What does "not in the same realm" really mean?

Bill Shanks

So, what in the world did the Braves offer Josh Donaldson?

WSB weekend anchor Alison Mastrangelo interviewed Donaldson on Friday and asked about him leaving the Braves.

Donaldson said Atlanta’s offer wasn’t “in the same realm” compared to the five-year, $100 million offer he got from the Twins.

“They (the Braves) ended up offering me late, like a day or so before, but it just didn’t work out and unfortunately because I really enjoyed my time there,” Donaldson said. “I think that was a good fit for me. I feel very fortunate and blessed just to be able to put on the uniform that I grew up of the team watching. It was a dream come true to be able to play there. Ultimately, it didn’t end up working out the way that we wanted it to.”

What exactly does not “in the same realm” mean? Okay, we obviously know it means the Braves were not close to what Donaldson got from the Twins. But does that mean the amount of years Atlanta offered was not close to the five he got from Minnesota, or was the money not even close?

The Braves likely did not offer more than a three-year deal, and that would be mainly based on Donaldson’s age. It is logical to question giving a 34-year-old a contract longer than three years. Baseball has changed a bit in the last few years, where players in their mid-30s don’t get the deals players in the same age group got in years past.

Did the Braves offer a three-year deal with a higher amount, like a three-year, $75 million dollar deal? That would be an AAV of $25 million obviously, but the total amount would still be $25 million short of what Donaldson got from the Twins.

Even though it’s not our money, there’s a big difference between $100 million, or even the guaranteed $92 million, compared to $75 million. And that might be enough of a difference for Donaldson to believe Atlanta’s offer was not in the same realm as what he received from the Twins.

Fans are going to wonder if the Braves were being cheap, or if ownership simply did not want to spend that much money on one player. If Donaldson was younger, even by two years, that might be a more logical question. But again, he’s 34, and it is easy to understand if general manager Alex Anthopoulos, who loves Donaldson, was just uneasy at offering any player that age a long-term deal at that financial level.

If the Braves turn around and trade for Nolan Arenado, who makes $35 million per season, then we won’t have to worry about ownership’s commitment. But since the organization is printing money with Truist Park, there’s plenty of reason for fans to wonder what type of financial commitment ownership is willing to make for a team that has been close to breaking through the last two seasons.

After the signing of Adeiny Hechavarria earlier this week, the Braves’ payroll is believed to be around $130 million right now. It is believed the 2019 payroll ended up near $144 million.

Listen to The Bill Shanks Show weekdays at 3:00 p.m. ET on Middle Georgia’s ESPN. You can listen online at TheSuperStations.com. Follow Bill on Twitter at @billshanks and you can email him at thebillshanksshow@yahoo.com.

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