MARKAKIS AGREES TO FOUR YEAR DEAL WITH THE BRAVES

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Outfielder Nick Markakis has agreed on a four-year contract with The Braves sources This end’s  31-year-old Markakis’ long association with the Orioles and likely precipitating a further overhaul by Atlanta.  Nick Markakis is expected to replace Jason Heyward for the Braves.

As negotiations with the Orioles went on for weeks, the Braves stepped in with an aggressive pursuit of Markakis that paid off with a return to his native Georgia. Markakis will most likely  leadoff and play right field for The Braves.

Markakis spent the first nine years of his career with Baltimore, and his return was considered, because of Orioles owner Peter Angelos’ fondness for him. The Orioles had discussed a contract for  four years and $40 million with Markakis, who hit .276 and won a Gold Glove last season. The Braves were believed to be offering somewhere in the neighborhood of $44 million.

After showing some power in his early 20s, Markakis settled in as an on-base threat, something the Braves desperately need after posting a .305 OBP and dealing Heyward. Signing Markakis almost certainly result in  the Braves to trading either Justin Upton or Evan Gattis.

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