Does it matter that Wren and Gonzalez are entering the final year of their contracts?

David Manning-USA TODAY Sports

Wren and Gonzalez enter the final year of their contracts

Dave O'Brien wrote a good piece yesterday on Frank Wren and Fredi Gonzalez entering the final year of their respective contracts.

DOB writes about their respective Braves careers to date, their ups and downs and everything in between, and also compares their current status to others in a similar situation as last year. He also mentions that while they are currently unsigned past 2014, that there is certainly a chance that they have extensions already in place but that have not yet been announced.

So, what does it mean that they are unsigned? Truthfully, it is hard to tell. I am certain that both would like to have the confidence from upper management that they have done a good enough job to warrant staying here after this season. One thing I am pretty confident in is that Gonzalez will be managing with the interests of winning in 2014 above most all else next season. What this means to me is that if Dan Uggla isn't hitting, he isn't playing. The same is probably true for B.J. Upton too and whichever other Brave may end up underperforming.

Fredi already showed that he was willing to make such moves in the postseason last year, when everything was on the line. So if he is concerned about his job not being there next season, I do not expect him to be hesitant to put highly paid players on the bench as he sees fit. I look at that as a positive and a negative. Fredi has showed in the past to be somewhat quick with the trigger in that respect (Remember the Heyward and Constanza situation/), but putting a player like Tommy La Stella at second base and putting Dan Uggla on the bench if the numbers suggest it could be a justifiably bold move.

For Wren, there could be a bit of risk that he would go all out to make 2014 his year, but he certainly hasn't done that this offseason. While there is a debate about whether the Braves need an "ace" or not, if Wren was truthfully willing to put it all in for 2014 he would have put the chips on the table and made a trade for one. Of course the decision isn't all his and he has not built up the type of rapport that John Schuerholz did before his triumphant exit (see Mark Teixeira), so Wren may not have as much leeway to sell the farm ala 2007.

In the end, I do not think this is too important, but it is something to keep mind of. If the team really stinks this year, for whatever reason, Fredi could certainly be gone. Wren could be too, but I think he has built a bit of a longer leash than Gonzalez has. Wren's consistently built a winning ballclub on a limited payroll and has done so while continually having a younger and younger major league roster. Let's hope this ends up being a non issue, but is something to follow throughout the season.

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