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Braves' GM says Braves could be buyers if the team is in contention

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The general wisdom surrounding the Braves is that they will not be increasing payroll until the 2017 season. Coppy says not so fast...

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The Braves roster, as it stands, is the product of varying factors. First, many of the players the team had were traded away for prospects to help restock what was a barren farm system. Second, the Braves did not fill the vacancies with higher end veterans/free agents because the prevailing thought was that the team was cutting costs to save money before the purse strings were loosened going in to the first season at SunTrust Park in 2017.

Mark Bowman's report certainly gives rise to a lot of thoughts and theories. Now, the reasoning is clearly out of the ordinary for a team to want to only spend money if there is actually going to be a return on the investment in terms of a playoff run, etc. However, for Coppy to put this out there does seem to indicate a few things about the state of the Braves in the minds of the front office.

To start with, the Braves do probably plan to spend the $10 million that is currently in the coffers in the international free agent market (the draft pool is set so no extra spending is going to happen there). It's also true that the Braves are willing, however, to accelerate their timeline and trade for and/or sign pieces in 2016 if the team finds itself in contention for a playoff spot at the trade deadline.

The last thing is certainly the most interesting as it does go against the consensus opinion about the Braves this coming season. The Braves seem to be convinced that this year's team is going to be significantly better than last year's team that won just 67 games. With those expectations and the fact that it's possible that some of the prospects that were being stockpiled for 2017(most likely Tyrell Jenkins or Aaron Blair) could break camp with the big league club, the Braves may be aiming a bit higher than just getting a high draft pick this season.

Or they are just saying these things so that at least some fans turn out for the Braves final season at Turner Field...one of the two.