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Braves News: International free agency opens today, Melky Cabrera retires, and more

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Twenty years removed from the trade that made Gary Sheffield a Brave

Boston Red Sox vs. Atlanta Braves

While we eagerly await further developments from the now ongoing CBA talks, it is important to remember that today is the day that international free agents can be signed. The Braves are finally out of the penalty box in terms of international free agency and they are expected to sign at least two high profile international free agents. If you need a quick primer as to what is going on with international signings, we have you covered right here.

Looking back a bit further, on January 15, 2002, Gary Sheffield was brought to Atlanta in the trade that sent Brian Jordan, Odalis Perez, and a minor league player to the Los Angeles Dodgers.

The outfielder got off to a slow start in the beginning months of the 2002 season, but worked hard as of late to produce a .307 batting average and hit 25 home runs.

Sheffield’s 2003 season with the Braves was arguably one of the best of his career. He slashed .330/.419/.604 that season, with 39 home runs and 132 RBIs. His WAR reached a career high of 6.8. This dominant season put the then 35-year old in 3rd place for MVP voting, behind Barry Bonds and Albert Pujols.

Sheffield’s short time in Atlanta came to an end following the 2003 season, when he entered free agency and signed a deal with the New York Yankees.

More Braves News:

Would Mark Teixeira be in the Hall of Fame if he escaped injury?

Find out about the state of Atlanta’s future outfield, lockout concerns, and more in yesterday’s Braves Mailbag.

MLB News:

Rays bullpen catcher, Jean Ramirez, passed away on January 11th. The cause of death was ruled a suicide.

OF Melky Cabrera announces retirement after 15 consecutive MLB seasons. Cabrera spent a short stint with the Braves, but had his most productive season with the Giants.

After adopting robo-umps in 2019, the Atlantic League will be returning to traditional umpires.