Glavine Back with the Braves

Tom Glavine is a Brave again. The 41-year-old former Braves ace agreed to terms late Sunday on a one-year, $8 million free-agent contract to return to the team.

The Braves are expected to announce the signing at a news conference Monday afternoon at Turner Field, which Glavine is scheduled to attend.

Glavine has spent the last five seasons with the New York Mets. During that time, he earned his 300th career victory, and now has 303 for his career.

The Braves are happy to get Glavine back. He spent 16 seasons with the Braves where he won 242 games and two Cy Young Awards.

Glavine was 13-8 with a 4.45 ERA in 200-1/3 innings during the 2007 season for the Mets. He turned down a $13 million option for a sixth season in New York in hopes of working out a deal with the Braves and finishing his career back in Atlanta.

His ERA was below 4.00 before Glavine was rocked for 13 runs in 5-1/3 innings over his final two starts. He was booed as he left the field after recording just one out and giving up seven runs on the final day of the season (that was pretty miserable for Glavine and heartbreaking for all the Mets fans), a loss that completed a historic Mets collapse that kept them out of the postseason (the Phillies made it to the playoffs instead).

Glavine was 5-0 with a 2.99 ERA in his 11 starts leading up to those final two defeats.

The Braves have now bolstered their rotation, which includes John Smoltz, Tim Hudson, Chuck James, and (supposedly) Mike Hampton. Hampton has been sidelined for the last two seasons, so there is a question whether he will be effective in 2008.

Others who could compete for a spot include rookie lefty Jo-Jo Reyes; rookie newcomer Jair Jurrjens, acquired from Detroit in the Edgar Renteria trade last month; and Jeff Bennett, who was pretty awesome in a late-season callup and has been nothing short of amazing in the in the Venezuelan Winter League.

No question about it: Glavine wanted to come to Atlanta. He wants to finish his career there. He was willing to take a major “hometown discount” for the opportunity to live close to his Alpharetta home with his wife and four children during the year.

The Braves’ initially offered $6.5 million on Friday, quickly raised that to $7 million, and by Sunday night agreed to go to $8 million, which Glavine believed to be a fair discount. It’s a rather simple contract, with no performance incentives or any options or buyouts.

Let’s hope Glavine has a healthy, dominating 2008 season. I don’t expect him to relive his glory days in Atlanta, but I do expect him to please the crowds and do a better job than he did in New York.

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~ by mlb2007playoffs on November 19, 2007.

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