With Bourn set to become a free agent after the 2012 season, it is not unreasonable to wonder if his upcoming contract is in the back of his mind. Bourn put to rest any concerns about his mindset, saying that his focus is on preparing for the season and that his agent Scott Boras will let him know if there are any contract talks.
"Playing and getting ready for the season is pretty much all I'm focused on," Bourn said.
Bourn should be the prototypical leadoff hitter that the Braves have been lacking since the days of Rafael Furcal. He has led the National League in stolen bases in each of the last three seasons, and he also provides Gold Glove defense in center field.
“I feel like we have a real good team,” Bourn said. “I felt like we had a real good team last year. I didn’t feel like anything was wrong with our team, we just had some breaks, had a couple of injuries."
Bourn is optimistic about the upcoming season, specifically the talent and depth on the pitching staff.
“I’ve never been on a team where the pitching is that deep, where you have six or seven starters that really can start anywhere in the big leagues," Bourn said. "It’s a good thing to be part of, and with the bullpen we have – if we can just score for them, we’ll be all right.”
The Braves have maintained that they are interested in extending Bourn, but it is not known whether they have had any contract talks with Boras yet. Bourn may command over $10 million per year in a long-term deal, which may very well be out of the Braves' price range.
“It’s fun to watch him put pressure on the defense,” Gonzalez said. “A ground ball to the left side, he’s got a chance to beat it out. Ball in the gap, he can get a triple. It’s going to be fun watching him play."Tags: Atlanta, Atlanta Braves, Michael Bourn, MLB