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Atlanta Braves Catcher Brian McCann Yet To Begin Contract Extension Talks

Brian McCann may be the least talked about star in baseball. The 27-year old catcher is as consistent as anyone in baseball at the plate and he does so while handling the rigors of playing upwards of 130 games behind the plate. It may seem like just yesterday, but B-Mac has been with the Braves since the summer of 2005 and only has one guaranteed year left on his contract.

McCann also has an option for the 2013 season worth $12 million that is very likely to be picked up, but nothing has been made official by the front office.

It would be tough to imagine Atlanta without Mac behind home plate. He is undoubtably one of the biggest fan-favorites on the club (if not the fan favorite after Chipper Jones) and is a leader in the clubhouse.

This being said, ludicrous contracts are being given out to players in this day and age of the game and it is not a foregone conclusion that McCann will be a Brave come the 2013 season.

That is not to say Frank Wren will not approach the five-time All-Star catcher about a potential contract extension. As a matter of fact, those talks are just about guaranteed to happen. As for when they transpire is still up in the air.

David O'Brien of the AJC recently addressed the idea of adding a few years to Mac's contract to keep him in Atlanta for the foreseeable future.

No extension talks have begun, and it's possible the Braves would wait until next offseason to initiate any discussions. We'll assume they will make an offer to the hometown star, who would draw a ton of interest if he ever hit the open market.

McCann, 27, said he's not thinking about any of that.

"I'm going to go out and play baseball and see what happens," he said. "I prepare every offseason like I do. Hopefully we have a productive season and go from there."

Asked if it would be important to him to get an offer before the 2013 season, McCann, "I'm just going to play baseball. That's all I care about. Anything else, I'm not too worried about."

He's represented by B.B. Abbott, who also is Chipper Jones' longtime agent.

The Braves essentially have 18 months to hammer out a deal with their catcher, which should be plenty of time to get something worked out that not only sets Brian and his family up for life, but also gives the front office some flexibility with the budget to address other concerns. As O'Brien mentions, if McCann were to ever hit the open market, you can bet Atlanta would have absolutely no chance of re-signing him unless he took a huge hometown discount.

One big factor in all of this: McCann and Chipper Jones are good friends, and they share the same agent. Surely that has to work in the favor of both sides once the extension talks begin.

Personally, I see B-Mac spending most of his career in Atlanta until his body can simply no long handle the riggers of being a starting catcher. That may be in three years or that may be in seven years, but I just cannot imagine the Braves letting him go until that day arrives.

Photographs by coka_koehler used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.