The 39-year-old has spent all 15 seasons of his MLB career with the St. Louis Cardinals, but signing with the Braves would be a bit of a homecoming for the Georgia native.
Wainwright is no stranger to the Braves organization, either. Atlanta selected him with the 29th pick in the 2000 draft, but the club traded the now three-time All-Star to the Cardinals after the 2003 campaign alongside pitchers Ray King and Jason Marquis in exchange for outfielder J.D. Drew and catcher Eli Marrero.
Wainwright has gone on to post a 167-98 record with a 3.38 ERA, 1.23 WHIP, and 1,830 strikeouts over 2,169 1/3 career innings with the Red Birds. He’s also finished among the top three in Cy Young voting four times.
Drew, the centerpiece of the deal coming back from the Cardinals, only spent one season with the Braves.
The Cardinals hold exclusive negotiating rights with Wainwright for five days following the World Series, though other teams are permitted to express interest. If St. Louis doesn’t re-sign him before Sunday, Wainwright will be able to ink a deal with any club.
Despite his age, something may be left in Wainwright’s tank. Over 10 starts in 2020, he went 5-3 with a 3.15 ERA. If he were to land with Atlanta, Wainwright would serve as the veteran presence for a young rotation featuring blooming stars Max Fried, Mike Soroka, and Ian Anderson.