It’s January 21, 2013 and Michael Bourn still doesn’t have a place to call home. Most baseball fans knew the open market for Bourn would be a slow-moving one, seeing as Scott Boras was his agent. But no one could have predicted it being this complicated.
As of right now, there aren’t really any strong rumors linking Bourn to any team. It’s more of a “well, it would be nice” type of deal for a lot of GMs. The reason for the slow market is due to the fact Bourn (and Boras) think they deserve to be paid the big bucks. I mean, Bourn is one of the better fielders and speedsters in baseball, so he deserves to be paid, right? But what team actually needs him?
His former team, the Atlanta Braves, have been rumored to bring Bourn back, even though they signed BJ Upton earlier this off-season. I highly doubt the Braves would be willing to bring Bourn back, especially since Boras will not settle for a discount. Outside of the Braves, there have been a couple other linked teams. The first one has been the Texas Rangers, who have a lot of unused revenue saved up from missing out on a lot of big-ticket free agents. I do think Bourn would be a good fit for Texas, seeing as they need a center fielder – Gentry and Martin aren’t going to cut it – and a true leadoff hitter. While Ian Kinsler is a solid player, he might be better suited moving down in the order.
Outside of the Rangers, there isn’t really a market for Boras to attack. The Tampa Bay Rays would be the best fit, but are they really going to spend the money? Although I have questioned Boras’ ways this off-season, I cannot doubt the man who got Rafael Soriano a 2-year, $28 million deal.
Bourn will get his money, but there needs to be a team that truly needs his services in order to spend that kind of dough. If I had to put money on a team, it would be the Rangers, with the Rays and possibly the San Francisco Giants as a dark horse.