2014 MLB Free Agency: 5 Potential Landing Spots for Jhonny Peralta
5 Possible Clubs That Could Ink Jhonny Peralta
Despite being suspended for 50 games during the 2014 MLB season for his involvement with PEDs, Jhonny Peralta will still be a well sought-after free agent going into the offseason, and rightfully so. He was arguably the Detroit Tigers' best offensive weapon throughout the playoffs, and increased his value going into free agency.
The question is, who wants Peralta's services the most? There are many teams throughout the league that could use an offensive upgrade at the shortstop position. Peralta's power and his ability to drive the ball makes him a threat at any spot in the top half of the lineup, which is rare for a position player that spends his day up the middle of the diamond. Although he may have initially signed for a cheaper price due to his involvement with PEDs during the season, teams may now find themselves trying to out-duel each other in the Peralta sweepstakes. Those are the types of negotiations that should be music to the free agent's ears.
Peralta's great playoff bat and his decent defensive abilities should make him a hot commodity among the many teams that need a shortstop. Here are five potential ball clubs that could find themselves in contract talks with Peralta as he heads into free agency.
5. Seattle Mariners
Although they got decent play out of a young up-and-coming shortstop in Brad Miller, the Seattle Mariners lacked stability at the position and found themselves starting at least five different shortstops throughout the 2013 season. To top it off, the Mariners could provide Peralta with a quick reunion with former Tigers hitting coach Lloyd McClendon as he was just recently named as the Mariners' new manager.
4. Toronto Blue Jays
Although their main concerns are with their starting pitching and situation behind the plate, the Toronto Blue Jays are also in need of help at second base. If Blue Jays GM Alex Anthopoulos could convince either Peralta or current shortstop Jose Reyes to take a stab at second base, Peralta would fit in right away with this already potent offense.
3. St. Louis Cardinals
After Pete Kozma's poor defensive performance during the playoffs, the St. Louis Cardinals should realize that they are clearly vulnerable at the shortstop position. Signing Peralta would give them another good playoff bat that could be the difference if they once again find themselves playing baseball in October.
2. New York Mets
The New York Mets have both the money to spend and a defensive vacancy with Peralta's name on it. He would round out the left side of the infield as he would pair up and hit either in front of or directly behind third baseman David Wright.
1. Pittsburgh Pirates
The Pittsburgh Pirates are poised to make another run at the playoffs for what seems to be at least a few years to come. Adding Peralta to their lineup would bring some much-needed pop at the position. Clint Barmes was just okay for the Pirates throughout the season. If they want to play deeper into the 2014 season, they are going to have to commit to a shortstop that is better than 'just okay', and Peralta fits the bill.