Predicting Where Top Remaining MLB Free Agents Will Land
Potential Top Remaining MLB Free Agent Destinations
Although there have already been a few free agent signings across MLB, the offseason has been relatively slow due to the fact that a lot more teams have more money to spend given the new television deals. However, there are still a few of the best baseball players in the world that may be looking to start with a clean slate elsewhere.
What makes this offseason different than most is that some of the teams that wouldn't stand a chance in making a big signing due to the lack of talent may now have the opportunity to sign free agents with the help of that extra TV deal income. The Minnesota Twins proved this to be correct as they went out and convinced pitchers Ricky Nolasco and Phil Hughes that the Twin Cities were the place to be for them, but don't expect this trend to continue in regards to the big moneymakers of the future.
When it comes down to big-time free agent signings, Nolasco and Hughes don't necessarily fit the bill. Yes, Nolasco had a great season with the Miami Marlins, but the players that are going to sign this offseason for a team that is willing to give out contracts between $100-$250 million are going to go to the teams that are projected to be playoff contenders in 2014. All of these highly sought-after free agents want to win, and they want to win now.
Heading into the month of December and the MLB Winter Meetings, here are some predictions of where the top remaining MLB free agents will land.
5. Carlos Beltran
Carlos Beltran will find himself having a reunion with the Kansas City Royals, the team that gave him his first shot at stardom back when they drafted him in the second round of the 1995 amateur draft.
4. Shin-Soo Choo
With Curtis Granderson most likely signing elsewhere, the New York Yankees will find themselves offering big money to Shin-Soo Chooin order to fill the void in center field in the Bronx.
3. Mike Napoli
Despite what looks to be a lengthy re-signing process between Mike Napoli and the Boston Red Sox, the two parties will not part ways this offseason. Napoli's initial signing last offseason took a long time to happen as well, and after he proved to be a vital part in their World Series championship run, the love affair between the two will keep on going.
2. Jacoby Ellsbury
With Austin Jackson involved in the rumor mill out of the Detroit Tigers organization and a ton of money being freed up after the Prince Fielder trade, Jacoby Ellsbury is in prime position to take over the center field position for the Tigers.
1. Robinson Cano
Here comes the shocker. Although Toronto Blue Jays GM Alex Anthopoulos created a policy against signing free agents for more than five seasons at a time, he may be convinced to think otherwise when it comes down to Robinson Cano. They are in desperate need of a second baseman, and Cano is the best in the business. The likes of Jose Reyes, Edwin Encarnacion and Jose Bautista will for sure be lobbying for this signing to happen as well. Both Reyes and Encarnacion were teammates of Cano's on the Dominican Republic team at the WBC. The potential marriage makes a lot of sense.
Team owners, Rogers Communications, just committed to dishing out approximately $5 billion dollars in their new television deal with the NHL. When it comes down to those types of numbers, what's the problem with dishing out another $300 million? If anyone can make this type of deal happen, it's Alex Anthopoulos. Cano will sign with the Blue Jays this offseason.