10 MLB Teams Who Have Won the Offseason
10 MLB Teams Who Have Won the Offseason
Every team has tried to improve their club this winter, and some have done that more than others. There is still about six weeks until camps open, and quality free-agents still remain out on the open market. With the hot stove flame still burning, the perceived winners and losers can certainly shuffle.
One prime free-agent that is still out there receiving bids is pitcher Masahiro Tanaka, and the club that is able to land him would be viewed immediately as a winter winner. Those ongoing negotiations and eventual signing has many clubs keeping close tabs.
Aside from Tanaka, this winter has seen an abundance of trades and signings. The hot stove was certainly kept warm for the majority of the winter across the entire league. One of the most active teams this winter is not one from a major market but a club out by the bay. The Oakland Athletics have been very busy in trying to improve on two straight playoff appearances without having the unlimited budget to spend. The A's are showing that it is not how much you spend but how you spend that get results out on the field.
Honorable mentions as winners just outside of this list have to go to the Miami Marlins and Houston Astros. Those two teams have made a few moves that will bring needed improvements to their respective cities. It is refreshing to see those teams not just stand idle during the offseason while everyone else is wheeling and dealing. Players like Garrett Jones, Jarrod Saltalamacchia, Dexter Fowler, and Scott Feldman may not be blockbuster names, but they are all steps in a positive direction for those two clubs.
At the turn of the calendar, here are 10 teams that can put this offseason in the win column.
Nick Schaeflein is a sports writer for RantSports.com. Follow him on Twitter @ptchr2424 or add him to your network on Google.
10. Minnesota Twins
The Twins were near the bottom last season in several pitching categories. This year they have gone out to get Phil Hughes and Ricky Nolasco to try and change that. They have also added Jason Kubel as a run producer and a reliable catcher in Kurt Suzuki. That move allows Joe Mauer to play first base full time which should help the offense as well.
9. New York Mets
The Mets were able to land some upgrades to help a struggling offense and All-Star David Wright. With the additions of Chris Young and Curtis Granderson, the Mets are trying to create more on the bases. They will be without Matt Harvey this year, but adding Bartolo Colon will help soften that blow. If they can get one more bat, the Mets' offense could be promising.
8. Los Angeles Angels
The Angels were a major disappointment last season. After two straight offseasons of spending the big-time dollars, the Angels have been somewhat conservative this year. While they were somewhat under the radar, the Angels still managed to pick up some nice acquisitions in David Freese and Raul Ibanez. They will be complimentary pieces to the thunder of Josh Hamilton, Albert Pujols, and Mike Trout. They also added young pitchers in Hector Santiago and Tyler Skaggs to help a rotation that did not carry their weight last year.
7. Chicago White Sox
The White Sox were dreadful on offense a season ago. The majority of their roster was old and the farm system was subpar. This winter they have added Jose Abreu and Adam Eaton to help fill out the order. If they can also land a catcher as well, the Sox could really be on the rise. They have also added Scott Downs as a complementary piece to the bullpen.
6. Arizona Diamondbacks
The Diamondbacks are faced with the task of trying to keep up with the Dodgers and Giants. While they do have an MVP contender in Paul Goldschmidt, they needed more around him. Arizona is hoping Mark Trumbo will be that protection. They have also added a solid closer in Addison Reed that should improve a bottom five bullpen from a year ago.
5. St. Louis Cardinals
The Cardinals arguably have one of the best crop of young pitchers in the league, and pitching will be the strong point for this club. While they have lost two key bats, they did add Jhonny Peralta, Mark Ellis, and Peter Bourjos to fill holes that were severely in need of upgrades.
4. Detroit Tigers
The Tigers really kicked off the winter with two noteworthy trades. They will be without Prince Fielder but added Ian Kinsler along with Rajai Davis. The lineup will likely see more dimensions of speed than in seasons past. Detroit also added closer Joe Nathan to a bullpen that lacked a true stopper last season which arguably cost them a trip to the World Series.
3. Boston Red Sox
The reigning champions figure to make a strong run at a possible repeat this season. They have a core of players signed and one of the best rotations out there. At the top of that rotation is Jon Lester who Boston quickly re-signed before he hit the market. The Red Sox also added Edward Mujica to the bullpen, A.J. Pierzynski as the new catcher and re-signed Mike Napoli who will be a huge part of the offense.
2. Oakland A's
The A's are the little engine that could out west as they continue to defy odds with their operations. It is the Athletics that have won the division the last two seasons. This winter they have made around two dozen moves and put a premium on the bullpen. Additions to the club include Luke Gregerson, Jim Johnson, Scott Kazmir, and Drew Pomeranz. The one knock could be that they may be one hitter short of a deep run. For that reason, they are the runner-up winner.
1. Texas Rangers
Texas is putting together quite a five-year plan. They have made two trips to the World Series and are becoming one of the league's premier teams. This winter they have bulked up the offense with J.P. Arencibia and Shin-Soo Choo. Not to be forgotten is one of the acquisitions that really started the winter when they landed Prince Fielder. The Rangers hope that by starting the winter early results in playing late in the fall.