Well baseball fans the off-season is here which means its hot stove time. There are 13 free agents that are tied to a compensation pick, mean that if another team signs that player the former team will lose out on their first round pick more importantly the money assigned to that slot. Top 10 picks are protected in which the team gives up their next highest pick. So for example, The Astros decide to nearly double their payroll by signing Robbie Cano since the Stros have the first pick they would give up their second round pick. The 13 players who declined the $14.1 million offer are:
- Carlos Beltran – OF – St. Louis
- Robinson Cano – 2B – New York Yankees
- Shin-Soo Choo – OF – Cincinnati
- Nelson Cruz – OF – Texas
- Stephen Drew – SS – Boston
- Jacoby Elsbury – OF – Boston
- Curtis Granderson – OF – NYY
- Ubaldo Jimenez – RHP – Cleveland
- Hiroki Kuroda – RHP – NYY
- Brian McCann – C/DH – Atlanta
- Kendrys Morales – 1B/DH – Seattle
- Mike Mapoli – 1B/DH – Boston
- Ervin Santana – RHP – Kansas City
Carlos Beltran – Baltimore – Beltran would have a really good fit in Baltimore, the O’s only have 3 outfielders on there active 40 man. He would command a pretty penny however the O’s are more built to win now and need that power clean up hitter to really put them over the top of the tough AL east. In 2012 the O’s were clutch in extra innings and fell off the wagon in 2013 look for the clutch Beltran to look good in black and orange.
Robinson Cano – NYY – Anyone want to sign on that dotted line for $300 million seeing as how Josh Hamilton, Albert Pujols, and Alex Rodriguez have all worked out so well for those teams. I don’t see him getting that $300 million contract but he will be paid.
Shin-Soo Choo – Houston – Yes the Astros finally do something besides pick 1st in every draft. The Astros really need help getting on base and could really use the OBP. Of course you need someone to knock those people in which the Astros have some young power hitters in the minors. Choo would be a nice addition to the young pitching staff that kept most games low scoring.
Nelson Cruz – Texas – Yes I’m aware people are saying the Ranger’s are not really going after Nelson with the Fielder deal however that starting outfield would be Alex Rios, Leonys Martin, and Greg Gentry. The fourth outfielder will mostly likely be Engel Beltre. Prince is a huge addition and helps ease the log jam in the infield however Prince will take a while to get used to the Texas heat so adding another power bat.
Stephen Drew – St. Louis – The Cardinals have three shortstops on the 40 man, none of them come close to producing what Drew can do. Drew is an upgrade compared to Kozma. Plus Drew is a left-handed bat that the Cardinals don’t have their only left-handed bats are Carpenter, Wong, Descalso, and Adams. Wong and Adams are locks for starting jobs at 1B and 2B.
Jacoby Elsbury – Texas – Elsbury is going to play for the team that he made his debut against back in 07′. Jacoby would replace the left-handed bat that Murphy left when he went to Cleveland. Jacboy will also replace the base stealing that was lost when Ian was traded. Jacoby lead the AL with 52 stolen bases. Jacoby leads off, Rios behind him, then Cruz, and Beltre to clean everything up. That would give starting pitchers problems all season.
Curtis Granderson – Chicago Cubs – Just as the Astros need to do something besides draft 1st the Cubbies are in the same boat. Theo needs to do something, this is year three of him trying to break another curse. He has drafted very well and the cubs have the infield pretty well taken care of but that outfield is atrocious. Outside of Chicago I’m sure few people can name even two outfielders are the current Cubs 40 man. Granderson will add a power as well as a left-handed bat into that line up.
Ubaldo Jimenez – NYY – The Yankees need pitching period. Outside of Nova and C.C. the Yankees pitching staff is as open as the NFC East. The Yankees have some prospects, did I just really type that, who are almost major league ready. Manny Banuelos is 22 and waiting his turn. While Michael Pineda is coming off of shoulder surgery he has been sidelined for about a full season and a half. Jimenez would be fill out that rotation if Pineda stays healthy and performs like he did in Seattle and if Manny makes the opening day roster.
Hiroki Kuroda – Japan – There are questions to weather Kuroda will come back to the states. He turned down the 14.1 million dollar offer from the Yankees. I don’t see any other team offering him any close to that. The Yankees are most likely going to focus on Masahiro Tanaka.
Brian McCann – Texas – I understand Texas is signing half of the free agents this year and I know that spending money hasn’t worked for some teams (see LA) but this team has a good farm system, needs offensive help, and consistent pitching. McCann could fill in the DH role and also play behind the plate when Prince needs a break from this Texas heat. Another thing that makes the Rangers different from the LA teams is Ron Washington. Ron is a players manager he relates to the players and can get the best out of them. He can help create chemistry.
Kendrys Morales – Minnesota – Morales was a tough one to decider. I don’t see Seattle resigning him anything past one year as Montera comes back to take over as DH with Smoak at 1B and Zunino behind the backstop. Morales isn’t going to play any fielding position so any NL teams are out which leaves with the Yankees or the Twins and Minnesota wins out. Morales would replace Morneau as the clean up hitter.
Mike Napoli – Colorado – The Rockies make a splash and let us know they still have a team up in the Mile High city. Nap will replace the bat of Rockies’ great Todd Helton and adds the bat that Helton once had.
Ervin Santana – Pittsburgh – Last but not least, Santana took me a couple of days to pick where I think he should go. Pittsburgh to me needs a couple of bats and one more stout rotation starter. Of course they do have the young pitching up and coming and if any of them work out anything close to Cole then the Pirates will be stout for years to come. Santana will cost them their 27th pick which compared to where they were picking I believe it will be a good trade-off. Hopefully Santanta can talk to Liriano about how to find the fountain of youth all though Santana isn’t that old.
There are over 100 more free agents however these are the ones that are tied to pick compensation. Now all we have to do is see where the chips fall and see who the first domino is to fall. Thanks everyone for taking the time to read my blog and these post. If you have any questions, comments, concernes please comment below or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I will have a twitter and hopefully Facebook page in the next week. Until next time enjoy your Thanksgiving and I look forward to seeing the comments and emails. Thanks to ESPN, CBSsports, and BleacherReport for information and stats used.
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