CSP Free Agent Tracker: Rankings and Rumors (Updated)

Posted: November 26, 2013 by The Cheap Seat Fan in MLB
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The free agent winter continues to revolve, and on the heels of the first ‘Cut The Check’ recap, it is time to see where everything stands on who’s available still. But the rankings have logic, and before we jump into where they stand, here’s why they are where they are—as well as how long they may stay there.

A few words on the big picture and select free agents:

  • The Yankees and Robinson Cano are at a stalemate. Thus far, there has only truly been interaction between both, but with the Winter Meetings looming, its getting closer and closer to leaving the window open for a mystery party. Ultimately, the Yanks are the only team with the type of resources to match Cano’s requests, but they have made it clear they will not go anywhere close to the much-discussed $300 million mark he requested, and are deep into the free agent scene everywhere else as well. There’s a time limit to everything.
  • Outside of Cano, the Yanks top target is Carlos Beltran currently. Upgrading their offense is a top priority, and the signing of Brian McCann was a big start towards those efforts. GM Brian Cashman has also made it clear that Curtis Granderson is also in the picture to return, but there is a chance that time schedules for each may not align if the Yankees don’t act early enough and it probably wouldn’t be resolved until Cano’s situation is.
  • Jacoby Ellsbury is the top outfielder available, but has had a slow to develop market. It is cloudy as to who the top suitors are currently, but there is still potentially no player available that could have more teams emerge that have interest in him. A later signing works best in his favor, as he will benefit from more teams entering the fray later on. While they are not in on him now, he would make logical sense for a soon to-be aggressive Cubs team and the Mariners, who are looking to make a big splash of some sort, could be a win for him as well. A return to Boston, doesn’t seem likely currently.
  • The St. Louis Cardinals struck first in the shortstop picture in signing Jhonny Peralta, and it leaves Stephen Drew without a clear favorite in the competitors market at shortstop. Another short-term deal could be in the picture there, in the same style as last season went for him.
  • The starting pitching scene will likely start up within the next week, but it has become slow to take off due to none of the top tier arms in this year’s class (which are in all reality just midgrade arms within the actual game) wanting to take the first deal, and then see the next guy set their negotiations from it.
  • The closer scene is defined by how many ninth inning spots stay open. When the Angels committed to Erneso Frieri and then signed Joe Smith to setup in front of him, it confirmed one potential spot had closed. The Yankees and Tigers are the two highest profile teams in need of solidifying their final frame.
  • And finally, there are the Rangers, who made a gain in acquiring Prince Fielder, but took a loss in missing on McCann. However, they could be in line for a number of significant gains, starting in the form of Shin-Soo Choo. If the Yankees concentrate on Beltran first, it leaves open a chance for the Rangers to pursue him for their right field vacancy, while still staying in position to resign Nelson Cruz as well.

And there it is; there are the rumors and reasoning, and here is where the current free agent scene stands.

For original rankings, refer to the first edition of the Top 75 Free Agents

  1. Robinson Cano-2B: Yankees, Nationals
  2. Jacoby Ellsbury-CF: Rangers, Yankees, Giants, Mariners
  3. Shin-Soo Choo-RF: Yankees, Rangers, Mariners, Reds, Tigers
  4. Matt Garza-RHP: Yankees, Twins, Angels, Orioles, Nationals
  5. Carlos Beltran-RF/DH: Yankees, Red Sox, Rangers, Royals, Mariners, Indians
  6. Ubaldo Jimenez-RHP: Yankees, Nationals, Angels
  7. Nelson Cruz-RF/DH: Rangers, Mets, Mariners, A’s
  8. Mike Napoli-1B: Red Sox, Mariners, Rockies
  9. Ervin Santana-RHP: Angels, Yankees, Twins, Royals
  10. Masahiro Tanaka-RHP: Yankees, Diamondbacks, Dodgers, Japan
  11. Stephen Drew-SS: Dodgers, Nationals, Mets, Yankees
  12. Curtis Granderson-LF: White Sox, Yankees, Cubs, Diamondbacks, Mets
  13. Hiroki Kuroda-RHP: Yankees, Angels, Japan
  14. Joe Nathan-RHP: Tigers, Yankees
  15. Grant Balfour-RHP: Yankees, Rockies, Tigers, Rays
  16. Kendrys Morales-1B: Mariners, White Sox, Indians, Mets
  17. Ricky Nolasco-RHP: Twins, Yankees, Mets, Nationals
  18. Fernando Rodney-RHP: Indians, Rays, Cubs
  19. Omar Infante-2B: Cubs, Orioles, Reds, Yankees
  20. Jarrod Saltalamacchia-C: Red Sox, White Sox, Twins
  21. Joaquin Benoit-RHP: Phillies, Tigers
  22. Brian Wilson-RHP: Tigers, Rockies
  23. Edward Mujica-RHP: Phillies, Angels, Tigers, Yankees
  24. A.J. Burnett-RHP: Pirates
  25. Nate McLouth-LF: Orioles
  26. Bronson Arroyo-RHP: Angels, Twins, Giants, Phillies
  27. Bartolo Colon-RHP: Athletics, Marlins, Angels
  28. Scott Kazmir-LHP: Twins, Orioles, Mets
  29. Jesse Crain-RHP: Red Sox, Rockies, Cubs
  30. Corey Hart-1B/RF: Brewers, Mets, Pirates
  31. James Loney-1B: Rays, Rockies
  32. Chris Perez-RHP: Astros, Athletics, Tigers
  33. Raul Ibanez-DH: Yankees
  34. Boone Logan-LHP: Yankees
  35. Gavin Floyd-RHP: Twins, Orioles
  36. Jason Kubel-OF/DH:
  37. Michael Morse-OF:
  38. Dioner Navarro-C: Mets
  39. Justin Morneau-1B: Rockies
  40. Scott Downs-LHP:
  41. A.J. Pierzynski-C: Twins, White Sox
  42. Matt Albers-RHP:
  43. Scott Feldman-RHP: Orioles
  44. J.P. Howell-LHP:
  45. Ryan Vogelsong-RHP: Giants
  46. Rafael Furcal-SS: Mets, Royals
  47. Scott Baker-RHP: Cubs,
  48. Jose Veras-RHP:
  49. Garrett Jones-OF (new, non-tendered):
  50. Roy Halladay-RHP: Blue Jays, Phillies
  51. Kevin Gregg-RHP:
  52. Juan Uribe-3B: Dodgers
  53. Chris Capuano-LHP: Twins
  54. Paul Konerko-1B: White Sox, Retirement
  55. Barry Zito-LHP:
  56. Kelly Johnson-2B: Yankees,
  57. Joba Chamberlain-RHP: Royals, Braves, Giants, Astros
  58. Phil Hughes-RHP: Twins, Royals, Padres, Giants, Marlins
  59. Francisco Rodriguez-RHP:
  60. Mark Ellis-2B:

For more on the free agent globe as it rotates, follow me on Twitter at @CheapSeatFan.

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