Thursday, October 11, 2007
Rating The Starting-Pitching FA Market
Since so many teams are looking to sign an arm or two this offseason, I figured I would rate the top 5 remaining free-agents and the type of deal they should receive. You can tell by looking that the market is extremely slim this year, so teams must make sure they can choose wisely. I've already taken out Clemens, Rogers, and Glavine since they are either going to retire or stick to a specific team(s). Let's begin:
* Honoralbe Mentions: Josh Fogg
5. Bartolo Colon. The 2006 Cy Young winner has been battling back problems ever since, but is still pretty lethal if he can stay healthy. Colon in a small-market team like the Royals or Reds would make sense, especially as they can afford an injury-plagued season if one is brought upon. 2-year $5M sounds very reasonable.
4. Randy Wolf. Wolf had a decent season in Los Angeles, especially with the fact that he had to battle some tough injury bugs. He's 31, which is fairly young for this year's class. He does have a $9M option though, and the Dodgers still don't know if they are going to pick this up. I can still see Randy getting a $7M 3-year deal somewhere.
3. Kyle Lohse. One of the few pitchers who haven't turned 30 yet, Kyle is still devloping and has more upside than any of the other pitchers. He still has somewhat of a wild arm though. 5-year deal worth $35M? Especially with Boras at his side.
2. Greg Maddux. Yes, he's old and he might not even want to return next season, but if Mad Dog wanted to switch teams, he would have no problem signing for an $8M contract somewhere and continue to pitch his magic.
1. Andy Pettitte / Curt Schilling. Even thought I doubt the Yankees will waive his $16M option for '08, If Andy hits the open market he is hands down the best option for a team looking for a short-term fixture at the top of their rotation. Going 15-9 this year with a 4.05, and still being able to eclipse the 200 innings-pitched mark, Andy should easily get double-digit figures for 1-2 seasons.
Schilling is still very capable at his age, and he is showing that he's still got it in this year's postseason.
As you can see, this is one of the weakest markets in history, especially with all the vast question marks that comes with age. Will be nice to see if one of these veterans like Jason Jennings can turn his season around.