In my article ten days ago I wrote about the top four free agents still remaining and how all of them are Scott Boras clients. As spring training is merely two days away all four are still available along with 44 more of the top 50 free agents that have been available since the World Series ended on November 1, 2023.
Today, let’s take a look at some of the other top names left.
Hyun Jin Ryu
Many teams are looking for a solid left-handed middle of the rotation guy. Hyun Jin Ryu would be a good fit for any of those teams. He was out most of last season coming back from Tommy John surgery and when he returned late in the season he suffered a knee injury too. However, for a left handed pitcher he has an average career line with a 3.26 ERA and 1.18 WHIP making him a palpable middle of the rotation guy who might be available at a lower price tag after returning from Tommy John surgery last year.
Being a Cubs fan this is a guy I have watched since the Cubs called him up for the minors. Many teams out there still need a good power bat in their lineup who is also able to play in the outfield. Even though Soler has is a below average overall hitter he is one of the better power hitters still available on the free agent market. He hit 36 homeruns in 2023 after missing most of 2022 with a back injury and separately a pelvis injury. He’d be a good fit for many teams thanks to the Universal DH rule that was added following the 2022 lockout.
There are a few teams, including the Cubs, who need a major league caliber bat at first base. Belt might be a great option for any of those teams with his career slash line .261 BA / .357 OBP/ .460 SLG / .817 OPS. While these are slightly above average numbers if placed in the middle of most batting lineups he Belt could become a difference maker helping a team solidify their lineup and appear to be more competitive on paper.
Anderson is an above average hitter who has suffered many injuries dating back to 2018. Many teams are in need of a solid major league shortstop who could potentially be willing to move over to second or third. With his career slash line .282 BA / .312 OBP / .422 SLG / .734 SLG the former White Sox shortstop would be a wonderful fit for many teams trying to fill a hole in their middle infield.
With that… let’s see if the available free agents start to fall off the board fast leading up to the first spring training game on February 22nd.
If you cannot play with them, then root for them.