Saturday, February 3, 2018


I know, you've heard enough about Mike Moustakas. Well... I have some thoughts.  Here it goes...

Credit: Peter G. Aiken-USA TODAY Sports
Mike Moustakas is in trouble in his quest to get a big, free agent contract. Look, he is a top 5 free agent and was expected to get a deal of 5 years, $85 million. Plus, he's coming off of a great season where he hit 38 homers for the Royals. But what's the deal?   Well, I see it as a real possibility that he is unable to get a long-term deal.  Here's why...

Third Base is already set on the following teams:

--Boston Red Sox: Rafael Devers, a top prospect. By the way, the DH is also locked up.

--Cleveland Indians: Jose Ramirez. The DH is also locked up with Encarnacion.

--Detroit Tigers: Jeimer Candelario, a top prospect they got from Cubs for Justin Wilson. The DH is Victor Martinez.

Photo: AP
--Houston Astros: Alex Bregman. The DH is Marwin Gonzalez.

--Los Angeles Angels: Just signed Zack Cozart to play 3B.

Photo: USA Today
--Minnesota Twins: Miguel Sano. Now, the DH slot might be open, but if Twins spend money, it will be on pitching.

Photo by Michael Zagaris/Oakland Athletics/Getty Images
--Oakland A's: Matt Chapman, a top prospect. The DH is Kris Davis

--Seattle Mariners: Kyle Seager. The DH is Nelson Cruz

--Tampa Bay Rays: Christian Arroyo, a top prospect they just got from the Giants for Longoria.

Photo: Dallas Morning News
--Texas Rangers: Adrian Beltre. The DH is Choo.

--Toronto Blue Jays: Josh Donaldson. The DH is Kendrys Morales.

--Arizona Diamondbacks: Jake Lamb. He had 30 HR, 105 RBIs last year.

--Chicago Cubs: Kris Bryant. Need I say more?

--Cincinnati Reds: Eugenio Suarez. 26 homers, 82 RBIs last year.

--Colorado Rockies: Nolan Arenado

--LA Dodgers: Justin Turner

Photo: Getty Images
--Milwaukee Brewers: Travis Shaw. 31 HR, 101 RBIs last year

--Philadelphia Phillies: Maikel Franco. He had 24 homers and 76 RBIs last year

--San Diego Padres: Chase Headley

--San Francisco Giants: Evan Longoria

--Washington Nationals: Anthony Rendon

This leaves only 9 teams that are potentially in the market for a third baseman. Of those 9 teams however, there are 4 that are clearly not going to spend money on a big free agent. Those are...

--Chicago White Sox: The youth movement is happening. They are unlikely to make a big money signing while they are rebuilding.

--Atlanta Braves: Youth movement – not spending money on big free agents

--Miami Marlins: Um. No.

Photo: Getty Images
--Pittsburgh Pirates: They are not seeking to contend after trading away Gerrit Cole and Andrew McCutchen. So they won’t give out a big free agent contract now. Bottom line.

So what does this all mean? It means the only teams that are legitimate options for Moustakas are the following, listed in order of likelihood in my opinion:

--New York Mets: This is the best fit out of all the teams. They have nobody at third. But this team is simply too cheap to give Moustakas a big long-term contract for $15M+ per year.

--Baltimore Orioles: Yes, they have Machado, but I suppose if he plays short, the Orioles can sign a third baseman. But look, I think it's unlikely though, as this would preclude them from keeping Machado at 3rd long-term if they re-sign him. Look, Baltimore is already burned by the bad, long-term contracts that they just signed with Chris Davis and Mark Trumbo. So I find it unlikely that they would sign Moustakas long-term. But hey, anything is possible.

--New York Yankees: They won’t sign Mike Moustakas long-term due to the salary cap and their desire to go for Machado next off season. But look, if he takes a lower priced 1 or 2 year deal, this is possible. Something to think about.

--Kansas City Royals: If the Royals lose out on Hosmer which is definitely possibly, they could turn to Moustakas.  I just don’t think they want to spend right now when they know they are far from contending.

--St. Louis Cardinals: The Cards have Jedd Gyorko at 3rd and he's signed for 4 more years, $37M. But he could also play 2B if they acquired a 3rd baseman. They also have Kolten Wong at second who hit .285 last year. And so, signing Moustakas for third is probably unlikely, but not impossible to see, so I included them here.

Out of the 9 teams that don’t already have clearly established 3rd baseman, only 5 can be considered a real possibility to sign Moustakas. And there are real issues with feeling confident that any of these teams would be willing to do so, especially on a long-term big-money deal.

And so, like I opened with, I think Moustakas is in trouble and will ultimately have to settle for a 1 or 2-year deal somewhere. If he becomes willing to sign a 1-year deal, then the Yanks would clearly be interested.  They have $20 million under the cap, but would want to leave some space for a deadline acquisition.  I'm going with a 1 year, $14 million deal. What do you think?

Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports
Anyway, here's my prediction. Moustakas goes to the Mets. Despite the cheapness, they are the best fit.  Moose is predicted to get a 5-year, $85M contract, but when Moustakas’ price tag comes down because he has no other options, the Mets might hop in there and get him for about 3 years, $45 million. It makes a ton of sense. Plus, it would be a great signing for them. Then again... the Orioles still pop in my mind.  They can easily put him at 3rd and put Machado at short and then they have a replacement for Machado, who is obviously leaving in free agency.

A lot to digest... but there's way to much garbage out on Moustakas right now.  I had to put things in better sense for you all.  No better place than on BYB.

--Douglas Solomon
BYB Writer

20% Off at with code YANKEEBLUE2017

No comments:

Post a Comment

Thank you for commenting on Bleeding Yankee Blue.