Thursday, January 17, 2013
If Bourn takes a one-year deal
By Jason A. Churchill
Free agent centerfielder Michael Bourn still may get a multi-year contract offer he likes, but if he goes the route of a one-year deal to hit the market again next offseason when fewer center field options are available, several clubs expected to contend could make sense.
Among those possibilities are the Texas Rangers, Atlanta Braves and Cincinnati Reds. The Reds, thus far, are reportedly planning to use Shin-Soo Choo in center field, which may not be ideal in the long run. If the Baltimore Orioles are willing to slide over Adam Jones into left field, Bourn fits there, too, but Jones, inexplicably, was just awarded his first Gold Glove, so the chance he changes positions at this stage is close to zero, at best.
The Rangers are currently set to go with Craig Gentry and/or Leonys Martin in center and the Braves could slide B.J. Upton to left field if Bourn returned for another year. The Los Angeles Dodgers could be a fit, too, but would have to move an outfielder to make room for Bourn. If that occurred it would likely be Andre Ethier, whose name has hit the rumor mill once or twice since the season ended.
Bourn could even still fit in Philadelphia despite the acquisition of Ben Revere, considering the club's lack of outfield options. As of today, the Phillies projected starting corner outfielders to surround Revere are Darin Ruf, John Mayberry, Laynce Nix and Domonic Brown, of whom only Mayberry has significant big-league experience. The Phillies were linked to Bourn before trading for Revere.