- Jim Bowden, ESPN Insider
In about a month, pitchers and catchers will be reporting for spring training, and yet several significant free agents remain unemployed. Some were even once thought to be among the best in this offseason’s free agent class, but because of bad timing, trades or teams’ reluctance to part with draft picks, the lucrative contracts these players were seeking simply haven’t materialized.
Here are the best players left on the free agent market, as well as where they fit best and a prediction of where I think they will sign.
1. Michael Bourn | CF
The center fielder market collapsed pretty quickly for the best leadoff hitter and defensive center fielder in this year’s free agent market when the three NL East teams with obvious holes in center field filled their needs right out of the chute: The Washington Nationals traded with the Minnesota Twins for Denard Span. Then the Atlanta Braves signed B.J. Upton to a five-year, $75 million deal. Soon after, the Philadelphia Phillies acquired Ben Revere from the Twins.