#6 Chris Davis:(1b) Baltimore Orioles
The slugging first baseman from the Baltimore Orioles is scheduled for free agency and he will be in very high demand. The big left-handed hitter has 203 career home runs and 549 career RBIs. His batting line of .255/.330/.506 is not overly impressive due to the batting average, but Davis has had some huge years for the Orioles, and batting average can be overlooked for an 800-plus OPS hitter.
Chris Davis hit 47 home runs last year and drove in 117 runs while playing in 160 games. He finished with a .262 average but struck out a league leading 208 times. He did walk 84 times resulting in a .361 on base percentage. Despite the strikeouts, he gets on base and drives in runs. That is precisely what you need from your first baseman. He has amassed a WAR total of 14.7 in his eight years but earned a 5.2 during the 2015 season and put up a 6.3 during the 2013 season. He was a late bloomer and his best years might be in front of him.
Davis does have some issues, don’t get me wrong. The strikeouts are one thing, but he was busted and suspended in the 2014 season. He received a 25-game suspension for testing positive for Amphetamines. Davis claimed the positive test was from his use of Adderal for a form of ADD in which he suffers from. Davis received a “Therapeutic Use Exemption” for the 2015 season and there was no issue.
The 2014 season was horrid for Davis in general as he hit .196 in 127 games. He did slug 26 homers and drove in 72 runs, but the year was a waste for him. He suffered from a left oblique strain in early April and never really recovered health wise. The drug issue as well as his sub-.200 batting average in 2014 make him a risk. Someone will pay the price though, his bat and ability to drive in runs cannot be ignored.
Davis will command $20-25 million per season for at least five years. He plays a decent first base and even played a little at third and right field for the Orioles, so he is not limited to the American League. There are a ton of potential landing spots for him, and he could land anywhere.
Those are the top-five free agents. Check back in for the rest of the list tomorrow.