Several notable players have been non-tendered over the last week, adding more depth to the Major League Baseball free agent market. Where will these players end up? Here are landing spots for 10 of these stranded MLB players — in alphabetical order.
Hanser Alberto – Chicago Cubs
Alberto is a smooth, contact hitter. Just a season removed from posting a 160:50 hit-to-strikeout ratio and hitting .305, he’s one of the more consistent offensive middle infielders in the big leagues. Alberto’s contact tendencies would bode well in a Cubs offense looking for balance. Him getting on base provides more chances for Javier Baez, Anthony Rizzo, and Kris Bryant to do productive damage. Alberto could be the starting second baseman and hit leadoff for manager David Ross.
Archie Bradley – Cleveland Indians
Adam Cimber was traded to the Miami Marlins and Brad Hand is a free agent; the Indians need a backend reliever. Bradley is coming off an encouraging 2020 campaign where he recorded a 2.95 ERA and 18 strikeouts across a combined 16 appearances with the Arizona Diamondbacks and Cincinnati Reds. The right-hander is a successful fastball pitcher who gets considerable movement on his curveball, has experience as both a closer and setup man, and could fill Cleveland’s closing vacancy.
David Dahl – Minnesota Twins
Eddie Rosario was non-tendered and Byron Buxton, unfortunately, keeps getting bit by the injury bug. Dahl was hamstrung by a shoulder injury last season. At full force, he’s a swift player. Dahl plays all three outfield positions and slugs at an elite rate. Across the 177 games he appeared in for the Rockies from 2018-19, Dahl posted 31 home runs, 109 RBIs, and a .528 slugging percentage. He could be Minnesota’s opening day left fielder.
Maikel Franco – Baltimore Orioles
The Orioles traded Jose Iglesias and non-tendered Hanser Alberto, opening up a couple infield positions in Birdland. Franco is coming off a productive season with the Kansas City Royals, hitting .278 and totaling 38 RBIs. The third baseman hits for power, makes nifty plays at the hot corner, and is an ideal signing for the Orioles, who play in a soon-to-be stiff American League East. They can experiment with the 28-year-old Franco for a season and see if he can be their long-term answer at third.
Jose Martinez – Chicago White Sox
Martinez is coming off a rough season at the plate, as he hit a combined .182 with the Cubs and Tampa Bay Rays. At the same time, he was previously an offensive catalyst with the St. Louis Cardinals from 2017-19. Martinez has been able to generate slug with his long, power swing, therefore providing run production. He’s best off in a designated hitter/fourth outfielder role, which the White Sox would benefit from. Martinez gives their offense even more power
Nomar Mazara – Washington Nationals
The Nationals declined Adam Eaton‘s 2021 team option and Michael A. Taylor signed with the Royals; Mazara would be a savvy pickup. The big left-handed swinger hits for power; from 2016-19 he totaled 79 home runs and 308 RBIs. Still 25, Mazara could be both a short- and long-term solution in right field for Washington while providing a power jolt to the middle of the order. Another option is him being part of a four-man outfield rotation while being the primary designated hitter.
Eddie Rosario – Houston Astros
Michael Brantley and George Springer are free agents, and the Astros have a boatload of hefty commitments to their core players. Rosario could be as dangerous in the batter’s box for Houston as both Brantley and Springer at a lesser price. Yes, he’s a bit shaky in the field, but the 29-year-old’s production makes up for any fielding deficiencies. From 2017-19 Rosario totaled 83 home runs and 264 RBIs and has posted an OPS no worse than .792 since 2017. He’s an impact bat.
Danny Santana – Tampa Bay Rays
Santana has played seven positions, and the Rays value defensive versatility. Santana is coming off an injury-riddled season with the Texas Rangers but is also just a season removed from posting 28 home runs, 81 RBIs, and an .857 OPS. He’d give manager Kevin Cash a Swiss-army knife in the field (Santana has started at every position but catcher in the majors) and a capable hitter from the left side to boost the offense. The two parties are a perfect fit.
Kyle Schwarber – Colorado Rockies
Colorado needs another outfielder. With the DH still in place, Schwarber could merely swing a bat, though he has improved in left field. The left-handed hitter gives the Rockies more power (Schwarber has finished in the top five percent of MLB in average exit velocity in each of the last two seasons) and some offensive backup in the scenario they blow up their infield this offseason (a Nolan Arenado and/or Trevor Story trade).
Tony Wolters – New York Mets
The Mets supposedly want to break the bank this offseason, which means they’ll have to be prudent with some parts of their roster; they could operate with that mindset in signing Wolters. The 28-year-old is a capable everyday catcher. Wolters gets on base by means of being a soft contact hitter, and he appeared in 121 games with the Rockies in 2019. Wolters would hit near the bottom of an energetic Mets offense and squat behind the plate.
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