Posts Tagged ‘Ben Sheets’

Mark Prior Wants To Be The Next Ben Sheets?

January 30, 2010

I was reading ESPN.com’s Jayson Stark’s Rumblings & Grumblings post this morning and I came across a quote that I thought was pretty interesting. Agent John Boggs had this to say about one of his clients:

“Mark has been through so many timelines, at this point I’m almost allergic to the word,” Boggs said. “But he’s out there. He’s getting himself ready. And when he’s ready, I’m sure you’ll hear a lot about him. Then we’ll invite teams to come watch him throw. And hopefully, he’ll be the next Ben Sheets.”

The Mark, Boggs is referring to is former Chicago Cubs’ pitcher Mark Prior. While I appreciate Boggs’ enthusiasm for his client comparing Prior’s situation to Sheets’, I am going to have to tell Boggs to pump the breaks a little bit.

Prior is on the comeback trail yet again

The only thing Sheets and Prior have in common is that they have been two injury prone pitchers throughout their careers. However, their situations are completely different.

The biggest and main difference between Sheets and Prior is that Sheets has actually taken the mound recently. Like in the last three years.

Sheets was pitching at an All-Star caliber level as late as September of 2008. Prior hasn’t taken the mound in a major league game since August of 2006.

Their situations are night and day.

As we all know, Prior burst on to the baseball scene going 18-6 with a 2.43 ERA for the Chicago Cubs in 2003. Since then, he has been an injury filled mess.

He has had an achilles tendon injury, a compression fracture in his pitching elbow, a strained oblique, shoulder tendonitis, and of course, two shoulder surgeries since 2003. That is a lot for any pitcher to handle.

If you would have told me Prior would only have 18 wins since the 2003, I would have said you were nuts. I would have said you were nuts too if back in 1987 you told me that Dwight Gooden, Darryl Strawberry or Don Mattingly would never even sniff the Hall of Fame.

But this is baseball and one injury can ruin a player’s career.

Many have pointed to Prior’s poor mechanics, which have led to all his injury problems. While that may be the case, there have been pitchers with worse mechanics like Kevin Appier, who managed to pitch for 16 years in the major leagues.

Sometimes bad luck factors into a pitcher’s career just as much as mechanics.

Remarkably, Prior is not even 30-years-old yet. He will turn 30 in September of next year. Due to his relatively young age, I would imagine if Prior did hold a try out, there would be a fair share of teams that would come out to watch him pitch.

But unlike Sheets, Prior won’t get $10 million from a team, nor will he even get a major league contract.

Thus making their situations very, very different.

You can follow The Ghost of Moonlight Graham on Twitter @ theghostofmlg

Oakland A’s Sign Ben Sheets

January 26, 2010

There were a lot of teams interested in Ben Sheets. Rumor had it there were at least 15 teams that watched Sheets workout at the University of Louisiana at Monroe last Tuesday.

I thought the Chicago Cubs, New York Mets, Texas Rangers, or maybe even the Seattle Mariners were his most likely landing spots. However, it was another team that swooped in and signed the 31-year-old right-hander.

Sheets is headed to Oakland

According to SI.com’s Jon Heyman, the Oakland A’s have signed Sheets to a one-year, $10 million contract. The deal will also include performances bonuses that can net Sheets an extra $2 million.

Well, I am going to have to admit I am a little surprised by the amount of money Sheets got, but I understand the signing for both parties.

For the A’s, this is the same move they pulled last year when they traded for Matt Holliday and signed Orlando Cabrera and Jason Giambi during the offseason. These moves weren’t made so the A’s can win the AL West, they were made so the A’s can get top prospects back.

The A’s are a young team right now and won’t be competing for the AL West crown in 2010. The A’s signed Sheets in hopes that he comes back next year healthy, so they can trade him for some top hitting or pitching prospects.

Pitchers hold more value at the trade deadline than hitters, so if Sheets stays healthy in 2010, then the A’s can get a significant return for him. If Sheets gets hurt again next year, then he is only on a one-year deal and the A’s aren’t stuck with a long-term disaster.

For Sheets, the A’s make sense for a couple of reasons.

For one, I don’t think any other team was willing to go to $10 million for one year of his services. That is a lot of money for a guy who has made 30 starts just once in the last five years and missed all of 2009.

Sheets took the most money offered and who can blame him? I would have done the same thing.

Secondly, pitching in Oakland is probably good for a pitcher trying to make a comeback. The Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum is a pitcher’s ballpark.

With its large foul territory and pitcher friendly dimensions, any pitcher wouldn’t mind pitching in that stadium. Also, the air at night in Oakland gets pretty heavy and a lot of home runs go to die, which helps. Sheets can make some mistakes in Oakland that won’t cost him like they would in let’s say Milwaukee or Texas.

Sheets will be entering his ninth season in the major leagues and has a career record of 86-83 with a 3.72 ERA and is a four-time All Star with the Brewers.

You can follow The Ghost of Moonlight Graham on Twitter @ theghostofmlg

Ben Sheets Impresses Infront Of Scouts

January 21, 2010

As I wrote in a post last week, former Milwaukee Brewers’ ace Ben Sheets was going to work out in front of scouts from at least 15 teams on Tuesday at the campus of the University of Louisiana at Monroe.

Sheets threw well on Tuesday

The results of this workout have been reported and Sheets didn’t disappoint.

According to a report on AOL Fanhouse, Sheets first threw 20 fastballs in the workout, topping out at 91 mph. He then threw another 20 pitches, half of them curveballs. In his third session, Sheets’ fastball topped out at 88 mph and the pitcher looked “gassed,” the report said. Sheets is believed to be seeking a two-year deal.

Even so, the scout said, Sheets “looked good physically and was in good shape” and should be equal to or ahead of other pitchers when spring training opens.

“No red flags,” the scout said. “No restrictions. He threw nice and loose.

“It couldn’t have gone any better.”

“I had a good showing today and I showed them what I got,” Sheets said. “I welcomed them to stay because a big part of being healthy is being able to recover … At this point now, I’m only getting better. Each day, I’m only getting healthier. I’m bouncing back really good.”

I am really not surprised Sheets threw well and appeared healthy. As I wrote in the post last week, there was no way on earth Sheets’ agent (Casey Close) would have let Sheets throw unless they both felt he was ready to go.

Expect Sheets to sign with a team in the next couple of weeks. I am still of the belief that the Chicago Cubs will be that team who eventually signs Sheets.

You can follow The Ghost of Moonlight Graham on Twitter @ theghostofmlg

Ben Sheets To Hold Audition Next Tuesday

January 14, 2010

Hoping to attract more interest on the free agent market and perhaps a bigger contract, former Milwaukee Brewers’ ace Ben Sheets is holding essentially what becomes an open audition next Tuesday at the campus of the University of Louisiana at Monroe according to ESPN.com’s Tim Kurkjian.

According to Kurkjian’s source, six to 10 teams will be in attendance scouting Sheets. I think this is a pretty smart move by Sheets and his agent.

Sheets will throw for teams on Tuesday

Sheets is perhaps the highest risk and highest reward pitcher out of all the high risk pitchers left on the market. At least Erik Bedard pitched last season.

Sheets was on the shelf all of last year.

Sheets missed the entire 2009 season with a torn flexor tendon in his pitching elbow. Sheets thought he might be able to come back after the All-Star break, but never made it back.

In 2008, Sheets made 30+ starts for the first time since 2004. He went 13-9 with a 3.09 ERA and struck out 158 in 198.1 innings. However, it was in his final start of the 2008 season trying to get the Brewers in the playoffs, where Sheets torn his flexor tendon.

If Sheets’ arm does feel “fantastic” as he said, then he has everything to gain with this audition. If Sheets shows he still has the velocity and the “stuff,” he and his agent can engage in a bidding war, which will only raise his price.

I would highly doubt Sheets would hold this audition if he wasn’t ready to go. If he is not ready, then him and his agent are the two dumbest people involved in the baseball industry. Well, they would be second and third behind Mark McGwire.

One of the six to ten teams that will view Sheets on Tuesday will be the Chicago Cubs. And that’s where I think Sheets ends up. Ted Lilly won’t be available until late April, early May, so the Cubs could use another pitcher to add depth in their rotation.

However, no matter how well Sheets throws on Tuesday, don’t expect him to get anything more than a one-year, incentive laden deal.

You can follow The Ghost of Moonlight Graham on Twitter @ theghostofmlg

Free Agent Primer: What To Look For This Offseason

November 19, 2009

At 12:01 tomorrow morning, the free agent signing period begins in baseball. Will you see players signing with teams at 12:05 like in the NFL and NBA? No, you won’t.

This will be a very long offseason in baseball. Just like last year, you will see some quality players still available going into the month of February. And just like last year, you are going to see GM’s try to wait out players hoping to get their version of a Bobby Abreu deal.

With the free agent signing period just a mere 12 hours away, here is a free agent primer on this year’s batch of free agents.

Best Free Agent Starting Pitcher: John Lackey. The same people who are concerned with Lackey being “injury prone” are the same people who thought Adrian Peterson was “injury prone” coming out of Oklahoma.

Kind of silly.

Best Free Agent Hitter: Matt Holliday. Holliday is the best hitter in a weak free agent hitting class. I am not sold on Holliday being paid like a franchise player, but he will be.

Best Free Agent Relief Pitcher: Rafael Soriano. Soriano is only 30-years-old and is entering the prime of his career. 12.1 K/9 in 2009 is very impressive.

Biggest Free Agent Hitter Bust: Marco Scutaro. I am sorry, but I just don’t see it from this guy. He has been a scrub all his life and now at 34-years-old he is worth a mutli-year deal? No thanks.

Biggest Free Agent Hitter Bust II: Chone Figgins. This is Juan Pierre Part II. Some team is going to give this guy a four-year, $42 million deal and regret it from the first day. In the third year of this deal he will be a pinch runner off the bench.

Biggest Free Agent Starting Pitcher Bust: Joel Pineiro. Back in August I wrote about how teams should stay away from Pineiro. My feelings towards him haven’t changed. He has Jeff Suppan and Kyle Lohse written all over him.

Biggest Free Agent Relief Pitcher Bust: Brandon Lyon. If a team signs Lyon as an eighth inning, set-up guy, I have no problem with that. But if a teams signs him to be their closer, all bets are off.

If you go into 2010 with Lyon as your closer, you are pretty much telling your fan base we have no shot to win in 2010.

Perfect Match Most Likely To Happen: Mark DeRosa to the Philadelphia Phillies. When you look at the Phillies team and then you look at the type of player DeRosa is, this is a perfect match. DeRosa is a “baseball player” and on a team filled with “baseball players,” DeRosa fits in perfectly.

Perfect Match Most Likely NOT To Happen: Orlando Hudson to the New York Mets. Hudson wanted to play for the Mets last year and it didn’t happen. He wants to play for them again this year and it won’t happen again.

Hudson is just what the Mets need, but since Luis Castillo and his horrific contract are holding down the fort at second base, Hudson will need to look for work somewhere else.

Biggest Free Agent Surprise: Jason Bay will not be back with the Boston Red Sox. As I told my buddy Odie, Bay is like the girl in high school who appears all sweet and innocent, but has slept with the entire football team.

Bay won't be a Red Sock in 2010

Everyone thinks because Bay is a soft-spoken nice guy and has thrived in Boston, he will just accept whatever Theo Epstein offers him and money doesn’t matter–not the case. I think Bay gets a five-year deal from another team and takes the years and the money and runs.

And I wouldn’t fault him for that.

Player Who Will Make The Most Money Who You Never Heard Of: Aroldis Chapman. Chapman is the 22-year-old Cuban defector, who is a starting pitcher and just happens to throw 100 mph. It looks like it will be a two-team race for Chapman’s services–the Red Sox and the New York Yankees.

This is Jose Contreras Part II.

Best Low-Risk, High-Reward Hitter: Xavier Nady. Last year, I correctly predicted that Russell Branyan would be the 2007 version of Carlos Pena–a journeyman guy, who finally gets a chance to start and has a big year.

Nady is that free agent this year. Let a small market team sign him to a one-year deal, let him play 1B/DH and watch him hit 30 home runs.

Best Low-Risk, High-Reward Hitter Part II: Troy Glaus. Glaus is relatively young at 33 and just two years ago hit 27 home runs and had an .856 OPS. Can he play third at this point in his career? Probably not.

But he can probably play first or DH and still be a power threat at a very low-cost.

Best Low-Rick, High Reward Pitcher: Ben Sheets. Sheets missed all of the 2009 season because of flexor tendon surgery. But Sheets should be 100 percent healthy by the start of spring training and I think could have an impact in 2010.

Remember, Andy Pettitte had the same surgery in 2004 and he has fully recovered from the injury. A team like the Texas Rangers would be wise to sign him to an incentive laden deal.

Pitchers Who Have To Stay In The NL In Order To Be Successful: Randy Wolf and Brad Penny. American League teams should really stay away from these guys. Hopefully both of these guys know where their bread is buttered and won’t pull a Jeff Weaver after the 2006 season.

Bedard won't work in New York or Boston

Big Market Teams Should Stay Away: Erik Bedard. Bedard just strikes me as a guy who would rather pitch in Kansas City and not be bothered than pitching in a pennant race in New York of Boston.

Worst Pitcher To Be This Offseason: Kevin Gregg. Gregg is a Type A free agent and he stinks. Very bad spot to be in.

Worst Hitter To Be This Offseason: Jermaine Dye. Dye is a Type A free agent, is 37-years-old, and can’t play a lick of defense. He is a DH in a strong DH market. I think it will be a while before a team looks at Dye.

Hitter Who Should Get More Love, But Won’t: Mike Cameron. Despite being 37-years-old, all Cameron is going to do is play a Gold Glove caliber center field, hit around .265, and hit 20-25 home runs.

Something tells me because of his relationship with CC Sabathia, Cameron signs with the Yankees on a one-year deal.

Pitcher Who Should Get More Love, But Won’t: Jon Garland. Why Garland was sitting the bench, while Hiroki Kuroda was starting playoff games for the Los Angeles Dodgers last year is beyond me.

I know wins for pitchers are overrated, but all Garland does is win. That does count for something. He is going to win games and pitch 200 innings. Teams could do a lot worse.

The Milwaukee Brewers would be smart to sign him.

Best Utility Player: Jamey Carroll. Great club house guy, who can play second, third, left, and right. Every team could use a player like Carroll on their roster.

Non-Tender Candidate Sleeper: Kelly Johnson. On December 12th, hundreds of players will not be tendered contracts. The sleeper out of this bunch–Kelly Johnson.

Johnson was put in Bobby Cox’s doghouse in Atlanta in 2009, but in 2007 he had an OPS of .831 and in 2007 he had an OPS of .795. He is a classic change of scenery guy.

You can find a full list of this year’s free agents here.

You can follow The Ghost of Moonlight Graham on Twitter @ theghostofmlg

As July 31st Approaches, What Do The Contenders Need Update..

July 28, 2009

A couple of weeks ago, I did a post on what do the contending teams around baseball need at the July 31st trading deadline. With already a couple deals taking place and the trading deadline just a couple of days away, I thought I would update this post.

Here are the needs of the 21 contending teams and who they could potentially target.

Philadelphia Phillies

Needs – Starting Pitching. The Phillies are going for it again and are looking for a big time pitcher.

The Phillies signed Pedro Martinez.

Potential Targets – Roy Halladay, Brad Penny, Cliff Lee, Jarrod Washburn

Florida Marlins

Needs – Bullpen. With Lindstrom out, the Marlins need help in the pen.

Potential Targets – Chad Qualls, Juan Cruz, Matt Capps, John Grabow, George Sherrill

Lee is very popular these days

Lee is very popular these days

Atlanta Braves

Needs – Leftfield. The Braves have already traded for Nate McLouth and Ryan Church, but their offense could use another bat.

Potential Targets – David Dejesus, Luke Scott, Aubrey Huff

New York Mets

Needs – Leftfield, First Base, Starting Pitching. The Mets should not be contenders, but in New York, there is no such thing as sellers.

Plus, after Omar Minaya’s press conference yesterday, it’s official – Omar Minaya is out of his mind.

Potential Targets – Roy Halladay, Adam Dunn, Nick Johnson, Luke Scott, David Dejesus, Aubrey Huff

St Louis Cardinals

Needs – The Cardinals acquired Mark DeRosa and then acquired the best hitter on the market in Matt Holliday. The Cardinals also acquired Julio Lugo from the Boston Red Sox

I don’t think the Cardinals have any prospects to deal to make another trade.

Potential Targets – None

Milwaukee Brewers

Needs – Starting Pitching. The Brewers’ starting rotation has fallen apart recently. Offense is not the issue with this team.

The Brewers have already acquired Felipe Lopez from the Arizona Diamondbacks.

Potential Targets – Roy Halladay, Jon Garland, Doug Davis, Jarrod Washburn, Ian Snell

Chicago Cubs

Needs – Bullpen. The Cubs just need the players they already have to play better. They could use another arm in the pen.

The Cubs have signed BJ Ryan

Potential Targets – Joe Beimel, Danys Baez, Jamey Wright

Houston Astros

Needs – Third Base, First Base, Starting Pitching. The Astros are now in the thick of the NL Central and Wild Card race. With Lance Berkman going on the DL, the Astros could now use a solid bench player for insurance.

Problem Astros will have making trades is that their farm system is not that good.

I love Mark Teahen for the Astros. Can play 1st, 3rd, 2nd, and the outfield.

Potential Targets – Jon Garland, Brian Bannister, Doug Davis, Bobby Crosby, Mark Teahen

Cincinnati Reds

Needs – Offense. With Jay Bruce now out six-to-eight weeks with a fractured wrist, the Reds are desperate for offense. They should really be sellers, but they are still only 7.5 games out of first in the NL Central.

Potential Targets – Mark Teahan, David Dejesus, Marco Scutaro, Scott Rolen

Los Angeles Dodgers

Needs – Bullpen. With Roland Belasario out with an inflamed elbow (it was only a matter of time before Joe Torre blew someone’s arm out) and Jonathon Broxton suffering from a toe injury, the Dodgers could use some insurance in the pen.

The Dodgers have also been linked to ace’s Roy Halladay and Cliff Lee.

Potential Targets – Joe Beimel, Juan Cruz, John Grabow, George Sherrill, Danys Baez, Ron Mahay, Roy Halladay, Cliff Lee, Jarrod Washburn

San Francisco Giants

Needs – Offense. The Giants can use all the offense they can get.

The Giants acquired Ryan Garko from the Cleveland Indians last night.

Potential Targets – Jermaine Dye, Aubrey Huff, Freddy Sanchez, Nick Johnson, Alex Rios, Josh Willingham

VMart could be traded

VMart could be traded

Colorado Rockies

Needs – Bullpen, Starting Rotation. Everyone thought the Rockies would be sellers at this point, but they are the leaders of the Wild Card race. As usual, the Rockies could use some pitching help.

The Rockies acquired Rafael Betancourt from the Cleveland Indians.

Potential Targets – Roy Halladay, Ian Snell, Matt Capps, John Grabow, Takashi Saito, Danys Baez, Miguel Batista

Boston Red Sox

Needs – Offense. I don’t want to hear the Red Sox are fourth in baseball in runs scored – they need offense.

The Red Sox acquired Adam LaRoche from the Pittsburgh Pirates and Chris Duncan from the St Louis Cardinals last week.

Potential Targets – Victor Martinez, Mark Teahan, Jack Wilson, Orlando Cabrera, Adrian Gonzalez, Roy Halladay

New York Yankees

Needs – Starting Pitching, Bullpen. The Yankees are having back of the rotation issues right now and they could use another arm in the pen. The Yankees have been linked to Halladay, Cliff Lee, Washburn and Bronson Arroyo.

The Yankees have already traded for Eric Hinske

Potential Targets – Roy Halladay, Joe Beimel, John Grabow, Cliff Lee, Bronson Arroyo, Jarrod Washburn, Ian Snell

Tampa Bay Rays

Needs – Starting Pitching, Catcher, Right Field. I still think the Rays could use another solid, depandable arm in the pen, but they seem to have targeted Roy Halladay and Cliff Lee.

They are also looking to upgrade the Gabe Gross/Gabe Kapler platoon in right and also at the catcher position. Dioner Navarro has been disappointing this year.

Potential Targets – Jamey Wright, Danys Baez, Mark Teahan, Jeremy Hermida, Josh Willingham, Roy Halladay, Cliff Lee, Victor Martinez

Detroit Tigers

Needs – Bullpen, Offense. The Tigers have two top of the rotation starters in Justin Verlander and Edwin Jackson. However, after watcing them versus the Yankees, I think they could use another bat

I also think they could use another arm in the pen to go along with Rodney. Joel Zumaya recently landed on the DL.

Potential Targets – Matt Capps, Ron Mahay, John Grabow, Mike Gonzalez, Josh Willingham, Adam Dunn, Jarrod Washburn

Minnesota Twins

Needs – Middle Infield. Freddy Sanchez makes so much sense it’s scary.

Potential Targets – Freddy Sanchez, Adam Kennedy, Orlando Cabrera, Marco Scutaro

Where will Doc land?

Where will Doc land?

Chicago White Sox

Needs – Starting Pitching. Kenny Williams already tried for Jake Peavy, will he go after Roy Halladay?

The White Sox have already acquired reliever Tony Pena from the Arizona Diamondbacks.

Potential Targets – Roy Halladay

Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim

Needs – Bullpen, Starting Rotation. For the first time in a long time, the Angels offense is not the problem. The Angels need bullpen help in the worst way and of course, they might be in on Roy Halladay.

Potential Targets – Roy Halladay, Cliff Lee, Scott Kazmir, John Grabow, Arthur Rhodes, Joe Beimel, George Sherrill

Texas Rangers

Needs – Starting Pitching. Isn’t it always about pitching with the Rangers? The Rangers have the farm system, but do they have the money? That is the question with the Rangers.

The Rangers bullpen might get a boost with Neftali Feliz. He has been pitching from the stretch recently and is preparing for a bullpen stint with the Rangers for this year.

Potential Targets – Doug Davis, Brad Penny, Brian Bannister, Ben Sheets (free agent), Takashi Saito, George Sherrill, Roy Halladay, Cliff Lee.

Seattle Mariners

Needs – Third Base, Leftfield, Shortstop. The Mariners might hold the key to the trading deadline. The have potentially one of the most desirable pitchers on the market, if the Mariners should pack it in – Jarrod Washburn.

Erik Bedard picked the worst time to go on the DL for the M’s.

The Mariners are 51-47 and 7.5 games back of the Angels in the AL West. They have dropped 3.5 games in the standing since this original post. I still see them trying to add instead of giving up players.

They have already acquired 3B Jack Hannrahan from the A’s.

Potential Targets – Garrett Atkins, Kevin Kouzmanoff, Jack Wilson, Marco Scutaro, Orlando Cabrera, David DeJesus

So there are the 21 teams and the players they might be interested in. Who do you want your favorite team to target? Let’s discuss.

Sheets Running Out Of Options….

February 5, 2009

As reported by MLB.com’s TJ Sullivan and MLBTradeRumors.com, the Texas Rangers are unlikely to sign free agent pitcher Ben Sheets.

I don’t know what Sheets demands are but it seems like he is quickly running out of options. If the Texas Rangers aren’t interested anymore, a team that is desperate for any form of pitching, than who is?

Who is going to give the 30 year old pitcher with a history of arm injuries more than a 1 year contract? I predicted in my “Where will they end up” post that Sheets would end up back on the Brewers. Now it is looking more likely that scenario is possible. Sheets makes sense for the Brewers and the Brewers make sense for Sheets.

Sheets can sign a 1 year deal with the Brewers, prove he is healthy and if he has a solid year, get his big pay day in 2010. Remember, the free agent pitching class of 2010 is pretty weak. Sheets would be the 2nd best pitcher on the market behind Lackey. The Brewers can sign Sheets to a 1 year deal with no risk. If he gets hurt, they were preparing to go into the season without him anyway. If he stays healthy, Sheets gives the Brewers the #1 starter they don’t have right now. This would also allow them to move McClung to the pen where he belongs and also takes some pressure off of Gallardo.

If Sheets doesn’t end up on the Brewers, where he ends up is anyone’s guess. Perhaps the Dodgers, Angels, Astros or Royals would take a flyer on a 1 year deal with Sheets.

Either way, Sheets is quickly running out of options.

Where Will They Land?….

January 10, 2009

With just over a month remaining until pitchers and catchers report to Spring Training, there are a lot of big names remaining on the free agent market.

Here are my predictions as to where some of the bigger names remaining will land:

Derek Lowe – Braves. The Braves missed out on A.J. Burnett, failed to trade for Jake Peavy and lost John Smoltz to the Red Sox. They are determined to be competitive this year and I believe they will overpay to land Lowe.

Ben Sheets – Brewers. Nobody will ever question Ben Sheets ability. When healthy he has #1 starter stuff. Unfortunately for Sheets, he hasn’t stayed healthy for a full season since 2004. Teams aren’t going to commit to a pitcher who has only started 22.17,24 & 31 games the last 4 years. Therefore, he returns to the Brewers on a 1 year deal

Oliver Perez – Mets. Perez is the ultimate pitching enigma. In the last 3 years Perez is a combined 9-2 with a 2.45 era against the Yankees and Braves but is 2-5 with a 7.47 era against the Nationals and Giants.  I am convinced he will be nothing more than a #3 starter and a .500 pitcher as his lifetime record of 55-60 indicates. After the Mets lose out on Lowe, they will re-sign Perez.

Orlando Hudson & Adam Dunn – Nationals. The Nationals should be thankful Mark Teixeira signed with the Yankees. I think everyone agreed signing Teixeira would have been Arod on the Rangers, part 2. The Nationals have money to spend and in this market they will land 2 solid players for below market value.

Bobby Abreu – A’s.   With the Rays (Burrell) and Cubs (Bradley) filling their corner OF needs, the market for Abreu is shrinking by the day. Though getting up there in age (Abreu will be 35 in March), Abreu remains one of the most consistent players in baseball. With a lifetime OBP of .405 he is a typical Billy Beane player. I think he joins fellow former Yankee, Jason Giambi on the A’s.

Orlando Cabrera – Angels. I have always liked Orlando Cabrera. I think it has something to do with him being a key part of the Red Sox 2004 World Series team. Cabrera is a winner. He has been to the post season 4 times in the last 5 years and as I mentioned earlier, Cabrera was a rock for the Red Sox in their 2004 post season run. The Angels need offense and Cabrera would be an upgrade over Erik Aybar and Maicer Izturis at least until Brandon Wood is ready.

Pedro Martinez – DiamondBacks. Pedro Martinez should retire and start preparing his HOF speach but he won’t. The Mets signing of Tim Redding yesterday I believe eliminates Martinez from the Mets plans. So where does a broken down 37 year old pitcher who has only starter 48 games the last 3 years go? The retirement community of America…Arizona.

Manny Ramirez – Giants. Last but not least let’s talk about Manny. I think at this point there are 3 teams Manny can go to. The Dodgers, Giants and Yankees. I am of the theory that the longer Manny and his agent Scott Boras drag this out the more of a player the Yankees become. However, at the end of the day Manny is about money and there is only one team on this list that likely will gave Manny the years and money that he is looking for. The same team that gave Barry Zito a 7 year $126MM contract…the San Francisco Giants.