Free Agent Stock Watch: Joe Crede

White Sox third baseman Joe Crede hopes to stay in Chicago beyond 2008.  He’s willing to have his agent, Scott Boras, negotiate in-season with the Sox – but only if the team approaches him.  Crede will still listen to the Sox after the season, but he’ll be on the open market after the exclusive negotiation period expires.

Will the Sox offer Crede arbitration?  The possibility that he accepts and they have him for ’09 seems a risk worth taking.  Crede would probably be a Type B free agent, and he’d likely decline arbitration in hopes of a multiyear deal.

It’s a weak free agent market for third basemen.  The closest guy to a regular besides Crede is Casey Blake, and he’s having a lousy year.  Boras should ask for more than three years and $25MM, since that’s what Melvin Mora is earning.  Mike Lowell’s three years and $37.5MM seems too much.  The Indians, Twins, Angels, Brewers, Dodgers, and Giants could be suitors. 

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