2013 MLB Free Agents Rumors

Position Analysis For The 2013 Free Agent Class

Plenty has been written about the potential starting pitching depth of the 2013 free agent class, which could include Matt Cain, Cole Hamels, Zack Greinke, Anibal Sanchez, Brandon McCarthy, and more.  But how does next offseason's free agent market look for position players?

Catcher

This could be the deepest free agent catching class in a long time.  Yadier Molina will set the market, while Chris Iannetta, Russell Martin, Miguel Montero, Mike Napoli, A.J. Pierzynski, and Yorvit Torrealba join him.  It's rare to find offense at catcher, but there is plenty in this group.  Napoli and Molina seem most likely to be extended prior to reaching the open market.

First basemen

Napoli and Lance Berkman head up the group, with second tier guys like Aubrey Huff, Adam LaRoche, Carlos Lee, and James Loney also in the mix.  They'll be joined by Casey Kotchman, Carlos Pena, and Derrek Lee if they sign one-year deals.  Overall, there's a case to be made for a non-contender to sign Prince Fielder if they're looking forward to this group.

Second basemen

Howie Kendrick signed an extension over the weekend.  If Brandon Phillips follows suit and obvious options are picked up on Robinson Cano and Ian Kinsler, the best available might be Kelly Johnson, Maicer Izturis, and Freddy Sanchez

Shortstops

Erick Aybar is the best option, but the Angels could extend him too.  Stephen Drew could get a big contract with a healthy season, while Marco Scutaro and Alex Gonzalez will be looking for everyday jobs.

Third basemen

The third base market may be bleak once again.  David Wright could be a free agent after the 2012 season if he's traded before it ends and chooses to void a 2013 option, or if the Mets simply decline the $16MM option.  Kevin Youkilis' $13MM option will probably be exercised.  Additionally, Scott Rolen and Placido Polanco are likely free agents.

Left fielders

Josh Hamilton is the big name.  His contract will depend heavily on his 2012 season.  Delmon Young will have age on his side at 27 years old.  Several others who are currently penciled in at center or right field will be options in left.

Center fielders

Hamilton can play some center, but this is a deep group with Michael Bourn, B.J. Upton, Shane Victorino, Melky Cabrera, Marlon ByrdGrady Sizemore, and Angel Pagan

Right fielders

Andre Ethier, Carlos Quentin, and Nick Swisher will be seeking big paydays.  Ichiro Suzuki and Torii Hunter will represent the old guard.

Designated hitters

David Ortiz will again be the best available; we'll see if he gets the equivalent of an arbitration offer from the Red Sox.  Edwin Encarnacion could be interesting, while Bobby Abreu and Travis Hafner will be fighting for regular work. 


2013 Free Agent Class Analysis

Our 2013 MLB Free Agent list has just been posted.  Since that post will be a permanent addition to the sidebar, comments on it are closed.  Leave comments here instead!

The 2013 list shows players who are eligible to become free agents after the 2012 season.  My system is to allow a player to only be on one list at a time, so those on the 2011 or 2012 lists are not on the 2013 one.  The 2013 list is for players who are signed through 2012 (some may have '13 options) and also for those who currently have between four and five years of service time.  Part of the latter group will be non-tendered after the '11 season, at which point they'll join the '12 list and be removed from '13.  Now that you're sufficiently confused, let's analyze this group!

Will Join The '13 Group If '12 Options Are Exercised

Yadier Molina, Kelly Shoppach, Edwin Encarnacion, Eric Hinske, Nick Swisher, Brandon Phillips, Marco Scutaro, Grady Sizemore, Bobby Abreu, Chris Carpenter, Ryan Dempster, Octavio Dotel, Jon Rauch, Koji Uehara, Jose Valverde, Jason Frasor, Michael Wuertz, and Arthur Rhodes are among those who may join the '13 free agent class if their '12 options vest or are picked up.

On The '13 List In Name Only

Players such as Brian McCann, Ian Kinsler, David Wright, Kevin Youkilis, Fausto Carmona, Gavin Floyd, Dan Haren, Tim Hudson, Brett Myers, James Shields, J.J. Putz, and Joakim Soria are among those with reasonable '13 options who will be removed from the list if they are exercised.

Non-Tender Candidates

Several players currently on the '13 list stand a decent chance of being non-tendered after the '11 season, making them free agents.  Kevin Kouzmanoff, James Loney, Jack Cust, Mike Napoli, and Joe Saunders are candidates.

Youth Is Served

Free agents who will be under 30 for the '13 season: Miguel Montero, James Loney, Howie Kendrick, Erick Aybar, Mark Reynolds, Delmon Young, B.J. Upton, Matt Cain, Matt KempJohn Danks, Scott Feldman, Zack Greinke, Cole Hamels, Francisco Liriano, Brandon McCarthy, Anibal Sanchez, Leo Nunez, Huston Street, Carlos Villanueva, and J.P. Howell.  It's not easy to accrue six years service time before you turn 30.  Young will turn 27 in September of 2012, which is impressive.

$100MM Contracts Coming?

As always, we must note that many of the players currently on the '13 list will not make it to free agency after the '12 season, because they'll be locked up beforehand.  However, players such as Cain, Danks, Greinke, Hamels, Stephen Drew, Josh Hamilton, Matt KempAndre Ethier, and Jered Weaver could be in line for $100MM+ free agent contracts depending on how their '11 and '12 seasons go.

So Much Starting Pitching

This group will thin out before the '12 season ends, of course.  But imagine a free agent class with Cain, Danks, Greinke, Hamels, Weaver, Liriano, Jeremy Guthrie, Shaun Marcum, Anibal Sanchez, Jonathan Sanchez, Ervin Santana, Jake Peavy, and plenty of solid innings eaters.  There is something to be said for a team sitting out the upcoming offseason and trying to snag pitching in the following one.

Finally Over    

After the 2012 season, the contracts of Carlos Lee, Aaron Rowand, and Carlos Zambrano are finally up.  Fans of the Cubs and Giants will still be waiting for the Alfonso Soriano and Barry Zito deals to expire, though.


2013 MLB Free Agents

MLBTR's up-to-date list of 2013 MLB free agents is below. These are players who are currently free agents. The player's 2013 age is in parentheses.  If you have any corrections or omissions, please contact us. To see who represents these players, check out our agency database.

Updated 8-30-13

Catchers
Rod Barajas (37)
Ramon Hernandez (38)
Matt Treanor (37)

First basemen
Brad Hawpe (34)
Eric Hinske (35)
Aubrey Huff (36)
Ty Wigginton (35) 

Second basemen
Willie Harris (35)
Orlando Hudson (35)
Brandon Inge (36)
Adam Kennedy (37)
Freddy Sanchez (34)
Ryan Theriot (33)

Shortstops
Jason Bartlett (33)
Luis Cruz (29)
Alex Gonzalez (36)
Elliot Johnson (29) 

Third basemen
Luis Cruz (29)
Chone Figgins (35)
Orlando Hudson (35)
Brandon Inge (36)
Adam Kennedy (37)
Scott Rolen (38)
Ty Wigginton (35) 

Left fielders
Bobby Abreu (39)
Jason Bay (34)
Brennan Boesch (28)
Johnny Damon (39)
Chone Figgins (35)
Laynce Nix (32)
Scott Podsednik (37)

Center fielders
Rick Ankiel (34)
Scott Podsednik (37)
Grady Sizemore (30)
Dewayne Wise (35) 

Right fielders
Rick Ankiel (34)
Brennan Boesch (28)
Brad Hawpe (34) 
Laynce Nix (32)

Designated hitters
Bobby Abreu (39)
Johnny Damon (39)
Jim Thome (42)

Starting pitchers
Dallas Braden (29)
Jon Garland (33)
Ted Lilly (37)
Shaun Marcum (31)
Dustin Moseley (31)
Jamie Moyer (50)
Brett Myers (33)
Carl Pavano (37)
Randy Wolf (36)
Carlos Zambrano (32) 

Closers
Jose Valverde (35)

Right-handed relievers

Todd Coffey (32)
Jose Contreras (41)
Francisco Cordero (38)
Juan Cruz (34)
Joey Devine (29)
Chad Durbin (35)
Livan Hernandez (38)
Bobby Jenks (32)
Rodrigo Lopez (37)
Brandon Lyon (33)
Ryan Madson (32)
Guillermo Mota (39)
Ramon Ramirez (31)
Michael Schwimer (27)
Cory Wade (30) 

Left-handed relievers
George Sherrill (36)

Cot's Baseball Contracts was used in the creation of this list.