Free Agency 2010 is upon us, and players are ready to hear those hilarious little sales pitches by the Nationals and Royals.
This Friday the 20th is the first day unrestricted free agents can sign with new clubs. We know you lovely ladies and gents don’t want to spend all your time thinking about the top players that the Cardinals could sign (I’d say “should” but I know better) to improve the ballclub, so we here at the CD decided to give you a little rundown of our top 25 free agents, and where we think they’ll sign. As an added bonus (mostly because this FA class is God-awful), we each threw in five extra guys in order to drop a little more knowledge on you.
It’ll probably be a major upset if either of us hit on more than five or six of these, but we’re shooting for perfection. Hooks and I are cocky bastards, what can I say? And even if we miss a few here and there, I couldn’t imagine any of you bookmarking this page and continuously coming back to tell us how big of jackasses we are. That would…never…happen?
So without further ado, here are the top free agents for this ’09/’010 offseason, and where they will land – including special DVD commentary by Mr. Hooks himself:
1) Matt Holliday (Hooks: Mets. HMW: Red Sox.) – We had him, dammit. We HAD him.
2) Jason Bay (Hooks: Red Sox. HMW: Giants.) – Like Holliday, this guy seems like a Cardinal. Unlike Holliday, he’s not going to stab us in the back.
3) Chone Figgins (Hooks: Angels. HMW: Phillies.) – White people hate his name, but love his game… HI-YO!
4) John Lackey (Hooks: Yankees. HMW: Tigers.) – And…we’ve got ourselves a pretty weak free agent class.
5) Aroldis Chapman (Hooks: Red Sox. HMW: Red Sox.) – Yes. I’ve read the stories. Yes. I’m on the Kool-Aid.
6) Jon Garland (Hooks: Dodgers. HMW: Brewers.) – Being able to take the ball every year for 200 innings and keep your team in a game is worth it.
7) Erik Bedard (Hooks: Angles. HMW: Cardinals.) – Hasn’t put it together, but hasn’t played on a good team either.
8.) Ben Sheets (Hooks: Rangers. HMW: Rangers.) – His recent injuries make him a risk. But worth a two year gamble.
9) Adrian Beltre (Hooks: Phillies. HMW: Twins.) – Get this guy in a bandbox ballpark with that D and you’ve got a possible all-star.
10) Randy Wolf (Hooks: Mets. HMW: Mets.) – Blah.
11) Rafael Soriano (Hooks: Cardinals. HMW: Yankees.) – Go get him Cardinals. Get him now.
12) Vladimir Guerrero (Hooks: Angels. HMW: Yankees.) – He may be done. But if he isn’t, he’s right behind Holliday and Bay when it comes to an impact bat.
13) Jermaine Dye (Hooks: Cardinals. HMW: Rangers.) – Seems like the White Sox are pulling the plug early on him.
14) Mark DeRosa (Hooks: Cardinals. HMW: Cardinals.) – Valuable because of his D at multiple positions.
15) Xavier Nady (Hooks: Diamondbacks. HMW: Rays.) – Based solely on the fact that Scott Boras would rep him.
16) Nick Johnson (Hooks: Mariners. HMW: Orioles.) – This guy used to be pretty good.
17) Joel Pinero (Hooks: Marlins. HMW: Phillies.) – Not nearly worth the money he’s demanding. Great 2009 season, though.
18) Miguel Tejada (Hooks: A’s. HMW: Astros.) – Quietly a very solid 2009 season. Besides the whole lying about his age thing.
19) Johnny Damon (Hooks: Yankees. HMW: Yankees.) – Remember when he dumped his ugly wife when he got paid in Boston for a hot one? She does.
20) Marco Scutaro (Hooks: Red Sox. HMW: Tigers.) – I’m starting to hate this FA class. Damn you Holliday!
21) Mike Cameron (Hooks: Padres. HMW: Cubs.) – Again, I searched this list hard and could only come up with Mike Cameron.
22) Orlando Hudson (Hooks: Nationals. HMW: Nationals.) – When is this guy not a free agent?
23) Carl Pavano (Hooks: Nationals. HMW: Astros.) – God, how great for the Post and Daily News would it be if he came back to NYC?
24) Doug Davis (Hooks: Brewers. HMW: Brewers.) – He pitches. That’s the best thing I can say about Doug Davis. He pitches.
25) John Smoltz (Hooks: Cardinals. HMW: Cardinals.) – A good dude to have hanging around on a good team with playoff hopes.
Wild Cards (Hooks):
1) Rich Harden (Cubs) – This could be the steal of the 2010 class. Or more likely, the biggest waste.
2) Carlos Delgado (Orioles) – As a DH with a one year contract? Could provide huge ROI.
3) Jason Marquis (Rockies) – Excellent 2009 season, but we’ve seen him shit the bed many times. Can he repeat?
4) Hideki Matsui (Japan) – Will he accept a DH only role? Can his knees hold up?
5) Andy Pettitte (Yankees) – Is he valuable to anyone other than the Yankees? Will he go anywhere else?
Wild Cards (HMW):
1) Rich Harden (Cardinals) – I realize it’s wishful thinking to bring in Bedard, Smoltz, and Harden, but these are all short-term gambles. Roll the dice, and let’s see what happens.
2) Dick Ankiel (Pirates) – Sorry Rick, but this about sums it up.
3) Hank Blalock (Cardinals) – Hey Cardinals, worth a shot? I’m not even a fan of him, but I wouldn’t mind Hanky B off the bench. Whenever extremely cheap, buy-low guys like this pop up, I always think of the Cardinals. Hmm…
4) Randy Johnson (Nationals) – You’ll remember the day when you heard this news, and said to yourself, “Wow, Randy Johnson, you’re a whore.” I’m actually predicting this in hopes that he’ll take Strasburg under his wing and teach him proper mullet-grooming techniques.
5) Russell Branyan (Mariners) – Runner up in the bidding? My Thursday night slow-pitch softball team.
Honorable Mention: Craig Counsell (cardsdiaspora.com) – We might have to sell a few more ads to Applebee’s (or have a good night in the alley playing craps), but I’d love to buy Craig Counsell just to punch his face every day from March through September.
Think you can do better? Throw some predictions out in the comments and then you’ll be allowed to talk shit down the road. Just don’t do it to our faces, we’re fragile.