Covering the Front and Back Pages of the Newspaper
November 8, 2004
BASEBALL: Not Really Free
Type B: Mike DeJean
Type C: Kris Benson, Ricky Bottalico
For a Type A player, the compensation is the signing team's first-round pick plus a supplemental first-rounder. For a Type B, it's the signing team's first-round choice. For a Type C, it's a supplemental second-rounder. However, if the signing team picks in the upper half of the first round, that choice is protected and it loses its second-round selection instead.
I'd mostly agree with his suggested dispositions, although I think I'd offer arbitration to Bottalico as well. Clearly, the Mets should be looking to keep Benson and get compensation for Leiter, unless Benson's demands are too high or Leiter's very low. I'm more hesitant to offer arbitration to Hidalgo, although he could yet be useful.
The full list of free agents by type, with asterisks denoting the guys who may still have a team or player option to exercise:
Type A Moises Alou (ChC), Wilson Alvarez (LA), *Tony Batista (Mon), Carlos Beltran (Hou), Adrian Beltre (LA), Armando Benitez (Fla), Jeromy Burnitz (Col), Orlando Cabrera (Bos), Miguel Cairo (NYY), Vinny Castilla (Col), Royce Clayton (Col), *Roger Clemens (Hou), Rheal Cormier (Phi), Carlos Delgado (Tor), J.D. Drew (Atl), Cal Eldred (StL), Steve Finley (LA), Nomar Garciaparra (ChC), Mark Grudzielanek (ChC), Chris Hammond (Oak), Dustin Hermanson (SF), Richard Hidalgo (NYM), Jeff Kent (Hou), Steve Kline (StL), Corey Koskie (Min), *Al Leiter (NYM), Esteban Loaiza (NYY), Derek Lowe (Bos), Matt Mantei (Ari), Edgar Martinez (Sea), Pedro Martinez (Bos), Mike Matheny (StL), Kent Mercker (ChC), Dan Miceli (Hou), Damian Miller (Oak), Kevin Millwood (Phi), Matt Morris (StL), Jeff Nelson (Tex), Magglio Ordonez (CWS), Russ Ortiz (Atl), Carl Pavano (Fla), Troy Percival (Ana), Odalis Perez (LA), Placido Polanco (Phi), Brad Radke (Min), Joe Randa (KC), Edgar Renteria (StL), Richie Sexson (Ari), Paul Shuey (LA), *Ugueth Urbina (Det), Jason Varitek (Bos), Omar Vizquel (Cle), David Wells (SD), *Woody Williams (StL), Scott Williamson (Bos), Jaret Wright (Atl).
Beltran, of course, is the big prize among the everyday players, as well as Ordonez. Either one would be a good acquisition; Beltran would be better, but Ordonez could come cheaper. Richie Sexson - who like Ordonez is coming off an injury - would also be a nice fit. As much as I like John Olerud and think his glove would be a big help, I don't see him having enough gas in his tank at the plate to be useful. Carlos Delgado is still a monster, but he'll be 33 next year and showed the first signs of decline this season; I'd stay away if I were a team as in need of youth as the Mets. Another guy who looks interesting on that list is Matt Clement; power pitchers have always had good fortunes at Shea.