A couple weeks ago, I unleashed my idea of an “all free agent team” onto the world (and Baseball Prospectus had a post with a similar idea a few days ago). I plan on posting about the team every 2 weeks (on Monday hopefully) through out the off-season and spring training and then once a week once the 2013 season starts (so I can update how my team is doing).
Here are the new signings (in no particular order, links to players are articles I have previously written on the player):
Mitch Maier: MiLB contract. His defense is usually below average and he has yet to really hit consistently in the big leagues, but he has always shown to be a patient hitter.
Hector Rondon: MiLB contract. Coming off elbow surgery, Rondon is a guy that throws hard in the upper levels of the Indians system and could be a guy that gets a chance on a weak Indians team in 2013.
Maicer Izturis: 3 million for 2013, 6 million in future commitments. According to ZIPs creator Dan Szymborski, Maicer Izturis projects to have a 91 OPS + with Toronto. That is obviously below average, but throw in good defense and you clearly have a 1 win player and perhaps even a 2 win player.
Ryan Reid: MiLB contract
Tim Wood: MiLB contract
David Ross: 3.1 million for 2013, 3.1 million in future commitments. A catcher with a really good defensive reputation, he is a good hitter as well. He won’t play full time due to his age, but he is going to get plenty of starts for Boston, and he should be successful.
Neal Cotts: MiLB contract: Obviously I am trying to build my bullpen with minor league free agents. Cotts spent all year in the minors last year and was very mediocre, but he is left-handed with decent velocity and the Rangers may have a bullpen that needs a lot of help this year.
Scott Baker: 5.5 million for 2013.
Melky Cabrera: 8 million for 2013. 8 million in future commitments. This is a little risky, not so much because of the PEDs (with Bartolo Colon already on my team I am already building up a bad PR already), but because of the BABIP risk. He isn’t a good defender, but he is coming off of a pair of 4 win seasons, and 8 million is a bargain for that all things considered. This could blow up, but you have to take some risks, and he is still only 7.6 % of my 2013 payroll limit and I am only expecting 2.43 WAR (assuming I get zero production from minor league free agents) from him with that salary. This is quite a leap of faith considering his pre-2011 numbers, but it is a bargain considering his 2011-2012 numbers. It is a mystery, but I think a worthwhile chance to take.
Juan Pierre: 1.6 million for 2013. This obviously isn’t as good of a deal as the minor league contract the Phillies got him for in 2012, but he has averaged a 1.5 fWAR over the last 4 years and with an average of 148 games played per season in that period. So he is durable, the Marlins are obviously going to be able to play him, and he has been okay.
I’ve spent 25.7 million so far (24.47 %) for 2013 and I need at least 3 more starting pitchers, a 1st baseman, 2nd baseman, and a 3rd baseman (and obviously depth everywhere else). I have spent just 17.1 million dollars in future commitments and still have 47 roster spots open. Here is the spreadsheet of the team so far (you will notice that I originally said I would judge the team just on fWAR, but I also added WARP, bWAR, and WPA just to give us 4 different ways to view the team):
Now on to the important stuff. The team name is:
The Kraken. No plural, just The Kraken: