Of course, this is not surprising whatsoever. The Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim have plenty of capable outfielders, and that money could surely be invested more wisely in a pitching staff that finished eighth in the American League in terms of ERA.
If he did not return to the Angels, Dierkes suggests that Hunter might be interested in either the Texas Rangers or the Philadelphia Phillies. Both of these teams have plenty of money and need to fill holes.
Hunter hit .313 last season with 16 home runs and 92 RBI. He is a nine-time Gold Glove winner, and even though he has not won one of those since he moved to right field, he is still one of the better defensive outfielders in all of baseball.
Beyond the Rangers and Phillies, the Boston Red Sox would be a very interesting fit.
First of all, as a right-handed hitter, he would definitely benefit from the short distance to the Green Monster in left field. As evidence of that, according to Baseball Reference, 13 of his 16 home runs were to the left side of the field. He would not be robbed of very many home runs by that deep power alley in right centerfield.
Next, the Boston Red Sox need to revamp their team, and Torii Hunter has been a documented leader for many years. While trying to reinvent themselves after what ended up being a headache of a season, Hunter would add to the positive atmosphere in the clubhouse.
Finally, the Red Sox have two very solid outfielders in Jacoby Ellsbury and Cody Ross. Scott Podsednik and Daniel Nava held down the position for most of the season and are probably the best fit to fill the position next season, but Hunter is an upgrade over both of them.
Torii Hunter is going to be a hot commodity on the free-agent market this winter, but the Boston Red Sox would be wise to make a play for him and get ready to compete at a high level in the American League East once again.
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