Corner infielders, the game's most offensive savvy players. Offense comes first, defense comes second. When you see a franchise player, it’s normally one of these talented athletes.
Without further ado, here is the list.
Carlos Delgado 1B
Delgado has an option that needs to be picked up or bought out. A few months ago, it looked like he would be a free agent for sure. Now, it looks more than likely it’ll be picked up. Either way, this guy is a game changer and a clutch hitter. He has been for more than a decade.
Jason Giambi 1B
Ok, he does steroids, and he hasn’t been the same Giambi that signed with the Yankees in 2002 since he admitted to the guilt. Well, he’s still a powerful left-handed bat that could change the look of any American League lineup. He’ll come cheap, as he has something to prove. He too has an option that will determine his free-agency fate.
Mark Teixeira 1B
The most coveted free agent bat on this year’s list. He won’t come cheap, not with Scott Boras at the helm. Boras will look for an Alex Rodriguez type deal, with a little less money. That means 10 years and $280 million. Yeah, not cheap, but he’s a game changer. He’s the complete package. A switch hitter, power, great defense, great contact, and a solid arm.
Casey Blake 3B/1B
Blake was traded to the Los Angeles Dodgers to boost their offense. He won’t command more than $7 million a season for more than three years, but he’s extremely versatile. He can play left, right, first, and more notably third. He’ll give you 20+ home runs and 80+ runs batted in a season and is a solid right-handed bat.
And that’s that. Joe Crede and Hank Blalock are two guys to watch. They have options for 2009 and would be good designated hitters for an AL team. The DH would be their best bets, as they are somewhat injury prone, but both are known for their handy work at the hot corner. Could be good investments on incentive-laden deals.
Check back tomorrow as we look at Part IV: Middle Infielders.
As always, you can find the potential 2009 free agents here.