MLB Rumors: Buying or Selling the 6 Most Discussed Potential Deals

Pete Schauer@@Pete_SchauerCorrespondent IDecember 20, 2012

MLB Rumors: Buying or Selling the 6 Most Discussed Potential Deals

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    The chips are certainly falling this offseason.

    With big names like Josh Hamilton and Zack Greinke off the market, we shift our focus to some of the bigger-named free agents still left without a home.

    In a matter of a day, you'll hear a player linked to multiple teams, which is why I'm here to buy or sell some of the most discussed potential deals this MLB offseason.

    Let's get into it.

Buying: Nick Swisher to Cleveland Indians

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    Nick Swisher ultimately wants to end up in Los Angeles (who could blame him), but it's probably not going to happen.

    According to Ben Nicholson-Smith of MLB Trade Rumors, the Cleveland Indians are going hard after the 32-year-old free-agent outfielder.

    Swisher has already met with executives and has even been made an offer, as's Jordan Bastian reports, and even Jim Tressel has attempted to recruit the outfielder to Cleveland (h/t ESPN).

    With Swisher's options running low, I think he has to think seriously about accepting the offer made by the Indians.

    Terry Francona will make sure he fields a competitive team, and Swisher could be a main piece to Cleveland's offense if he signs.

Selling: Carl Pavano Return to Minnesota Twins

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    Carl Pavano had a solid season for the Minnesota Twins in 2010—pitching to a 17-11 record and 3.75 ERA—but I don't think he'll be doing that in 2013.

    Pavano was plagued by injury for most of last season, starting just 11 games and posting a 2-5 and 6.00 ERA in those few starts.

    Furthermore,'s Rhett Bollinger doesn't believe Pavano to be a fit in Minnesota this season, writing:

    Pavano is still currently a free agent and doesn't appear to be a fit with the Twins. He pitched only 63 innings last season before ultimately being shut down with what was later diagnosed as a bone bruise on his right humerus bone.

    Given the fact that the righty is 36 and is showing signs of wearing down, it wouldn't be the right move for the Twins to bring him back, as they're looking to get younger and contend in the AL Central.

Buying: Michael Bourn to Seattle Mariners

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    Similar to the Swisher situation, the market for Michael Bourn has shrunk recently. 

    The Los Angeles Angels signed Josh Hamilton, and the Philadelphia Phillies—who were rumored to make a run at Bourn—signed Ben Revere, making Bourn's options very limited.

    Enter the Seattle Mariners.

    CBS Sports' Jon Heyman reports that the Mariners may be willing to part with their draft pick in order to sign a big-name free agent other than Swisher, and as MLB Trade Rumors reports, Bourn could be that player.

    Bourn's speed would be ideal for covering ground in center field in Safeco Field and could do wonders atop the Mariners lineup.

    I'm buying it.

Selling: Cody Ross to Texas Rangers

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    According to ESPN Insider (paid access required), the Texas Rangers have expressed interest in Cody Ross.

    After seeing Josh Hamilton flee town for L.A., I don't think Ross is the answer.

    Texas has a serious lack of power without Hamilton and Mike Napoli, and Ross is just an average hitter against right-handed pitching—.256 last season, and that was in Fenway.

    Ross is a hard-nosed player and a solid outfielder, but he's not the answer for Texas.

    With teams like the Boston Red Sox, Seattle Mariners and Philadelphia Phillies also in the mix for Ross, I'm selling Ross in a Rangers uniform next season.

Buying: Edwin Jackson to Chicago Cubs

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    Edwin Jackson has been linked to multiple teams this offseason, but with the Chicago Cubs reportedly making a push for him, I'm buying it.

    According to Phil Rogers of the Chicago Tribune, the Cubs are focused on landing Jackson after missing out on Anibal Sanchez.

    We all know Theo Epstein is no stranger to making big splashes in free agency and you can bet he'll go hard after Jackson.

    Given the fact that the Cubs ranked 23rd in starting pitching ERA last season (4.52), Jackson seems like an obvious focus for Chicago.

Buying: A.J. Pierzynski to Texas Rangers

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    With Mike Napoli now in Boston and Geovany Soto not producing much for Texas last season, the Rangers are reportedly interested in the services of 14-year veteran A.J. Pierzynski (h/t ESPN).

    Pierzynski is coming off a season in which he hit 27 HR and drove in 77 runs while still calling an excellent game behind the plate for the Chicago White Sox.

    Texas is in desperate need for a catcher. Soto hit just .198 last season, and with Hamilton and Napoli gone from the Rangers lineup, they need more offensive production.

    The Rangers will get offense and a solid backstop in Pierzynski—I'm buying it.

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