The Weak Market for Orlando Hudson

Josh LevittSenior Analyst IJanuary 13, 2010

PHILADELPHIA - OCTOBER 21:  Orlando Hudson #13 of the Los Angeles Dodgers rounds the bases after hitting a home run in the fifth inning against the Philadelphia Phillies in Game Five of the NLCS during the 2009 MLB Playoffs at Citizens Bank Park on October 21, 2009 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Nick Laham/Getty Images)
Nick Laham/Getty Images

Orlando Hudson is asking for $9 million in 2010. No, that's not a joke:

It is believed Hudson is asking for $9 million for 2010, which is too much for the Nationals. And don't look for them to offer Hudson a two-year deal either. In fact, the source believes the Giants set the market for infielders like Hudson when they re-signed Juan Uribe to a one-year, $3.25 million contract on Jan. 5.

If Hudson is seriously looking for $9 million, then he needs a dose of reality. Hudson will not get $9 million in 2010. In fact, he might not come close. Hudson might be the best second baseman on the free agent market, but there are very few teams out there actually looking for a second baseman.

  • Tigers: ONLY IF the price is right (back up option: Scott Sizemore)
  • Nationals: ONLY IF the price is right (back up option: Ian Desmond (at SS)
  • Mets: ONLY IF they are able to trade Luis Castillo

See, none of those teams NEED Hudson. That's the problem. If Hudson was able to develop a market where various teams were competing for his services, then maybe he could come closer to getting the $9 million dollars he seeks.

Hudson's case is further hindered because Felipe Lopez, who is the other top second baseman on the market, is still available and is struggling to find interested suitors, just like Hudson. And beyond Hudson and Lopez, there are plenty of cheaper free agent 2Bs still out there: Adam Kennedy, Ronnie Belliard, etc.

Given how terribly Hudson's free agency went last winter, it's easy to understand why he is shooting high this winter. Hudson is now 32 years old and the stats are showing that Hudson is declining (especially defensively ) and his chances of landing a lucrative multi-year contract are diminishing.

Furthermore, the money is simply not there this winter. Only three free agent position players landed contracts that exceeded $9 million annually: Jason Bay, Matt Holliday, and Chone Figgins. That fact alone makes it unfathomable to think that Hudson will land anything close $9 million guaranteed.

It's clear to me that the Nationals are the best fit for Hudson at this point, but we'll see if Hudson's price comes down to their level. A incentive laden one year deal would make lots of sense for both sides and at this point, I think Hudson would be giddy if the Nationals offered him a multi-year contract.

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