The free agent season is just around the corner. Some of the biggest names in baseball are out this year, but there are arguably four big ones: Carlos Correa, Corey Seager, Max Scherzer, and Freddie Freeman.
In the next few days we will look at each of these top 4, their top admirers … and rate them. There are many teams out there who want the top tier options, the platinum plan that Glengarry runs. But who is most likely to sign it? That is the goal of the Free Agency Power Ranking: to give you our best rating.
Today we met Scherzer. Do you realize that Scherzer set the best ERA of his career (2.46) in 2021? He was the ultimate deadline prize for the Dodgers, and he’s exactly the pitcher you want on your rotation in the playoffs. He is Max Scherzer! He’s a Hall of Famer who’s somehow still at its peak. Still, he’ll be 38 years old before the trade deadline next year, and we’ve seen him get a little tired towards the end of the season. But there’s no more immediate, more obvious rotation upgrade than Scherzer.
First, let’s make some predictions from Scherzer.
Obviously fits here. Scherzer and the Dodgers were an obvious couple when they traded for him, and he was great there. He’s already won a World Series title, but who doesn’t want another, and there’s no better bet in baseball to get one than Los Angeles. The Dodgers like short-term, expensive contracts, which Scherzer is an ideal candidate for. Nothing is broken in this relationship. Why fix what is not broken?
The Giants – despite this week’s shifts – still have some notable holes in their rotation, but we know how they fill places on their roster: Veterans can help them get the most out of them. This could be a chance to correct a wrong and get the best pitcher available.
If they were willing to pay Noah Syndergaard $ 21 million for a year, what would they give Scherzer? MLB.com’s Mike Feinsand reports that Mike Trout desperately wants the Angels Scherzer to follow up, which makes him like any Angels fan but maybe a little more influential. But the two teams above them on this list won at least 106 games last year. The angels … didn’t. Scherzer doesn’t have much time left in baseball. Does he want to roll the angels?
You’re always a contender, and he’d look amazing in pinstripes staring at the rackets at Yankee Stadium. A Gerrit Cole-Scherzer tandem at the head of the rotation would be terrifying in the regular season and the playoffs. All in all, the Yankees are kind of desperate: you may have read somewhere that they haven’t done a World Series since 2009. When you’re all-in, Scherzer is the ultimate all-in move.
A reunion of Justin Verlander and Scherzer (they were teammates in Detroit for five years) is kind of irresistible, isn’t it?
The Cardinals clearly could use him – they need a clear anchor for this rotation – and he has ties to the franchise from growing up in the area to playing for the University of Missouri to the original St. Louis draft from Parkway Central High School in Chesterfield, Missouri, in 2003 to the team that withdrew when they got the chance in 2015. The Cardinals have some money on the books, and they might be a sleeper contender. But here too: Deals like this seem to be outside of their personality.
7) red socks
Boston has some cash out of the books themselves, and it could use another starter. Red Sox fans would love Scherzer, which is worth it, though the team is looking to prioritize expansions for the likes of Rafael Devers and Xander Bogaerts.
8) blue jay
No team is eager to move up from last year’s standings than the Blue Jays, and one handy way to replace a potentially outgoing Cy Young Award winner (the free agent links Robbie Ray) is to sign another.
You obviously suddenly need some mugs, and a one-two punch from Jacob deGrom-Scherzer would be a delight. But do the Mets have enough together at the moment for Scherzer to want to register?
Are you ready to see you again? A lot of this would feel nostalgic: In terms of the competition window, it doesn’t seem to make a lot of sense. But if you want to convince Juan Soto that you want to win, this is not a bad way to go.