Thursday, September 29, 2011

Teams to target in the offseason

I've been writing about how the Pirates should be looking into shanghai'ing talent this offseason by trading for young veterans with multiple years of control left on their contracts.

Rather than discuss players like I did last year, even though I think most of those players would be good candidates to obtain this year, I thought it may be interesting to evaluate which TEAMS may be in the market to trade.

Teams with financial problems:
NY Mets
LA Dodgers
Oakland A's

The Mets and Dodgers' financial problems are well-known, but perhaps lesser known to us East Coasters are the A's problems. Owner Lew Wolff desperately wants to move the A's to San Jose and build a corporately funded stadium, to the point that he recently backed a mayoral candidate who vowed NOT to build the A's a taxpayer-funded stadium in Oakland.

Further complicating the situation is that the Giants feel that San Jose is part of their "territory" and are actively fighting against them being able to move there. If things continue to drag on, the A's will be looking to burn the whole team down, perhaps this offseason.

Teams that need to cut salary and reload/rebuild:
Chicago Cubs
Houston Astros
Baltimore Orioles
Chicago White Sox
Minnesota Twins
Seattle Mariners

Whether or not all these teams realize they need to reload or rebuild is another story (I'm looking at you Minnesota).

Teams that may want to move salary in order to add salary:
St. Louis Cardinals
Florida Marlins
Washington Nationals
San Francisco Giants
Toronto Blue Jays
Los Angeles Angels

Oddly enough, all of these teams are in the market potentially for either Pujols or Fielder. All of these teams are up against their self-imposed salary caps, so they may need to move a mid-sized contract in order to clear space for these top 2 free agents.

With the Pirates showing increased attendance and Huntington already alluding to the idea that they may explore the trade market to improve the major league club, it makes sense that these teams will be mined for potential players. Each of these teams, with perhaps the exception of the Mets, has at least one interesting player with multiple years of control that could be a trade candidate.

The offseason will be an interesting one for the Pirates.

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