Now that Jason Heyward has selected a place to call home, it's time for more hitter dominoes, especially first basemen and outfielders, to fall. Free-agent hitters (and trade options) have been waiting patiently for one of the big "fishes" on the MLB free-agent market to decide on a destination and determine what the financial market would look like, and now we have a bit more clarity on that.
Just after free agency began, I projected Heyward to receive $23 million per year for nine years, and he got $23 million per year for 8 years. This means two things: 1) It appears there's still plenty of money left to go around after all the big-money starting-pitcher signings, and 2) The market doesn't seem to have changed much since we first posted my "Pricing, best fits for the top 50 free agents" column on Nov. 11.
But since I made those initial predictions, we've learned a lot more about which teams are most interested in each player and what the market is for each guy. With that, here's an updated look at six free-agent hitters and two trade options:
Note: A.A.V. stands for Average Annual Value.
Chris Davis, 1B
Age: 29 | DOB: 3/17/1986 | 2015 WAR: 5.2
Proj. contract: 7 years for $159 million (A.A.V.: $22.7M)
Davis has hit more home runs (and struck out more) than any other player in baseball over the past four seasons, but his market appears to be limited right now -- the Orioles are the only team known to have made an offer (for seven years and $154 million). Davis would fit well with several clubs, including the Cardinals and Astros, and would be a difference-maker for any team that signs him. But nobody else is willing to step up and play at the Orioles' level.
Have a need but can't afford him: Cleveland, Seattle, San Diego, Pittsburgh
Possible destinations: Baltimore, St. Louis, Houston, Colorado
Most likely: Baltimore