The 2010-11 MLB betting online free agency period has been both a memorable and rather forgettable one. On the one hand, all of the top sports betting free agents of the baseball world have been signed except for two. However, on the other hand this offseason has given Northbet fans and experts alike a good idea of just how desperate some teams can get when a player leaves their team. With only a select few top free agents remaining, these are the players we are still surprised do not have a job yet.
Rafael Soriano P – The former Kansas City Royal turned Tampa Bay Ray for a season, still remains the hottest free agent on the market. Soriano not being signed yet comes as both a surprise and a head scratcher to us, as he is one of the best if not the best closer in the game today.
Throughout his career, Soriano has enjoyed playing in smaller markets. Meaning to say, the fact that former Pittsburgh Pirate and veteran relief pitcher Octavio Dotel got a job with the Blue Jays over Soriano makes us think Soriano might need to reduce his asking price. In our opinion, Soriano is the Cliff Lee of the bullpen. Our suspicion is that a team such as the Minnesota Twins, who sorely lacked a closer last season, will be the team that takes Soriano this offseason.
Adrian Beltre 3B – Beltre is another player whose contract demands may be a little too high for teams to accommodate. Over the last couple of seasons, Beltre has been rather inconsistent. On the one hand, he showed in Boston that when he focuses Beltre is perhaps one of the top five best third basemen in the MLB both offensively and defensively.
However, on the contrary he showed in Seattle, that despite receiving a decent pay day, he’s not always focused. During his time in Seattle he put up poor offensive numbers, while his defense left a bit to be desired. We see Beltre ending up with the LA Angels.
MLB betting handicappers predicting where the league’s top free agent pitchers will land, were for the most part shocked and amazed that gem of the 2011 class, Cliff Lee signed with the Philadelphia Phillies. In an era where the almighty dollar dictates where baseball betting online stars will sign, Lee shocked the world by going with his heart. Now that Lee is signed, who will be the next pitcher scooped up by a new team? Here are three of the remaining top free agent pitchers.
- Kevin Millwood – The grizzly veteran had one of the most forgettable seasons of his career in 2010, playing on a young bad Baltimore Orioles squad that really didn’t show up until the beginning of September. In saying that, over his career, the 37 year old Millwood has a record of 159 – 137 with a four point 11 earned run average.
Last season, Millwood one of the league’s work horses, earned a whopping $12 million. However, at 37 years of age, many clubs have been hesitant to offer the big right hander a contract with the same monetary figures. Meaning to say, we expect a team looking for a strong veteran presence to add Millwood, but at a reduced price from the $12 million from a year ago.
- Justin Duchscherer - Once considered one of the best young arms in the game, Duchscherer has suffered through a lot of arm and back injuries over the past few seasons. Only accumulating a record of 33 – 25 with an earned run average just over three.
When he’s healthy, Duchsherer is one of the most affective pitchers in the game. Last season he only made two million dollars with Oakland. However, we feel he could be effective coming out of the bullpen for his new team, perhaps as a closer.
- Jon Garland - From years of watching the American League Central, breeders cup betting fans may remember Jon Garland, the staff ace of the Chicago White Sox. Over the last couple of seasons, Garland has bounced around several teams, pitching admirably. However, each team he’s been on has had a difficult time contending and has found his value to be beneficial on the trade market.
It is no Bet Online scam — for teams looking for an innings eater, Garland is the pitcher you want to go after. What’s more, he can be a gap whole guy until a prospect being groomed in the minors is ready to come up during the middle of the season.
Today is a very important day with a lot of MLB betting ramifications, as it is the final day for free agents to accept or decline arbitration offers from the clubs they played with last season. If a player accepts arbitration, they will remain with their current team. Yet as many baseball betting online handicappers are hoping, if players decline arbitration, they can become free agents.
In essence, the reason the 2010 MLB offseason has been so quiet since the World Series ended, is because players and teams have been waiting for today to arrive. With so many of today’s players feeling they are worth more on the open market then what their teams suggest via arbitration, it is more than likely that the free agent pool will heat up in the coming weeks.
Over the last decade, several marquee players have declined arbitration and signed with a new baseball team and helped their new team win the World Series. The best example of this was back in 2002, when a then fairly unknown designated hitter and occasional first baseman named David Ortiz, declined his arbitration offer from the Minnesota Twins. The result? Ortiz would sign with the Boston Red Sox, and become one of their most valuable players en route to two World Series titles.
This offseason, the biggest name to be tendered an arbitration offer but is likely to decline is Chicago White Sox closer Bobby Jenks. The 2005 World Series winning closer had an off season last year with awful statistical numbers. Also with the emergence of several other bullpen arms in Chicago last year, who proved able to close out games, it appears Jenks days in Chicago are numbered. With the Toronto Blue Jays looking for a new closer and having a tendency to take a flyer on players, Jenks may be the perfect fit.