Every offseason seems to bring with it a new crop of highly talented free agent players – and the 2016 list will be no different. There are plenty of great names that will be hitting the free agent market, and huge contracts are sure to be handed out all winter long. While you can’t necessarily buy your success in the offseason, you can certainly help your chances by bringing in one of the top names on the market. A front line starting pitcher or a middle of the order power hitter can mean the difference between making the playoffs and going home early next fall.
There are far more than three great players on the free agent market this winter, but the three below are likely to land some of the biggest contracts.
What makes Heyward unique is not just his set of skills, but also his age. Jason Heyward will only be 26 years old when the season starts next year, which is unusual for a free agent. Since he made his debut at such a young age, Heyward started the ‘clock’ on his free agency date younger than most. Also, unlike a player like Mike Trout, Heyward never signed an early contact extension, meaning he is hitting the market looking for his first big deal. Of course, he will have no trouble finding it. The power numbers haven’t really come along for Heyward like many expected, but he is still an excellent player. With plenty of speed, skill on defense, and the ability to get on base, somebody is going to write a big check to bring in this talented outfielder.
The Orioles slugger will be hitting the market this winter, and there are plenty of teams around both leagues that could benefit from a power hitting first baseman. Davis is picking an excellent time to have a good season, as his stock is certainly higher now than it was at the start of the year. Davis will be 30 when the 2016 season starts, which may limit the length of his contract slightly – but he should still be expected to command a large sum.
It just might be that David Price ends up with the biggest contract of all during the offseason. There simply isn’t anything not to like about what Price brings to the game. He throws hard, he works deep in games, and he has been durable to this point in his career. His stock doesn’t need to go up any further for him to command a $200 million deal, but his profile will be enhanced even more if he takes the Blue Jays all the way to a World Championship.