Baseball's Most Interesting Free Agents Entering The Offseason

By Geoff Magliocchetti
World Series - Washington Nationals v Houston Astros - Game One
World Series - Washington Nationals v Houston Astros - Game One / Elsa/Getty Images

With the World Series end apparently well on its way, baseball's offseason is looming large. The lack of on-field activity doesn't mean a quiet few months for America's Pastime, though. Some of baseball's biggest names are up for movement, after all...

1B/DH Jose Abreu, Chicago White Sox
Abreu has found a true calling as a designated hitter and leads impending AL free agents with 123 RBI last season. Fielding, double play issues, and his relative age (33) could scare teams off, but he would be an invaluable tool in this new home run era.

LHP Madison Bumgarner, San Francisco
This seasons saw the San Francisco staple earn mediocre numbers by MadBum standards (9-9, 3.90 ERA). But he proved himself valuable at multiple points last season, carrying a young Giants team to respectability. He could easily make a team on the cusp of contention very happy as a reliable middle-starter.

RHP Gerrit Cole, Houston
A mediocre World Series opener notwithstanding, Cole might be the most-sought after pitching prospect. The former Pittsburgh Pirate set new career-highs in every major category this season, headlined by a jaw-dropping 326 strikeouts. He's added 38 more this postseason. He'll be one of the most coveted guys in the market, no matter how his final series of 2019 works out.

3B Josh Donaldson, Atlanta
The three-time All-Star did a splendid job of getting back on track after injuries cost him most of 2018. Suitors could scoff at Donaldson's age (he turns 34 in December), but could marvel at the power and defense he brings. Donaldson knocked 37 out of the park last season and led all NL third basemen in Defensive Runs Saved.

SS Didi Gregorius, NY Yankees
Don't let an injury-marred 2019 season fool you. Gregorius was in perhaps the most unenviable position in sports-- picking up where Derek Jeter left off on the field in The Bronx-- and managed to post respectable numbers, including three straight 20-home run seasons (2016-18).

OF Yasiel Puig, Cleveland
Things felt a little quiet for the showstopping Puig, whose deadline move from Cincinnati to Cleveland didn't quite pay off. New career-highs in RBI (84) and stolen bases (19) will make him an attractive option to team seeking power and depth in the outfield.

LHP Hyun-Jin Ryu, LA Dodgers
Ryu was already known for his general consistency, but has taken his game to new heights with a minuscule 2.21 ERA over the past two seasons. The one knock against Ryu would probably be his relative mileage, having thrown seven full seasons in his native South Korea before joining up with Los Angeles in 2013.

3B Anthony Rendon, Washington
Entering both free agency and his third decade of life, Rendon picked the perfect year to explode onto the scene, introducing himself to the casual baseball fan in the process. Rendon's suitors better be ready to open their checkbook after his season. Experts at Spotrac claim he nearly double his yearly value, which was already at a pricy $18 million in his last Washington deal.

RHP Stephen Strasburg, Washington
The last thing the former strikeout king needed was a better audition tape for his current and future employers. Washington's closing in on an elusive World Series thanks to the efforts of Strasburg and his 1.93 postseason ERA and 40 strikeouts over 28 innings. He helped the Nats take a 2-0 lead with a strong outing in Houston, going six innings with only two runs earned and seven strikeouts.