Thursday, December 13, 2012

Josh Hamilton Signs with the Angels; Impact on the Nick Swisher Market

No interlocking NY for Swisher in '13
The Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim have added outfielder Josh Hamilton on a five year deal worth $125M and now the free agent market attention shifts to Nick Swisher as one of the top outfielder options.

Swisher said that he would make a decision on where to play after Hamilton picks his team, so it appears as if the Rangers would not move into the teams interested in Swisher to replace Hamilton. Among the other teams interested are the Cleveland Indians, Boston Red Sox, Philadelphia Phillies, Seattle Mariners, and Baltimore Orioles. The Yankees have turned their attention to bringing back Ichiro in 2013.

Cleveland Indians
The Indians are now aggressive in Swisher talks as they traded away Shin-Soo Choo to the Cincinnati Reds. They offered Shane Victorino a deal for 4-years worth $44M before he decided to sign with Boston. Swisher is asking for more money, but it could be for four years as well.

Philadelphia Phillies
The Phillies actually offered Ichiro a two-year deal worth $14M before he decided to return to the Bronx, according to Buster Olney. They're looking to rebuild their outfield after their trade for Ben Revere and were interested in Hamilton. Their attention right now should be split between Cody Ross and Swisher. The price tag on Ross is lower than that of Swisher.

Boston Red Sox
Even after signing Victorino, the Red Sox have stayed in contact with Swisher's agent. Their outfield seems to be set, unless they can find a team that would present a good trade for someone like Jacoby Ellsbury. Jon Heyman of CBS Sports sees that as unlikely.

Texas Rangers
There are still options on the market to replace Hamilton and the money is available to sign Swisher. They never offered Hamilton a five year deal, so they would most likely offer Swisher a four year deal. All in! This team has the best shot of landing the former Yankees slugger after whiffing on Zach Greinke and Hamilton.

Seattle Mariners
Mrs. Swisher aka Joanne Garcia loves the West Coast being an actress and the San Francisco Giants are out due to the price tag. The Rangers are expected to be more aggressive than the Mariners in the upcoming talks and offer a chance to join a team more likely to win in the short term. The Mariners need offense and this would be a start to go along with their Jason Bay signing (whom they hope to resurrect.)

In the end, he has options and plenty of time to make his decision.

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