It's not often the MLB offseason brings as much excitement as this one has in such short time. It hasn't even been six weeks since the Red Sox beat the Cardinals in the World Series on Oct. 30, and already we've seen six of the ten biggest free agents (based on HardballTalk's rankings) reach deals.
As the 2013 Winter Meetings move through their second day, it seems like a good time to revisit the rankings HardballTalk put out in early November. Here is a look at the top ten remaining free agents with their most recent team and age on Opening Day included:
1. Shin-Soo Choo - OF - Reds - 31
2. Matt Garza - RHP - Rangers - 30
3. Ervin Santana - RHP - Royals - 31*
4. Ubaldo Jimenez - RHP - Indians - 29*
5. A.J. Burnett - RHP - Pirates - 37
6. Nelson Cruz - OF - Rangers - 33*
7. Stephen Drew - SS - Red Sox - 31
8. Bronson Arroyo - RHP - Reds, 37
9. Bartolo Colon - RHP - Athletics - 40
10. Kendrys Morales - 1B-DH - Mariners - 30*
(Players with an * next to their name received qualifying offers and will require teams to forfeit a draft pick to sign)
Since the focus for the Nationals is now on lefty relief pitching, here is a look at the best options available in that category:
1. J.P. Howell - Dodgers - 30
2. Boone Logan - Yankees - 29
3. Scott Downs - Braves - 38
4. Eric O'Flaherty - Braves - 28
5. Oliver Perez - Mariners - 32
6. Matt Thornton - Red Sox - 37
7. Michael Gonzalez - Brewers - 35
8. Rich Hill - Indians - 34
The Nats have already been linked to the top four by multiple outlets, and Thornton has also been tossed around. As you can see, the market is thinning at the position. O'Flaherty is also said to be leaning towards returning to Atlanta, that would leave very little proven options.
Gonzalez hasn't been mentioned with the Nationals despite the fact he pitched well for the Nats in 2012. He struggled last season with the Brewers, posting a 4.68 ERA through 75 appearances.