Just how good of a team can we build out of only remaining free agents?
Things have been a little quiet on the Hot Stove front this winter. Sure, Giancarlo Stanton has a new home and the Angels may or may not have signed the next Babe Ruth, but there's still a ton of talent left on the free agent market. Just how much talent, exactly? Enough to build an entire postseason-contending roster, as it turns out.
C: Jonathan Lucroy
Lucroy struggled early in 2017 with the Rangers, but he rebounded nicely after being traded to the Rockies at the non-waiver Trade Deadline -- and from 2012-2016 he was arguably the best catcher in baseball.
1B: Eric Hosmer
Hosmer picked a great time to have the best season of his career, setting new highs in batting average, on-base percentage and slugging. Of course, he's always been clutch:
2B: Neil Walker
Walker has quietly been one of the most consistent second basemen around: He's put up an OPS+ below 110 just twice over eight full seasons in the Major Leagues. He's still just 32, and he slashed .267/.409/.433 down the stretch for the Brewers last year.
3B: Mike Moustakas
Speaking of Royals corner infielders who posted career years in 2017, Moose put up an .835 OPS last season. And if you're looking for someone who can galvanize your fan base by breaking your franchise's single-season home run record, he's your guy:
SS: Eduardo Nunez
There's not much that Nunez can't do on a baseball field: He's played every position but catcher, first base and center field in his career, and he's hit 24 homers and stolen 60 bases over the last two seasons combined. The biggest risk for whichever team signs him will probably be finding a helmet that can stay on his head.
LF: Jay Bruce
Bruce will guarantee any Major League team three things: 1) dingers, 2) the kind of veteran leadership that you'd expect from the man who most resembles Baseball's Dad and 3) dingers
CF: Lorenzo Cain
Might any teams be interested in an All-Star who can hit .300, play a great center field, steal 20-30 bases every year and instantly make the clubhouse at least 40 percent more adorable?
We thought so.
RF: J.D. Martinez
They call him Just Dingers for a reason. Over the last four years, Martinez has averaged 32 homers a year and a .936 OPS, and his numbers down the stretch last year with Arizona are so bonkers they deserve repeating one more time: 62 games, 29 dingers, a .302/.366/.741 (!) slash line.
His power also comes with an added bonus of being great for clubhouse morale:
SP: Yu Darvish, Jake Arrieta, Lance Lynn, Alex Cobb
Yes, you can basically form a full (and awfully formidable) rotation just with the pitchers still left on the market. There are six All-Star nods an a Cy Young Award in this group, and the highest ERA of the bunch last year was Alex Cobb's 3.66.
Closer: Greg Holland
There are plenty of other qualty relievers available, from Addison Reed to Tony Watson, but we'll put our ninth inning in the hands of the man who nailed down 41 saves for the Rockies last season. He even has the official Bryce Harper Stamp of Approval: