Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Key free-agent signings-hitters

A quick rundown of the key hitters who have switched teams via free agency:

Perhaps the most important free-agency move was OF Rico Valdes. The speedy outfielder leaves Toronto for the defending NL champion Fargo Dirtbags for 5 years at $36.5 million. Can he provide the offense that the Dirtbags need to take the title in season 3?

Valdes was not the only big-time hitter to switch teams. World Series MVP Torey Diaz left the Sultans for the St. Louis Silly Nannies for a 2 year, $4.8 million contract. Fellow ex-Sultan Moose Coleman will play for Charlotte; the Brit signed a 3-year, $20.4 million deal to go to the Blue Devils. 3B Eddie Linton leaves Las Vegas for Seattle for 2 years and $9.6 million.

A couple of outfielders will try to come back from injuries in new spots. LF Marc Olson will try to come back from his hamstring tear in Austin instead of Salt Lake City, bolting to sign a 2 year, $7 million contract. Speedster Yank Lohse returns from a bulging disk in Louisville, leaving Scottsdale for a 2-year, $9.6 million guaranteed contract (there is a mutual $5.3 million option in season 5).

Trenton signed a pair of infielders to supplement their young talent. Scot Hutton leaves Fargo for New Jersey, signing a 4-year, $27 million contract, and Phil Nakajima leaves Seattle and breaks up the Kobe Connection for 3 years and $18 million. Whether these signings get them past Atlanta and Norfolk remains to be seen.

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