If there’s one thing that’s always constant within Major League Baseball it’s the rumor mill. And despite the fact that the MLB’s postseason is still in progress, the Hot Stove rumors are just getting started. One of these pre-offseason rumors revolves around Los Angeles Dodgers infielder Manny Machado. The same Manny Machado who just helped the Dodgers advance to their third straight National League Championship Series on Monday night.
Whether or not the Dodgers can win it all depends largely on Machado’s talent. But he’s a free agent at the end of the season and many teams will be vying for his services. The Baltimore Orioles traded Manny to the Dodgers over the summer to unload his salary and move into rebuild mode. The Orioles preferred to get something for him in return as opposed to losing him in free agency for nothing.
Machado’s next contract could be worth as much as $200 million. He’s one of the best hitters in the game, he’s solid with the glove, he can play third base in addition to his regular shortstop, he’s a four-time All-Star, a two-time Gold Glove winner, and a Platinum Glove winner. Here are some teams that can not only make immediate use of his services, but can also afford his asking price…..
The Los Angeles Dodgers–
This would be the most obvious choice. After all, why not stay with the team that you’re having October success with? The Dodgers have a ton of high priced talent on their roster already and keeping Manny Machado could put them into luxury tax territory. But the risk could be worth it if it means playing in October on a regular basis.
The Chicago Cubs–
Machado can help the 2016 World Champions in a couple of ways. For starters he can upgrade an offense that went cold over the final six weeks of the season and into the playoffs. Then he can also make it easier for the team to part ways with a couple of other players. Shortstop Addison Russell was given a 40-game suspension by Major League Baseball under their Domestic Violence Policy, and the team may wind up releasing him altogether. Plus, many Cubs fans were never supportive of the idea to bring in infielder Daniel Murphy and are hoping that he doesn’t come back.
Machado would make it easier to move on from both players.
The Chicago White Sox–
The Sox are still in rebuild mode, and they’ve made pitching a priority. But they’ve also expressed interest in adding another veteran bat to go along with those of first baseman Jose Abreu, outfielder Avisail Garcia, and designated hitter Matt Davidson. Manny Machado would give the White Sox another foundation player to compliment their core of young talent that will make them contenders again in the near future. The only question would be would Machado want to go to Chicago’s south side, and how much of his asking price would the team be willing to pay?
The Washington Nationals–
With all signs pointing to Bryce Harper leaving our nation’s capital in free agency, maybe Machado could take his roster spot. He’s accustomed to the Mid-Atlantic region as he began his career in Baltimore and played the Nationals several times in his early career. If they were to replace Harper with Machado, the Nationals would keep the star power alive and the offense wouldn’t skip a beat. They would also contend for the National League East title again after missing the postseason this year.
For now Manny Machado’s attention is focused on bringing a title to Los Angeles. But pretty soon he’ll start fielding offers and that’s when the next round of fun will begin.