The market has exploded. Teams have the money, and they are willing to spend it. So far, our Oakland Athletics are laying low, waiting for the prime opportunity to pounce on an undervalued commodity. Many ANers are speculating this crazy markets' effect on Oaktown. This is what I would do if I was Billy Beane, keeping the market in mind:
1. Keep Mark Kotsay
Gary Matthews: 5 years, 50 million. Alfonso Soriano: 8 years, 136 million. Juan Pierre: 5 years 45 million. The market for center fielders is at an alltime high. Mark Kotsay's 7 million looks like a bargain, and the A's would be able to "shed" his contract in a trade; however, the A's will then have to aquire another cf IN THE SAME MARKET. No way you can convince me that anyone on the roster can play center other than Kotsay. The A's will overpay for a center fielder in this market, just like another team would overpay for Kotsay. You think Kotsay's value has been climbing? Adam Dunn's is through the roof. In a perfect world the A's aquire a young cheep alternative, but I don't see that happening.
2. Trade Duke and DJ
Now here's a market that we can exploit. Duke is great, but so are Calero, Street, and Gaudin. Justin Speier is the best FA reliever, and he is no longer available. I have heard wispers about a Duke/DJ to Boston deal (don't ask me where, I won't tell you). In this market, I believe that Duke, DJ, and say, Jason Windsor nets Kevin Youkilis and Wily Mo Pena. Boston signs JD Drew and boasts a ManRam, Crisp, Drew OF with DJ at 1b. Oakland revieves an affordable 1b and DH, both of whom are locked up for years. Everyone is happy.
3. Sign Randy Wolf
The pitching market is yet to explode, and Wolf would be a great #5. Give him 2 years 13 million.
4. Sign Craig Wilson
Wilson will be the new Jay Payton. He will fill in at 1b, lf, rf, and even catcher. Melhuse gets nontendered and is finally free to get some playing time. Oakland brings up Jeremy Brown as an emergency catcher. 2 years 8 million.
1.Wilson (Will play at least 125 games)
Looks good to me. Our payroll stays in a more than realistic range, our offense is revamped, and we get Randy Wolf! What a wonderful world it would be.