Dan Uggla’s agent said last month that the 29-year-old had no intention of moving off second base for the Marlins or any other team, but it doesn’t appear that the player himself is quite so inflexible.
Or as Uggla told MLB.com yesterday:
“It’s a tough subject. I feel like I’m a second baseman. I feel like I’ve done a good job there the last few years. I don’t know. We’ll have to wait and see.”
Which is just about what one would expect a proud ballplayer to say. Uggla’s not a little guy, and he’s certainly not a prototypical second baseman. It’s impressive that he’s functioned as well as he at the position these last few years. However, the simple truth is that none of the teams that have weighed bidding on him want him as a second basemen. He’s going to have to move sooner or later, and it might as well be now.
Uggla to the Giants has been the popular rumor of the day, though San Francisco GM Brian Sabean isn’t going to surrender top prospect Madison Bumgarner for him.
There should be room for a compromise. If not, perhaps the Braves or Red Sox will get involved. Uggla has the bat to be useful in left field, and he should be solid enough defensively once he gains some experience there.
The Orioles singlehandedly kept the rumor mill churning this weekend. MLB Network’s Jon Morosi reports that the club is interested in making a play for free agent right-hander Lance Lynn, adding him to a list of potential candidates that also includes free agent righty Alex Cobb. The two are expected to command similar contracts in free agency, but Morosi notes that the Orioles may prefer Cobb based on his familiarity with the AL East.
Lynn, 30, is two years removed from Tommy John surgery on his right elbow. Despite missing the 2016 season, he bounced back with a respectable 11-8 record in 33 starts and complemented his efforts with a 3.43 ERA, 3.8 BB/9 and 7.4 SO/9 over 186 1/3 innings for the 2017 Cardinals. He lost several days with a blister on his pitching hand in early September, but managed to avoid any major injuries and can reasonably be expected to shoulder another heavy workload in 2018.
Lynn may not be the Orioles’ first choice to beef up their starting rotation, but there’s no doubt that he’ll be in high demand as one of very few viable starters on the market this winter. The veteran righty rejected his one-year, $17.4 million qualifying offer from the Cardinals on Thursday and will likely be seeking a multi-year contract, one that Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch estimates around five years and $100+ million. If the Orioles are willing to bite that bullet, they’ll still need to compensate the Cardinals with their third pick in next year’s draft.