Top 111 Free Agents: the non-tender edition

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With the batch of non-tenders helping to repopulate the ranks, it seemed like a good time to present an updated top 111 free agents. Players are listed based on how I think teams view them, rather than any personal feelings.
The original list can be found here.
1. Matt Holliday
2. John Lackey
3. Jason Bay
4. Adrian Beltre
5. Johnny Damon
6. Joel Pineiro
7. Aroldis Chapman
8. Jose Valverde
9. Mike Cameron
10. Jason Marquis
11. Mike Gonzalez
12. Ben Sheets
13. Fernando Rodney
14. Orlando Hudson
15. Mark DeRosa
16. Adam LaRoche
17. Jarrod Washburn
18. Marlon Byrd
19. Nick Johnson
20. Felipe Lopez
21. Jermaine Dye
22. Jon Garland
23. Hideki Matsui
24. Bengie Molina
25. Vladimir Guerrero
26. Carlos Delgado
27. Doug Davis
28. Vicente Padilla
29. Garrett Atkins (NT)
30. Octavio Dotel
31. Miguel Tejada
32. Brett Myers
33. Russell Branyan
34. Orlando Cabrera
35. John Smoltz
36. Erik Bedard
37. Matt Capps (NT)
38. Hank Blalock
39. Kelly Johnson (NT)
40. Pedro Martinez
41. Xavier Nady
42. Chan Ho Park
43. Rick Ankiel
44. Chien-Ming Wang (NT)
45. Randy Winn
46. Darren Oliver
47. Justin Duchscherer
48. Aubrey Huff
49. Troy Glaus
50. Coco Crisp
51. Jim Thome
52. Jonny Gomes (NT)
53. Miguel Olivo
54. Jack Cust (NT)
55. Kevin Gregg
56. Yorvit Torrealba
57. Braden Looper
58. Ryota Igarashi
59. Juan Uribe
60. Scott Podsednik
61. Joe Crede
62. Kiko Calero
63. Rod Barajas
64. Marcus Thames
65. Todd Wellemeyer
66. Ryan Church (NT)
67. Mike MacDougal (NT)
68. Scott Olsen (NT)
69. Craig Counsell
70. Rocco Baldelli
71. Randy Johnson
72. Reed Johnson
73. Jamey Carroll
74. Austin Kearns
75. David Weathers
76. Jose Contreras
77. Adam Kennedy
78. Ronnie Belliard
79. Gabe Gross (NT)
80. Alfredo Amezaga (NT)
81. Ryan Garko (NT)
82. Jerry Hairston Jr.
83. Guillermo Mota
84. Kelvim Escobar
85. Khalil Greene
86. Mike Jacobs
87. Fernando Tatis
88. Endy Chavez
89. D.J. Carrasco (NT)
90. Chad Tracy
91. Jose Arredondo (NT)
92. Livan Hernandez
93. Melvin Mora
94. Bob Howry
95. Gary Sheffield
96. Russ Springer
97. Jason Giambi
98. Tim Redding
99. Seth McClung (NT)
100. Garret Anderson
101. Eric Hinske
102. Ron Mahay
103. Brian Anderson (NT)
104. Ramon Castro
105. Shelley Duncan
106. Danys Baez
107. Jeff Weaver
108. Clay Condrey (NT)
109. Mark Loretta
110. Frank Catalanotto
111. Chris Duncan
Saturday’s non-tenders are listed with an (NT) next to their names. John Buck and Anthony Reyes would have made the list, but they’re already gone. Craig Counsell apparently is as well, but since he deal to stay with the Brewers isn’t official, he comes in at No. 69.
The cutoff for players likely to get multiyear deals is right around No. 30, though some of the catchers and relievers in the middle of the list will get two-year deals. Several guys in the bottom 20 may have to settle for minor league contracts.
Atkins comes in as the top non-tender. He’d probably prefer a one-year contract so that he can rebuild his value, and the Orioles might be willing to give him $5 million or so. The Twins are another team that figures to have some interest.
It might be that Arredondo has already agreed to a minor league deal to stay with the Angels, but he makes the list anyway. There should be several teams interested in stashing him away while he misses 2010 following Tommy John surgery.

Report: MLB, union making progress on new slide rule at second base

New York Mets shortstop Ruben Tejada falls after a slide by Los Angeles Dodgers' Chase Utley during the seventh inning of an NL Division Series baseball game Saturday, Oct. 10, 2015, in Los Angeles. (John McCoy/Los Angeles Daily News via AP)
John McCoy/Los Angeles Daily News via AP
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After Ruben Tejada suffered a fractured right fibula on a takeout slide from Chase Utley during the playoffs, there was momentum for a new rule about slides at second base. We haven’t heard much about it since the Owners’ Meetings in November, but ESPN’s Buster Olney reports that talks between MLB and the players’ union are making progress and a change is expected for the 2016 season.

The exact wording of the new rule is still unclear, but Olney hears that there’s a focus toward “ensuring that sliding runners either touch the base or make an effort to touch the base.” Below are some more details:

Sources said that in the union’s internal discussions, players made it clear they had been taught since they first began playing baseball to go into second base with the intent of breaking up double-play attempts. Although the union wants to improve safety for middle infielders, it does not want to eliminate players’ aggressiveness on slides or the ability to break up a double play.

However, there is a desire on both sides to eliminate slides on which a baserunner goes beyond the effort to reach second to make contact with middle infielders.

There’s already a rule in place for a situation like we saw with Utley, but it’s rarely, if ever, enforced. It’s unfortunate that Tejada’s fractured fibula had to be the catalyst for change or clarification with the rules, but hopefully this will result in fewer injuries in the future. Similar to the “Buster Posey Rule” for plays at home plate, get ready for life with the “Chase Utley Rule.”

Here’s the video of the Tejada/Utley play:

And here’s the video of another high-profile play from 2015 which resulted in a torn lateral meniscus and a fractured tibia for Pirates infielder Jung Ho Kang:

Report: Tigers and J.D. Martinez agree to a two-year, $18.5 million deal

J.D. Martinez
Photo by Leon Halip/Getty Images
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UPDATE: Jason Beck of MLB.com confirms that it’s a two-year, $18.5 million deal.

8:00 p.m. ET: Chris Cotillo of MLB Daily Dish reports that the Tigers have avoided arbitration with outfielder J.D. Martinez by agreeing to a two-year contract. No word yet on the terms involved, but Robert Murray of Baseball Essential reported earlier today that he was hearing rumblings about a two-year, $18.5 million deal.

Martinez filed for $8 million and was offered $6 million by the Tigers when arbitration figures were exchanged last month. There has been some talk about a long-term extension, but we heard last week that the two sides were discussing both one- and two-year deals. This new deal will buy out Martinez’s final two years of arbitration, so as of now, he’s still on track to go into free agency after 2017.

After a breakout 2014, Martinez batted .282 with 38 home runs and an .879 OPS over 158 games last season.

Free agent reliever Eric O’Flaherty weighing interest from four teams

New York Mets pitcher Eric O'Flaherty throws against the Miami Marlins during the ninth inning of a baseball game in Miami, Wednesday, Aug. 5, 2015. The Mets defeated the Miami Marlins 8-6. (AP Photo/Joe Skipper)
AP Photo/Joe Skipper
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Veteran reliever Eric O'Flaherty is coming off the worst season of his career, but there’s still plenty of interest in a bounceback, as ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick reports that he’s deciding between four teams and “should sign a deal by the weekend.”

You really can’t sugarcoat O’Flaherty’s 2015. The 31-year-old was flat-out bad, posting an 8.41 ERA and 21/18 K/BB ratio over 30 innings of work between the Athletics and Mets. Opposing batters hit .343/.427/.482 against him. I keep going back to check if that’s a misprint, but nope, it’s real. He also missed some time with shoulder inflammation. On the bright side, Tim Brown of Yahoo Sports reported last month that O’Flaherty feels healthy and believes that he has fixed his mechanics.

O’Flaherty’s career has veered off track since Tommy John surgery in 2013, but he has enjoyed plenty of success in the past and throws from the left side. He’s the kind of guy who will continue to get chances.

Mets sign outfielder Roger Bernadina

Cincinnati Reds v Arizona Diamondbacks
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Veteran outfielder Roger Bernadina has agreed to a minor-league contract with the Mets that includes an invitation to spring training.

Bernadina was a semi-regular for the Nationals from 2010-2012, but never developed as much as hoped offensively and didn’t play in the majors at all last season.

At age 32 he’s a career .236 hitter with a .661 OPS in 548 games as a big leaguer and given the Mets’ outfield depth–they already have Alejandro De Aza and Juan Lagares in bench/part-time roles–Bernadina seems likely to begin the season in the minors.