Yesterday, we learned that the Marlins were considering Evan Gattis and Chris Davis as trade options for an upgrade at first base. You can add Brandon Moss of the Athletics to the list, per MLB.com’s Joe Frisaro, as well as Allen Craig of the Red Sox (via Clark Herald of the Miami Herald).
The Marlins got below-average production out of Garrett Jones this past season, as he batted .246/.309/.411 with 15 home runs and 53 RBI in 547 plate appearances. The average slash line for a first baseman in the National League was .257/.330/.430.
With the Athletics having added Ike Davis and Billy Butler already, Moss has become expendable despite another productive year in Oakland. He hit .234/.334/.438 with 25 home runs and 81 RBI.
Craig joined the Red Sox at the trade deadline along with Joe Kelly in the trade that sent John Lackey to the Cardinals. He had a miserable year, posting an aggregate .215/.279/.315 line with eight home runs and 46 RBI in 505 plate appearances.
The Braves have announced on Tuesday evening the signing of free agent outfielder Marcell Ozuna. ESPN’s Jeff Passan reports that it’s a one-year contract for $18 million.
Ozuna, 29, hit .241/.328/.472 with 29 home runs, 89 RBI, 80 runs scored, and 12 stolen bases in 549 plate appearances for the Cardinals last season. He’s been consistently above-average in each of the past four seasons, which also included a career year in 2017 in which he was worth 6.1 WAR, per Baseball Reference.
It is surprising that Ozuna, a two-time All-Star and Gold Glove Award winner, had to settle for a one-year deal. The Braves are happy he did as he will help make up for some of the offense lost when third baseman Josh Donaldson became a free agent and ultimately signed with the Twins. Ozuna can become a free agent again after the 2020 season but won’t have qualifying offer compensation attached to him, part of the reason why his market may have been slow to develop.
Along with Ozuna, the Braves have signed in free agency this offseason reliever Will Smith, starter Cole Hamels, and catcher Travis d'Arnaud. They re-signed relievers Chris Martin and Darren O'Day, catcher Tyler Flowers, infielder Adeiny Hechavarría, and outfielder Nick Markakis.