Originally posted on NESN.com  |  Last updated 12/3/12
The baseball offseason has already seen plenty of fireworks and it will be tough for anyone to top what the Toronto Blue Jays have done. The Jays coordinated a pretty special blockbuster trade that brought them Josh Johnson, Mark Buehrle and Jose Reyes from the Miami Marlins and in the process, they became World Series contenders. While that move might be tough to beat, there are still a number of big free agent chips that have yet to fall into place. At the top of this year’s class is former Cy Young winner Zack Greinke and five-time All-Star and American League MVP Josh Hamilton. Both players have potential to elevate the status of any contender and that’s why there is no shortage of suitors vying for their services. Here’s a look at the two biggest prizes of the baseball offseason and analysis as to where they might end up playing next season: Zack Greinke, Starting Pitcher Greinke finished with the 58th-best ERA among starting pitchers in 2011 and the 27th-best in 2012. Three rivals are fighting for his services and that’s going to create quite the bidding war. The Angels, who Greinke pitched for last season, need him back in their rotation. They already let Dan Haren go and traded away Ervin Santana, so they really need Greinke back. Meanwhile, their AL West rivals from Texas are prepared to open their checkbooks too. They would love nothing more than to weaken their opponent’s rotation by strengthening their own. Lastly, the Dodgers are also in the mix — maybe somewhat surprisingly — even after all of the payroll they’ve take on in the last year. They apparently have no qualms going into the luxury tax and if that’s truly the case, they’ll go after Greinke very aggressively. Greinke doesn’t like the spotlight of playing in New York or Boston, so don’t expect those teams to get into the mix. Josh Hamilton, Outfielder Hamilton is an intriguing free agent who is also likely to get a very lucrative contract. On the one hand, when you see his 128 RBIs and 43 home runs from last season, the temptation is to do everything possible to sign him. However, teams like the New York Yankees have been burned by signing sluggers to such massive, long-term contracts (see: Alex Rodriguez) and many other teams around the league will be reticent. The 31-year-old only played 134 games or more twice in his career. He’s also battled drug addiction and had some relapses throughout his career, so there are definitely some red flags. Teams like the Baltimore Orioles, Milwaukee Brewers, Boston Red Sox and Rangers should be in the mix for his services. 2013 World Series Odds Detroit Tigers: 17-2 Washington Nationals: 17-2 New York Yankees: 11-1 Toronto Blue Jays: 11-1 Cincinnati Reds: 12-1 Los Angeles Angels: 12-1 Los Angeles Dodgers: 12-1 San Francisco Giants: 12-1 Texas Rangers: 12-1 Boston Red Sox: 30-1
MORE FROM YARDBARKER:
Five most anticipated September MLB call-ups
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Kubiak hinting that Siemian is favorite for Broncos' QB job?

Jason Garrett won’t rule Tony Romo out for Week 1

John Harbaugh: NFL needs to make changes to preseason

Romo expected to miss 6-10 weeks with broken bone in back

Kaepernick explains why he is protesting national anthem

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Dwyane Wade’s cousin shot and killed in Chicago

NFL tries to reduce kick returns, promptly causes more kick returns

San Francisco Giants inching closer to a record they really don’t want

Clint Dempsey undergoing testing for irregular heartbeat

Troubling details emerge from Jeremy Jeffress' DWI arrest

Chargers would welcome Joey Bosa if he signed contract

A sports history of not standing up for the national anthem

Heading into the homestretch: 2016 ROY favorites

Premier League notebook: The love affair at Man U

One Gotta Go: NFL legends talking comedians is no joke

It's all about timing: The evolution of the clock in sports

Predicting the unpredictable: Your MTV VMAs rundown

10 great moments in the career of Roberto Duran

Marshall’s first impression of Fitzpatrick: ‘He was terrible’

One Gotta Go: NFL legends bring the hate for fast food

What you need to know about the Champions League draw

Six worst quarterback situations in the NFL

Can the San Francisco Giants bust their teamwide slump?

MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

A sports history of not standing up for the national anthem

Premier League notebook: The love affair at Man U

Heading into the homestretch: 2016 ROY favorites

One Gotta Go: NFL legends talking comedians is no joke

It's all about timing: The evolution of the clock in sports

Predicting the unpredictable: Your MTV VMAs rundown

10 great moments in the career of Roberto Duran

The 20 best boxing movies of all time

One Gotta Go: NFL legends bring the hate for fast food

What you need to know about the Champions League draw

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker