3 Under-The-Radar Teams To Watch In Free Agency


As baseball enters free agency, everyone talks about the New York Yankees, Boston Red Sox, and all the usual big-spending suspects. But this winter, there are a number of "under-the-radar" teams to watch in free agency, teams that have been dormant for years in the hot stove portion of the offseason, but are now ready to pounce. Keep an eye on these three organizations:

1. Seattle Mariners 

The Mariners made a leap into near-contender status in 2021, and GM Jerry DiPoto has made it clear they're ready to spend this offseason. Long-time third baseman Kyle Seager's $20M is off the books, as is Yusei Kikuchi's $13M. Their payroll committed for 2022 at this point is just $50M. So big-time cash is at their disposal.

The Mariners are looking for a big bat for the middle of the order, and they have their sights set on nabbing one of the superstar shortstops on the market.  

2. Detroit Tigers 

The Tigers are ready to step up and contend in the American League Central. With a good young pitching staff, they just need to add some thump to the lineup. 

In addition, the Miguel Cabrera money ($32M/year) is coming off the books in two seasons, so they've got relief coming for any big-money long-term contracts they hand out this winter. 

Carlos Correa is front and center on their radar, and his connection with Tigers manager A.J. Hinch from Houston could be a selling point. 

3. Miami Marlins 

This is not a team that usually comes to mind when considering who will "win the offseason", but MLB insider Jon Morosi says "the Marlins are a team to watch very carefully this offseason." And with good reason. 

Miami already has one of the best young starting staffs in all of baseball, and an exciting young piece in Jazz Chisholm to build around. And after a surprising playoff appearance in 2020, part-owner and head of baseball operations Derek Jeter won't let 2021's slippage affect his push towards contention.  

One big free agent name that's been tied to the Marlins is local boy Anthony Rizzo. As Morosi reported even before this season began, Broward County's Rizzo is very popular in his home state, and would be "an ideal free agent target for the Marlins."

Photo Credit: Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports