Sudden thought, crystallized after jumping around the back of my head for a while, and one that you’ve probably already considered . . . .
With all these nebulous tweets from the national media about how busy and how crazy these Winter Meetings are primed to be, and given both the lack of top-tier free agents and the number of teams apparently prepared to spend, it seems like we might have a throwback, old-school, wheel-and-deal marketplace shaping up.
It wouldn’t surprise me if a good number of clubs not quite feeling it for 2012 might try to take advantage of the current landscape by running some impact players out on the relatively thin market to see what sort of premium they can extract in high-end pre-arbitration players and minor leaguers . . . which could convert a sellers’ market into somewhat of a buyers’ market for those teams particularly flush in those types of young player assets.
Stated another way, much as Atlanta found itself targeted (along with two or three other clubs) by the Rangers in July 2007, I wonder if Texas might find itself fielding as many calls as it places this week on opportunities to be on the opposite end of a Mark Teixeira-type trade. Part of the reason the Rangers traded Teixeira exactly when they did (a season and a half away from free agency) was an exploitation of market timing – and I wonder if the more or less unimpressive free agent crop could have teams with impact starters and impact bats at least checking around to see what they can flip their own players for . . . and pinpointing Texas, with its farm system depth and its money to spend, on its list (regardless of size) of the teams to check in with.
Just a thought.