Skip to content

Michael Bourn is still waiting for some love

Jan 20, 2013, 8:19 PM EDT

Michael Bourn Getty Images

Considered by many as the No. 2 free agent hitter available this winter, Michael Bourn has now gone three months with seemingly no market developing for his services. The Braves struck early to sign B.J. Upton to replace him. The Phillies also targeted Upton and then traded for Ben Revere after coming up short. The Nationals traded for Denard Span. The Giants re-signed Angel Pagan. And it’s unclear if Bourn has even one offer on the table at this point.

Let’s explore all of the possible suitors as of Jan. 20, going from most likely to least likely.

Rangers – The most obvious destination; the Rangers have no clear starting center fielder and they possess as much payroll flexibility as any AL team. Still, one gets the idea that if they were truly high on Bourn, something would have gotten done already. Perhaps they’ll be more interested if he proves willing to accept a three-year deal.

Mariners – Management knows changes are on the horizon if the Mariners fail to take a clear step forward in 2013. Bringing in Bourn to play center fielder over the injury-prone Franklin Gutierrez would likely result in at least a couple of more wins. However, the team has been focused on adding power at the expense of speed and defense this winter.

Braves – Bourn is open to returning, even after the Braves initially shoved him aside to bring in Upton, and Atlanta still needs an outfielder and a leadoff hitter. If the Braves could come up with the cash to make it happen, they’d have a much better chance of hanging with the Nationals all season.

Cubs – The Cubs had no plans to splurge on a hitter this winter, but if Bourn’s price tag falls, they could find room in their plans for him. They’ve already upgraded their pitching staff enough to entertain dreams of sneaking up on teams in the NL Central.

Rays – He’d be a terrific fit if they could come up with the money. The Rays seem to prefer keeping Desmond Jennings in left field, and Bourn would be an upgrade in the leadoff spot, with Jennings hitting sixth or lower. Still, it’s hard to see them making the salary work.

Dodgers – They’re here simply because they do have the budget room for Bourn. However, any chance of them trading Andre Ethier and signing an outfielder seems to have passed.

Astros – If the Astros thought bringing back Bourn would excite the fans, then maybe they’d make a run. They certainly have room for him in their outfield. Unfortunately, they’re so far from contention that it makes little on-field sense to sign him.

White Sox – What would the winter be without a big surprise move from Ken Williams and Rick Hahn? Center field isn’t a need, but Bourn would be an upgrade over Alejandro De Aza in the leadoff spot.

Tigers – The team signed Prince Fielder last winter despite already having Miguel Cabrera at first base. However, with Austin Jackson in center, the upgrade from Andy Dirks to Bourn isn’t nearly worth Bourn’s asking price.

Yankees – There’s been some talk about a Curtis Granderson trade, but since he’s a free agent after 2013 and the Yankees are trying to cut payroll for 2014, Granderson is still a really good fit in New York. Plus, a Brett Gardner-Bourn-Ichiro Suzuki outfield, while ridiculously awesome defensively, just wouldn’t be very practical.

Blue Jays – They’re capped out as is, so they’d have to beg ownership for the money. Besides, they’re not too badly off with Colby Rasmus in center and Jose Reyes batting leadoff.

Red Sox – Would have to trade Jacoby Ellsbury and still might not be interested then.

Mets – Bourn would be a huge upgrade for the game’s second worst outfield (ahead of only Houston’s), but the Mets don’t have the money right now.

In my estimation, that’s three realistic possibilities (Rangers, Mariners and Braves) with maybe the Cubs as a sleeper if this drags on a few more weeks. My guess is that we’ll finally see some real Bourn talk this week, and he’s still going to get his $15 million per year in the end, even if some of that ends up being deferred (see Soriano, Rafael).

Latest Posts
  1. Henderson Alvarez undergoes shoulder surgery

    Jul 28, 2015, 11:22 PM EDT

    Henderson Alvarez AP

    Alvarez served as the Marlins’ Opening Day starter …

  2. Video: Jose Abreu awarded a home run after Mookie Betts flips into Fenway Park bullpen

    Jul 28, 2015, 10:05 PM EDT

    Mookie Betts AP

    Red Sox center fielder Mookie Betts tracked down a hardly hit ball from White Sox slugger Jose Abreu on Tuesday night but lost it when he fell into the bullpen …

  3. Red Sox retire Pedro Martinez’s number at Fenway Park

    Jul 28, 2015, 9:32 PM EDT

    Pedro Martinez AP

    Martinez was inducted into the Hall of Fame on Sunday.

  4. Astros “making a strong effort” for Phillies ace Cole Hamels

    Jul 28, 2015, 8:40 PM EDT

    Philadelphia Phillies v Chicago Cubs Getty Images

    Hamels would join Dallas Keuchel and Scott Kazmir in an excellent, postseason-ready Astros rotation.

  5. Mike Trout out Tuesday with left wrist injury

    Jul 28, 2015, 7:47 PM EDT

    Mike Trout AP

    Angels center fielder Mike Trout went 4-for-4 with two homers and five RBI in Sunday’s series finale against the Rangers, but he also suffered a left wrist injury in that game when he tried to make a diving catch …

  6. Angels acquire outfielders David Murphy and David DeJesus

    Jul 28, 2015, 6:54 PM EDT

    angels logo

    In a span of about 10 minutes the Angels landed two outfielders …

  7. Jenrry Mejia gets 162-game ban for second failed PED test

    Jul 28, 2015, 6:30 PM EDT

    Jenrry Mejia Jenrry Mejia

    This time it’s for both Stanozolol and Boldenone.

  8. Nationals, Phillies agree to Jonathan Papelbon trade

    Jul 28, 2015, 6:16 PM EDT

    papelbon Getty Images

    Papelbon owns a sparkling 1.59 ERA and 40/8 K/BB ratio in 39 2/3 innings this season for the Phillies, and he’s 17-for-17 in save opportunities.

  9. The Hall of Fame just made a MAJOR change to the Hall of Fame voting process

    Jul 28, 2015, 4:30 PM EDT

    Cooperstown

    Voters who are more than 10 years removed from covering the game will no longer get to vote in Hall of Fame elections

  10. Nolan Arenado is not too pleased about the Troy Tulowitzki deal

    Jul 28, 2015, 4:00 PM EDT

    Nolan Arenado Nolan Arenado

    And he thinks Carlos Gonzalez is the next one out the door. He’s probably right.

  11. Red Sox claim reliever Jean Machi off waivers from Giants

    Jul 28, 2015, 3:45 PM EDT

    Jean Machi Getty Images

    Designated for assignment by the Giants last week.

  12. Royals make another big move, get Ben Zobrist from A’s

    Jul 28, 2015, 2:40 PM EDT

    ben zobrist getty Getty Images

    General manager Dayton Moore is not messing around.

  13. Troy Tulowitzki’s greatness is not a Coors Field creation

    Jul 28, 2015, 11:50 AM EDT

    troy tulowitzki getty Getty Images

    Coors Field is powerful, but Tulowitzki is great anywhere.

  14. The Nationals are “making progress” on acquiring Jonathan Papelbon

    Jul 28, 2015, 11:33 AM EDT

    Jonathan Papelbon Getty Images

    He would be a nice addition to the Nats’ pen, but a costly one given his $13 million vesting option.

  15. Diamondbacks’ No. 1 overall pick Dansby Swanson suffers concussion, gets 14 stitches after beaning

    Jul 28, 2015, 11:19 AM EDT

    150608_DansbySwanson Getty Images

    Swanson was scheduled to join a minor-league team later this week after signing for $6.5 million.

  16. Mark Teixeira thrown out at plate, barks at his third base coach and throws trash can

    Jul 28, 2015, 11:08 AM EDT

    Screen Shot 2015-07-28 at 11.07.47 AM

    He had a right to be angry, but maybe he overdid it a bit?

Top 10 MLB Player Searches
  1. A. Rodriguez (4151)
  2. J. Cueto (3728)
  3. C. Hamels (3634)
  4. M. Trout (3205)
  5. T. Tulowitzki (3161)
  1. S. Kazmir (3083)
  2. M. Conforto (2988)
  3. D. Price (2980)
  4. J. Reyes (2965)
  5. C. Gonzalez (2964)