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Where does Nelson Cruz go from here?

Dec 21, 2013, 4:17 PM EDT

The Rangers have reportedly agreed to a seven-year, $130 million contract with free agent outfielder Shin-Soo Choo. While it was already unlikely that Nelson Cruz was going to return to Texas, this pretty much seals it. So the big question is, where will he land now? Bob Nightengale of USA Today has one guess:

It’s a logical assumption, as the Mariners and Cruz have been linked throughout the offseason. And the Mariners still need to add other parts if they are serious about making a run at things. Still, I wouldn’t rule out the Orioles, as they have been mentioned as a possibility before and they could be compelled to make a big splash amid the nasty fallout from the Grant Balfour situation. Not saying it would be the right course of action, but I could see it.

Cruz turned down a qualifying offer from the Rangers to test free agency, so whoever signs him will have to surrender a draft pick. While there was talk of him potentially getting $75 million just a few weeks ago, that could be a stretch with few obvious fits remaining.

  1. uyf1950 - Dec 21, 2013 at 4:40 PM

    The attached link while it doesn’t completely throw cold water on the Mariners as a potential destination for Cruz it does make you wonder if they are indeed out to sign him.

  2. dylanthom2013 - Dec 21, 2013 at 4:43 PM

    As a Rangers fan, I hope he finds a good home. That walk-off grand slam in Game 2 of the ’11 ALCS playoffs against DET still resonates through time. Cruz has to DH to preserve his legs and 2 years/$32 million with a team option for a 3rd year from an AL team is reasonable, but I wouldn’t be surprised if he got a guaranteed 3rd year.

    • uyf1950 - Dec 21, 2013 at 4:48 PM

      If Granderson can squeeze 4 years $60MM out of the Mets and Bourn and Swisher both got 4 years guaranteed roughly $50MM no reason why Cruz won’t get 4 years guaranteed and somewhere around $50MM guaranteed.

      • Kevin S. - Dec 21, 2013 at 6:30 PM

        Well, Cruz is a worse player than all three you listed, likely to age worse than Bourn and Granderson and no better than Swisher, but some GM is likely to fall sucker for the HR and RBI, I guess.

      • biasedhomer - Dec 21, 2013 at 8:47 PM

        How is Cruz worse than Granderson?

      • Kevin S. - Dec 21, 2013 at 9:11 PM

        Defense and baserunning matter.

      • wiscotom - Dec 21, 2013 at 11:54 PM

        Nelson Cruz has only been worth more than 2.5 WAR once (in 2010). He is a poor defender with a high strikeout rate and a low OBP. His only valuable tool is hitting for power and he is coming off a PED suspension. Anyone that would give Cruz a four year contract would be out of their mind.

  3. spudchukar - Dec 21, 2013 at 4:50 PM

    Cruz becomes a much more dangerous hitter in Camden Yards.

    • cur68 - Dec 21, 2013 at 5:01 PM

      Yep. He’d do real well there. Conversely, a pitcher like Ubaldo would do well in Safeco. Not as many easy homers. It all depends on how the Mariners are thinking. They could go either way. Bolster the hitting or shore up the pitching. If they do both…well that makes things interesting

      • dirtyharry1971 - Dec 21, 2013 at 8:14 PM

        If you had a brain and could actually read you would realize that Ubaldo could do well in any park as his HR totals in his career are terrific, now go back to following nascar as that’s about the only thing you can follow anyway….left turn…

      • Old Gator - Dec 21, 2013 at 8:59 PM

        Wow, poor dim Harry is really showing whiplash responses to being liberated from his…um…special school for the holidays. He is also showing that his classes aren’t doing him any good; his leaden attempts at “humor” (in the medical sense of seepage) are still juvenile, trite and lame. I wonder if he could be silenced by wearing that pointy cap he left in his locker when he had to run for the last bus back to mummy.

      • cur68 - Dec 21, 2013 at 10:17 PM

        Pity he’s such a failure, Gator. I mean, the court system tried. I’m sure his parents tried, too. In the end, though? He’s a poo-flinging chimp. Still, we should attempt to be charitable, eh? He took the time to read my comment (he follows me around like a trained circus monkey, you know. I’m not sure why, either. He just does. Same with following PC, too. Its kinda pathetic and creepy). He missed the fact that no where did I say Ubaldo Jiménez gives up a lot of homers. Just that he’d do well in Safeco with a reduction in easy homers (which applies to ALL pitchers, of course, but it would turn Ubaldo into the Latino God Of Pitching). Anyhow, ‘harry did go to all the trouble to sound out the words and attempt to construe meaning. He tried. Wish he’d bathe, though.

  4. chacochicken - Dec 21, 2013 at 4:53 PM


  5. meatcarroll - Dec 21, 2013 at 4:56 PM

    To the grave with Nelson Mandela.

  6. meatcarroll - Dec 21, 2013 at 4:56 PM

    To the grave with Nelson Mandela.

  7. dirtyharry1971 - Dec 21, 2013 at 5:18 PM

    Im not sure where cruz is going but I do know where he isn’t going and that’s to the bluejays. They got no cash to sign a wet fart and they are happy with last year’s team that finished 23 games back and that’s where I agree with the jays front office, im happy with last year’s team also. Heck of a performance let me tell ya!

    • Old Gator - Dec 21, 2013 at 6:07 PM

      And clearly, Poor Dim Harry, you’re gearing up to spend nothing whatsoever to refine that complete waste of carbon compounds that you represent into anything showing any signs of mental or emotional life. Ah well, When elementary school let out for the holidays we kinda figured you’d be around around again, banging the pan for that team you root for that finished out of the playoffs last season.

      • dirtyharry1971 - Dec 21, 2013 at 8:15 PM

        and clearly old gasser need some more prune juice in the morning….oh well

      • Old Gator - Dec 21, 2013 at 9:02 PM

        Ah, Poor Dim One Note Harry has discovered prune jokes to add to his armory of worn-out gerontological japes. Congratulations! You represent the thirteenth successive generation of dimwits to drag out the same exhausted cliches in a futile attempt to denigrate your betters.

  8. jaysonlee83 - Dec 21, 2013 at 5:31 PM

    Hope chop won’t turn out to be wat Carl Crawford was to the red sox…being in a new league and all.

    • Reflex - Dec 21, 2013 at 6:14 PM

      Choo’s career started with the Mariners and he was traded to the Indians before being traded to Cincy. 8 of his 9 professional seasons have been in the AL.

      • Reflex - Dec 21, 2013 at 6:17 PM

        Heh, and I missed your original error: Crawford started on the Rays and signed with the Red Sox. He not only stayed in the same league, he stayed in the same division…

  9. jaysonlee83 - Dec 21, 2013 at 5:32 PM


    • Old Gator - Dec 21, 2013 at 6:08 PM


      • dirtyharry1971 - Dec 21, 2013 at 8:16 PM

        Prune Juice!!

      • Old Gator - Dec 21, 2013 at 9:05 PM

        Sure – use an eyedropper to administer it to your nostrils, genius. It might keep you from picking your nose at dinner until mummy can pack you back orf to your special school in January.

  10. bendover09 - Dec 21, 2013 at 6:18 PM

    Since yankees struck out on Choo, why not sign Cruz ?

    • Kevin S. - Dec 21, 2013 at 6:37 PM

      Because he isn’t that good at baseball?

      • bendover09 - Dec 21, 2013 at 10:52 PM

        A career .275 -.280 hitter is just not that good, lol. Kevin, what type of baseball world do you live in where everyone is batting over .280 ?

        Dondada10, good thing Cruz is not a centerfielder .. good lord, do you people just type crap to act cute? This website is turning into the YouTube comment sectio.

      • clydeserra - Dec 22, 2013 at 2:31 AM

        nelson Cruz has been a decent hitter for the past 4 years or so. He cannot play defense. At all.He will hurt his team if he steps onto any grassy area (or turf).

        So when you add defense and baserunning to pretty good batting, you get a bad ball player

      • Kevin S. - Dec 22, 2013 at 7:26 AM

        I live in a world where batting average is a profoundly incomplete judge of a player’s skill. Nelson Cruz’ only real value comes from hitting home runs. He doesn’t play defense, doesn’t add value on the basepaths, doesn’t get on base. His offensive stats have been inflated by ballpark that is incredibly generous to hitters. He fits the profile of a player who could go over the cliff at any moment. But yeah, keep going on about how he’s a .275 hitter like that means anything.

      • paperlions - Dec 22, 2013 at 12:55 PM

        Obviously, Bendover09 isn’t that good at understanding baseball. I’m sure he was great at it in the 1980s though.

    • dondada10 - Dec 21, 2013 at 7:57 PM

      Because they signed Elsbury when they struck out on Choo?

      • Old Gator - Dec 21, 2013 at 9:05 PM


  11. unclemosesgreen - Dec 21, 2013 at 6:45 PM

    Cruz is a perfect fit for these Yankees. He’s old, slow, injury prone and likely to be quite overpriced. Match made in heaven for the post-caring Cashman administration.

    • uyf1950 - Dec 21, 2013 at 9:49 PM

      Words of wisdom from the “peanut gallery”. It’s such a shame someone wasted all that money putting you through school. I’m going to borrow a line from the United Negro College Fund campaign slogan several years back which I think fits you to a tee: “A Mind is a Terrible Thing to Waste”.

      Have a good day.

  12. stvtorres75 - Dec 21, 2013 at 6:59 PM


    • Old Gator - Dec 21, 2013 at 9:07 PM

      Don’t kid yourself. If he’s patient, Cruz will be laughing all the way to the bank before spring training is over.

  13. blynch67 - Dec 21, 2013 at 7:14 PM

    Where does Nelson Cruz go from here?

    Home. Just guessing.

  14. snipedanglecelly13 - Dec 21, 2013 at 9:42 PM

    Cruz to Yankees, calling it right now. Yankees love signing old dudes

    • Old Gator - Dec 21, 2013 at 9:48 PM

      Yes, but with the A-Roid fiasco hanging over them, one wonders if they would take a flyer at yet another PED-stained ballplayer. Not saying they won’t, but I kinda doubt it.

  15. snipedanglecelly13 - Dec 21, 2013 at 9:42 PM

    Cruz to Yankees, calling it right now. Yankees love signing old dudes

  16. phillysports1 - Dec 22, 2013 at 11:15 AM

    Billy butler Nelson Cruz and David Price is what they need . Get rid of Logan & Smoak plz

  17. braxtonrob - Dec 23, 2013 at 5:21 AM

    To all of you seeing the Yankees signing Cruz … are you mental?!

    The Yankees currently have 6 outfielders!
    Not only are they done, and most definitely not signing a bad-fielding one in Cruz (who is only a .260 hitter BTW), they still have to unload Ichiro somewhere.

  18. sidelineshot - Dec 24, 2013 at 11:53 AM

    Take a few months off, and detox a bit more.

  19. twothousandman79 - Dec 25, 2013 at 7:53 PM

    Cruz = decline. Teams should save their money. 3/30 is all he is worth. Nearly a POS.

  20. dylanthom2013 - Dec 26, 2013 at 7:12 PM

    Wouldn’t mind seeing Cruz back in TEX on a 2-year deal as the RH’ed DH dropping Moreland into a LH’ed platoon DH/1B/COF role. Or, maybe we could just roll with Choice as the RH’ed platoon guy at DH and whichever corner Choo’ll be playing.

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