Yoénis Céspedes’s market is finally taking shape in the middle of January, far past when most analysts speculated he would sign. Nevertheless, there are finally rumors out there of offers to the Cuban and him weighing offers which could signal he’s ready to sign soon.
Reportedly, the Orioles are growing increasingly frustrated with Chris Davis’s camp. The Orioles had offered Chris Davis about $150 million over seven years. Davis and his agent, Scott Boras, are looking for a deal in the ballpark of $175 million. Due to no other team offering Davis a contract, the Orioles refused to bid against themselves. The Orioles’ manager Buck Showalter hinted that the Orioles might be ready to move on if Davis doesn’t back down from his lofty demands.
The Orioles might’ve done just that. They’ve offered Cuban slugger Yoénis Céspedes a five year deal worth $90 million with an option for a sixth year. That falls well below what the Cuban was looking for, but at this point that might be the most he could get barring an unexpected entrance of a team into his market. He’s reportedly looking for a 6-year pact worth around $132 million. The other offer he is reportedly weighing is a one-year deal with the New York Mets that would allow him to re-enter the free agent market next year when Carlos Gomez and the 37-year-old Jose Bautista are currently the best outfielders. This might be the smartest move for Céspedes based on recent one-year deals that turned into big money, a la Nelson Cruz and Ervin Santana.
If Céspedes is willing to take a short-term deal for a single year or a longer deal with an opt-out in the first or second year, expect the White Sox to have interest as well. The White Sox have interest in Céspedes, but no more than a three-year deal. Other teams that have possible interest are the Angels and Tigers.
So, which offer will Céspedes take? Will he take a five-year trip to the hitter-friendly Camden Yards in downtown Baltimore or will he bet on himself that he can have a big year in the Big Apple to attempt to get that $100 million+ deal next offseason? Will any other team step in the picture?