Brandon Nimmo’s free agency figures to be fascinating to watch this winter.
He’s undoubtedly the best center fielder on the open market, so the offseason contract projections are already in the nine figures and could approach $200 million in total value. That’s not a small chunk of change, even in today’s market.
Brandon Nimmo free agency in 2022-23
Of course, it’s still too early to make a Nimmo free-agent prediction. After all, Brandon Nimmo’s free agency is bound to have many suitors, making it tough to handicap where he’ll end up.
But since the offseason is still in its early stages, let’s take a closer look at where Nimmo could end up signing this offseason.
Brandon Nimmo’s free agency could be decided by the Mets’ offseason plans. There will surely be mutual interest between Nimmo and the Mets, but with the club likely needing to commit significant funds to its pitching staff, there may not be enough money to re-sign Nimmo, even with Steve Cohen’s deep pockets.
Granted, the Mets will likely seek outfield help during the offseason. But unless they can get creative with addressing their other needs, they might need to look at the best trade candidates among outfielders rather than pledge a nine-figure sum to bring Nimmo back to Queens.
The Giants look like they could be a big spender this winter, which makes a quality outfielder like Nimmo a potential target.
With Mike Yastrzemski being flexible defensively, San Francisco could open up center field for Nimmo with Yastrzemski becoming the primary right fielder. One way or another, the Giants need to add at least one outfielder, so they might as well take a chance on the best one available.
Don’t count the Rockies out of the Nimmo sweepstakes. They’ve been known to throw around money sometimes. Keep in mind they signed Kris Bryant last offseason.
Also, Nimmo is from Wyoming, so signing with the Rockies would take him as close to home as he can get. On the other hand, the Rockies don’t have a glaring need for an outfielder, even with Charlie Blackmon getting older and clearly in decline. The Rox would also struggle in a bidding war over Nimmo and might be better off allocating the money it would take to sign Nimmo on multiple players.
Don’t think that the Astros are going to rest on their laurels after winning the World Series. They know they need to find ways to get better if they’re going to stay on top.
Also, with the emergence of Jeremy Pena, Houston isn’t one of the teams that are looking for a shortstop, freeing up some money to pursue Nimmo. It’s not like the Astros have any proven outfielders on their roster outside of Kyle Tucker, meaning Nimmo is a clear fit for their needs. In that sense, Nimmo could end up being one of Houston’s top targets this offseason.
It’s unclear how Boston’s offseason could unfold. It’s possible that they trade a key player or two and do some rebuilding. But it’s also possible that they’ll throw some money around and look to reload quickly.
If it’s the latter, Nimmo will surely be on their radar. Alex Verdugo will be somewhere, but the rest of Boston’s outfield is unspoken for at the moment. Nimmo is the type of leadoff hitter who could do wonders for the Boston lineup, so if the Red Sox decide to spend, they could make a hard push to sign Nimmo.
The Dodgers are one of those teams that know no limits when it comes to chasing a championship. That means an impactful free agent like Nimmo will be on their radar. Obviously, Los Angeles needs to worry about finding a shortstop with Trea Turner hitting the open market.
If the Dodgers don’t re-sign Turner or find another shortstop who is an obvious fit in the leadoff spot, don’t be surprised if they turn their attention to Nimmo. They should have no problem fitting him into their outfield while Nimmo’s energy could provide the spark the Dodgers could use after failing to reach the World Series in back-to-back years.
All of the spending Texas did last offseason didn’t pay off, so the Rangers could double down this winter and keep spending.
With Corey Seager and Marcus Semien coming aboard last winter, the middle infield is set, so the Rangers won’t be spending money on a shortstop. That could give them the green light to make Nimmo a top target. Leody Taveras hasn’t quite distinguished himself as an impact offensive player in the majors while Adolis Garcia is better off in right field.
That creates an obvious need for Nimmo in center field. If the Rangers are willing to sign another free agent to a nine-figure contract, they are another team that could be in the running to sign Nimmo.
The Mets would surely hate to see Nimmo end up in the Bronx, but it’s not out of the question. The acquisition of Harrison Bader last August makes a move for Nimmo a little less likely. But the Yankees are obviously disappointed with what they’ve gotten out of Aaron Hicks over the last couple of seasons.
There’s also the small matter of re-signing Aaron Judge. If the Yankees somehow don’t re-sign Judge, pivoting to Nimmo would be a natural move, even with Bader in center field and Nimmo playing a corner spot.
It doesn’t seem likely that the Yankees would re-sign Judge and then go after Nimmo. But if Judge ends up elsewhere, the Yankees could give Nimmo the hard sell on moving from Queens to the Bronx.