Picking the best fits for Starling Marte in free agency

Starling Marte
Starling Marte is one of the best free agent outfielders. Photo from CBS Sports.

Starling Marte’s free agent status gives plenty of teams the chance to add a top-notch outfielder to their ranks. The former Marlins star is expected to fetch a big contract this offseason.

Marte is expected to sign a deal somewhere near the 3-year, $63 million figure. He excelled in Florida before taking his talents to the Oakland Athletics for a second-half playoff push. However, he’s not likely to extend his stay with a team that rarely offloads big sums of money in free agents.

Starling Marte free agent 2021-22

Starling Marte is coming off an impressive season, slashing .308/.381/.456. with 12 home runs, 47 stolen bases, 89 runs scored, and 55 runs batted in.

On top of that, he was one of the best defensive center fielders in the league. With that in mind, let’s take a look at the most likely destinations for him in free agency.

5. Tigers

Marte’s free agency fits aren’t just about playing for a contender but also about the teams that can actually afford him. And, from what we’ve heard thus far, it seems like the Detroit Tigers won’t hesitate to break the piggy bank and make a couple of big-time signings in the offseason, even if that means overpaying.

The Tigers have a lot of money to spend and their young rotation showed promising signs last season. Skipper A.J. Hinch wants to start competing right away and they’re expected to make a big run at Carlos Correa, so don’t be surprised to see them pursue Marte as well.

4. Giants

Even though Marte isn’t likely to stay with the Athletics, that doesn’t mean that he couldn’t stay in the Bay Area. The San Francisco Giants are coming off the best season in franchise history even despite lacking some big-time sluggers in their ranks.

With Buster Posey retiring and Brandon Belt, and Kris Bryant hitting free agency, the Giants will also have a lot of money to try and rebuild their roster. They will also look to keep Kevin Gausman and Anthony DeSclafani around but they’ll still have more money to invest if that happens.


3. Padres

The San Diego Padres don’t need more bats but desperate teams often make not-so-smart moves. They’re expected to trade Will Myers and/or Eric Hosmer for financial flexibility, so that would open up the door for Starling Marte to sign with them.

The Padres’ biggest issue was pitching. Then again, they’ll have Mike Clevinger, Ryan Weathers, and Dinelson Lamet back from their injuries next season. They don’t need Marte but they’ve proven that they won’t hesitate to be aggressive to land as many stars as they can in the pursuit of their first World Series title.

2. Yankees

The New York Yankees have a strong lineup but they still struggled to produce runs when they weren’t hitting home runs. Most of those struggles came due to poor base-running and their lack of speed, which is why adding Starling Marte should be a no-brainer for them.

The Yankees struggled to stay healthy as well and the center-fielder spot was often a headache for Aaron Boone. They have bigger needs right now (shortstop and another starting pitcher are a must) and aren’t stacked with cash, but it’s the Yankees we’re talking about.

1. Phillies

And last but not least, the Philadelphia Phillies should be at the top of Marte’s free agent fits. No other team in the league needs a center fielder as badly as the Phillies do and they have been willing to spend big bucks in recent offseasons, so it’s time to solve that issue.

Marte’s ability to make contact is only topped by his speed. He could fix most of their offensive issues as well by sliding at the top of that batting order.

Add Bryce Harper, Rhys Hoskins, and J.T. Realmuto to that mix, and you have a playoff team right there. They also need to fix their bullpen, though, but you get the point.

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