Eric Hosmer is one of the best free agent bats currently on the market. Where are the likely landing spots for the power-hitting first baseman?
One of the fixtures of the Kansas City Royals core, Eric Hosmer helped the Royals win the 2015 World Series, which was their first in 30 years. He has emerged as not only the best player on the Royals team, but one of the better first basemen in the game. After rejecting the clubs qualifying offer, Hosmer is on the market and will likely get a big payday.
Over his seven seasons in Kansas City, Hosmer has put together a pretty reputable slash line. Sitting at .284/.342/.439 with 127 home runs and 566 RBI. He has taken home four Gold Glove awards at first base, to go along with a silver slugger award in 2017, solidifying him as one of the better all-around first basemen.
With a free agent market with names like Shohei Otani, JD Martinez, Jake Arrieta, and Jay Bruce, Hosmer sometimes gets left out of the conversation. Despite his lack of exposure, Hosmer will seek out a deal of around five to six years, teetering around the $100 million range. Which team would fork over that money for the 28-year-old slugger?
Kansas City Royals
The obvious answer is that Hosmer turned down his qualifying offer to try and renegotiate a new deal. There is no doubt that the Royals would love to have one of their franchise players back, but that’s the issue. With Mike Moustakas, Lorenzo Cain, and Alcides Escobar all free agents, its unlikely Hosmer will return to Kansas City. Unless they bring back that core that helped bring home that World Series championship, Hosmer will likely sign elsewhere.
Boston Red Sox
The Boston Red Sox are in need of a first baseman after Mitch Moreland hit the free agent market. While they do have Hanley Ramirez, who is a defensive liability, they would want a proven first baseman to fill that role. Boston views Ramirez as more of a DH, and the addition of Hosmer would be a good fit. They certainly have the money for Hosmer and might shell it out to find their new first baseman.
With the recent departure of Carlos Santana to free agency, Hosmer could be a good fit. Hosmer would stay in the AL Central, joining the new powerhouse of the division. The Indians are an up-and-coming team that could use another solid power bat to compliment Francisco Lindor, Edwin Encarnacion, and Jose Ramirez. Hosmer would fit in well with the Indians, but the issue is that the Tribe might not need him. The Indians are littered with talent, and adding some big money on their pay role might not be of interest. They will spend this offseason, its just how much are the Indians willing to fork up?
The Rockies are a team that is very similar to the 2015 Kansas City Royals. They have a core group of guys in Nolan Arenado, Charlie Blackmon, and DJ LeMahieu that have led them from obscurity to success. Reaching the NL Wild Card Game in 2017, this is a team that can win and win now. Getting one more bat to compliment Arenado and Blackmon, in addition to the Coors Field effect, could boost Hosmer’s numbers. The Rockies are looking to add another piece to their already dynamic lineup, and Hosmer might be their guy.
Eric Hosmer can impact a team and no matter where he lands, he will positively impact that organization. Hosmer will likely have to wait to find a home until the Otani sweepstakes finish up, but whoever lands Hosmer will get a veteran who can carry a lineup.