While Major League Baseball continues to spend the winter freezing over with an inactive free agent market, an interesting suggestion was posed as a way to help thaw it out: Create a Free Agent Baseball Team.
Steven Rissotto, a die hard baseball fan and aspiring writer, has come up with this out of the box suggestion for how to help create some interest around the league while helping Free Agents.
Players who are not signed could be at the same facility preparing for the Major League season. This happens a lot, more informally, with players working out in Arizona and Florida on their own or with a few former teammates.
If this could be organized, it could create opportunities for many in the game.
Here is Rissotto’s suggestion:
If Major League Baseball created a more official “team,” these players could get much better workouts. The team could even be run by free agent managers and coaches looking to get signed on by a Major League team as well.
While their may be some concern in the case of injury, Major League Baseball would be able to carry the health insurance necessary for these players to continue to workout.
Meanwhile, MLB Network could broadcast workouts and talk about the players that aren’t signed yet. They could talk about what makes them worthy of being signed and the publicity would be good for both the players and the agents.
This would become especially important as the off-season nears their reporting dates. As players for all 30 major league teams report to camp, free agents will be left without a clear place to play.
This would also provide an opportunity for a team in Arizona and a team in Florida to be comprised of former Major Leaguers that can play practice games with Major League teams early in Spring Training and showcase them for Independent League teams as well.
Not only could this be a great opportunity for former players and former managers, but also former executives, who could be brought in to run the teams.
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This Arizona team and Florida team could have a home stadium, gear to sell on MLB’s website, and could provide jobs for several locals during camps.
Players like J.D. Martinez, Eric Hosmer, Yu Darvish,Lorenzo Cain, Mike Moustakas, Jay Bruce, Jake Arrieta, Lance Lynn, Alex Cobb, and others are likely to sign at some point this winter. However, their are many free agents who might not. For all of the high profile free agents, there are several who are either struggling to get teams interested in them, or might be considering a comeback and not able to showcase their talents to as many people as would be necessary.
Former San Francisco Giants, such as Eduardo Nunez, may find a home before February, but others like Conor Gillaspie, Nori Aoki, Rajai Davis, Francisco Liriano, Jason Grilli, and Sergio Romo may benefit from this idea.
This Free Agent Team idea could be something that could be beneficial for all and allow for fans to see players they know and players they should know compete for a chance at a Major League job.
In this era of reality television, this idea has all the makings of the next Emmy winner.