New York Mets- SS Francisco Lindor
“Mr. Smile” heading to New York might just be the biggest move of the entire 2020-21 offseason. One of the top players in the entire league joins a young and hungry Mets lineup looking to take the next step and reach the postseason. Acquiring Lindor (and Carlos Carrasco) was undoubtedly the BIGGEST move for the Mets, but it wasn’t the only one. New Owner Steve Cohen was a busy man this offseason signing RP Trevor May and C James McCann and making some… questionable front office moves. The Mets should be towards the top of one of the best divisions in baseball in 2021.
Miami Marlins- Adam Duvall
The Fish are coming off a surprising playoff run in 2020, but they don’t want to stop there. Adam Duvall gives them a burst of power they desperately missed last season. Brian Anderson led the team with 11 homers last year, the only Marlin to reach double digits. Duvall hit 16 alone in the shortened 60 game run of 2020. The Marlins also made multiple moves to add to their bullpen, acquiring various pieces for the back end of ballgames. The Marlins look for some of their young guys to take the next step and turn Miami into a perennial threat.
Philadelphia Phillies- C JT Realmuto
The Phillies had one of the worst bullpens in the history of the sport last year, and they did make strides to improve this coming season. Brandon Kintzler and Archie Bradley WILL help this team (it can’t get any worse), but locking up JT Realmuto was the best move for the Phils this year. Signing the best catcher in baseball is never a bad move. Realmuto is a career .278 hitter who does it all behind the plate. The Phillies have a nice mixture of young prospects and veteran players to make a run in 2021.
Atlanta Braves- OF/DH Marcell Ozuna
The DH most likely will not be used by NL teams next season, but that didn’t stop the Braves from resigning the NL home run and RBI leader from last season. The Braves have had a hold on the NL East for a few years at this point, and with their young rotation and star-filled lineup, 2021 should be no different. Not sure what PECOTA was thinking, but the Braves are the clear favorites to win the division this season in my eyes.
Washington Nationals- RP Brad Hand
Brad Hand was one of the top free-agent bullpen arms coming off a season where he posted a 2.05 ERA over 22 innings. The Nationals had a down season coming off the franchise's first World Series championship in 2019. While Hand was signed to help the bullpen, the rotation got a boost, too, with the signing of 3x World Series champ Jon Lester. Josh Bell and Kyle Schwarber bring a lot of power to a lineup that already features Juan Soto and Trae Turner. The Nationals are a dark-horse to make a deep postseason run in 2021.
St. Louis Cardinals- 3B Nolan Arenado
8 seasons. 8x Gold Glove Winner. 5x All-Star. 4x Silver Slugger. Not a bad resume if you ask me. Arenado was the big splash Cards fans have been waiting for to go alongside Paul Goldschmidt. The NL Central isn’t expected to be too competitive this season; hopefully, for the Cardinals, Nolan will put them over the top.
Milwaukee Brewers- 2B Kolten Wong
Kolten Wong has been a mainstay for the Cardinals organization for years, but come 2021; he will have a new home in the NL Central. Milwaukee signed the back-to-back Gold Glove winner to a two-year $18M deal. With Lorenzo Cain back and Yelich looking to bounce back, the Brewers might make some noise in 2021.
Chicago Cubs- OF Joc Pederson
It was a rough offseason for the Cubbies, but they still have some excellent pieces to compete in a down division. Rizzo and Bryant are still an elite 3-4 combo in the middle of your lineup, add Joe Pederson, and now you really got some power at Wrigley. Pederson is coming off a World Series title, and with an everyday job in Chicago can put up some big numbers, as long as he is able to cut down on his strikeouts just a bit.
Pittsburgh Pirates- Prospect Hudson Head
Hudson Head is still just 19 years young, but the Pirates hope he is their CF of the future. It will be a while before we see Hudson make the league, but he has all the tools to be an everyday starter for this team's future. The Pirates are probably in for another long season, but at least they have a few young prospects they should get a look at in 2021.
Cincinnati Reds- RP Sean Doolittle
The Reds are an interesting team. Are they contenders? Yet to be seen. They are coming off a postseason run in 2020 but lost their ace and Cy Young winner, Trevor Bauer. The Reds still have a decent lineup led by a few vets like Nick Castellanos and Joey Votto along with a rotation led by Luis Castillo, but the addition of Sean Doolittle can provide a boost for this team. Doolittle has seen it all in the MLB, and even if his production is not top-notch, he will always be a great guy to have in the clubhouse.
Los Angeles Dodgers- SP Trevor Bauer
The rich get richer. The 2020 Cy Young winner will join the 2020 World Series Champions, which sounds like fun for the rest of baseball. The Dodger may make a real run at the 2001 Mariners record of 116 regular-season wins this season. The rotation is probably the best in baseball, and not many teams can compete with their lineup. LA has all the tools to repeat as champions, and in all honesty, it should be title or bust for the Dodgers this year.
Arizona Diamondbacks- RP Joakim Soria
The Diamondbacks are more focused on their young players to take the next step as opposed to going out and signing big-money free agents. With that being said, bringing in veteran Joakim Soria is a great move for the Dbacks pen. Soria is coming off a season with a 2.82 ERA and will help in the development of the young Arizona pitchers.
San Francisco Giants- INF Tommy LaStella
The Giants still aren’t quite ready to compete just yet, but that didn’t stop them from adding one of the most interesting free agents. LaStella is the perfect utility player who can really do it all at almost any position. The Giants may look to move LaStella at the deadline if they are able to get a nice return from a potential playoff team.
San Diego Padres- SP Blake Snell/Yu Darvish
Has anyone ever had a better offseason than San Diego this year? Coming off a playoff run in 2020, the Padres went all-in, trading for Blake Snell and Yu Darvish. Adding two aces to your staff can’t be a bad thing. The Padres biggest question this year will be was it all enough to get by the Dodgers. This is shaping up to be a long-term rivalry brewing out west, and I’m all in for it.
Colorado Rockies- Prospect Elehuris Montero
The Rockies had an offseason to forget. They saw one of the greatest players in franchise history get shipped to St. Louis and stayed quiet when it came to free agency. One of the biggest names coming back to the Rockies is Elehuris Montero, the former Class-A MVP. Montero jumped into the top 10 prospects for Colorado and can hopefully, in time, help the Rockies forget about this offseason.
Check out the AL edition here.