MLB Free Agents: Top 25 players up for grabs

NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 15: Zack Wheeler #45 of the New York Mets in action against the Los Angeles Dodgers during of a game at Citi Field on September 15, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 15: Zack Wheeler #45 of the New York Mets in action against the Los Angeles Dodgers during of a game at Citi Field on September 15, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images) /
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(Photo by Chaz Niell/Getty Images)
(Photo by Chaz Niell/Getty Images) /

Top 25 MLB Free Agents

Stephen Strasburg

A lot of hopeful talk, not all of it political, flows from Washington. These days, some of it involves Stephen Strasburg’s (3) willingness to re-sign with the Nationals.

Only time will tell whether he does. But Strasburg on the open market is a mega-valuable entity. Notably,  he led the league in innings pitched in 2019, a fact that may stun those who reacted negatively to the way the Nats coddled his workload for his first several seasons.

If Strasburg is one thing, it’s a bonafide ace. Aside from the reliability of his workload, he won a league-leading 18 games, delivered a 3.32 earned run average, struck out 251 and produced a 138 ERA+.

So as the Nats line up their retention offer, they’ll be playing a high-stakes game with an unknown number of fellow bidders. Already, rumors are rampant that the Sam Diego Padres, where Strasburg played college ball, are positioning themselves to make a serious run.

Strasburg can settle all the mystery, of course, by affirming his intent to return to Washington. But until he does, the Nats are operating on the edge. They have two of the top MLB free agents available right now, and they need to retain one or both of them.  That could be very costly.