Friday, December 12, 2008

Top 10 Free Agent Signings of S10

It's been a "decade" of great baseball in Hunter World. Season 10 lived up to the hype and provided a lot of fierce competition. Let's take a look back at the ten most effective free agent signings of S10.

  1. Shawn Owen SP Pittsburgh- Who would have thought the signing of a 38 y.o. starter would make such an impact on a team? Owen gave the pitching starved Studdabubbas a huge boost, going 18-7 with a nifty 3.35 ERA in 193.1 IP. Unfortunately for Pittsburgh, Owen went down in Game 2 of the opening round of the playoffs. The flip side of having an old ace.
  2. Rodrigo Brito 3B/2B Pittsburgh- Hmmm, no wonder Pittsburgh won their division. A second shrewd signing was Brito, who manned 3B most of the year, but played a little 2b as well. Brito powered his way to a .951 OPS. If you like conventional stats, then a .299 AVG with 34 HR and 115 RBI should get your attention.
  3. Juan Gonzalez SP Cleveland- Gonzalez is no stranger to glory, having pitched for 7 seasons in the San Francisco machine. The Moosedawg shrewdly signed this wily veteran, who responded by posting a 15-10 mark with a 3.68 ERA in 220 IP. Cleveland, not coincidentally, is one of the 2 NL wild card representatives.
  4. Frank Funaki 2B Chicago- Here's a case of Pittsburgh letting a good one slip away. Funaki was signed by the Fire to man 2B and turned in an iron man performance, playing 162 games. He hit .301 with 36 HR and 119 RBI with a .874 OPS. The Fire struggled with their pitching again, but that wasn't Funaki's fault.
  5. Mendy Montana CF Philadelphia- The Black Sox were very active in the FA market this year and snagged some solid players. Tops on the list is Montana. For a bargain price, Montana hit .283 with 29HR and 112 RBI. An .828 OPS from CF is nothing to sneeze at.
  6. Phillip Mercedes 2B Philadelphia- What's that? Another Philly signing? Pennsylvania really raked in the free agents this season. Mercedes was also signed for a bargain price and played 2B for the Sox, hitting for an .819 OPS with 33 HR and 100 RBI.
  7. Mel Bush SP Helena- Don't let the mediocre record fool you. Bush turned in a fine season for the Hashies, posting a 3.89 ERA in 192 IP to go with his 11-10 record. Helena had a rough year and it's the last for original Hunter owner tbook. We'll miss him.
  8. Philip Bellinger SP Atlanta- Bellinger is a 35 yo veteran with a track record of success, so it's no surprise he jumped right into his role as Atlanta's #4 starter with a fine season 10. Bellinger went 17-9 with a 4.44 ERA in 194.2 innings. The stability he brought to the bottom of Atlanta's rotation helped return the Cheese Grits to the playoffs for the first time since Season 5.
  9. Harry Castro SP Los Angeles- Castro has spent most of his career as a reliever, but this season he took his regular turn in LA's rotation and had a fine season, going 11-7 with a 2.95 ERA in 180 IP. He really had a better season than Bellinger, but Atlanta's trip to the playoffs meant Bellinger had more of an impact. Still, you can't take anything away from Castro.
  10. Homer Busby RP Cleveland- We would be remiss if we didn't include at least one relief pitcher. Busby is an old hat at 38, but Cleveland used his diminishing skills wisely, deploying him out of the bullpen. Busby posted a 2.65 ERA in 71 IP as the Moosedawg's main setup man.
Honorable Mention: Placido Camacho 3B/SS Phil., Heathcliff Price 1B Tex.

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