Hudson signing a great deal for Dodgers

Originally Published: February 21, 2009
ESPN.com

Read below for analysis of each major offseason move.

Links: Hot Stove League | Free Agent Tracker | Rumor Central Insider

Feb. 21: SIGNED: Orlando Hudson with Dodgers

   2B Orlando Hudson

    Signed: One year, $3.38 million
Keith Law says …
The Dodgers' signing of Orlando Hudson is easily one of the biggest bargains of the offseason. He's a very good offensive second baseman who in the past was also a plus fielder. … More

Complete story | Team page: Dodgers

Feb. 12: SIGNED: Ken Griffey Jr. with Mariners

   OF Ken Griffey Jr.

    Signed: One year, $2 million
Keith Law says …
The Mariners' agreement with Ken Griffey Jr. is a nostalgia signing that does very little to push the franchise forward and carries some risk of retarding their recovery from five years of mismanagement by the previous baseball regime. … More

Complete story | Team page: Mariners

Feb. 12: SIGNED: Bobby Abreu with Angels

   OF Bobby Abreu

    Signed: One year, $5 million
Keith Law says …
The Los Angeles Angels typically prefer players who provide more speed and defense than Bobby Abreu does at this point in his career, but he brings them a skill they have sorely lacked the past few years: patience … More

Complete story | Team page: Angels

Feb. 12: SIGNED: Adam Dunn with Nationals

   OF/1B Adam Dunn

    Signed: Two years, $20 million
Keith Law says …
Signing Dunn makes the Nationals somewhat less awful for 2009 and 2010, but given their inability the last three years to convert veteran players on expiring contracts into long-term assets, this doesn't push the franchise forward at all … More

Complete story | Team page: Nationals

Jan. 27: SIGNED: Brandon Lyon with Tigers

   RHP Brandon Lyon

    Signed: One year, $4.25 million
Keith Law says …
The Tigers' 2008 bullpen was plagued by, among other things, a general lack of control, and their acquisition of Brandon Lyon addresses that flaw. Lyon is an extreme strike-thrower -- 101 unintentional walks in 416 career innings … More

Complete story | Team page: Tigers

Jan. 13: SIGNED: Derek Lowe with Braves

   RHP Derek Lowe

    Signed: Four years, $60 million
Keith Law says …
[Atlanta's] rotation doesn't have a traditional power-pitcher No. 1, but Derek Lowe should be more than adequate as the nominal No. 1 for as long as he remains a strike-throwing ground-ball machine … More

Complete story | Team page: Braves

Jan. 13: SIGNED: Kenshin Kawakami with Braves

   RHP Kenshin Kawakami

    Signed: Three years, $23 million
Keith Law says …
Kenshin Kawakami is a solid fit for the Braves despite his propensity to surrender the long ball. … As long as Kawakami continues to throw strikes, he should provide value at the back of the rotation. … More

Complete story | Team page: Braves

Jan. 13: SIGNED: Koji Uehara with Orioles

   RHP Koji Uehara

    Signed: Two years, $10 million
Keith Law says …
Uehara tends to work around the plate with good command of average stuff and, like many Japanese pitchers, throws his fastball in the upper half of the zone, which will make him susceptible to the long ball. … More

Complete story | Team page: Orioles

Jan. 7: SIGNED: Jason Giambi with A's

   1B Jason Giambi

    Signed: One year, $4 million
Keith Law says …
Oakland needed bats this offseason, badly. And the acquisitions of Matt Holliday and now Giambi address the A's offensive concerns. … More

Complete story | Team page: A's

Jan. 5: SIGNED: Milton Bradley with Cubs

   OF Milton Bradley

    Signed: Three years, $30 million
Keith Law says …
If Milton Bradley can stay healthy enough to give the Cubs 450 to 500 plate appearances, his signing will prove outstanding for Chicago. The question is whether his body will permit him to play that much. … More

Complete story | Team page: Cubs

Jan. 5: SIGNED: Pat Burrell with Rays

   OF Pat Burrell

    Signed: Two years, $16 million
Keith Law says …
The Rays took advantage of the market glut in sluggers with bad defensive profiles and scored a major bargain in signing Pat Burrell. … More

Complete story | Team page: Rays

Dec. 31: SIGNED: Brian Fuentes with Angels

   LHP Brian Fuentes

    Signed: Two years, $17.5 million
Keith Law says …
The Angels' pickup of Brian Fuentes is a bargain relative to other recent closer/reliever contracts, and a great addition to their bullpen. The former Rockies closer is close enough to Francisco Rodriguez in stuff and performance … More

Complete story | Team page: Giants

Dec. 31: TRADED: Mark DeRosa to Indians

INF/OF Mark DeRosa


RHP Jeff Stevens
RHP Chris Archer
LHP John Gaub

Keith Law says …
The Indians didn't quite get Mark DeRosa for free, but they got him on clearance in a post-Christmas sale. … More

Complete story | Team pages: Indians | Cubs

Dec. 29: SIGNED: Brad Penny with Red Sox

   RHP Brad Penny

    Signed: One year, $5 million
Keith Law says …
The Red Sox have made a minor habit of picking up a once-good, broken-down starter on a one-year deal, reaping modest returns but never quite hitting the big score they were hoping to land. Brad Penny's contract would fit that pattern. … More

Complete story | Team page: Red Sox

Dec. 26: SIGNED: Randy Johnson with Giants

   LHP Randy Johnson

    Signed: One year, $8 million
Keith Law says …
With the signing of Randy Johnson to a one-year deal, the Giants made another move toward 2009 respectability, if not outright contention in a weak division, without doing any damage to their long-term rebuilding plan. … More

Complete story | Team page: Giants

Dec. 23: SIGNED: Mark Teixeira with Yankees

   1B Mark Teixeira

    Signed: Eight years, $180 million
Keith Law says …
Give the Yankees credit: They're not some nouveau riche team throwing their money around on whatever shiny baubles they come across in free agency. Signing three of the top four free agents on the market is a sign that they have excellent taste, even if they don't seem to have a credit limit. … More

Complete story | Team page: Yankees

Dec. 15: SIGNED: Felipe Lopez with Diamondbacks

   2B Felipe Lopez

    Signed: One year, $3.5 million
Keith Law says …
Despite his up-and-down (mostly down) history, Lopez has ability and I like the chance this signing gives Arizona to catch one of his up periods. … More

Complete story | Team page: Diamondbacks

Dec. 13: SIGNED: Kerry Wood with Indians

   RHP Kerry Wood

    Signed: Two years, $20.5 million
Keith Law says …
Cleveland takes a risk by signing Kerry Wood to a two-year, $20.5 million contract, but they acquire the best closer on the market if he stays healthy … More

Complete story | Team page: Indians

Dec. 12: SIGNED: A.J. Burnett with Yankees

   RHP A.J. Burnett

    Signed: Five years, $82.5 million
Keith Law says …
On paper, the Yankees have one of the best rotations in baseball, perhaps the best if you feel optimistic and are willing to gift them with 30 starts apiece from A.J. Burnett and Joba Chamberlain. … More

Complete story | Team page: Yankees

Dec. 12: SIGNED: Raul Ibanez with Phillies

   LF Raul Ibanez

    Signed: Three years, $31.5 million
Keith Law says …
Raul Ibanez will turn 37 during the first year of his three-year deal with the Phillies and finish it at the age of 39. He's very similar to the player he's replacing, Pat Burrell. … More

Complete story | Team page: Phillies

Dec. 10: TRADED: J.J. Putz to Mets

RHP J.J. Putz
RHP Sean Green
OF Jeremy Reed


OF Franklin Gutierrez
RHP Aaron Heilman
OF Endy Chavez
LHP Jason Vargas
RHP Maikel Cleto
OF Ezequiel Carrera
INF/OF Mike Carp


RHP Joe Smith
2B Luis Valbuena

Keith Law says …
If the Mets get the healthy J.J. Putz -- he missed time with rib and elbow injuries in 2008 -- they might actually have acquired the best closer of their offseason, one even better than their new capital-C closer, Francisco Rodriguez. … More

Complete story | Team pages: Mets | Mariners | Indians

Dec. 10: TRADED: Edwin Jackson to Tigers

RHP Edwin Jackson


OF Matt Joyce

Keith Law says …
The Tigers get a potential upside play in Edwin Jackson, albeit one who's shown a lot of downside in his career, while the Rays get a partial solution to their right-field hole in Matt Joyce. … More

Complete story | Team pages: Tigers | Rays

Dec. 10: SIGNED: CC Sabathia with Yankees

   LHP CC Sabathia

    Signed: Seven years, $161 million
Keith Law says …
The Yankees used their financial advantage wisely this time. They acquired the best pitcher available in free agency, a welcome change from the philosophy earlier this decade … More

Complete story | Team page: Yankees

Dec. 9: TRADED: Ramon Hernandez to Reds

C Ramon Hernandez


INF/OF Ryan Freel
INF Justin Turner
INF Brandon Waring

Keith Law says …
The problem with Hernandez is that his defense has gone in the tank the past two years, and he doesn't play with much energy at a position that demands it. … More

Complete story | Team pages: Reds | Orioles

Dec. 9: SIGNED: Francisco Rodriguez with Mets

   RHP Francisco Rodriguez

    Signed: Three years, $37 million
Keith Law says …
The signing of Francisco Rodriguez addresses one of the Mets' biggest weaknesses, adding probably three wins of value over the Mets' in-house options for late-game relief. … More

Complete story | Team page: Mets

Dec. 8: TRADED: Gerald Laird to Tigers

C Gerald Laird


RHP Guillermo Moscoso
RHP Carlos Melo

Keith Law says …
The trade of Gerald Laird to the Tigers gets Detroit an inexpensive everyday catcher, but one with limited upside, and at a pretty significant cost in minor league pitching. … More

Complete story | Team pages: Tigers | Rangers

Dec. 4: SIGNED: Edgar Renteria with Giants

   SS Edgar Renteria

    Signed: Two years, $18.5 million
Keith Law says …
The signing of Edgar Renteria makes the Giants more competitive in 2009 and probably 2010, but at no cost to the generally bright long-term picture in San Francisco. … More

Complete story | Team page: Giants

Dec. 4: TRADED: Javier Vazquez to Braves

RHP Javier Vazquez
LHP Boone Logan


INF Brent Lillibridge
INF Jonathan Gilmore
LHP Santos Rodriguez

Keith Law says …
Javier Vazquez comes to Atlanta for one good prospect, a wild-card arm, and some filler. … More

Complete story | Team pages: Braves | White Sox

Dec. 1: SIGNED: Mike Hampton with Astros

   LHP Mike Hampton

    Signed: One year, $2 million
Keith Law says …
It's a good fit for both sides; Houston just needs some starting pitching depth, and while Hampton is, at best, a back-of-the-rotation starter, if he can stay healthy … More

Complete story | Team page: Astros

Dec. 1: SIGNED: Junichi Tazawa with Red Sox
   RHP Junichi Tazawa
    Signed: Three years, $3.3 million
Keith Law says …
Signing Tazawa was a no-brainer for the Red Sox. If he was an American college player eligible for next June's draft, at worst he'd be taken in the top two rounds, and I think it's likely he'd go in the back half or third of the first round. … More

Complete story | Team page: Red Sox

Nov. 19: TRADED: Coco Crisp to Royals

CF Coco Crisp


RHP Ramon Ramirez

Keith Law says …
This looks like the sort of trade in which both teams may end up disappointed with the results. … More

Complete story | Team pages: Royals | Red Sox

Nov. 17: SIGNED: Jeremy Affeldt with Giants

   LHP Jeremy Affeldt

    Signed: Two years, $8 million
Keith Law says …
[The Giants] get one of the best free agent relievers on the market for a contract below the typical length for high-end relievers. Two years is nothing for a quality relief pitcher. … More

Complete story | Team page: Giants

Nov. 13: TRADED: Kevin Gregg to Cubs

RHP Kevin Gregg


RHP Jose Ceda
Keith Law says …
Getting Jose Ceda for one year of Kevin Gregg is a heist for Florida, and could really end up as a disaster for the Cubs, given how they intend to realign their pen. … More

Complete story | Team pages: Cubs | Marlins

Nov. 13: TRADED: Nick Swisher to Yankees

1B/OF Nick Swisher
RHP Kanekoa Texeira


INF Wilson Betemit
RHP Jeff Marquez
RHP Jhonny Nunez
Keith Law says …
There's a chance that [the Yankees] got a good offensive player, while the White Sox get rid of Swisher but don't get anything valuable in return for their trouble. … More

Complete story | Team pages: Yankees | White Sox

Nov. 12: TRADED: Matt Holliday to A's

LF Matt Holliday


OF Carlos Gonzalez
LHP Greg Smith
RHP Huston Street
Keith Law says …
His power is big enough to play even in a tougher hitting environment like Oakland's home park, but he's likely to strike out more often and see his average drop. Even if he drops to something like .310/.370/.520, Holliday will be an enormous upgrade in Oakland's lineup. … More

Complete story | Team pages: A's | Rockies


Nov. 10: TRADED: Josh Willingham to Nats

LHP Scott Olsen
OF Josh Willingham


2B Emilio Bonifacio
RHP P.J. Dean
2B Jake Smolinski
Keith Law says …
The Marlins move two players in a salary dump, trading them to the Nationals, who are in a perfect position to roll the dice on left-hander Scott Olsen while receiving a big upgrade offensively from outfielder Josh Willingham. It's an easy win for Washington. … More

Complete story | Team pages: Nationals | Marlins


Oct. 30: TRADED: Mike Jacobs to Royals

1B Mike Jacobs

RHP Leo Nunez
Keith Law says …
Jacobs should not get regular playing time from a major league club, period. The fact that the Royals looked at him and thought, "Wow, everyday first baseman!" is terrifying. … More Insider

Complete story | Team pages: Royals | Marlins