- Tim Burke
If I were an MLB GM, The player I would pay to play for my team this Free Agency is Carlos Correa
The fact that Carlos Correa is on the open market for a second consecutive year is an excellent opportunity for all 30 Major League Baseball teams. This a unique chance to add a proven winner to your ball club in the prime of their career. At 28 years old, Carlos Correa is the youngest player in this terrific group of Free Agent Shortstops. One could argue that he is also the most talented Shortstop in this Free Agent class. But nobody can deny that he has had the most successful career of any of his shortstop counterparts. Correa is the type of player who shines brightest on the game's biggest stage. In 79 postseason games, Correa's eighteen home runs are 7th All-Time, and his 59 RBIs are tied for Sixth All-Time. He also has a slash line of 272/ .344/.505 in the Postseason. He has played in three Fall Classics and has one World Series, and at 28 years old, Correa is just getting started.
Last season, Shortstop Corey Seager signed a 10-year 325 million dollar contract. Remarkably, nobody else gave Correa an offer equal to or better than Seager's contract. Correa deserves a massive contract considering his 12.7 Wins Above Replacement since 2021 ranks first among all Shortstops. He is also an elite defender with 20 Defensive Runs Saved and a 2.9 defensive WAR in 2021. The former Gold Glove winner's range and arm strength separate him from other Shortstops. He certainly is as good as Corey Seager, if not better.
The only question marks surrounding Correa are his offensive consistencies and his health. At the plate, Correa has shown improved plate discipline and overall maturity in recent years, and he has found more consistency in his game. However, his health is still a concern. From 2017-2022 Correa missed 28.9% of his games due to injury. But when on the field, Correa's impact at the plate and with his glove is undeniable. Not often do you see a player in their prime with Correa's talent and experience hit Free Agency. If anyone is worth a big-time contract this Winter, it is Carlos Correa. Most Free Agent signings are signed with more money and for a longer term than most General Managers are comfortable with, but that's how the business works. If you are not willing to take risks in Free Agency, odds are you will not sign a lot of Free Agents. Correa will be worth every penny of his next contract. He's a winner.