The closer we get to the season and the less leverage remaining free agents have, the more likely it is that their asking price will decrease and they will settle for one-year deals.
The control in these situations lies with the teams, as the players have little they can do to create a market for themselves and still get a multi-year deal.
So what can Ervin Santana do to get a four-year, $50 million-ish deal in the neighborhood of what Matt Garza got from the Milwaukee Brewers and what Ubaldo Jimenez got from the Baltimore Orioles? For one thing, he and his representatives can try and make it clear that multiple teams are still interested in signing him.
It is in that context that we heard a report yesterday of three teams interested in Santana: the Orioles, Texas Rangers, and a “mystery team” from the National League West.
Unfortunately for Santana, Evan P. Grant of the Dallas Morning News has heard that the Rangers are not interested in signing him:
— Evan Grant (@Evan_P_Grant) February 23, 2014
That leaves the Orioles, who already signed Cruz and Jimenez this week, and then the NL West team. Presumably the Orioles are content to wait and see if Santana will settle for less money, which might make Santana’s options even thinner to get paid the way he was hoping to.