There are certainly Major League Baseball teams that could use more pop at the plate. Furthermore, there are certainly teams that could use a capable shortstop with a bit of pop in his bat.
That is the case, and yet Kendrys Morales and Stephen Drew remain unsigned. And while reports earlier today indicated that the market for the two players is warming up a bit, a survey conducted by Buster Olney of ESPN (subscription required) seems to indicate many executives are still lukewarm on both players.
It may not be any single factor as much as it is a combination of things that have left these players on the market this long. For one thing, it sounds like neither indicated much willingness to lessen their contract demands. With that, many executives feel these players each made a “huge mistake” by not accepting their qualifying offers.
There is also the fact that both players are limited in their skill sets. Morales is effectively a designated hitter only, despite his agent’s claims otherwise, and so he will have to land in the American League. A reunion between him and the Mariners still seems inevitable.
As for Drew, his limitations on offense are holding teams back, especially when they consider that he wants a multi-year deal in the range of $10 million a year, or more. Most executives seem to think he should be more in the $7-8 million range, and until his price comes down he might not get much interest.
Finally there is the concern over how much time they have missed. That becomes a self-perpetuating issue, in a sense, but any team who signs one of these guys will have to wait three weeks or so to actually have them on the field. Teams are checking in, but you better believe they will consider the decision carefully before offering either guy a deal.