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I have noticed that many team could either decide to rebuild or retool this offseason. There were 2 teams like this last year. The White Sox and A’s were both very good teams in ’06, but bad in ’07. The A’s decided to rebuild, the White Sox decided to retool. Both have worked out for the teams, as the White Sox are in a penante race, (I picked them to win their division here) and the A’s have arguably the best farm system in the MLB. This year, the Indians, Tigers, Braves, Rockies and Blue Jays are teams sitting on the fence. The Indians were 1 game away from the world series last year, the Tigers with the Indians all the way in that division, the Rockies made it to the world series. The Braves and Blue Jays each were contnders, also. I don’t know what these teams WILL do but this is what I think they SHOULD do.
The Indians- Retool. This is a bad team with a lot of holes as says our Offseason Needs sidebar link. But other than CC Sabthia, they still have all the core guys that got them so close last year. They need a shortstop or third basemen, which will be hard to find. They need a second basemen, which should be easier. They need a bullpen makeover, and a starter. This division is noth good, though. They have enough money to get a player like Orlando Hudson. They can move Victor Martinez to first and leave Kelly Shoppach as the catcher. They also could settle with using a guy like Asdrbal Cabrera at shortstop and move Jhonny Peralta to third base. There are a few relievers avalable tat suit the Indians. And they could get a number four starter. It will be tough, but I think retooling makes more sense that rebuilding.
Tigers- Retool. They also have a lot of holes, and play in the weak AL Central. They could get a decent starter, though, off the cheap. Could add a bullpen arm, and there are a lot of left fielders. The will have to settle woth Inge as a catcher, and I don’t think they have anyone for shortstop. I think there is a better chance of the Indians competing next year.
Rockies- Retool. This team has only 3 holes, and could fill them via free agency. Clint Barmes could eb their second basemen, that leaves pitching. They need a lot of it, but I think that they can compete in the VERY weak NL West.
Blue Jay- Rebuild. They have no hitting at all, and play in arguably baseball tougest division. They have to face it that they can’t score, and don’t have the financial resorces of the Red Sox and Yankees. Or the farm system of the Tampa Bay Rays. They need to rebuild to get a farm like the Rays so they can compete.
Braves- Rebuild. To compete, they’ll need 2 big arms and a big bat. I thought they could retool, but when Tim Hudson went down with Tommy John surgery, I changed my mind. If they don’t have him for a lot of ’09, they can’t compete. They don’t have much to trade, but don’t sign any major free agents and spend a lot in the draft. Just take one off year, then come back and when guys like Jordon Scafher and Gorks Hernandez are ready and start retooling.
There you have it. This is what I think these teams should do, but soem won’t. Like the Braves. I don’t think Bobby Cox will let the team rebuild, but they should.