Shin-Soo Choo with the Indians
Choo spent seven years in Cleveland after being wrangled away from the Mariners for Ben Broussard at the July trading deadline in 2006. He played well enough to finish at #48 in our Top 100 series. As a Scott Boras client, he was 99% likely to hit the free agent market this season, so last winter Chris Antonetti dealt him as part of a threee team trade with the Cincinnati Reds and Arizona Diamondbacks that netted us top prospect Trevor Bauer, Matt Albers, Bryan Shaw and Drew Stubbs.
He struggled occasionally in the field moving to center for the Reds, but hit very well (.285/.423/.462, 143 OPS+, and a league leading 26 HBP), solidifying the top of their lineup. The Reds gave up top prospect Didi Gregorius in the deal and now will have a compensation pick from the Ranges after the first round in the 2014 draft.
The deal didn't pan out as nicely as the Reds hoped as they were bounced out in the Wild Card Game (like our Tribe) and now have a hole in their lineup and in the outfield for 2014. I did not note any outfielder signings by them yet this offseason. The Reds did take a chance, but now have to move forward. [Perhaps they might be intrigued by Bourn?]
In Jason's free agent review, he had him pegged as the #3 free agent. He guessed at 5 years and less than ~$90M, while Fangraphs had him at 5 years and $80M. Boras definitely worked his magic, getting seven years and $40-50M more than predicted.
Better the Rangers than the Tigers, right?