1. Andruw Jones, Atlanta: Perennial Gold Glove outfielder whose fading bat last season (.222, 26 homers and 94 RBI last summer) took the edge off. His agent, Scott Boras, had talked about a long-term deal worth $20 million or more a year, but the market for Jones doesn't seem anywhere near that.
There is a long list of teams needing a center fielder, including Texas, Philadelphia, San Diego, the Chicago White Sox, San Francisco, the Dodgers, Kansas City and Baltimore. Jones could wind up somewhere on a one-year deal in an effort to re-establish himself for the big-money, long-term deal later.
2. Aaron Rowand, Philadelphia: Viewed (in Philadelphia, at least) as the glue that held the Phillies together through all of the ups and downs leading to the NL East title last year, Rowand is as desirable for his intangibles as for his steady production (career highs last summer with 27 homers, 89 RBI and 105 runs scored).
The Phillies want to re-sign him, the White Sox are interested in bringing him back and the Dodgers, San Diego and Texas have kicked the tires as well. Rowand will wind up with a nice contract somewhere -- likely in Philadelphia or Chicago.
3. Carlos Silva, Minnesota: Not a big winner, but he's almost guaranteed to throw 200 or more innings and would fit nicely into a contender's rotation. The Mets, St. Louis and Seattle are among those interested.
4. Livan Hernandez, Arizona: Maybe he's closing in on 80 years old, but Hernandez has made 30 or more starts and thrown more than 200 innings in seven consecutive seasons. The Mets are interested, as are Seattle, Washington, Philadelphia and others.
5. Kyle Lohse, Philadelphia: Poster boy for this year's weak free-agent class: He's one of the top two or three desirable pitchers despite the fact that he's 63-74 lifetime with a 4.82 ERA and hasn't come close to pitching to potential in several seasons. Nevertheless, the Phillies want him back, and the Mets, Seattle and St. Louis are interested as well.
On the block
1. Matt Morris, Pittsburgh: The Pirates need to rebuild and don't have enough resources as it is. So what are they doing with Morris and his $9.5 million salary for '08 (plus a club option of $9 million, or a $1 million buyout for '09)? "They should give whoever trades him a big raise," one rival executive cracked.
2. Coco Crisp, Boston: Rookie Ellsbury supplanted him in center field during the World Series, and no way Crisp stays ahead of Ellsbury in '08.
3. Juan Uribe, Chicago White Sox: Having acquired shortstop Orlando Cabrera from the Angels, the Sox need neither Uribe's legal troubles nor his $4.5 million salary in '08.
4. Juan Pierre, Los Angeles Dodgers: After signing Pierre last winter for five years at $44 million, the Dodgers this winter had meetings set up with Torii Hunter before the Angels swooped in, they're interested in Aaron Rowand and they've checked in with Andruw Jones. Get the message? The plan would be to move Pierre over to left field -- if they can't deal him.
5. Richie Sexson, Seattle: The Mariners have long since tired of Sexson's all (21 homers in '07) or nothing (.205 batting average) approach and would love to move him.
The rookie general managers
1. Tony Reagins, Angels: Of six different clubs that have new men in charge since season's end, nobody has made a bigger early splash than Reagins. He traded shortstop Orlando Cabrera to the White Sox for starter Jon Garland, locked in free-agent center fielder Hunter and is engaging both the Twins (Santana) and Marlins (Cabrera) in trade talks.
Look for the pattern to continue in Nashville. For one thing, the Angels could trade from an excess of starting pitchers (Ervin Santana is likely to go) or outfielders (Juan Rivera or Reggie Willits, and possibly even Gary Matthews Jr.).
2. Bill Smith, Minnesota: The Twins already lost Hunter and will trade Santana. No debut GM has a more challenging winter ahead.
3. Neal Huntington, Pittsburgh: The latest in a long line of GMs attempting to rebuild the Pirates, Huntington is holding a wide range of trade talks, according to rival clubs, including all three outfielders (Jason Bay, Nate McClouth and Xavier Nady) and Morris. The Pirates would love to deal McClouth and Nady to San Diego for prospect Chase Headley.
4. Frank Wren, Atlanta: Wren's first move after replacing legendary John Schuerholz was to trade shortstop Edgar Renteria to Detroit for a couple of pitchers, including Jair Jurrjens. What the Braves need now is a center fielder to replace Andruw Jones.
5. Ed Wade, Houston: Technically not a rookie in that he was in charge of Philadelphia previously, but Wade's first few months in Houston have been eventful, from trading Brad Lidge to the Phillies to signing free-agent infielder Kaz Matsui. Wade's goal: Add speed, pitching and defense in Houston.