Chavez market: Rangers, Rays, D-Backs, Bucs, Braves, Yanks, Nats

Chavez's agent says the third baseman is open-minded about his options.(USATSI)
Chavez's agent says the third baseman is open-minded about his options. (USATSI)

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- The Eric Chavez market is heating up, with at least seven teams in on the free-agent third baseman at the moment.

The Rangers, Rays, Pirates, Braves, Diamondbacks, Nationals and Yankees all have checked in with interest, though the Yankees' signing of Kelly Johnson might diminish the chances of a return to New York. Texas is interesting because of the connection to manager Ron Washington from when Chavez was a star in his Oakland A's days -- though they are well-covered at third with star Adrian Beltre.

In a weak third-base market, Chavez is especially appealing. Juan Uribe is a starting free-agent third baseman, with a returning Kevin Youkilis and aging Placido Polanco among the other options.

Chavez, 36, took a hometown deal last time, signing to play at home in Phoenix for $3 million for 2013 after rejecting more lucrative offers, and Chavez hit .281 with nine home runs  and 44 RBI in 80 games for Arizona. He didn't play much in September after the Diamondbacks called up third-base prospect Matt Davidson. Chavez played 113 games in 2012 for the Yankees, posting a stellar .845 OPS.

"Chavy is approaching the offseason no different than he has the last fifteen offseasons," agent Scott Leventhal said. "He wants to play, and he wants to be part of a winner. He does not have his heart set on one team or one league. His mind is wide open. There's heavy interest in him from around the league."

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