Left field

The Reuters global sports blog

It’s open season on baseball’s free agents


BASEBALL/After a World Series and San Francisco Giants triumph that fittingly capped a Major League Baseball campaign known as the Season of the Pitcher, the sport has barely skipped a beat before quickly beginning its next chapter — open season on free agents. 

License to begin the hunt in a season of big spending has been granted 10 days earlier than in the past due to rules changes intended to make the wheeling-dealing easier.

The top ticket item among more than 150 free agent players is Texas Rangers pitcher Cliff Lee, and as expected the deep-pocketed New York Yankees have already reached out to his agent to express their interest.

Lee, who had amassed a 7-0 postseason record the past two years before two uncharacteristic Fall Classic stumbles against the Giants, figures to command in the neighborhood of his old Cleveland Indian team-mate CC Sabathia’s deal with the Yanks at $23 million per year.