First Base is one of the more interesting spots open on our roster and it could be filled in any number of ways but I want to focus particularly on the Free Agents. The general consensus on the blogs lately has been to trade for Brewer Brad Nelson. Which I also agree with. Trades, unfortunately, are hard to predict and any number of hang-ups can doom them, even if your GM has recently worked with your trade partner. I've included last years VORP to each player. Anyway here are most of the options out there for first among free agents.
So lets get on our way...
Mark Teixeira - Great player. Never going to happen, ever...Wants big money, on a winning team, Boras client. Type A free agent. 37.0 VORP
Rich Aurilia - Been there done that, didn't really work, getting older, right handed, not a fan favorite after his last stint in Seattle. Might be considering retirement. 8.2 VORP this year.
Sean Casey - Decent defense, decent contact bat but has less power than Willie Bloomquist. Has a history of injuries. Could be had relatively cheaply. Had an identical 8.2 VORP as Aurilia.
Tony Clark - Getting older and it shows. Known for his lefty power but that's all but left him, only 3 HRs this year. Bench player. Retirement is possible. -1.5 VORP. There are better options out there.
Kevin Millar - Hmmm. Tough year, still has a bit of pop, but he's right handed and his career is going downhill as well. Good clubhouse presence though if that stands for anything. Probably a bench player now. -.3 VORP
Miguel Cairo - Still wondering how he got as much playing time as he did. I bet he thought he hit the jackpot. No bat, average glove. -4 VORP which was lower than pretty much everyone on the team not named Vidro, Balentien, or Jojima. Probably better suited as some sort of coach that has nothing to teach.
Russell Branyan - One of the better cheapish options. Had a good year last year with Milwaukee .925 OPS. Left handed power bat. Won't hit for average and will strikeout a lot but he has good enough on base skills to counteract that. Makes me think of a lefthanded Richie. Platoon needed. 11.2 VORP
Adam Dunn - One of the more expensive options. Pretty sure he won't be worth the contract someone gives him. Rob Deer at its best. Average at best fielder. 40 HRS in each of last 5 years. Type A free agent. 10.3 VORP
Doug Mientkiewicz - Well known for his glove and an average at best bat. Not much in the way of power but he does get on base. Kind of similar to Sean Casey in that regard. Inexpensive, would be a stopgap at best. 7.6 VORP
Eric Hinske - Should not be an outfielder ever again. First base would be more suitable. Platoon option only, he can't hit leftys to save his life. His value as a hitter was hidden in the Rays lineup of hitters. Fairly inexpensive. 13.6 VORP
Hank Blalock - Will probably have his option picked up. Could be a decent fit as long as the contract isn't too long to block Raben or someone else. Would be pricey if he does hit the market. Has a tough time staying healthy but is a decent bat when he is and would fit in well at Safeco. Type B free agent. 14.6 VORP
Jason Giambi - Really bad fielder, still a good hitter. Should be DH. Will have his $22 mil option declined. Probably wants to stay with the Yankees. Steroid history. Good fit for Safeco though. 32.5 VORP
Raul Ibanez - Fan favorite who should no doubt have been a DH or 1B long ago. We all know about his bat. Good clubhouse guy. Fairly expensive, at least a 2 year contract. Type A free agent. The draft picks would be nice but losing his bat would be a big loss for a bad lineup. 39.4 VORP
I may have skipped over some, please feel free to add if you think they'd be an option. Not a lot of exciting options but I think the best options of the group are Branyan, Hinske, or Ibanez, but others here may know better...