MLB Free Agency

Ranking the Top 10 MLB Free-Agent Outfielders

Aaron Judge headlines the list of outfielders set to hit the open market this winter

Ranking the top 10 MLB free-agent outfielders originally appeared on NBC Sports Boston

When it comes to the MLB free-agent outfield market, it's Aaron Judge and then everyone else.

Judge headlines the 2022-23 free agent class and should earn an enormous contract following an MVP-caliber year with the New York Yankees. Once he's off the board, clubs in need of outfield help will be looking at names like Brandon Nimmo, Andrew Benintendi and Joc Pederson.

The Boston Red Sox recently signed center fielder Kiké Hernandez to a one-year contract extension, but they should still be in the market for outfielders this winter. Trade deadline addition Tommy Pham will be part of the 2022-23 free agent class and the outfield depth behind Hernandez and Verdugo isn't all that promising.

So, which players could they target? Here's a look at the top 10 outfielders who could hit free agency this offseason.

1. Aaron Judge

Age: 30

The Yankees of all teams wouldn't really let a superstar and face of the franchise like Judge slip away this offseason, would they? Regardless, Judge is set to earn a monster contract after a historic season in the Bronx.

2. Brandon Nimmo

Age: 30

Nimmo may not be a household name, but he'll be one of the most valuable outfielders on the market this winter. The New York Mets center fielder will be coveted for his above-average glove and ability to get on base consistently.

3. Andrew Benintendi

Age: 28

Benintendi's brand new approach at the plate paid dividends as he earned his first MLB All-Star nod in 2022. The former Red Sox outfielder hasn't seen the same success since leaving the Kansas City Royals for the Yankees, but he's still one of the more intriguing names in a thin outfield market.

4. Joc Pederson

Age: 31

Pederson's 2022 campaign with the San Francisco Giants has been one of the best of his career. The two-time All-Star has the second-best OPS of his career (.865) through 112 games. That, plus his reputation as a playoff performer, should put him on plenty of teams' radars this offseason.

5. Mitch Haniger

Age: 32

Haniger has missed most of the 2022 season due to an ankle injury and didn't look the same upon returning to the Seattle Mariners lineup. Still, his stellar 2018 and 2021 seasons should be enough to entice clubs to sign him this winter.

6. Joey Gallo

Age: 29

Teams should know what they're getting with Gallo at this point. Yankees fans got the full experience when he hit just .159 with 106 strikeouts and 12 homers in 82 games. A change of scenery has worked out for Gallo in L.A., so perhaps a bounce-back campaign could be in the cards next year.

7. Michael Conforto

Age: 30

Conforto sat out the 2022 season after undergoing shoulder surgery. He also was a free agent last winter but couldn't land a major league contract. Now presumably fully healthy, the ex-Mets outfielder should have no problem joining a club in need of some pop in their lineup.

8. A.J. Pollock

Age: 35

2023 player option: $10 million

Pollock hasn't looked the same since joining the Chicago White Sox in 2022. After posting an .892 OPS with the Dodgers in 2021, he has a .673 OPS through 115 games this year. Age could be catching up to the former All-Star, but there should be teams willing to give him a one-year "prove it" deal.

9. Tommy Pham

Age: 35

2023 mutual option: $6 million

Pham has shown with the Red Sox that he still has plenty left in the tank. The journeyman outfielder has a .769 OPS in 32 games since being acquired from the Cincinnati Reds.

10.  Kevin Kiermaier

Age: 33

2023 club option: $13 million

Kiermaier doesn't offer much of anything offensively at this point in his career, but his defensive prowess is second to none. He'll have no problem finding a job as long as the glove continues to work its magic.

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