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Phils Ink Polanco, Beltre Suiters Dwindle

Placido PolancoPlacido Polanco, after not getting offered arbitration, became a hot commodity. The Phillies scooped him up today for a reported 3 years, $18 million to replace Pedro Feliz at third base. Polanco has a significantly different skillset from Feliz, but I'm not certain that he is better (especially as a third baseman) as much as he is different. Then again, the Phillies are only paying Polanco $1 million more per year than they gave Feliz last season, so maybe they see it the same way.

Anyway, the Phillies were one of the teams linked to Adrian Beltre, but they certainly are out of the running now. That leaves the Red Sox as the only other team commonly linked to him. Realistically, I could see Beltre going to the Angels, Red Sox, Orioles, and maybe the Dodgers, Twins, or Astros.

The Angels won't seriously pursue Beltre until Chone Figgins makes a decision on the arbitration he was offered.

Boston probably still has to move Mike Lowell to make room for Beltre. Jason Bay is a bigger priority for them too, and the free agent they seem to covet most is Marco Scutaro.

The Orioles are farther away from the playoffs than the Mariners, farther from Beltre's home than the Mariners, and I doubt would pay him more than what Beltre can get in arbitration.

The Dodgers are a good fit in several ways, but they couldn't even get around to offering Randy Wolf arbitration with their current ownership mess.

The Twins are wild cards, but signing Beltre might wipe out long-term contract talks with Joe Mauer.

Houston is a pretty speculative guess too, and a fringe one at best. They are more focused on Miguel Tejada, and I don't think they can offer the same type of money that Beltre can get in arbitration.

Ironically, both the Twins and Astros might be better served looking at M's second baseman Jose Lopez in a trade if they are interested in acquiring a third baseman at all.

Adrian Beltre has to make a decision on arbitration by Monday. I don't see a team that will heavily pursue his services between now and then. Would you leave $10-$12 million for one year on the table, looking at those options above?