Teams might be wise to take a chance on Austin Jackson. Getty

While many teams have kept an eye on the top free-agent outfielders J.D. Martinez and Lorenzo Cain, veteran Austin Jackson might quietly be one of the biggest bargains on the market. Jackson played in just 85 games in 2017, but he was quite productive in 280 at-bats, finishing with a career-high .869 OPS.

Terry Pluto of the Cleveland Plain Dealer reported on Dec. 3 that the Cleveland Indians were interested in bringing Jackson back but probably won't break the bank for him. In the same note, Pluto pointed out that there are rumors setup man Bryan Shaw may sign a three-year deal for least $7 million annually and if that's the case he won't be back in Cleveland.

The money freed up from not signing Shaw could help pay Jackson's contract, but there might be some hesitancy on the Indians' part. Jackson turns 31 in February and he hasn't hit 10 or more home runs in a season since 2013.

More than a week after Pluto's report, Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports reported that the Indians were meeting with Jackson.

It's difficult to tell what Jackson might command on the market due to his injury history. He played 136 games in 2015. In 2016, he played in just 54 games due to a medial meniscus tear in his left knee and missed a good portion of the 2017 season due to a toe injury and strained left quad muscle.

The Indians outfield consists of three left-handed hitters: Michael Brantley, Bradley Zimmer, Lonnie Chisenhall. Since that's the case, Jackson's right-handed bat could be a valuable asset for Terry Francona. Meanwhile, Jackson has always been good with his glove and made arguably the best defensive play of the season when he robbed a home run from Hanley Ramirez at Fenway Park.

If team president of baseball operations Chris Antonetti decides to pass on Jackson, the San Francisco Giants look like a team that might be interested.

The Giants, known for seeking out reclamation projects, seem likely to take a chance on a player like Jackson. San Francisco has high hopes for prospect Steven Duggar, so it wouldn't be surprising if they offer Jackson a one-year or two-year deal instead of pursuing Martinez or Cain.

Jackson would be considered an upgrade for a Giants lineup that finished 29th in runs and an outfield that lacked much punch. Denard Span posted the highest outfield's highest OPS at .756. Span, meanwhile, was traded last week to the Tampa Bay Rays for Evan Longoria.

On Wednesday, MLB insider Jon Morosi reported that the Giants were considering a trade for the Cincinnati Reds' Billy Hamilton.

This year's free agent outfielders also include the Indians' Jay Bruce and the Dodgers' Andre Ethier and Curtis Granderson.