• Josh Donaldson is wanted by six different clubs
  • The Nationals have the most money and need so they will do what it takes to sign him
  • Meanwhile, the White Sox are the favorites to land Nicholas Castellanos

Two of the best players on the free agent market are Josh Donaldson and Nicholas Castellanos and both are getting bit-time attention from the Washington Nationals and Chicago White Sox, respectively. Although there are interested suitors outside of those two, they are the most likely to land Donaldson and Castellanos.

David Schoenfield of ESPN reports that there are at least five potential playoff contenders who are without a third baseman, or have questions at the hot corner. They are the Nationals, Atlanta Braves, Texas Rangers, Milwaukee Brewers and Minnesota Twins (who plan to slide Miguel Sano from third to first).

The Philadelphia Phillies are another potential player in the third baseman market should they choose to allow Scott Kingery to continue in his super-utility tole instead of playing the hot corner every day. With a fairly limited free agent market at the position outside of Donaldson plus a relatively thin trade market, they will all monitor the 34-year-old closely.

Josh Donaldson, Toronto Blue Jays
Josh Donaldson is tied for 17th with a $23,000,000 base salary for the 2018 MLB season. Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images

This may result in a bidding war for the former Oakland Athletic and Toronto Blue Jay star, who is coming off a season where he slammed 37 round-trippers and drove in 94 runs. The Braves did tender a qualifying offer to the player, which he refused, so if he signs outside of Atlanta, they will be due the draft pick compensation.

That won’t put off any of Donaldson’s suitors, however, due to his continued production even into his mid-30s. Because of the looming bidding war, it is very likely that the team with the most money to spend will get their man and in this case that would be the Nationals.

The Nats lost out on Anthony Rendon, although they did manage to keep Stephen Strasburg. This suggests that Washington has big-time money left in the bank that they are willing to spend as Rendon was always going to get a huge contract.

All of this means that the Washington Nationals will land Donaldson in free agency.

Castellanos, on the other hand, hasn’t gotten quite the same amount of attention this winter. This is down not only to the very real gap in quality between the two players but also the fact that Castellanos may be a terrific hitter but his defense is average at best.

The long-time Detroit Tiger turns 28 in March, making him one of the younger players on the market. Castellanos is also coming off a season where he hit 58 doubles, the most in the majors since Todd Helton hit 59 in 2000.

The Arizona Diamondbacks do want an outfielder, but they prize defensive ability making them a bad fit. The Rangers also traded away Nomar Mazara, leaving a gap in the Lone Star State, while the Cleveland Indians have money to spend after trading away Corey Kluber.

However, it is the Chicago White Sox who make the most sense as they have a paltry salary commitment to 2020 even after signing the likes of Yasmani Grandal and Dallas Keuchel in addition to Jose Abreu. They not only have a need at both outfield and designated hitter but also have the money to make the move a reality.