#1: Seth Lugo, SP/RP
Looking for a diamond in the rough? Seth Lugo represents one of the best values in this free agency class.
The Swiss Army Knife established a long MLB career as a longtime bullpen option as a member of the NL East rival New York Mets. during that time, from 2016-2022, Lugo posted a super solid 3.48 ERA across nearly 500 innings, most of which came as a high-leverage reliever.
When he was given his first true opportunity to pivot to a starting role with the Padres in 2023, Lugo cemented himself as a rock-solid option. The veteran posted a stellar 3.50 ERA across 26 starts and a career-high 146 innings. He finished the club's #3 starter and recorded an 8-7 record.
Lugo, like Hendricks, would bring immediate stability to a Miami rotation currently in flux. And, as an added bonus, his services could likely be secured for under the $10 million per season price tag.
Honorable Mention: Kenta Maeda, SP
Maeda unfortunately falls just outside the sub-$10 million annual projected market value required for this article. However, he deserves an honorable mention as a potential rotation solution.
The 35-year-old has had injury and durability concerns throughout his career. Yet, he remains a strong starting option when healthy. He, like Paxton, is a candidate to improve off a higher 2023 ERA (4.23) as he builds back up after Tommy John surgery in 2022.
Miami needs to add multiple starter this offseason. Maeda is worthy of consideration.
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