AL East no longer free agent heaven

AL East no longer free agent heaven
December 14, 2012, 3:00 pm

It’s strange watching the American League East this off-season. The Red Sox have nabbed some mid-level free agents: Ryan Dempster, Mike Napoli, Koji Uehara and Shane Victorino, but haven’t come close to others.

The Yankees have only signed Kevin Youkilis from outside while keeping Hiroki Kuroda and Ichiro Suzuki and allowing Russell Martin to leave.

Boston has plenty of money to spend and spaces to fill and the players they’re signing are useful, but not spectacular.

New York seems to be fixated on affordable, short-term deals. While the Ichiro contract is reportedly a two-year one, it’s not onerous and he supposedly could get more from San Francisco.

Zack Greinke, Josh Hamilton and Anibal Sanchez: big deals with the Dodgers, Angels and Tigers. None with the Yankees.

New York was even content to let a fan favorite, Nick Swisher, walk.

The Orioles haven’t been terribly active, but Tampa Bay pulled off a huge trade, sending Wade Davis and James Shields to Kansas City for several top prospects. Toronto hauled in Mark Buehrle, Josh Johnson and Jose Reyes last month.

Perhaps the Orioles’ relative quiet in the AL East is the new normal.