Shields, Swisher likely movers this week

Shields, Swisher likely movers this week
December 2, 2012, 5:45 pm
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One of the American League East’s top arms could be on the move during the wheeling and dealing this week at baseball’s winter meetings in Nashville, Tenn.

According to 17 baseball executives surveyed by ESPN’s Jayson Stark, the Rays’ James Shields is the player most likely to be traded during the swap meet at Opryland.

"Just look at the contract," one AL executive told Stark. "He's got this year and next year left. So he's got more value now than he'll have a year from now. They're very analytical about everything they do. It just makes sense that now's the time."

Among the free agents, outfielder Nick Swisher, who’s spent the past four seasons with the Yankees, is expected to sign somewhere this week, Stark’s panel said. Where is that somewhere?  That might be Baltimore, the execs said.

The Orioles "have to add offense," one front-office type said. "They don't have a lot in their system they can plug in. They won last year, and they need to build on that. They're in the AL East, so they can't sit back. I'm sure they'll sign a bat."

Swisher isn’t the only bat out there, but he’ll have a more reasonable price tag than other free agents.