The Free Agent Class of Major League Free Agent Class of (1976-1977),
After the 1976 Baseball Season the Free Agents that became available was mind boggling
Among those available Pitchers -Steve Stone, Doyle Alexander,Wayne Garland and Don Gullett
Hitters, Dick Allen, Willie McCovey, Richie Hebner, Bert Campaneris, Gene Tenace, Sal Bando, Don Baylor, Dave Cash, Gary Matthews, Joe Rudi, Bobby Grich.
Oh Yes Two others--Closer Rollie Fingers and one Reginald (Reggie) Martinez Jackson.
To me this blows away the NBA Free agent class of 2010, There was 7 Proven winners in the (1976-1977) class, 6 of them from the 3 time champion Oakland A's plus Don Gullett from the 76 Champion Reds, add Big time hitters Dick Allen, An aging Willie McCovey, Highly sought after All-Stars like Bobby Grich, Richie Hebner, Gary Matthews, Doyle Alexander Solid players like Dave Cash, and Pitchers Wayne Garland and closer Bill Cambell
This draft captivated the Baseball and Sports fan, At he time teams had to select the players they wanted to negotiate with, The Yankees for example in that year selected in order Bobby Grich, (The Player they wanted the most), Don Baylor, Don Gullett, Gary Matthews, Wayne Garland,Reggie Jackson, Campaneris, Dave Cash, and Billy Smith.
The Yankees also wanted Don Gulllett also, Grich they thought could replace Fred Stanley as the starting SS even though Grich was a 2nd Baseman,
One rule in Free Agency was that a team could only sign 2 Free Agents or if they lost more than 2 then sign as many as they lost.
So the Yankees quickly signed Don Gullett to solidify the starting rotation, the turned their sights on Bobby Grich, However Bobby Grich was from Southern California and when the Angels got Don Baylor, Grich contacted his agent to see if he can join his friend and former teammate from Baltimore.
So as he signed with the Angels and other the other free agents were signing with other teams The Yankees had to settle with negotiating with Reggie Jackson. They did sign him, It turns out that Even though GM Gabe Paul wanted Grich over Jackson Yankee owner George Steinbrenner really wanted Reggie all along. (And the Rest is History)
For more on the Free Agent Class of 76-77 here is 2 Links to read more
Here is a year by Year Free Agent list