OFFSEASON UPDATE - EDITION 2
John Bazemore/AP | Jim McIsaac/Getty Images
- Arizona Diamondbacks acquire OF Kyle Lewis from the Seattle Mariners in exchange for C/OF Cooper Hummel.
- New York Mets acquire RHPs Elieser Hernandez and Jeff Brigham from the Miami marlins in exchange for RHP Franklin Sanchez.
- Los Angeles Angels acquire 3B Gio Urshela from the Minnesota Twins in exchange for RHP Alejandro Hidalgo.
- Los Angeles Angels acquire OF Hunter Renfroe from the Milwaukee Brewers in exchange for RHPs Janson Junk and Elvis Peguero, and LHP Adam Seminaris.
- Seattle Mariners acquire 2B Kolten Wong from the Milwaukee Brewers in exchange for OF Jesse Winker and INF Abraham Toro.
- Tyler Kinley, RP, Colorado Rockies - Three-years, $6.25 Million:
- Kinley posted his best MLB season in 2022, notching twenty-four innings allowing just two runs - good for a 0.75 ERA, and an extension.
- Carlos Santana, 1B, Pittsburgh Pirates - One-year, $6.7 Million:
- The 36-year old is on the back-end of his career, after posting abysmal numbers the past three seasons. Pittsburgh, simply put, just needs to field a team.
- Mike Clevinger, SP, Chicago White Sox - One-year, $8 Million:
- The ex-Clevelander dominated prior to being dealt to San Diego, but injury-plagued seasons and underperformance has forced him into taking a bottom-of-the-barrel deal.
- Jose Abreu, 1B, Houston Astros - Three-years, $58.5 Million:
- Gurriel’s replacement hasn’t slowed down, as he’ll enter 2023 in his age 36 season having slashed .304/.378/.446 with 15 bombs and 75 RBI in ‘22.
- Luke Maile, C, Cincinnati Reds - One-year, $1.175 Million:
- Maile, best known for his defence, signs with his hometown team as a quality backup to Tyler Stephenson. Any production with the bat is a bonus.
- Trevor Gott, RP, Seattle Mariners - One-year, $1.2 Million:
- After the success Seattle’s had developing middling relievers, this may be a bargain after Erik Swanson’s exit to Toronto.
- Jeimer Candelario, INF, Washington Nationals - One-year, $5 Million:
- Candelario is a very up-and-down hitter coming off a beleaguered ‘22 hitting just .217 over 124 games. An uncompetitive Washington club just needs serviceable players, and he fits that role.
- Stone Garrett, OF, Washington Nationals - One-year, N/A:
- The only first-time MLB deal this offseason so far, Garrett showed promise when he debuted with Arizona last year. In AAA, he hit 28 bombs with 95 RBI over 103 games - an intriguing signing, though likely just for depth.
- Shelby Miller, RP, Los Angeles Dodgers - One-year, $1.5 Million:
- Miller, if nothing else, is a Los Angeles special. Cheap deal, low bar, what the heck.
- Matt Boyd, SP, Detroit Tigers - One-year, $10 Million:
- Returning to Detroit after a one-year absence, Boyd shores up an underwhelming Tigers’ staff headlined by Eduardo Rodriguez. In thirteen innings out of the ‘pen last year, Boyd posted a 1.35 ERA.
- Zach Eflin, SP, Tampa Bay Rays - Three-years, $40 Million:
- Tampa Bay’s largest ever Free Agent financial commitment - a starter/reliever who pitched to a 4.04 ERA with Philly in ‘22. It’s Tampa, I dare not criticize.
- Miguel Castro, RP, Arizona Diamondbacks - One-year, $3.5 Million:
- Filling up a bullpen that relied on very few arms, Castro is a proven reliever who can eat innings - likely a set-up role is his destiny.
- Chris Martin, RP, Boston Red Sox - Two-years, $17.5 Million:
- Martin, an extremely late bloomer, has had a fairly good run since 2020 with Atlanta, Chicago and the Dodgers. He really came on post-deadline in ‘22, and hopes to help a below-average Sox ‘pen.
- Jacob deGrom, SP, Texas Rangers - Five-years, $185 Million:
- The best pitcher on the open market signs, as Mets fans everywhere shed a tear. Sure, he’s been injured over parts of the last three seasons, but he’s never had a bad year in the Majors - ever. Texas continues to spend after the acquisitions of Corey Seager and Marcus Semien last year, with deGrom now being a bonafide ace of the staff. His last full season - in 2019 - deGrom pitched to an outstanding 2.43 ERA with a NL-leading 255 strikeouts. The year prior, a 1.70 ERA. When he pitches, he’s the best in the game.
- Kyle Gibson, SP, Baltimore Orioles - One-year, $10 Million:
- Gibson’s struggled for two consecutive years with the Phillies, though he had a decent run in ‘21 with Texas. He’ll eat innings, and be a veteran voice in a young Orioles locker room.
- Justin Verlander, SP, New York Mets - Two-years, $86.6 Million:
- After losing out on Jacob deGrom, the Mets dish out the cash for their second-favourite target. He’s shown no signs of slowing down, winning a Cy Young this past year after going 18-4 with a 1.75 ERA over 175 innings. Perhaps on a Tom Brady-esque career path, Verlander will be signed into his 41st birthday on a team desperate to get over the playoff hump. Allegedly, the Yankees offered him more than Steve Cohen’s $86.6 Million - an indictment of Brian Cashman’s club’s current position.
- Trea Turner, SS, Philadelphia Phillies - Eleven-years, $300 Million:
- Signed until his age-40 season, Turner reunites with fellow ex-National Bryce Harper in Philly. All along, rumours have linked the Phillies to Turner, and $300 Million proves it true. A scary lineup gets scarier, though inevitable questions will arise - however many years down the line - should Turner’s speed dip. Known for his wheels, speedsters generally aren’t known for lasting into their late-30s, something that we’ll have to see with Turner.
- Carlos Estevez, RP, Los Angeles Angels - Two-years, $13.5 Million:
- Estevez pitched well for Colorado last year, posting a 3.47 ERA over fifty-seven innings, and earning himself a nice two-year deal in Free Agency.
- Maikel Franco, INF, Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles (NPB):
- The once highly-touted Phillies prospect will head to Japan for, at least, 2023 in an effort to reignite his offensive value. Plenty of power to be had, Franco - in theory - seems to be a good fit.
- Aristides Aquino, OF, Chunichi Dragons (NPB):
- Likewise with Franco, Aquino’s homer-or-strikeout approach is very much similar to that of other ex-MLB’ers who have gone to Japan. Known for his hot stretch with the Reds, he looks to fix his swing and become a more consistent hitter across the ocean.
- Anthony Gose, RP, Cleveland Guardians - Two-years, $2 Million:
- Perhaps odd to read without knowing context, Tommy John Surgery will prevent Gose from pitching in ‘23. This deal simply locks him down for 2024, when he should be healthy enough to show Cleveland what he has in the tank. An Outfielder-turned-Reliever, Gose has seen Major League action and has been able to fire up to 100 MPH - it’ll be interesting to see if he can return to form, post-surgery.
- Chris Devenski, RP, Los Angeles Angels - One-year:
- A once-great Astros’ arm, Devenski has struggled mightily since 2017 - he’s posted a 5.45 ERA over 142 innings from 2018-2022, not a highly sought after statline. If the Angels can work some magic and retain his 2016-17 self, he’ll provide some much needed relief help in Los Angeles.
- Jason Castro, 35 years-old:
- Castro will end on a high note, winning the World Series with Houston in 2022. Having caught for Minnesota, San Diego, the Los Angeles Angels, and Houston (twice), the vet ends his career where it began in 2010. Never known for his bat, Castro did manage to wrack up almost 100 homers (97) with 325 RBIs over 12 seasons, as well as an All-Star appearance in 2013.
- Rick Porcello, 33 years-old:
- Porcello, potentially one of the wildest winners of a Cy Young Award ever, pitched 12 years in the Majors over the span of three teams: Detroit, Boston, and the Mets. Never a particularly overpowering arm, he led the league in wins in ‘16 (22) only to lead the league in losses in ‘17 (17). Porcello may be best known for his days amidst a Tigers rotation consisting of Justin Verlander, David Price, Max Scherzer, and Doug Fister.
- Bryan Reynolds:
- One of the few bright spots amidst an atrocious Pirates’ roster, Reynolds recently requested a trade from Pittsburgh - a move that, so far, has not been responded to from the front office.
- Brian Cashman:
- Today, the Yankees inked Brian Cashman to a four-year extension as GM. A somewhat polarizing figure in New York these days, Cashman drew the ire of Yankees faithful after yet another failed postseason.
- Don Mattingly:
- The Toronto Blue Jays have hired the ex-Miami skipper as their new Bench Coach, allowing for interim Bench Coach Casey Candaele to return as Buffalo’s Manager in AAA. Donny Baseball adds a new dynamic to the Schneider-run Jays, with quite a track record.
- Fred McGriff:
- The Ex-Jay was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame by the Contemporary Era Committee recently, a unanimous decision by members.
- Pat Tabler:
- Tabler announced that he’ll not be returning to the Blue Jays’ broadcast booth in 2023 - a move that comes after Dan Shulman decided to opt-out of calling games for ESPN Radio, and to instead return full-time as one of Toronto’s TV men alongside Buck Martinez.
- Miguel Cabrera:
- Cabrera announced that 2023 will be his final season before retiring, as the legend will have one last year in the bigs. Now 39, Cabrera has amounted 507 HRs and 1,847 RBIs since 2003. Miggy’s been with the Tigers since 2008, after being traded from the then-Florida Marlins after the 2007 season.
- Houston Astros claim 3B Rylan Bannon off waivers from Chicago Cubs.
- San Diego Padres claim RHP Sean Poppen off waivers from Arizona Diamondbacks.
- Philadelphia Phillies claim OF Jake Cave off waivers from Baltimore Orioles.
- San Francisco Giants claim RHP Miguel Yajure off waivers from Pittsburgh Pirates.
- Arizona Diamondbacks claim C Ali Sanchez off waivers from Pittsburgh Pirates.
- Baltimore Orioles claim INF Lewis Diaz off waivers from Pittsburgh Pirates.
By: Gus Cousins