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Going over the recent MLB transactions

December 8, 2018

Short post here, let’s look at every notable transaction that’s gone down this offseason and review it (in somewhat chronological order).

 

12/3/18

Mariners trade 2B Robinson Cano, CP Edwin Diaz, and cash to Mets for OF Jay Bruce, OF Jarred Kelenic, RHP Anthony Swarzak, RHP Gerson Bautista and RHP Justin Dunn

We all knew former agent-turned GM Brodie Van Wagenen was going to be aggressive right away and this was his first step. Cano, while he has produced every season of his career, is a huge question mark following an 80-game PED suspension. Diaz, on the other hand, has quickly turned himself into one of, if not the best, closers in the game and is nothing if not an exclamation point. The Mets gave up a pretty fair haul here, and that seems to be predicated on their belief that Cano can slot in at second base and produce as he has for multiple years more (which is a big if). Bruce was included mainly because his huge contract (owed $13 million next year), and the two relievers seem to be insurance for the following Jean Segura trade (will review later). While Dunn and Kelenic are two of the Mets’ top prospects, neither are certainties and if they fail to develop this could be a huge win for the Mets.

 

Mariners trade 1B Carlos Santana and INF J.P. Crawford to Seattle for SS Jean Segura, LHP James Pazos and RHP Juan Nicasio

Here is that Segura trade. As you can see, the Mariners shipped off two of their better relievers in this trade, filling a void for the Phillies but not leaving Seattle high and dry (due to the previous trade). Segura is seen as one of the best contact hitters in the game and also brings superb defense and speed at the shortstop position, a great get for Philly (especially if they miss out on Manny Machado). Santana and Crawford both come to the Mariners following hugely disappointing seasons, though the two are at very different stages of their careers; Santana, after an excellent stretch of production in the field and at the plate, earned a huge contract but underwhelmed. Crawford, long one of the top prospects in the MLB, struggled to find consistent playing time and production last season in the crowded Philadelphia infield. If everyone plays well in the coming years, this trade could be a win for both teams.

 

12/5/18

Cardinals trade RHP Luke Weaver, C Carson Kelly, INF Andrew Young and a 2019 competitive balance round B draft pick to Arizona for INF Paul Goldschmidt

So far the biggest transaction of the offseason in my opinion, I really love the Goldschmidt trade. It provides St. Louis with a franchise power hitter/first baseman that they’ve been looking for and also allows them to trade slugger Jose Martinez to an A.L team where he can shift to DH. On the Diamondbacks’ side, two very intriguing young players with Major League experience come over and will both most likely start. Weaver, one of St. Louis’s coveted pitching prospects, has over 200 innings under his belt already at age 25 and Kelly is seen as the top defensive catching prospect in the game (and was even thought to be Yadier Molina’s eventual replacement). Assuming the Redbirds can make an interesting pitch to Goldschmidt this coming winter (when he hits the free market), this looks like a great trade for both teams.

 

12/6/18

Astros sign C Robinson Chirinos to a one year, $5.75 million contract

While it may not look like much on paper, following the loss of Brian McCann to the Braves in free agency this signing seemingly takes the Astros out of a catching market that they seemed to be very in on (especially regarding coveted Marlins catcher J.T Realmuto). This also possibly signals that the Astros are looking towards next year to find a high-level backstop, but in the meantime Chirinos brings a nifty mix of defense and power.

 

Indians exercise $10.25 million option on RHP Carlos Carrasco for 2020 and sign him to a two-year extension worth $24 million (with a $14 million club option for the 2023 season)

It seems like complicated language but in reality what it says is that Carrasco is staying put. It seems a foregone conclusion that the Indians are trading one of Corey Kluber, Trevor Bauer or Carrasco, and this new contract ensures that it won’t be the third name on that list. Now, we have to look at potential trades for Kluber and Bauer, as one is highly likely to be dealt at next week’s Winter Meetings.

 

Red Sox resign RHP Nathan Eovaldi to a four year, $68 million contract

Were it not for Steve Pearce, this would have been the World Series MVP last year. Eovaldi battled back from Tommy John to post solid numbers with the Tampa Bay Rays this year and was promptly dealt to Boston, where he dominated as a starter for the remainder of the regular season and shined as a utility-reliever in the Postseason. Armed with a 100-MPH fastball and the ability to pitch at any time (and for any length) in a game, Eovaldi would’ve been a great signing for anyone, and the Red Sox are happy to welcome him back.

 

12/7/18

Nationals sign LHP Patrick Corbin to a six year, $140 million contract

Is it just me or does that number seem way too high? Sure, Corbin is good and has only gotten better as his career has progressed, but that’s over $23 million a year. Even Yu Darvish, the nastiest pitcher in the game and much more proven than Corbin when he signed last winter, only got $21 million per year for six years. The Nationals are going the Cleveland route, now armed with three top pitchers (Corbin, Stephen Strasburg and Max Scherzer), and they’d better hope this pays off (especially given this signing completely took them out of the Bryce Harper market).

 

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