With such a large number of quality free agents available this offseason, you’d certainly think that spreading out the moves across the winter – like a rumor-rationing system – would provide a little more overall utility to fans than wrapping almost everything by Christmas, but nope. This is just more annoying.
… especially because the Cubs Convention is already here, which means we won’t get to meet any additional new players (if there are any new players after the Convention at all (sad trombone)) or press the front office on their decisions. In my opinion, it kinda neuters much of the event. Frankly, if this is is to be the new norm, I’d rather they push the convention back a week or two. I just feel like I’d get more out of it.
From around the league …
- As we all well-know by now, the Phillies are almost certainly going to break camp with one of Manny Machado or Bryce Harper on their roster, but don’t expect that to slow them down in the future. According to Jon Heyman, the Phillies intend to make a “big play for Mike Trout in 2 years,” provided he hasn’t signed an extension first (it’s not looking likely as of now). Trout is from Philadelphia, so there’s an obvious connection there, and the Phillies should be plenty good and plenty loaded with cash by the time he arrives. Now that’ll be some kind of offseason. Trout might even get a two or even THREE-year deal!
- As it turns out, the marginal value of another win may not be as lucrative as we once thought, and that could be impacting the way owners think about free agent additions. In dollars and cents, according to Deadspin, Manny Machado might not be worth more than $6-$8M per year to a strictly bottom-line team owner (there are plenty of nits to pick with this, but if you check out the article, you’ll understand), and therein lies the source of the icy free agency. In other words, “collusion” may not be necessary to hold prices down. There are natural cures to these problems – like incentivizing teams to spend more by reducing revenue sharing and/or returning streaming rights back to individual clubs, but it’ll take some real action and tough decisions.
- And that’s assuming the allegations of continued collusion – like the one we see from Barry Bonds former Agent Jeff Borris here – are unfounded. If, by some nightmare, any form of overt collusion between owners is discovered, the fans are going to be in for it. I am not looking forward to that next round of CBA negotiations either way.
- The Brewers have sold out their fan convention,”Brewers On Deck”, for the first time in history. Whatever.
Psh probably all Cubs fans. https://t.co/ey9CRnpwB7
— Michael Cerami (@Michael_Cerami) January 8, 2019
- MLB Pipeline will unveil it’s 2019 Top 100 Prospect rankings on January 26th, but leading up to that event, they’re releasing individual top-10 lists for prospects at each position. You can find the top-ten right-handed pitching prospects right here, but it’s the left-handers that should catch your eye. According to MLB Pipeline, the San Diego Padres have FOUR of the top ten left-landed pitching prospects in all of baseball. And among the remaining six, the A’s have two and the the Rays have two. That’s right, EIGHT of the top 10 left-handed pitching prospects belong to three teams. That is nuts.
- For what it’s worth, former Cubs prospect Dylan Cease made the right-handed list (#5). He’s also listed with the best curveball and as the fastest riser. Swell. Oh, also, remember how he got traded with Eloy Jimenez and …
— Chicago White Sox (@whitesox) January 16, 2019
- Now to wash that bad taste out of your mouth: Bartolo Colon wants to keep pitching! I want that sexy beast – now 45 years old – to keep on hurlin’ as long as humanly possible. He might have to settle for another Minor League deal, like he did last year, but hey, he managed to make 24 starts for the Rangers in 2018. I’d like to see it again. Maybe he could be a long reliever/pinch-hitter for the Cubs.
- Six of MLB.com’s writers have the ability to vote for inductees into the Hall of Fame, and they’ve all shared their ballots here. Among the notable trends? All six voted for Barry Bonds, Roger Clemens and only one did not vote for Curt Schilling. Could this be the year some of the steroid guys finally get in? Could be. As a separate matter, all six also voted for Roy Halladay, Mike Mussina, Edgar Martinez, and Mariano Rivera.
- If you’ve been in and out of the NFL or MLB sports world recently, you’ll know about Heisman Trophy Winner/Oakland A’s prospect Kyler Murray and his declaration for the NFL Draft. But former two-way player (and NFL Hall of Famer) Deion Sanders believes Murray should stick with baseball:
From his own experience, Deion Sanders advises Kyler Murray to choose baseball. pic.twitter.com/Ouq6UBQyKi
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) January 15, 2019
- You might’ve known that Sanders is the only player to appear in the World Series *and* the Super Bowl, but did you know he had a 136 wRC+ in 1992? He was worth 3.3 WAR that season in under 100 games! He was mostly well-below average for the rest of his career, but that summer, man, he had it going on.
- Would you ever get a tattoo of Anthony Rizzo or Kris Bryant on your body? Well, a Braves fan got Acuna tattooed her forearm, so … you’ll have to one-up her. Maybe a face-tat of Javy? That should do it.