Lukewarm Stove: Short-Term Martinez, Darvish Offers, Gimenez Selling for Cubs, Lynn, More

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Lukewarm Stove: Short-Term Martinez, Darvish Offers, Gimenez Selling for Cubs, Lynn, More

Chicago Cubs

Answer: Ice Age, The Big Chill, Out Cold, Frozen …

Question: What are movies whose titles could double as a description for the 2018 free agent market? *DING, DING, DING* NERD ALERT!

  • At FanRag, Jon Heyman rounds up a whole bunch of rumors, and among the many notable bits include the Diamondbacks continued interest in J.D. Martinez. But unlike the big, multi-year rumored offer from the Red Sox, the D-backs might be taking a different approach:

  • It’s not really all that uncommon (at least, in recent years) for players to take 1-year deals (or longer deals with early opt outs) when their market hasn’t really surfaced the way it was expected (Nelson Cruz, Yoenis Cespedes, and Dexter Fowler all did it relatively recently with success), but I can’t say I was expecting Martinez to do it, and not when he has a 5-year/$120M offer on the table. In fact, I doubt he takes the D-backs up on that offer – though it doesn’t hurt to show the Red Sox you have options.
  • Interestingly, Bruce Levine hears that isn’t *quite* the offer, though:

  • Also from Heyman’s piece: one agent of another star free agent (i.e. not Scott Boras) described Jake Arrieta and Mike Moustakas as “disillusioned, even angry” over the way their markets have developed. Does that mean Arrieta is still hanging onto hope that he’ll wind up in that $200M range? I sure hope not, because it might be a looooong Spring for him then. Or does it mean that the offers (non-offers) for Arrieta have been brutally low?
  • According one of Heyman’s sources, the Brewers are one of the teams that have extended a nine-figure offer to free agent starter Yu Darvish, but Heyman admits that because Darvish prefers the Cubs (and Dodgers/Rangers, who are both considered long shots), the Brewers would have to really go the extra mile to get something done. In the event that Darvish does sign elsewhere, know that the Brewers have checked in on Arrieta, Alex Cobb and others on the free agent market, and would even be willing to make a significant trade if necessary (they’ve recently been connected to Chris Archer, for example). It still sounds pretty likely that the Brewers are going to add a starter before everything is said and done. For what it’s worth, the Twins are also thought to be in the five-year, $100+M range on Darvish, but are also not his preferred destination. Earlier today, we noted that the Twins have extended a formal offer.
  • The Mets (lesser tier) and Phillies (sounds like everyone is in play) also seem to be fully in the market for starting pitching this winter, but let’s stick with the Twins for a minute. At FanGraphs, Craig Edwards writes that, without Ervin Santana for the first month or so of the season, the Twins really, really need starting pitching and could look to sign not one, but two of the remaining starters if they fail to get Darvish (i.e. Jake Arrieta/Alex Cobb/Lance Lynn plus someone from a lower tier). Ken Rosenthal also reported that they are among the teams in play for the Rays Jake Odorizzi and the Astros Collin McHugh, who are both available.
  • As for the Mets, according to Rosenthal, they’re still looking for a starter from that third tier, below Cobb and Lynn, but aren’t ruling anything out yet:

  • Yeah, why rule out your free agent targets – I mean, it’s only February 8th after all. There’s still sooooooo much time before Spring Training. 
  • New Cubs catcher (and notable friend of Yu Darvish) Chris Gimenez jumped on 670 The Score earlier and pointed out that he has, indeed, been trying to get one of Darvish or Cobb (whom he knows from Tampa Bay) to come to Chicago. “I can’t say I haven’t been trying to work on either of them, just because I am pretty good friends with both of them.” Of course, he concedes that the guys will ultimately decide what’s best for themselves. He added that, while he credits Darvish for sticking to his guns, he wishes he would sign because he thinks that’ll have an immediate trickle down effect and loosen everything up. Also, for whatever this is worth, he claims that the front office “is really pushing hard to get one or more of those guys.” To be fair, it kinda sounded like he was speaking generically, so don’t get *too* excited.
(Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
  • Also from Rosenthal, the Yankees (Jacoby Ellsbury) and Dodgers (Matt Kemp) are both still trying to move expensive veterans in order to add more to the payroll in the form of a pitcher, including Yu Darvish. Neither have yet been successful, though. Let’s hope it stays that way.
  • Remember the rumor of a Spring Training for free agents that broke yesterday? Well, today word broke that it’s happening next week.
  • According to Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, seven or eight teams have shown interest in free agent righty Lance Lynn, including, it seems, the Cubs, but excluding the Cardinals: “The Milwaukee Brewers have interest, though a source described how they were looking toward trade options. Reports linked them to Tampa Bay, where Jake Odorizzi could be available. The Chicago Cubs also have had contact with Lynn’s agent. Multiple reports Wednesday suggested the Baltimore Orioles were pursuing Lynn. The Minnesota Twins are shopping for a starter and have looked to Lynn, and Washington has been mentioned as a fit. The New York Mets could yet emerge as a suitor …. The Cardinals are not in the mix.”
  • Lynn has never been seen as a priority for the Cubs, but it’s always possible that he’ll have to settle for something extremely short-term, and maybe that’ll work for the Cubs when everything else is sorted out. A reminder that Lynn is tied to draft pick compensation (like Arrieta and Cobb, but not Darvish), so he’d also cost a team like the Cubs their second highest draft pick and $500,000 in IFA bonus pool space.

Author: Michael Cerami

Michael Cerami covers the Chicago Cubs, Bears, and Bulls at Bleacher Nation. You can find him on Twitter @Michael_Cerami