In case you missed it earlier, Craig Mish (a solid source for Marlins rumors) has reported that the Chicago Cubs have some sort of interest in acquiring Marlins catcher J.T. Realmuto, despite the presence of Willson Contreras.
It’s an odd rumor, to be sure, but as Brett said, just because Mish has actually heard this doesn’t mean it’s actually likely to go down. The Cubs, the Marlins, and any number of other teams could be floating these rumors to jack up the price on Realmuto or pressure another free agent/trade target.
And remember, the Mets (and now Nationals) are reportedly looking for a catcher, though the Marlins have implied that they would rather keep Realmuto out of the NL East. The opportunities and incentives for false rumors are many.
- And to that end, Jon Morosi writes that the Mets are optimistic about their ability to land Indians catcher Yan Gomes in a deal (UPDATES BELOW), even after taking on some money and losing some prospects in the not-yet-completed move for Robinson Cano and Edwin Diaz. ).
- But they’re not alone in that pursuit:
— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) November 30, 2018
- The Nationals, you might recall, were hot and heavy on Realmuto for a while, but seemed to back off a bit once they signed free agent catcher Kurt Suzuki. But according to Rosenthal, they’re now “in serious discussions” with the Indians to acquire Gomes and would love to pair him *with* Suzuki as a one-two punch behind the plate. That’s very interesting.
- UPDATE: And look at that …
— Jon Morosi (@jonmorosi) November 30, 2018
- Indeed, this catching market is getting wild and the Indians seem to be at the center of it all with Gomes, who’s also been connected to the Dodgers in the recent past). And just as a finish typing *that* I see, this:
Sources: #Dodgers have been in contact with Free Agent catcher Martin Maldonado. He could be an option if Realmuto and others fall through.
— Michael J. Duarte (@michaeljduarte) November 30, 2018
- Lordy, this is gonna be a fun Winter Meetings and the catching market figures to be very active. The Cubs, at a minimum, should be looking at quality, back-up options.
- Back to the Indians, Ken Rosenthal believes they’d be willing to hang onto Carlos Carrasco “this offseason” if he agreed to an extension, which is something they’re currently working on. Thus, if they are going to move a starting pitcher, which seems to be the general consensus, it would probably be Corey Kluber or Trevor Bauer. Bauer has just two more years of control and is not interested in signing an extension, so he’d be my guess.
- The Mariners made another trade today, sending reliever Alex Colome to the White Sox. Colome, 29, was a Cubs trade target in the past, and given (1) the Cubs needs in the bullpen, (2) their previous interest in him, (3) Colome’s recent success, and (4) relative youth, I can’t say I would have hated the Cubs landing him. With that said, the return, 26-year-old catcher Omar Narvaez (122 wRC+ in 2018), was pretty hefty (though his receiving ability is dicey). If I had to guess, I’d say the Cubs will add at least one reliever via trade and another via free agency this season, but some names are starting to come off the board, so …
- According to Ken Rosenthal, the Phillies had shown some interest in acquiring Edwin Diaz *and* Jean Segura in one trade, before the Mariners more or less committed to sending Diaz with Robinson Cano to the Mets. HOWEVA, they’ll reportedly still have interest in acquire Segura, alone, if the Mariners are still up for it (they will be). And to that end, Jon Heyman agrees that the Phillies have interest in Segura, but wonders what it would do to their pursuit of Manny Machado, specifically, as both players would prefer to play short (though surely one could move to third or second under the right circumstances). And if you’ve been following along closely lately, you might’ve noticed a trend of the Phillies walking back their extreme interest in adding one of Bryce Harper or Machado this winter. I still believe one of those guys will end up there (and that Philly will spend a ton), but that is clearly not their only path forward.
- That, of course, matters to the Cubs not only because they might be interested in jumping back into the Harper or Machado market if the stars align, but also because we, too, have seen Segura as a potential Cubs trade target. Of course, whether or not Addison Russell is on the north side plays into that, as well, but I’m willing to bet the Cubs are still working on trading him this winter. In fact, Jon Greenberg wrote that now is the exact time to trade him at The Athletic earlier today. Remember: Russell’s contract is not fully guaranteed *and* he has another 29 games of a suspension to serve.
- Joel Sherman writes that the Yankees remain the favorites on Patrick Corbin (those rumors are non-stop), but the Phillies and Nationals are still worth watching. And Jon Heyman adds that Corbin could sign within a week (or even sooner), making him the first top tier free agent off the board. J.A. Happ is another guy expected to sign early, but Heyman believes he might wait for Corbin to go first.
- Over in New York, Brian Cashman continues to do whatever he can to get Sonny Gray traded out . And according to the New York Post, he’s received as many as 11 inquires already and the returns have varied from prospects to big leaguers to a combination and even much larger deals. Gray, 29, has obviously stumbled a bit, but is not far removed from really solid production.
- And finally, over at MLB.com, Mike Petriello writes about how good of a free agent target Andrew McCutchen is (yeah, dude, I’m with ya!) and outlines who could make the most sense. The Indians, Braves, Astros, Rockies, and Rays fall into the “obvious fits,” category, but the Cubs – who would have to either trade Kyle Schwarber or shift Jason Heyward to center (uhm, the second one, please) are among the teams listed.