Here’s the latest from a few National League general managers as they prepare for the upcoming GM Meetings…
- Diamondbacks GM Dave Stewart would prefer to address his team’s pitching needs via free agency rather than dealing from his position player depth, he tells Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic. “I’m kind of in the mode of if I can hold on to my depth, then I’d like to hold on to it,” Stewart said. “I want to see if we can accomplish what we want to accomplish by dealing with these free agents. That’s probably my first choice. That’s probably the way I would want to do it.” Stewart said he’s already contacted with agents for several pitchers the D’Backs are interested in, and hopes to have more such discussions during the GM Meetings.
- The Diamondbacks’ first round draft pick (13th overall) isn’t protected but Stewart sounded open to giving up the pick to sign a qualifying offer free agent if “whoever we get is impactful enough that we would want to do that.”
- While the D’Backs are aiming at free agents first, Brewers GM David Stearns said his team is (not surprisingly) planning to focus more on drafting and trades in this stage of the team-building process, Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel writes. “That doesn’t mean we’ll never be a player in free agency. It means we’ll have to be very selective and opportunistic about the times that we do invest in the free-agent market,” Stearns said.
- The Brewers made several roster cuts over the last week, which Stearns said was a way to “create roster flexibility” for future acquisitions and free some 40-man space to protect minor leaguers from the Rule 5 draft next month. Hernan Perez elected free agency after being outrighted, and Stearns said the Crew will try to re-sign the infielder.
- Cubs GM Jed Hoyer believes teams could make some trades made during or just after the GM Meetings since the offseason is already heating up, he tells Gordon Wittenmyer of the Chicago Sun-Times. “There’s probably going to be a little more urgency for teams. Given the fact there’s already been a trade, I think people realize that things could happen quickly. I think people are going to be ready to move quickly,” Hoyer said, referring to the six-player deal already swung between the Rays and Mariners on Thursday. This doesn’t necessarily mean the Cubs themselves will be busy, though Hoyer has already had at least “exploratory” talks with all 29 other teams.
- Hoyer expects to be asked about the Cubs’ position player depth in possible trades for pitching. While the Cubs like their everyday and bench roster, “you can never say never,” the GM said. “If something makes sense where we would trade out some surplus on the position-playing side for some pitching depth, that’s something we have to explore.”