Here’s the latest from around the AL East…
- Manny Machado talked to reporters (including MASNsports.com’s Roch Kubatko) about several topics in a media session today, including his happiness that Chris Davis, Matt Wieters and Darren O’Day are all still Orioles. The team’s willingness to spend this offseason “brings out hope” that Machado will also be able to sign a new contract to remain in Baltimore, as he desires. “They’re trying to keep everybody here. That’s good for me. I hope they keep me here for [the] long term,” Machado said. “But the case is, you can’t really sign everybody. You can’t bring everybody back. But it’s just part of the business, people you can bring back, people who you can’t, people who won’t be. But I think we’re making an effort of bringing everybody back, keeping the same clubhouse, the same core.”
- It’s “still quite unlikely” that Ian Desmond will sign with the Rays, Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times writes. Desmond’s list of possible suitors got even thinner yesterday when the White Sox signed Jimmy Rollins to address the shortstop position. The Rays have had some talks with Desmond, but the sticking point is the Rays’ unwillingness to surrender its first round draft pick (the 13th overall selection) to make the signing, as Desmond is a qualifying offer free agent.
- In a session with reporters (including Sportsnet’s Shi Davidi) this morning, Blue Jays GM Ross Atkins gave no comment on either Jose Bautista’s contract ultimatum or the reportedly off-the-table trade involving Jay Bruce and Michael Saunders. In regards to Bautista, Atkins said any extension talks between the team and the slugger won’t be made public, as “in relation to the negotiation, out of respect for him, out of respect for the Blue Jays organization, we just can’t get into the specifics of it.”
- In another piece from Davidi, he characterized the Blue Jays’ decision on Bautista as a bellwether of how the club plans to operate in the near future beyond the 2016 season, in regards to both spending and fielding a contender.