- While domestic violence charges against Mets closer Jeurys Familia may soon be dropped, that doesn’t mean he won’t face league discipline. That possibility must be considered by the organization as it charts its offseason, GM Sandy Alderson says, as ESPNNewYork.com’s Adam Rubin reports. Of course, it still seems unlikely that the club will be motivated to spend big on a new late-inning arm, particularly with Addison Reed capable of filling in for the ninth inning after an excellent 2016 season. It’s possible that a reliever, or perhaps some array of young talent, could end up moving to New York if (or, more likely, when) the team deals one of its left-handed-hitting corner outfielders, MLB.com’s Anthony DiComo reports. The Mets’ strong preference is still to trade Jay Bruce rather than Curtis Granderson; it seems that the latter player may be expected to share time in center with Juan Lagares.
- Alderson also said in an appearance on MLB Network Radio today (Twitter link) that he’d be “surprised” if the Mets got involved with a top-level center fielder in free agency due not only to the draft pick they’d have to forfeit (referring to Dexter Fowler and Ian Desmond) and also due to the fact that the team has other needs on the roster. Following the re-signing of Yoenis Cespedes, the Mets are looking to move an outfielder, with reports indicating that Jay Bruce is the name they hope to shed. However, Curtis Granderson is reportedly drawing more interest, and FanRag’s Jon Heyman reports that the Orioles are among the teams with interest in Granderson (Twitter link). Baltimore doesn’t appear to have much interest in Bruce, however, he adds.
- The Braves put in a strong pursuit of righty Edinson Volquez before he went to the Marlins, ESPN’s Buster Olney tweeted yesterday. The team’s interest in Volquez came after it had already landed both R.A. Dickey and Bartolo Colon, but the Braves have been said to be focused on acquiring short-term assets in the rotation or front-of-the-rotation arms that would require enormous trade packages. As such, it’s possible that Atlanta only had interest in Volquez on a one-year deal, but he received two years and $22MM from the Marlins. Atlanta acted quickly to grab another short-term rotation commodity with tonight’s Garcia trade.
- The Marlins, too, still appear to be shopping for arms, as Heyman reports that they have potential interest in free-agent right-handers Jason Hammel and Doug Fister. The Fish are also looking for bullpen help, Heyman notes, which has been a priority in Miami for much of the offseason. Tim Healey of the Miami Sun-Sentinel writes that Miami is hoping to keep right-hander David Phelps in the bullpen following his dominance in that role in 2016. “Ideally, if we can keep a deep bullpen, we can keep him as that multi-inning effective bridge to the back-end guys,” said president of baseball ops Michael Hill to Healey. “He impacts more games for us that way. But we know he has the versatility if he has to move into the rotation to do that seamlessly and not miss a beat.”
- The Nationals are still looking for a closer, tweets Heyman, but it’s likely that they consider Aroldis Chapman to be too expensive. The Nats are interested in a reunion with Mark Melancon, however, he notes, adding that Washington “loved” Melancon’s clubhouse presence in his short stint with the team following a trade-deadline rental this past summer.