Tigers second baseman Ian Kinsler tells MLB.com’s Jon Morosi that he intends to sit down the general manager Al Avila in the next couple of days to discuss his future with the team (all Twitter links). The 35-year-old Kinsler says his willingness to waive his partial no-trade clause will be dependent on what Avila tells about the team’s planned offseason direction, as a return to the postseason is his priority. The Tigers appear to be dead-set on rebuilding, having traded the likes of Justin Verlander, Justin Upton, Justin Wilson, Alex Avila and Cameron Maybin in the past 10 months. Kinsler, then, stands out as one of the most obvious trade candidates of the offseason as he heads into the final year of his contract.
More from the American League Central…
- Royals general manager Dayton Moore tells MLB.com’s Jeffrey Flanagan that he’s prepared for many to second-guess the front office’s decision not to sell off short-term pieces at the trade deadline. “It’s a fair question,” said Moore, though he pointed to the Royals’ July surge as rationale for the moves. Indeed, as Flanagan points out, Kansas City was 2.5 games out of the division lead and was in possession of a Wild Card spot on July 30. Moore tells Flanagan that following the current season, the Royals will “do everything we can” to compete for wins in 2018 and for player acquisitions in the offseason. That doesn’t sound like the Royals are planning on any sort of rebuild with much of its core hitting the open market, though Moore likely wouldn’t tip his hand at this point even if that were the direction in which the Royals are leaning.
- With the Twins in the thick of a Wild Card race, Michael Rand of the Minneapolis Star Tribune takes a look at the first season of work from new front-office tandem Derek Falvey and Thad Levine. Rand notes that the team’s show of faith in in-house young talent like Byron Buxton, Miguel Sano, Eddie Rosario, Jorge Polanco, Max Kepler and Jose Berrios has proven to be shrewd, as as their emphasis on improving catcher defense and adding high-character veterans. The Twins, however, failed to sufficiently address the bullpen despite it being a clear point of need this winter, Rand opines, and the decision to tender lefty Hector Santiago for $8MM looks especially questionable with the benefit of hindsight.
- White Sox outfielder/DH Avisail Garcia tells Daryl Van Schouwen of the Chicago Sun-Times that he hopes to remain with the club even through the rebuilding phase. The 26-year-old can become a free agent following the 2019 season and is in the midst of a breakout campaign, however, making him a fairly logical offseason trade candidate. Van Schouwen also spoke with ChiSox hitting coach Todd Steverson about Garcia’s improvements this season, getting his take on what has helped Garcia break out. Through 519 plate appearances, Garcia is hitting .333/.382/.504 with 17 homers, 23 doubles and four triples.