There are “hints” that the D-backs plan to try locking up MVP candidate Paul Goldschmidt to a longer-term deal, writes Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports in his latest NL Notes column. However, the team’s below-average revenues (in part due to the league’s lowest ticket prices) could make it difficult. Goldschmidt will earn $11MM in 2018 and has an easy-call $14.5MM club option ($2MM buyout) for the 2019 campaign on his contract as well. He’ll turn 32 years old at the end of that 2019 campaign, though he’s shown no signs of slowing down to this point in his career; Goldschmidt is hitting .305/.410/.576 with 35 homers and 18 steals in what has been a roughly 6-WAR season thus far. Of course, any long-term deal with Goldschmidt would have to be able to mesh with Zack Greinke’s considerable contract and could also impact the team’s ability to re-sign slugger J.D. Martinez.
Elsewhere in the National League…
- Heyman also reports that the Reds may try to retain Zack Cozart in 2018 and beyond after holding onto him in July and August. Per Heyman, the Reds set an extremely high asking price on Cozart, asking the Orioles at one point for top outfield prospect Austin Hays in return. That’s a steep ask for a Cozart rental, considering Hays broke out with a .329/.365/.593 slash and 32 homers in 128 games between Double-A and Triple-A this season before making his MLB debut in September.
- The Braves are still weighing whether to retain manager Brian Snitker beyond the 2017 season, as Heyman notes in his column and as Ken Rosenthal details at greater length for The Athletic (subscription required and strongly recommended). Per Rosenthal, the Braves don’t need to make a decision on Snitker’s 2018 option until five days after the World Series, so they still have some time to mull things over. Snitker tells Rosenthal that he’d like to continue managing for “a while,” though he says he’s not sweating the decision as it’s largely out of his control. Heyman cites a source in reporting that Atlanta is “leaning toward” making a change, though nothing’s been set in stone yet, and it’s possibly that Snitker’s option is simply exercised without any extension being issued. Rosenthal, meanwhile, takes a deeper dive into some of the reported tensions in the Braves organization and how they impact the managerial decision.
- Andrew Baggarly of the San Jose Mercury News wonders whether Giants second baseman Joe Panik is part of the team’s future or will instead be an offseason trade chip. Panik, Baggarly reasons, is one of the Giants’ most desirable big league pieces given his lack of a long-term contract and the fact that he’s only just reaching arbitration eligibility. However, the Giants also didn’t see Christian Arroyo take the step forward that they hoped, making it perhaps tougher to deal from their more proven infield depth. Giants fans and those interested in the offseason trade market are encouraged to check out Baggarly’s well-reasoned take on the situation in full.