Thus far, the Rangers have mostly focused on open-market additions to their pitching staff. A turn to the trade market shouldn’t be expected, GM Jon Daniels tells MLB.com’s T.R. Sullivan. While there are a variety of enticing possible trade candidates floating around, Daniels says the organization is “making a concerted effort to be more disciplined and stay away from” moves that cost the team its “best young players.” Though the team’s top baseball decisionmaker wouldn’t rule out the trade avenue entirely, he said the team won’t be giving up notable future value for a short-term addition. Speaking of the Rangers’ moves to this point, Gerry Fraley of the Dallas Morning News solicited a scouting breakdown of the new arms brought onto the staff.
Here’s more from the American League:
- The Twins are “still trying to match schedules” to schedule a sit-down with free agent Yu Darvish, according to Darren Wolfson of 1500 ESPN (via Twitter). That’s somewhat odd to read at this stage of the winter; Darvish has already met with other teams, Minnesota has long labeled him a “priority,” and spring camp is just six weeks away. Nevertheless, at this point it seems little has changed in the situation: the Twins are still interested in the top-flight righty, though it’s difficult to determine a favorite in the Darvish sweepstakes. To that end, it’s worth noting that Jim Bowden of The Athletic wrote today that Minnesota “appears … prepared to offer a market deal” for Darvish (though it stands to reason that an in-person meeting would precede such an offer). Bowden also notes that the Astros are still in the Darvish mix, in part due to concerns over their ability to sign Dallas Keuchel long term, and he cites multiple sources in reporting that the Rangers are still alive in the bidding for Darvish as well.
- Mariners righty Max Povse is heading back to a rotation role in 2018, as Greg Johns of MLB.com writes. While there had been some expectation that Povse would thrive as a multi-inning reliever, GM Jerry Dipoto says that the youngster’s move to the pen didn’t come with “the uptick in the stuff” the team hoped. That said, the organization still likes him as a starter. Dipoto says he was encouraged by Povse’s work in the AFL — he worked to a 4.56 ERA with 8.8 K/9 and 2.1 BB/9 in 25 2/3 innings — and takes the blame for pushing Povse into the upper minors and ultimately the majors as a reliever.
- Rich Dubroff of PressBoxOnline.com examines whether the Orioles might roll with young catcher Chance Sisco out of camp. Baltimore is still looking at veterans, though it seems the organization is resolved to rely primarily upon Caleb Joseph if Sisco doesn’t run away with the job. Assuming that any players acquired from outside the organization are mostly reserve/depth options, it could well come down to a camp battle. As Dubroff writes, the MLB coaching staff has not yet had an extended opportunity to see Sisco in action.