Rounding up of the last two weeks’ worth of original content from the MLB Trade Rumors writing team…
- Tim Dierkes compiled MLBTR’s annual list of out-of-options players, several of whom could be facing a roster crunch prior to Opening Day.
- MLBTR began our annual “Offseason In Review” series, recapping and analyzing every team’s winter moves. The first teams up were the Tigers (by Steve Adams), Marlins (by Jeff Todd), Giants, and Red Sox (both by Mark Polishuk).
- Steve Adams and Jeff Todd provided an update on the 18 players selected in last winter’s Rule 5 Draft, and how many of those names are on pace to win 25-man roster spots with their new teams.
- Spring is the time for long-term extensions, with teams looking to lock up both soon-to-be free agents, players entering their arbitration years, or even some less-conventional extension candidates. To this last point, Jeff Todd examines the case for the Royals to explore an extension with late bloomer Whit Merrifield, who looks to be an important piece for the team in the near future even as K.C. goes into a rebuilding phase.
- Speaking of extensions, the Astros made headlines this week when they agreed to add five years and $151MM to Jose Altuve’s deal, ensuring that the star second baseman will remain the face of the Houston franchise. Kyle Downing submitted a pair of polls about the extension to the MLBTR readership, asking them to grade the deal both from the Astros’ perspective and from Altuve’s perspective.