The latest from the American League…
- If the trade-happy Mariners have their way, third baseman Kyle Seager will be the next veteran to depart. The club’s willing to do “whatever it takes” to deal Seager, Buster Olney of ESPN writes (subscription required). Long one of the majors’ most underrated players, the 31-year-old Seager is coming off an uncharacteristically rough season and still has a guaranteed $57MM left on his contract. Seager’s presence is no longer needed in Seattle, which is rebuilding and trying to cut payroll, though it could be difficult to deal him on the heels of such a disappointing campaign. With that in mind, Olney suggests the Mariners could either swap Seager for another team’s unwanted contract or package him with one of their best remaining assets (Mitch Haniger or Jean Segura) to get his money off the books.
- Like Seager, Yankees catcher Gary Sanchez endured a surprisingly poor season in 2018. However, Sanchez is “not for sale,” general manager Brian Cashman tells Jack Curry of the YES Network (video link). The Yankees expect to be “proven correct” that Sanchez is a franchise catcher, per Cashman, who has consistently defended the 26-year-old in recent months. So, although Sanchez has come up in trade rumors as recently as this week, it appears he’ll stay put.
- Indians right-hander Trevor Bauer is another offseason trade candidate, but he explained to MLB Network this week that it wouldn’t make sense for the Tribe to deal him now. “There’s a lot of reasons I think that [the Indians should not trade me],” Bauer said (via Anthony Castrovince of MLB.com). “Ultimately, I think the surplus value on me this year is just way too high. Even with an arbitration raise, you’re probably talking about $15 to $20 million of surplus value.” Bauer added that it would be more logical for the Indians to move him a year from now, when his price will rise and he’ll be just one year from reaching free agency. The 27-year-old provided oodles of surplus value to the Indians in 2018, when he logged an amazing 2.21 ERA/2.44 FIP over 175 1/3 innings for a little more than $6.5MM. He’s projected to earn another reasonable salary – $11.6MM – in 2019.