6:17pm: Similarly to Weaver, Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News, tweets that Texas is “not actively engaged” on Donaldson and isn’t inclined to push a potential bid to four years.
It’s not clear what type of offer the Texas organization is willing to put forth, but Grant writes in a full column that Donaldson already has at least one three-year offer in hand from another club. The Athletic’s Jim Bowden, meanwhile, tweets that “multiple” clubs are willing to push to a fourth year to land Donaldson. That aligns with previous reports on Donaldson’s earning power, although any and all talk about him reaching four years has been nebulous to this point. And given the fairly limited number of teams reported to be serious players for Donaldson’s services, a four-year guarantee perhaps shouldn’t be a full-on expectation.
Other clubs that have been linked to Donaldson include the Dodgers, Nationals, Twins and Braves, although bringing Donaldson back into the fold would utterly shatter Atlanta’s current record payroll. The Nationals and Dodgers both just missed out on Rendon, while the Twins still have plenty of payroll space but have also been in active pursuit of rotation upgrades.
11:45am: President of baseball operations Jon Daniels addressed the topic of third base today, as Jeff Wilson of the Forth Worth Star Telegram reports (Twitter links). Daniels acknowledged that “it sucks” to have missed on Rendon.
Looking forward, Daniels offered a possible acknowledgement that the organization isn’t simply checking down to Donaldson — though that’s only one possible interpretation. “I wouldn’t assume that we necessarily view the options exactly as they are portrayed publicly,” he said.
11:03am: The Rangers are believed to be exiting the hunt for Josh Donaldson, according to Levi Weaver of The Athletic (via Twitter). Indication is that the club isn’t willing to keep pace with the bidding and is “likely out” on Donaldson.
It seems there’s ongoing action in the third base market even as the Winter Meetings draw to a close. Anthony Rendon signed last night, spurning the Rangers and other pursuers to go to the Angels. Now, the club’s top alternative seems destined to move along.
Donaldson, who just turned 34, has drawn many of the same suitors as did Rendon, along with a few additional interested teams. He has long been expected to receive a big annual salary over at least three guaranteed seasons, with the major question being whether or not he can secure a fourth.