With the biggest event of the baseball offseason underway, here are three things we’ll be keeping an eye on throughout the day today:
1. The Winter Meetings are underway
Today marks the first full day of the Winter Meetings, with executives, agents, and players around baseball having convened in San Diego to do business. The day is sure to be rife with rumors fresh from the hot stove, with the potential for a new deal to break at any minute. Much of the focus is on Aaron Judge, particularly in the wake of multiple reports that he could have a deal in hand some point before the Winter Meetings end. The free-agent shortstop quartet of Carlos Correa, Trea Turner, Xander Bogaerts and Dansby Swanson will also dominate headlines this week, and Newsday’s Tim Healey tweets that center fielder Brandon Nimmo is in San Diego for face-to-face meetings with interested teams. Be sure to check in here at MLBTR throughout the day today for all the latest coverage and analysis. You can also download our free Trade Rumors app on iOS or on Android and set up notifications for your favorite teams or any players of particular interest!
2. Could the top of the pitching market keep moving forward?
Jacob deGrom’s five-year deal with the Rangers takes one of the most talented pitchers on the planet off the free agent market, but two aces are still available to be signed: reigning AL Cy Young winner Justin Verlander, and lefty ace Carlos Rodon. Both hurlers had phenomenal years in 2022, with Verlander’s 1.75 ERA in 2022 leading all of baseball and Rodon’s 2.25 FIP doing the same. The Mets appear to be among the most heavily involved on both players after losing deGrom to Texas, but they’re hardly lacking in competition. Verlander has been repeatedly connected to the Dodgers, and the Blue Jays been mentioned as another possible suitor for a second straight offseason. Rodon, on the other hand, reportedly has as many as nine teams interested, with the Orioles among those most recently connected to him. What’s more, the Rangers may still be interested in signing the lefty even after acquiring deGrom. While a team signing two players at the same position at the top of the market is typically rare, the Rangers should not be counted out, having done so as recently as last offseason when they inked both Marcus Semien and Corey Seager to massive deals.
3. Will the A’s deal Murphy soon?
Braves president of baseball operations Alex Anthopoulos quashed rumors that his club could be on the verge of landing catcher Sean Murphy in a deal with the A’s last night, but Oakland is still actively discussing trades with several interested suitors. It’s been widely expected that the A’s will trade Murphy this offseason, with the team in the midst of a rebuild and flush with options behind the plate. Top prospect Shea Langeliers already reached the big league level in 2022, while fellow top prospect Tyler Soderstrom climbed from Class-A Advanced to Triple-A in 2022. The Guardians, Rays, Red Sox and Cardinals are among the teams known to have interest in Murphy, all of whom have the stockpile of prospects and young talent necessary to swing such a deal.