As MLB’s offseason continues, here are three things we’ll be keeping an eye on around the baseball world throughout the day today:
1. Will Carpenter find a new team?
The Braves released veteran slugger Matt Carpenter yesterday, sending the 38-year-old to the open market. Carpenter posted an otherworldly performance as a member of the Yankees in 2022 when he slashed a whopping .305/.412/.727 across just 47 games. Outside of that brief stint in the Bronx, however, Carpenter has posted below average offensive numbers every year following the 2018 campaign, when he finished in the top-10 of NL MVP voting with the Cardinals.
While Carpenter’s age and mostly meager production in recent years make it reasonable to wonder if he’ll be able to land a job with a big league club, it’s worth noting that any interested club would only have to pay a pro-rated portion of the big league minimum for the time Carpenter spends on the roster given the Padres and Braves are still on the hook for his 2024 salary. That could make him an affordable option for teams in need of a lefty bat on a tight budget.
2. Royals working through roster crunch:
The Royals have spent more than $100MM on free agents this offseason, and the influx of additions has led to something of a logjam on the 40-man roster in recent weeks. To accommodate their new signings, Kansas City has shipped right-hander Taylor Clarke to Milwaukee, outfielder Edward Olivares to Pittsburgh, and most recently right-hander Jonathan Heasley to Baltimore in minor trades while also surrendering right-hander Collin Snider to the Diamondbacks on waivers. That flurry of activity has allowed them to make official the signings of right-handers Seth Lugo, Michael Wacha and Chris Stratton as well as left-hander Will Smith.
Even after all of that, the club still has one more player for whom they’ll need to open a 40-man roster spot: outfielder Hunter Renfroe, who the club reportedly agreed to a two-year deal with last week. The Royals have largely been successful in working out small trades for marginal players on their 40-man roster while navigating through this roster crunch, though it remains to be seen if they’ll pull off a fourth swap in that vein or have to settle for designating a player for assignment to accommodate Renfroe as they did with Snider to make room for Smith.
3. MLBTR chat today:
With the new year swiftly approaching, are there any questions burning in your mind about the offseason as 2023 comes to a close? Are you wondering what’s next for your favorite team, or perhaps curious about what the market for a particular free agent looks like? If so, tune in this afternoon when MLBTR’s Steve Adams hosts a live chat with readers at 1pm CT. You can click here to ask a question in advance, and that same link will allow you to join in on the chat once it begins or read the transcript after its completed.