Fantasy Baseball News

 
  • Frankie Montas To Miss First Month Of Season

    New York Yankees right-hander Frankie Montas (shoulder) is expected to miss the first month of the regular season in 2023 due to shoulder inflammation that he dealt with at the end of 2022, according to sources. Montas is eight to 10 weeks behind in his offseason training. The 29-year-old missed two weeks with the Oakland Athletics last year and then landed on the injured list on Sept. 20 with the Yankees after eight lackluster outings in pinstripes. The Yanks sent left-handers JP Sears and Ken Waldichuk, along with two minor-leaguers, to acquire Montas and reliever Lou Trivino from the A's at last year's trade deadline. Montas had a 6.35 ERA in 39 2/3 innings in his eight starts for New York in 2022, but they're hoping he'll be an important part of their rotation in 2023 once he returns from his shoulder issues.

    Jan 14 · Source via Yankees Frankie Montas
  • Nestor Cortes To Make $3.2 Million In 2023

    The New York Yankees and left-handed starting pitcher Nestor Cortes agreed to a one-year, $3.2 million deal to avoid salary arbitration on Friday. The 28-year-old Cuban southpaw made the All-Star team for the first time in 2022 in his fifth major-league season and second with the Yanks. He went 12-4 with a career-best 2.44 ERA (3.12 FIP), 0.92 WHIP, career-high 163 strikeouts and 38 walks in 158 1/3 frames over his 28 starts. Cortes suffered a left groin injury while pitching in the American League Championship Series, but he should be fine for the start of 2023. Fantasy managers should consider him a fringe top-30 fantasy starter.

    Jan 14 · Source via Yankees Nestor Cortes
  • Yankees, Clay Holmes Avoid Arbitration

    The New York Yankees agreed to a one-year, $3.3 million deal with relief pitcher Clay Holmes on Friday to avoid salary arbitration. Holmes will make an extra $25,000 each for 25, 30, 35 and 40 games finished in 2023. In his first full season with the Yankees, the 29-year-old right-hander picked up a career-high 20 saves -- he didn't have a single save coming into the season -- and also finished with a career-best 2.54 ERA (2.84 FIP), 1.02 WHIP and 65 strikeouts in 63 2/3 relief innings. He dealt with a strained right shoulder late last year, but he should be fine for spring training and is expected to open the 2023 season as the team's primary closer. Holmes isn't elite by any means and will have to continue pitching well to keep the gig, but he should be considered a top-20 fantasy reliever.

    Jan 14 · Source via Yankees Clay Holmes closers
  • Wandy Peralta Settles At $3.35 Million

    The New York Yankees and left-handed reliever Wandy Peralta avoided salary arbitration on Friday by agreeing to a one-year, $3.35 million deal. The 31-year-old Dominican southpaw was very sharp out of the bullpen in his second season in the Bronx, posting a career-best 2.72 ERA (2.86 FIP), 1.05 WHIP, four saves and 21.1 percent strikeout rate in 56 1/3 relief innings. Peralta was very useful for the Yankees in relief last year, but he doesn't project to carry much fantasy value in middle relief for the 2023 campaign. In his seven big-league seasons, he has a 4.07 ERA (4.40 FIP), 1.38 WHIP, nine saves and 240 strikeouts in 291 2/3 career innings over 322 outings (one start).

    Jan 14 · Source via Yankees Wandy Peralta closers
  • Mitch Garver Avoids Arbitration

    The Texas Rangers and catcher Mitch Garver avoided salary arbitration by agreeing to a one-year, $3.9 million deal on Friday. Garver had a down year in his first year with the Rangers in 2022, hitting just .207/.298/.404 with a .702 OPS, 10 home runs, 24 RBI, 23 runs scored and a stolen base in 54 games. The 31-year-old backstop had season-ending surgery on his right forearm in July. Fantasy managers shouldn't expect him to return to the 31-homer mark he set in 2019 with the Minnesota Twins, but a bounce-back could be in the cards in 2023 if he can stay fully healthy. Still, fantasy managers should only consider him as a backup catcher for the time being. Garver is expected to split time with Jonah Heim in his second year with the team.

    Jan 14 · Source via Rangers Mitch Garver
  • Ty France Agrees To One-Year, $4.1 Million Deal

    The Seattle Mariners agreed to a one-year, $4.1 million deal on Friday to avoid salary arbitration with first baseman Ty France. The 28-year-old has found a home in Seattle and has had a really nice last couple of seasons. He made the All-Star team for the first time in his career in 2022 and finished with a .274/.338/.436 slash line, .774 OPS, career-high 20 home runs, career-high 83 RBI and 65 runs scored in 613 plate appearances over 140 games played. France isn't elite by any means, but he's not a bad consolation prize at the first base position and resides in a Mariners lineup that is dangerous. He has produced a .283 average, .795 OPS, 38 home runs and 157 RBI in his last two seasons with the M's.

    Jan 14 · Source via Mariners Ty France
  • Jake Cronenworth Settles For $4.25 Million

    The San Diego Padres and infielder Jake Cronenworth avoided salary arbitration on Friday by agreeing to a one-year, $4.25 million deal. Cronenworth is coming off back-to-back All-Star nods for the Friars. He finished up his third MLB season with a .239/.332/.390 slash line with a career-low .722 OPS, 17 home runs, a career-high 88 RBI, 88 runs scored and three stolen bases in 684 plate appearances and 158 games. The 28-year-old has some decent power at the second base position and resides in one of the best lineups in baseball. He'll also be the team's primary first baseman in 2023, so he'll add some positional flexibility to his fantasy profile. Cronenworth is ranked just inside the top 20 second basemen at RotoBaller.

    Jan 14 · Source via Padres Jake Cronenworth
  • Cubs, Ian Happ Avoid Salary Arbitration

    The Chicago Cubs agreed to a one-year, $10.85 million deal with outfielder Ian Happ on Friday to avoid salary arbitration. Happ is in the final year of arbitration and will be eligible to become a free agent after the 2023 season. The 28-year-old was a first-time All-Star in 2022 in his sixth season with the Cubbies, and he hit .271/.342/.440 with a .781 OPS, 17 home runs, a career-high 72 RBI, career-high 72 runs scored and a career-high-tying nine stolen bases in 641 plate appearances and 158 games played. Happ should remain a solid source of power and on-base percentage as a starting outfielder for Chicago yet again in 2023. RotoBaller has him ranked just inside the top-50 fantasy outfield options.

    Jan 14 · Source via Cubs Ian Happ
  • Julio Urias Gets $14.25 Million To Avoid Arbitration

    The Los Angeles Dodgers and left-handed starting pitcher Julio Urias agreed to a one-year, $14.25 million deal to avoid salary arbitration on Friday. The 26-year-old southpaw deserves the big raise after another excellent season for the Dodgers in 2022. Urias went 17-7 with a league-best 2.16 ERA (3.71 FIP), 0.96 WHIP and 24.1 percent strikeout rate in 175 innings over 31 starts. He also led the league with a 194 ERA+ and finished third in the National League Cy Young voting. After two straight strong seasons for the Blue, Urias is locked in as a low-end fantasy ace/high-end No. 2 for the 2023 season.

    Jan 14 · Source via Dodgers Julio Urias
  • Angels Outright Austin Warren

    Angels right-hander Austin Warren has cleared waivers and been outrighted to Triple-A, per the MLB transaction log. Warren was designated for assignment to create a roster spot for outfielder Brett Phillips, who signed a one-year deal last week. After a quality rookie year in 2021, Warren, 27 in February, fell away a bit in 2022,…

    Jan 14 · MLB Trade Rumors Angels Brett Phillips Austin Warren closers
  • Phillies Sign Louis Head To Minor League Deal

    The Phillies have added right-hander Louis Head on a minor league deal, according to Baseball America’s transaction log. Head, 33 in April, worked in relief for the Marlins and Orioles in 2022. He pitched to a combined 6.28 ERA over 28 2/3 innings, most of which came with Miami. Head struck out batters at an…

    Jan 14 · MLB Trade Rumors Phillies Louis Head closers
  • Twins Give Chris Paddack A Three-Year Deal

    Updating a previous report, the Minnesota Twins and right-hander Chris Paddack agreed to a three-year, $12.5 million deal on Friday as the two sides avoided salary arbitration. The Twins take care of the rest of his arbitration-eligible seasons and will pay him $2.5 million in 2023 and 2024 and $7.5 million in 2025. The deal also includes $2.5 million in incentives. The 27-year-old only made five starts for the Twins in 2022 before needing Tommy John surgery for the second time in his career. As such, fantasy managers can avoid him in mixed leagues in 2023 with him unlikely to return to Minnesota's rotation until the second half of the season. Paddack still needs to prove he's the same pitcher that he was in his rookie season with the San Diego Padres in 2019.

    Jan 13 · Source via Twins Chris Paddack
  • Mets, Pete Alonso Avoid Salary Arbitration

    The New York Mets and first baseman Pete Alonso agreed to a one-year, $14.5 million deal on Friday to avoid salary arbitration. Alonso made his second All-Star team in 2022 and finished the regular season with 40 long balls, a league-high 131 RBI, 95 runs scored, five stolen bases, a .271/.352/.518 slash line and an .869 OPS in 685 plate appearances and 160 games. The former National League Rookie of the Year in 2019 is one of the best power hitters in baseball and resides in one of the better lineups in baseball, which makes him a top-25 fantasy target, regardless of position, early in drafts. Alonso has mashed 146 home runs and driven in 380 runs in his first four major-league seasons.

    Jan 13 · Source via Mets Pete Alonso
  • Vladimir Guerrero Jr. Gets $14.5 To Avoid Arbitration

    The Toronto Blue Jays and first baseman Vladimir Guerrero Jr. avoided salary arbitration on Friday by agreeing to a one-year, $14.5 million deal. Guerrero is coming off back-to-back All-Star seasons for the Blue Jays. He finished second in the American League MVP voting in 2021 but took a slight step back in 2022. The 23-year-old remains one of the best power hitters in the game in a hitter-friendly environment and a potent lineup, though, and he finished 2022 with a .274/.339/.480 slash line, .818 OPS, 32 home runs, 97 RBI, 90 runs scored and eight stolen bases in 706 plate appearances over 160 games. The 23-year-old has gotten his body right and it has paid off, as he's missed just three games the last two seasons.

    Jan 13 · Source via Blue Jays Vladimir Guerrero Jr.
  • Francisco Mejia Settles With Rays For $2.155 Million

    The Tampa Bay Rays and catcher Francisco Mejia avoided salary arbitration on Friday by agreeing to a one-year, $2.155 million deal. The 27-year-old switch-hitting Mejia hit .242/.264/.381 with a .645 OPS, six home runs, 31 RBI and 32 runs scored in 299 plate appearances and 93 games for Tampa in 2022 in his second season with the team and sixth in the big leagues. Mejia is set to share playing time behind the dish with Christian Bethancourt in 2023, leaving him fantasy value only in two-catcher leagues. In his six major-league seasons, Mejia has slashed .241/.288/.393 with a .681 OPS, 24 home runs and 99 RBI in 305 games played.

    Jan 13 · Source via Rays Francisco Mejia
  • Frankie Montas Gets $7.5 Million From Yankees

    The New York Yankees agreed to a one-year, $7.5 million deal with starting pitcher Frankie Montas to avoid salary arbitration on Friday. The Yankees acquired Montas at the trade deadline from the Oakland Athletics last August to beef up their rotation, but the only made eight starts in pinstripes and dealt with a right shoulder issue. He had an ERA over 6.00 in the Bronx and finished 2022 with a combined 5-12 record, 4.05 ERA (3.78 FIP), 1.25 WHIP and 23.4 percent strikeout rate in 144 1/3 innings over 27 starts. With better health in 2023, the 29-year-old right-hander could bounce back for the Yankees and fantasy managers, but it will admittedly be much tougher pitching in Yankee Stadium and the tough American League East for a full season.

    Jan 13 · Source via Yankees Frankie Montas
  • Royals, Kris Bubic Avoid Salary Arbitration

    The Kansas City Royals agreed to a one-year, $2.2 million deal on Friday with left-hander Kris Bubic to avoid salary arbitration. Bubic wasn't very good for KC last year, going 3-13 with a career-high 5.58 ERA (4.78 FIP), 1.69 WHIP and career-low 18.7 percent strikeout rate in 129 innings over 28 outings (27 starts) in his third MLB season. The 25-year-old southpaw will be off the fantasy radar in mixed leagues entering spring drafts. In his three seasons with the Royals, he's posted a 4.89 ERA (4.93 FIP), 1.53 WHIP and 20 percent strikeout rate in 67 appearances (57 starts).

    Jan 13 · Source via Royals Kris Bubic
  • Keston Hiura Settles For $2.2 Million

    The Milwaukee Brewers and infielder Keston Hiura avoided salary arbitration on Friday by agreeing to a one-year, $2.2 million deal. Hiura was once one of the Brew Crew's better infield prospects, but the 26-year-old just hasn't been able to put much together after his rookie season in 2019 when he hit .303 and clubbed 19 home runs in 84 games. In 2022, he slashed .226/.316/.449 with a .765 OPS, 14 home runs, 32 RBI, 34 runs scored and five stolen bases in 266 plate appearances over 80 games. He struck out over 40 percent of the time and should open the 2023 campaign as a bench bat with pop for Milwaukee, leaving him little fantasy value outside of NL-only leagues.

    Jan 13 · Source via Brewers Keston Hiura
  • Jose Cisnero Gets $2.287 Million From Tigers

    The Detroit Tigers and relief pitcher Jose Cisnero agreed to a one-year, $2.287 million deal on Friday to avoid salary arbitration. Cisnero had an excellent 1.08 ERA (3.67 FIP), 1.36 WHIP, 19 walks and 23 strikeouts for the Tigers in 2022, but he only threw 25 relief innings due to an injury and personal issues. The 33-year-old right-hander will not be so fortunate next year if he is unable to limit his number of walks. Cisnero will only be attractive in 2023 deep holds leagues as a setup man in front of expected closer Alex Lange.

    Jan 13 · Source via Tigers Jose Cisnero closers
  • Framber Valdez Settles With Astros For $6.8 Million

    The Houston Astros and left-handed starting pitcher Framber Valdez agreed on a one-year, $6.8 million deal on Friday to avoid salary arbitration. Valdez was excellent in his fifth season with the Astros and earned his first All-Star selection. He finished the year 17-6 with a 2.82 ERA (3.06 FIP), 1.16 WHIP and 23.5 percent strikeout rate in 31 starts. Valdez led the league with three complete games, one shutout, 201 1/3 innings pitched, 827 batters faced and 0.5 home runs allowed per nine innings. The 29-year-old southpaw was absolutely dominant in Houston's run to another World Series championship as well. He'll enter the 2023 season as an SP2 for fantasy managers.

    Jan 13 · Source via Astros Framber Valdez
  • Guardians, Amed Rosario Agree On One-Year, $7.8 Million Deal

    The Cleveland Guardians agreed to a one-year, $7.8 million deal on Friday with shortstop Amed Rosario to avoid salary arbitration. In his second full season in Cleveland after four years with the New York Mets to begin his MLB career, Rosario slashed .283/.312/.403 with a .715 OPS, 11 home runs, 71 RBI, 86 runs scored and 18 stolen bases in 670 plate appearances over 153 games played. The 27-year-old is durable but lacks elite upside at a deep shortstop position in fantasy. His best asset is probably his speed, but Rosario has only had 20-plus thefts one time in six major-league seasons. Rosario is a fringe top-20 option at the position heading into 2023 drafts.

    Jan 13 · Source via Guardians Amed Rosario
  • John Brebbia Avoids Arbitration Friday

    The San Francisco Giants and right-hander John Brebbia avoided arbitration by agreeing to a one-year, $2.3 million deal on Friday. Brebbia had a fine season for the Gigantes in 2022, going 6-2 with a 3.18 ERA (3.32 FIP), 1.31 WHIP and career-low 18.8 percent strikeout rate in 68 innings over a league-high 76 appearances (11 starts). The 32-year-old was primarily used in relief and picked up 18 holds along the way. Brebbia has only two career saves in five major-league seasons, though, and outside of deep holds leagues, he won't be appealing to fantasy managers in 2023. The Giants are expected to enter next year with Camilo Doval as their primary closer.

    Jan 13 · Source via Giants John Brebbia
  • Austin Nola Will Receive $2.35 Million In 2023

    The San Diego Padres avoided salary arbitration on Friday by agreeing to a one-year, $2.35 million deal with catcher Austin Nola. The 33-year-old backstop came on strong for the Padres in the postseason, but he wasn't all that great in the regular season with a .251/.321/.329 slash line, .649 OPS, four home runs, 40 RBI, 40 runs scored and two stolen bases in 397 plate appearances and a career-high 110 games played in 2022. Nola should once again see his fair share of playing time in 2023 in one of the best lineups in the league, but hasn't reached double-digit home runs since his rookie year with the Seattle Mariners in 2019 (10), and he could lose substantial playing time to Luis Campusano when it's all said and done.

    Jan 13 · Source via Padres Austin Nola
  • Chris Paddack Settles For $2.4 Million

    The Minnesota Twins and right-hander Chris Paddack avoided salary arbitration on Friday by agreeing to a one-year, $2.4 million deal. Paddack only made five starts for the Twins in 2022 in his first year with the team and needed his second Tommy John surgery in May. In his five starts, he allowed 10 earned runs on 25 hits while walking two and striking out 20 in 22 1/3 innings. Because the 27-year-old starting pitcher likely won't be ready to rejoin the starting rotation until the second half of 2023, he won't be worth drafting in mixed leagues. Paddack has struggled to replicate his rookie year in 2019 with the San Diego Padres, when he posted a 3.33 ERA, 0.98 WHIP and a career-high 153 strikeouts in 26 starts.

    Jan 13 · Source via Twins Chris Paddack
  • Cubs Avoid Arbitration With Nico Hoerner Friday

    The Chicago Cubs avoided salary arbitration with middle infielder Nico Hoerner on Friday by agreeing to a one-year, $2.525 million deal. Hoerner had easily his best big-league season in his fourth year with the Cubs last season, but it still didn't move the needle much in fantasy. In a career-high 135 games played, he hit .281/.327/.410 with a .736 OPS, 10 home runs, 55 RBI, 60 runs scored and 20 stolen bases in 517 plate appearances. The 25-year-old was used mostly at shortstop, but he is expected to move back to the keystone in 2023 after the Cubs signed Dansby Swanson this offseason. Hoerner is most valuable to the Cubs for his defense and to fantasy managers for his speed on the basepaths.

    Jan 13 · Source via Cubs Nico Hoerner
  • Amir Garrett Avoids Arbitration With Royals

    The Kansas City Royals and relief pitcher Amir Garrett avoided salary arbitration on Friday by agreeing to a one-year, $2.65 million deal. Garrett was better in 2022 than he was in his final season in Cincinnati in 2021, but he still wasn't of much use to fantasy managers in his first year with the Royals. He finished with a 4.96 ERA (3.40 FIP), 1.32 WHIP, no saves and a 25 percent strikeout rate in 45 1/3 relief innings covering 60 appearances. Garrett is tough on left-handed hitters but hasn't fared too well otherwise. He'll carry little fantasy appeal in deep holds leagues for a rebuilding Royals team as a setup man in front of closer Scott Barlow.

    Jan 13 · Source via Royals Amir Garrett closers
  • Dakota Hudson Settles For $2.65 Million

    The St. Louis Cardinals and starting pitcher Dakota Hudson avoided salary arbitration by agreeing to a one-year, $2.65 million deal on Friday. It wasn't a great year for Hudson in 2022. In his return from Tommy John surgery, he recorded a career-high 4.45 ERA (4.34 FIP), 1.45 WHIP and career-low 13.1 percent strikeout rate in 139 2/3 innings over 27 appearances (26 starts). Heading into his sixth season with the Cardinals, Hudson is in line to open the 2023 campaign in the bullpen, limiting his fantasy appeal in deeper formats. He should eventually see some time in the rotation, but he's gone over 139 innings just one in his career and will have limited fantasy upside.

    Jan 13 · Source via Cardinals Dakota Hudson
  • Brendan Rodgers To Make $2.7 Million In 2023

    The Colorado Rockies and second baseman Brendan Rodgers avoided salary arbitration on Friday by agreeing to a one-year, $2.7 million deal. In his fourth year in the big leagues with the Rockies in 2022, Rodgers slashed .266/.325/.408 with a .733 OPS, 13 home runs, 63 RBI and 72 runs scored in 581 plate appearances and a career-high 137 games. He hasn't been much to look at from a fantasy perspective with only 28 home runs, 123 RBI and no stolen bases in four seasons at Coors Field, but offers the Rockies great defense at the keystone and could develop more power along the way. Rodgers remains a decent selection as a middle infielder in deep mixed leagues in 2023.

    Jan 13 · Source via Rockies Brendan Rodgers
  • Angels, Taylor Ward Avoid Salary Arbitration

    The Los Angeles Angels and outfielder Taylor Ward avoided salary arbitration on Friday by coming to an agreement on a one-year, $2.75 million deal. Ward had a .281/.360/.473 slash line with career-highs in OPS (.833), home runs (23), RBI (65), runs scored (73), stolen bases (five) and games played (135) for the Halos in 2022 in his fifth major-league season. The 29-year-old didn't hit quite as well after returning from several different injuries during the year, but he was one of a few bright spots for the Angels. With better health in 2023, Ward could be a fantasy steal.

    Jan 13 · Source via Angels Taylor Ward
  • Joe Jimenez Avoids Arbitration Friday

    The Atlanta Braves and relief pitcher Joe Jimenez avoided salary arbitration by agreeing to a one-year, $2.765 million deal on Friday. The Braves picked up Jimenez in a trade last month with the Detroit Tigers. The 27-year-old right-hander had a career-best 3.49 ERA (2.00 FIP), 1.09 WHIP, two saves, 77 strikeouts and 13 walks in 56 2/3 relief innings in 2022 for the Tigers. He has 20 career saves in six major-league seasons with Detroit, but he'll probably only have any fantasy value in holds leagues in 2023 as one of Atlanta's setup men in front of closer Raisel Iglesias. Jimenez holds a 5.24 ERA (4.03 FIP) and 1.34 WHIP in 266 major-league relief innings.

    Jan 13 · Source via Braves Joe Jimenez closers
  • Reds Sign One-Year Deal With Luke Weaver

    The Cincinnati Reds signed free-agent right-hander Luke Weaver to a one-year deal worth $2 million on Friday. He will compete for a starting rotation spot in spring training. Weaver had a combined 26 appearances (only one start) last year and posted a 6.56 ERA (2.69 FIP), 1.82 WHIP and 20 percent strikeout rate over only 35 2/3 innings with the Arizona Diamondbacks and Kansas City Royals. The 29-year-old came to Arizona in 2019 in the Paul Goldschmidt trade. He had a career-best 2.94 ERA in 12 starts in his first year in the desert but hasn't been any good since. Weaver won't be particularly attractive if he wins a spot in Cincy's starting rotation, and if not he'll fill a relief role out of the bullpen. He can be ignored in mixed leagues in 2023.

    Jan 13 · Source via Luke Weaver
  • Shane Bieber Settles With Guardians For $10.01 Million

    The Cleveland Guardians and starting pitcher Shane Bieber avoided salary arbitration on Friday by agreeing to a one-year, $10.01 million deal. Bieber was once again excellent for Cleveland and fantasy managers alike in 2022 in his fifth major-league season, going 13-8 with a 2.88 ERA (2.87 FIP), 1.04 WHIP and 25 percent strikeout rate in 200 innings over his 31 starts. Since 2019, the two-time All-Star and American League Cy Young winner in 2020 has a sharp 2.91 ERA (2.96 FIP), 1.05 WHIP and 713 strikeouts in 588 1/3 innings pitched over 93 outings (92 starts). Bieber is one of the most reliable fantasy aces out there.

    Jan 13 · Source via Guardians Shane Bieber
  • Blue Jays, Cavan Biggio Avoid Arbitration

    The Toronto Blue Jays and infielder Cavan Biggio avoided salary arbitration on Friday by coming to an agreement on a one-year, $2.8 million deal. The 27-year-old son of former second baseman Craig Biggio hit just .202/.318/.350 with a career-low .668 OPS, six home runs, 24 RBI, 43 runs scored and two stolen bases in 303 plate appearances and 97 games for the blue Jays in 2022. Biggio has regressed since his rookie season with Toronto in 2019 and has slashed a weak .213/.320/.353 with 13 home runs, 51 RBI and five stolen bases combined in the last two seasons. But he still will have fantasy appeal in deep mixed and AL-only leagues as a utility infielder in a strong Blue Jays lineup heading into next season.

    Jan 13 · Source via Blue Jays Cavan Biggio
  • Tanner Scott Gets $2.825 Million From Marlins

    The Miami Marlins and relief pitcher Tanner Scott avoided salary arbitration by agreeing to a one-year, $2.825 million deal on Friday. Scott had a career-high 20 saves in his first season in Miami in 2022, but he also had a 4.31 ERA (3.67 FIP), 1.61 WHIP, 31.1 percent strikeout rate and didn't finish the regular season as the team's primary closer. Because of the way things ended last year in Miami's bullpen, Dylan Floro, not Scott, is expected to open the 2023 season as the team's primary closing option. It's bad news for Scott's fantasy appeal in drafts this spring. The 28-year-old reliever had one career save entering 2022 and has a 4.61 career ERA (3.91 FIP), 1.56 WHIP and 29.9 percent strikeout rate in six major-league seasons.

    Jan 13 · Source via Marlins Tanner Scott closers
  • Ranger Suarez Avoids Arbitration With Phillies

    The Philadelphia Phillies and left-handed starting pitcher Ranger Suarez avoided salary arbitration on Friday by agreeing to a one-year, $2.95 million deal. In a full-time starter role in the big leagues for the first time, Suarez handled himself rather well in 2022, going 10-7 with a 3.65 ERA (3.87 FIP), 1.33 WHIP and 19.5 percent strikeout rate in 155 1/3 frames over 29 starts. Even more exciting was the fact that the 27-year-old southpaw was much better in the second half of the year and in the playoffs to help the Phillies to a World Series appearance. Suarez doesn't strike out a ton of batters (career 7.9 K/9) and isn't overpowering anyone, so he'll need to continue to induce weak contact in order to thrive for fantasy managers in mixed leagues in a hitter-friendly ballpark.

    Jan 13 · Source via Phillies Ranger Suarez
  • Daulton Varsho To Make $3.05 Million In Toronto

    The Toronto Blue Jays and catcher/outfielder Daulton Varsho avoided salary arbitration by agreeing to a one-year, $3.05 million deal on Friday. The Blue Jays upgraded their outfield depth and added a much-needed left-handed bat to their potent lineup when they acquired Varsho from the Arizona Diamondbacks this offseason. In just his third big-league season in 2022 with the D-backs, he hit .235/.302/.443 with a .745 OPS, career-high 27 home runs, 74 RBI, 79 runs scored and 16 stolen bases in 592 plate appearances and 151 games played. The 26-year-old provides defensive versatility at catcher and in left field, but he's expected to be Toronto's regular left fielder in 2023. The power-speed combination and the move to one of the better lineups in baseball have skyrocketed Varsho's fantasy value heading into next season.

    Jan 13 · Source via Blue Jays Daulton Varsho
  • Trent Grisham Avoids Salary Arbitration

    The San Diego Padres and outfielder Trent Grisham avoided salary arbitration on Friday by agreeing to a one-year, $3.175 million deal. Grisham struggled to make contact regularly in his third year with the Friars in 2022, finishing with a .184/.284/.341 slash line, career-low .626 OPS, career-high 17 home runs, 53 RBI, 58 runs scored and seven stolen bases in 524 plate appearances over a career-high 152 games played. The 26-year-old was a liability at the plate, but he did show some signs of life in the postseason and also won his second Gold Glove award on defense. Needless to say, Grisham's fantasy value has dropped significantly heading into 2023, and there's a good chance he'll be benched this year if he doesn't improve.

    Jan 13 · Source via Padres Trent Grisham
  • Guardians, Josh Naylor Avoid Arbitration

    The Cleveland Guardians and first baseman/outfielder Josh Naylor avoided salary arbitration by agreeing to a one-year, $3.35 million deal on Friday. Naylor had by far his best season in the big leagues for Cleveland last year, posting career-highs in home runs (20), RBI (79), runs scored (47) and stolen bases (six) in 122 games while slashing .256/.319/.452 with a .771 OPS. The 25-year-old left-handed slugger from Canada has hit just .209 in his career against left-handed pitchers in four seasons, though, so he loses a lot of mixed league value for fantasy managers as a platoon player for the Guardians.

    Jan 13 · Source via Guardians Josh Naylor
  • Nicky Lopez Settles At $3.7 Million For Next Season

    The Kansas City Royals and middle infielder Nicky Lopez avoided salary arbitration on Friday by agreeing to a one-year, $3.7 million deal. Lopez went from hitting .300 in 151 games with the Royals in 2021 to slashing .227/.281/.273 with a .554 OPS in 480 plate appearances and 141 games in 2022. He added no homers, 20 RBI, 51 runs scored and 13 stolen bases. The 27-year-old has never been much of a threat with the lumber, but he's stuck around because of his excellent defensive skills up the middle. He can play second, third and shortstop and will be competing with Michael Massey at the keystone in spring training this year. Lopez isn't very attractive in fantasy for anything other than his modest speed.

    Jan 13 · Source via Royals Nicky Lopez
  • Gregory Soto To Earn $3.925 Million In 2023

    The Philadelphia Phillies and left-handed reliever Gregory Soto avoided salary arbitration by agreeing to a one-year, $3.925 million on Friday. The Phillies just acquired Soto in a trade with the Detroit Tigers a week ago after finishing up back-to-back All-Star seasons in Detroit. Last year, he went 2-11 but had a career-low 3.28 ERA (3.59 FIP), 1.38 WHIP, career-high 30 saves and 22.8 percent strikeout rate in 60 1/3 innings over a career-high 64 relief appearances. The 27-year-old southpaw has never had a BB/9 under 5.00 in his four major-league seasons, so without nearly as many save opportunities in what is expected to be a closer-by-committee situation in Philly, Soto loses considerable fantasy appeal with his move to the Phillies. Along with Soto, the team will also have Seranthony Dominguez, Craig Kimbrel and Jose Alvarado as options to save games.

    Jan 13 · Source via Phillies Gregory Soto closers
  • Paul Sewald Avoids Arbitration Friday

    The Seattle Mariners and relief pitcher Paul Sewald avoided salary arbitration on Friday be agreeing to a one-year, $4.1 million deal. Sewald had the best year of his career in his second season in Seattle in 2022, posting a career-low 2.67 ERA (3.88 FIP), career-low 0.77 WHIP, career-high 20 saves and 29.8 percent strikeout rate in 64 innings over 65 relief appearances. He did have surgery on both his elbow and heel in December, but he is expected to be ready for the start of spring training. The 32-year-old veteran should open the 2023 campaign as the favorite in Seattle for saves, but if he falters at all, the M's have some other pretty good ninth-inning options in Andres Munoz and Diego Castillo.

    Jan 13 · Source via Mariners Paul Sewald closers
  • Zac Gallen Agrees To One-Year, $5.6 Million Deal

    The Arizona Diamondbacks and starting pitcher Zac Gallen avoided salary arbitration on Friday by agreeing to a one-year, $5.6 million deal. In his third full season with the Snakes, Gallen had a career-best season, going 12-4 with a 2.54 ERA (3.05 FIP), a league-best 0.91 WHIP, a league-best 5.9 hits per nine innings and a 26.9 percent strikeout rate in 31 starts over a career-high 184 innings to come in fifth in National League Cy Young voting. The 27-year-old right-hander came into last season with an ERA above 4.00 in just one of his three seasons, with the other resulting in sub-3.00 ERAs. While he did strike out a career-low 9.4 hitters in 2022, all of his other peripherals look strong as he heads into his fifth MLB season.

    Jan 13 · Source via Diamondbacks Zac Gallen
  • Brewers, Brandon Woodruff Avoid Arbitration

    The Milwaukee Brewers and starting pitcher Brandon Woodruff avoided salary arbitration by agreeing to a one-year, $10.8 million deal on Friday, according to a source. Woodruff continues to be one of the better pitchers in baseball after going 13-4 with a 3.05 ERA (3.08 FIP), 1.07 WHIP and 30.7 percent strikeout rate in 27 starts over 153 1/3 innings pitched last season. Injuries are a concern for the 29-year-old right-hander -- he's never topped 179 1/3 innings in his six major-league seasons -- but aside from those concerns, he's been very solid for fantasy managers. Woodruff has never had an ERA above 5.00 in any of his seasons and has only been over a 4.00 ERA once, in his rookie season in 2017.

    Jan 13 · Source via Brewers Brandon Woodruff
  • Josh Hader Avoids Arbitration With Record Deal

    The San Diego Padres and relief pitcher Josh Hader avoided salary arbitration on Friday by agreeing to a one-year, $14.1 million deal, according to a source. It becomes the biggest salary in arbitration in MLB history for a reliever. The Padres acquired the left-hander from the Milwaukee Brewers at last year's trade deadline, but was uncharacteristically wild and really struggled overall in 2022. Hader had a 7.31 ERA in 19 appearances in San Diego and finished with a career-high 5.22 ERA (3.45 FIP), 1.28 WHIP, 36 saves, 9.6% walk rate and 37% strikeout rate. Despite the down year, the 28-year-old southpaw had a really rough stretch to blame and he looked to be back to elite Hader form in the postseason, so a bounce-back campaign in 2023 is very possible.

    Jan 13 · Source via Padres Josh Hader closers
  • Dylan Cease To Earn $5.7 Million In 2023

    The Chicago White Sox and starting pitcher Dylan Cease avoided salary arbitration on Friday by agreeing to a one-year, $5.7 million deal. Cease finished up his fourth season with the White Sox with a 14-8 record, career-low 2.20 ERA (3.10 FIP), 1.11 WHIP and 30.4 percent strikeout rate in a career-high 184 innings over 32 starts. The 27-year-old was among the league's elite starting pitchers last season, but he did walk a league-high 78 batters along the way. Cease finished up his regular season with quality starts in five of his last six outings and struck out a career-high 227 batters (one more than 2021). Needless to say, he'll be a pretty popular high-end fantasy starter in drafts this spring.

    Jan 13 · Source via White Sox Dylan Cease
  • Phillies Settle With Rhys Hoskins Friday

    The Philadelphia Phillies and first baseman Rhys Hoskins avoided salary arbitration by agreeing to a one-year, $12 million deal on Friday, according to sources. In an even more formidable Phillies lineup heading into 2023 with the addition of superstar shortstop Trea Turner, Hoskins will be more attractive in fantasy in the heart of Philly's lineup. The 29-year-old finished up his sixth MLB season in 2022 by hitting .246/.332/.462 with a .794 OPS, 30 home runs, 79 RBI, 81 runs scored and two stolen bases in 672 plate appearances and 156 games. Hoskins has hit 27-plus home runs in four of his six seasons and should be money for fantasy managers again in 2023.

    Jan 13 · Source via Phillies Rhys Hoskins
  • Juan Soto Avoids Arbitration At $23 Million

    The San Diego Padres and outfielder Juan Soto avoided salary arbitration on Friday by agreeing to a one-year, $23 million deal, according to sources. The Padres swung a blockbuster trade to acquire Soto and first baseman Josh Bell from the Washington Nationals at last year's trade deadline. The two-time All-Star disappointed in 52 games to close the regular season for the Friars, though, hitting .236/.388/.390 with six home runs, 16 RBI and 31 runs scored. Still, he's only 24 years old and remains one of the best all-around hitters in the game with elite on-base skills, so there's a very good chance he bounces back for the Padres and fantasy managers alike in 2023, especially with no more shift.

    Jan 13 · Source via Padres Juan Soto
  • Will Smith Avoids Salary Arbitration

    The Los Angeles Dodgers and catcher Will Smith avoided salary arbitration on Friday by agreeing to a one-year, $5.25 million deal, according to sources. Smith had another very strong year as the Dodgers' primary catcher in 2022, slashing .260/.343/.465 with an .807 OPS, 24 home runs, a career-high 87 RBI, 68 runs scored and a stolen base in 578 plate appearances over a career-high 137 games. He now has 49 home runs in the last two years and has become one of the most attractive fantasy backstops in the game in one of the best lineups in baseball.

    Jan 13 · Source via Dodgers Will Smith
  • Cardinals, Jordan Montgomery Settle At $10 Million

    The St. Louis Cardinals and left-hander Jordan Montgomery avoided salary arbitration on Friday by agreeing to a one-year, $10 million deal, according to a source. Montgomery came to St. Louis at last year's trade deadline from the New York Yankees. He had a combined 9-6 record with a 3.48 ERA (3.61 FIP), 1.09 WHIP and 21.8 percent strikeout rate in 178 1/3 innings over 32 starts. The 30-year-old southpaw figures to be a key piece in St. Louis' rotation moving forward, and he'll have more fantasy appeal pitching in the National League Central division instead of the brutal American League East. Montgomery went 6-3 with a 3.11 ERA and 1.08 WHIP in his 11 starts for the Red Birds to close out 2022.

    Jan 13 · Source via Cardinals Jordan Montgomery
  • Mets Considering Tommy Pham

    With outfielder Andrew McCutchen returning to the Pittsburgh Pirates, the New York Mets are now considering free-agent outfielder Tommy Pham as their fourth outfielder, among others. Trey Mancini, Adam Duvall, Jurickson Profar and Tyler Naquin are other possibilities that remain on the open market. Pham became a free agent this offseason when the Boston Red Sox declined his $6 million mutual option for 2023. The 34-year-old hit a combined .236/.312/.374 with a .686 OPS, 17 home runs, 63 RBI, 89 runs scored and eight stolen bases in 622 plate appearances and 144 combined games for the Red Sox and Cincinnati Reds in 2022. He's no longer the on-base machine he used to be in his prime, but he'd make for a decent fourth outfielder for the Mets.

    Jan 13 · Source via Tommy Pham
  • Cedric Mullins Avoids Arbitration

    The Baltimore Orioles and outfielder Cedric Mullins avoided salary arbitration on Friday by agreeing to a one-year, $4.1 million deal. Mullins was a first-time All-Star for the O's in 2021 in his fourth big-league season, but he wasn't nearly as good in 2022, hitting .258/.318/.403 with a .721 OPS, 16 home runs, 64 RBI, 89 runs scored and a career-high 34 stolen bases in 672 plate appearances and 156 games. The 28-year-old really struggled against left-handed pitching in 2022, so he'll need to improve in that area if he wants to play every day and return to his 2021 form at the plate.

    Jan 13 · Source via Orioles Cedric Mullins
  • Andrew McCutchen Returns To Pirates

    The Pittsburgh Pirates signed free-agent outfielder Andrew McCutchen to a one-year deal worth $5 million on Friday, according to a source. McCutchen spent the nine years of his big-league career in Pittsburgh and was an All-Star with them for five straight seasons from 2011-15. He won the National League MVP in 2013. The 36-year-old is far from his prime in his return to Pittsburgh, but he'll give the rebuilding Pirates some veteran leadership. McCutchen posted a career-low .700 OPS with the Milwaukee Brewers last season and shouldn't be expected to improve much toward the back end of his career. But for fantasy purposes, he'll be relevant in deep mixed leagues if he's playing every day.

    Jan 13 · Source via Andrew McCutchen
  • Padres Sign Alfonso Rivas To Minor-League Deal

    The San Diego Padres signed free-agent first baseman Alfonso Rivas to a minor-league deal on Thursday that includes an invitation to major-league spring training after he was released by the Chicago Cubs last week. The 26-year-old played in 101 games for the Cubs last season in his second year in the majors and hit .235/.322/.307 with a .628 OPS, three home runs, 25 RBI, 27 runs scored and six stolen bases in 287 plate appearances. Rivas will have a chance to impress the Padres coaching staff this spring, and he could eventually find his way onto the major-league roster in 2023, as the Padres depth at first base is a bit lacking behind Jake Cronenworth and Matt Carpenter, who both also hit left-handed like Rivas.

    Jan 13 · Source via Padres Alfonso Rivas
  • Brewers Avoid Arbitration With Hoby Milner, Victor Caratini

    The Brewers have avoided arbitration with a pair of players before tomorrow’s deadline for sides to exchange salary figures. Reliever Hoby Milner and the club have settled at $1.025MM, reports Robert Murray of FanSided (Twitter link). Catcher Víctor Caratini and the team are in agreement on a $2.8MM salary, reports Mark Feinsand of MLB.com (on Twitter). Milner…

    Jan 12 · MLB Trade Rumors Brewers Victor Caratini Hoby Milner
  • Orioles Outright Ryan O'Hearn

    The Orioles announced that first baseman Ryan O’Hearn has cleared outright waivers and been assigned to Triple-A Norfolk. He had been designated for assignment last week when the O’s claimed Lewin Díaz a second time. O’Hearn, 29, had a strong debut in 2018. Over 44 games in that season, he hit 12 home runs and…

    Jan 12 · MLB Trade Rumors Orioles Ryan O'Hearn
  • P.J. Higgins Signs With Diamondbacks

    The Arizona Diamondbacks signed free-agent catcher P.J. Higgins to a minor-league deal on Thursday that includes an invitation to major-league spring training. Higgins comes to the desert after playing in 74 games for the Chicago Cubs in 2022, finishing with a .229/.310/.383 slash line with a .693 OPS, six home runs, 30 RBI and 23 runs scored in just his second major-league season. Arizona already has Carson Kelly, Gabriel Moreno and Jose Herrera on the active roster at the catcher position, so Higgins will have to play well in spring training to win an Opening Day roster spot with his new club. The 29-year-old is unlikely to have any real fantasy value in 2023, aside from maybe deep two-catcher leagues if he sees semi-regular playing time in the big leagues.

    Jan 12 · Source via Diamondbacks P.J. Higgins
  • Mets Remain In Contact With Trey Mancini

    The New York Mets remain in contact with free-agent outfielder/designated hitter Trey Mancini, according to reports. It's worth noting that manager Buck Showalter was Mancini's manager for his first two major-league seasons with the Baltimore Orioles. In addition to Mancini, the Mets are considering Andrew McCutchen for the fourth outfielder role in 2023. Other options for the Mets on the open market include Adam Duvall, Jurickson Profar, David Peralta and Tyler Naquin. Mancini was pretty bad after getting dealt to the Houston Astros at the trade deadline last August, but he has 125 career home runs in six big-league seasons and could fit well as a part-time outfielder/DH for the Mets next year.

    Jan 12 · Source via Mets Trey Mancini
  • Francisco Alvarez, Brett Baty Will Have Shot To Make The Roster

    New York Mets catcher Francisco Alvarez and third baseman Brett Baty will both be given a realistic chance to make the Opening Day roster out of spring training. But with more opportunity in left field this year, Alvarez likely has the better chance to begin the 2023 season in the big leagues. When it looked like shortstop Carlos Correa was signing with the Mets, the Miami Marlins were interested in trading for Baty and infielder Eduardo Escobar. Alvarez is considered the No. 1 prospect in baseball heading into the 2023 season, per MLB Pipeline, so it makes sense for him to have a pretty good shot at starting the year with the Mets. Baty is the team's No. 2 prospect. Alvarez (five games) and Baty (11 games) got their feet wet in the Show in 2022, but they should both see much more playing time this year and are considered key future pieces in Queens.

    Jan 12 · Source via Mets Francisco Alvarez Brett Baty prospects
  • Bucs Want Soto-Like Trade For Bryan Reynolds

    The Pittsburgh Pirates are looking for a "Juan Soto trade" for outfielder Bryan Reynolds, who has asked out of Pittsburgh this offseason, according to an interested team executive. Reynolds has three years left in his current contract, but he makes much less than Soto and isn't in an elite tier of players like Soto. The Pirates offered Reynolds around $76 million, while the Washington Nationals offered Soto $440 million before they traded him to the Padres. The prediction is that Reynolds will remain in Pittsburgh for now due to the absurd asking price, but things could change at the trade deadline in August. The word is that the Bucs sought four top prospects from the New York Yankees, including multiple players from the top group that includes Oswald Peraza, Anthony Volpe and Jasson Dominguez.

    Jan 12 · Source via Pirates Bryan Reynolds
  • Dodgers Officially Release Trevor Bauer

    The Los Angeles Dodgers gave starting pitcher Trevor Bauer his unconditional release on Thursday. The Dodgers designated Bauer for assignment last Friday and could not find a trade partner by the deadline this Friday, so the 31-year-old right-hander will become a free agent. Bauer has been reinstated by the league following his lengthy suspension for domestic violence, but it remains to be seen if any other MLB teams will take a chance on the former National League Cy Young winner. The Dodgers are on the hook for $22.5 million. He missed all of last season, so even if a team takes a chance on Bauer for 2023, it will be tough to predict how he'll perform after previously being one of the better pitchers in the game.

    Jan 12 · Source via Dodgers Trevor Bauer
  • Rangers, Zack Littell Agree To Minor League Deal

    The Rangers and free-agent righty Zack Littell are in agreement on a minor league contract, reports Kiley McDaniel of ESPN. The CAA client will be invited to Major League camp with Texas this spring. Littell has appeared in parts of five big league seasons, all with either the Twins or Giants. The 27-year-old has had…

    Jan 12 · MLB Trade Rumors Rangers Zack Littell closers
  • Josh Lindblom Announces Retirement

    Right-hander Josh Lindblom took to Twitter today to announce his retirement as a player. “For 30 years of my life, I played a game that taught me about more than balls and strikes, hits and runs, and wins and losses,” he wrote. “It taught me about life and made me the person writing this letter.”…

    Jan 12 · MLB Trade Rumors Josh Lindblom
  • Three Teams Interested In Aroldis Chapman

    Three teams are reportedly interested in signing free-agent relief pitcher Aroldis Chapman. It was initially reported that the Los Angeles Dodgers were interested in signing Chapman to a two-year deal, but that was shot down on Thursday night. The San Diego Padres have also been rumored to be interested in the left-hander. The 34-year-old really struggled in 2022 with the New York Yankees, going 4-4 with a 4.46 ERA and just nine saves. He spent time on the injured list with a leg infection caused by a tattoo and was left off the team's playoff roster after missing a mandatory workout. The Dodgers are in need of bullpen help after losing Chris Martin and Tommy Kahnle in free agency and with Blake Treinen (shoulder) likely out for the year if he has shoulder surgery.

    Jan 12 · Source via Aroldis Chapman closers
  • Mets, Yankees Won't Pursue Trevor Bauer

    The New York Mets and New York Yankees won't pursue starting pitcher Trevor Bauer, according to sources, either via trade by the Friday deadline or as a free agent. Bauer, who is still currently on the Los Angeles Dodgers roster, was reinstated his 194-game suspension. However, it's unclear if any major-league team will take a chance on him. The Dodgers would like to trade him out of the National League West, if possible. One baseball decision-maker said Bauer would have to be signed by a "team on another planet." Pitching is at a premium this year, and Bauer won the NL Cy Young as recently as 2020. The Dodgers have until Friday to trade him, and if they can't, he'll be on the open market as a free agent.

    Jan 12 · Source via Mets Yankees Trevor Bauer
  • Red Sox Avoid Arbitration With Josh Taylor

    The Boston Red Sox and left-hander Josh Taylor avoided salary arbitration Thursday by agreeing to a one-year, $1.025 million deal, according to a source. Ryan Brasier, Abraham Almonte, Nick Pivetta, Alex Verdugo, Rob Refsnyder, Christian Arroyo and Reese McGuire remain arbitration-eligible. The 29-year-old Taylor didn't pitch at all last season due to a back injury, but the Red Sox are hoping he'll return in 2023 and be as effective as he was in 2021, when he posted a 3.40 ERA (2.83 FIP), 1.43 WHIP, one save and 28.7 percent strikeout rate in 47 2/3 relief innings in his third major-league season with Boston. Taylor won't carry any fantasy relevance.

    Jan 12 · Source via Red Sox Josh Taylor closers
  • Cubs Sign Vinny Nittoli On Thursday

    The Chicago Cubs signed veteran right-hander Vinny Nittoli to a minor-league deal on Thursday that includes an invite to major-league spring training. He will earn $775,000 in the big leagues or $162,000 in the minors. The 32-year-old pitched in just two games for the Philadelphia Phillies in 2022 and also in the minors for the New York Yankees and Toronto Blue Jays. He quickly finds a home after being released by the Phillies earlier this week. Nittoli will compete in camp to serve as relief depth for the Cubbies in 2023. He has only pitched three innings the last two seasons with the Phillies and Seattle Mariners, allowing two earned runs on a homer while walking three and striking out two.

    Jan 12 · Source via Cubs Vinny Nittoli
  • Matt Holliday Resigns As Cardinals' Bench Coach; Joe McEwing Hired As Replacement

    The Cardinals announced Thursday that Matt Holliday has resigned from his position as the team’s bench coach. He’ll be replaced by Joe McEwing, who’s spent the past 15 years on the White Sox’ coaching staff. It’s a surprising announcement, given that Holliday was only hired to the post back in early November. Both Bob Nightengale…

    Jan 12 · MLB Trade Rumors Cardinals Matt Holliday
  • Marlins Haven't Decided Jazz Chisholm Jr.'s Position

    When asked if Miami Marlins infielder Jazz Chisholm Jr. will get any run at shortstop in 2023, general manager Kim Ng said, "We haven't decided yet." Chisholm was the team's full-time second baseman in 2022 and earned his first All-Star nod in his third season in the majors. But after the team sent shortstop Miguel Rojas to the Los Angeles Dodgers on Wednesday, there's an opening at the 6 in Miami. Chisholm's natural position is at shortstop, but the recently signed Jean Segura and Joey Wendle are also candidates to play shortstop next season. Ultimately, keeping Chisholm at the keystone might be the safest option after he played only 60 games in 2022 due to back and knee injuries. Defensive position aside, the 24-year-old has plenty of offensive upside with 34 homers, 104 RBI and 37 stolen bases in his first three MLB campaigns.

    Jan 12 · Source via Marlins Jazz Chisholm
  • Brewers Sign Thyago Vieira To Minor-League Deal

    The Milwaukee Brewers signed free-agent right-hander Thyago Vieira to a minor-league contract on Thursday that includes an invitation to major-league spring training. Vieira has pitched in Japan since 2020 and was pretty successful, posting a 2.86 ERA with 150 strikeouts and 61 walks in 125 2/3 innings out of the bullpen. In three seasons in the major leagues before heading overseas, the 29-year-old reliever had a 7.36 ERA (5.32 FIP), 1.79 WHIP, one save and a 19.2 percent strikeout rate in 25 2/3 relief innings for the Seattle Mariners and Chicago White Sox. Thyago will be competing to be middle-relief depth for the Brewers bullpen in spring training.

    Jan 12 · Source via Brewers Thyago Vieira
  • Connor Seabold Designated For Assignment

    The Boston Red Sox designated right-hander Connor Seabold for assignment on Thursday to make room on the 40-man roster for the recently signed Corey Kluber. In his second major-league season with the Red Sox in 2022, Seabold had a rough go of it, allowing 24 runs (23 earned) on 35 hits (five home runs) while walking eight and striking out 19 in 18 1/3 innings pitched over five starts. The 26-year-old has a 10.55 ERA (6.82 FIP), 2.25 WHIP and 19 strikeouts in his six major-league starts with Boston, but he's been much better in the minor leagues. In his last two seasons at Triple-A Worcester, Seabold has fanned 141 batters over 140 2/3 innings.

    Jan 12 · Source via Red Sox Connor Seabold
  • Sandy Leon Signs Minor-League Deal With Rangers

    The Texas Rangers signed free-agent catcher Sandy Leon to a minor-league deal on Thursday that includes an invitation to major-league spring training, according to a source. Leon played in 33 combined games in 2022 with the Cleveland Guardians and Minnesota Twins, hitting .169/.298/.211 with no homers, four RBI and six runs scored in 86 plate appearances. He had meniscus surgery on his right knee in October and is unlikely to be on the Opening Day roster, as the team already has backstops Jonah Heim and Sam Huff. The 33-year-old veteran has played 11 years in the big leagues and has a career slash line of .210/.278/.314 with a .592 OPS and 31 home runs, so he's never been much of an offensive force.

    Jan 12 · Source via Rangers Sandy Leon
  • Phillies, Vimael Machin Agree To Minor League Deal

    The Phillies and infielder Vimael Machin have agreed to a minor league contract, reports Melissa Lockard of The Athletic (Twitter link). Machin himself all but confirmed as much, thanking the Phils for a new opportunity in a tweet of his own. Machin, 29, has spent the past three seasons with the A’s, who selected him…

    Jan 12 · MLB Trade Rumors Phillies Vimael Machin
  • Miguel Rojas Expected To Undergo Additional Wrist Procedure

    After eight seasons with the Marlins, Miguel Rojas changed organizations this evening. Miami traded the infielder to the Dodgers in a one-for-one deal that sent infield prospect Jacob Amaya to South Florida. Rojas is coming off a tough season in which he hit .237/.282/.324 through 504 trips to the plate. A right wrist issue seemed to play…

    Jan 11 · MLB Trade Rumors Dodgers Miguel Rojas
  • Marlins Outright Charles Leblanc

    Infielder Charles Leblanc has been passed through waivers by the Marlins and outrighted to Triple-A Jacksonville, reports Jordan McPherson of the Miami Herald. Leblanc was designated for assignment last week when the club signed Jean Segura. Leblanc, 27 in June, was drafted by the Rangers in 2016 but was never added to their roster. In…

    Jan 11 · MLB Trade Rumors Marlins Charles Leblanc
  • Tigers Moving Center Field In At Comerica Park

    The Detroit Tigers are moving in their fence in dead center field from 422 feet to 412 feet, starting with the 2023 season. Left field is being "relabeled" as 342 feet instead of 345 feet. It is not being moved in, but it's just a more accurate measurement. The height of the walls in center field will also be lowered from 8.5 feet to seven feet, with right-center field going from 13 feet to seven feet and right field from 8.5 feet to seven feet. The ballpark will lose the first row of seats in right field (around 50 seats total) because of the alterations. Comerica Park has long been known as a pitcher-friendly venue, and although these slight changes are unlikely to make a huge impact, they are certainly notable for the upcoming season.

    Jan 11 · Source via Tigers
  • Greg Allen Agrees With Red Sox On Minor-League Deal

    The Boston Red Sox agreed with free-agent outfielder Greg Allen on a minor-league deal on Wednesday that includes an invitation to major-league spring training, according to a source. Allen didn't make his 2022 season debut until the second half of the season due to a hamstring, and he finished with a weak .186/.260/.271 slash line with only two home runs, eight RBI, 17 runs scored and eight stolen bases in 46 games for the Pittsburgh Pirates. The 29-year-old switch-hitter will strictly provide Boston with outfield depth if he sticks around with the organization. Allen is a career .232/.299/.336 hitter with a .635 OPS and 10 home runs in six big-league seasons. His greatest asset is probably his speed, as he's swiped 45 bases in 282 games played.

    Jan 11 · Source via Red Sox Greg Allen
  • Marlins Land Shortstop Prospect Jacob Amaya

    The Miami Marlins acquired shortstop prospect Jacob Amaya from the Los Angeles Dodgers on Wednesday in exchange for shortstop Miguel Rojas. The glove-first Rojas became expendable when the Fish signed veteran infielder Jean Segura in free agency this offseason. With Rojas now in LA, Segura is likely to begin the 2023 campaign as Miami's everyday shortstop. Amaya, who was ranked as the Dodgers' No. 15 prospect by MLB Pipeline, hit a combined .261/.369/.427 with a career-high 17 home runs, 71 RBI, 85 runs scored and six stolen bases in 133 games for Double-A Tulsa and Triple-A Oklahoma City in 2022. Like Rojas, Amaya is excellent defensively and has a strong approach at the plate, albeit without a ton of pop.

    Jan 11 · Source via Dodgers Marlins Jacob Amaya prospects
  • Dodgers Acquire Miguel Rojas From Marlins

    The Los Angeles Dodgers acquired shortstop Miguel Rojas from the Miami Marlins on Wednesday in exchange for shortstop prospect Jacob Amaya. Rojas had an underwhelming year at the plate for the Fish in 2022 while dealing with a wrist injury that eventually required surgery, but he's always been more of a glove-first player to begin with. The 33-year-old veteran moves to a much better lineup in LA, which will make him slightly more attractive as a fantasy middle infielder in deeper leagues if he's playing every day. The Dodgers lost star shortstop Trea Turner in free agency and are expected to give Gavin Lux a shot at the 6, so it's possible that Rojas ends up playing more regularly at the keystone for the Blue.

    Jan 11 · Source via Marlins Dodgers Miguel Rojas
  • Craig Stammen Returns To Padres On Minor-League Deal

    The San Diego Padres re-signed right-hander Craig Stammen to a minor-league deal on Wednesday, according to a source. Stammen will be invited to major-league spring training with the Friars for the seventh straight season. The 38-year-old reliever has been solid for the Padres in middle relief the last six seasons and posted a 4.43 ERA (5.15 FIP), 1.35 WHIP and 19.8% strikeout rate in 33 outings (one start) over 40 2/3 innings in 2022. He wasn't as good as he was in 2021, but Stammen has been workmanlike out of the SD bullpen with a 3.36 ERA (3.76 FIP), 1.14 WHIP, five saves and a 23.0% strikeout rate in 394 1/3 innings over the last six seasons. Stammen dealt with injuries last year and will strictly provide the Pads with more relief depth in 2023.

    Jan 11 · Source via Padres Craig Stammen closers
  • A's Agree With Shintaro Fujinami

    The Oakland Athletics agreed with Japanese right-hander Shintaro Fujinami on a one-year deal, pending a physical, on Wednesday, according to a source. The 28-year-old was posted by the Hanshin Tigers of Nippon Professional Baseball in Japan last month and is expected to join Oakland's starting rotation in 2023. The 28-year-old had a career-best 1.118 WHIP in 107 1/3 innings pitched last year in his 10th year with the Tigers. Fujinami is 6-foot-6 and has a fastball that sits in the upper-90s. Along with his 1.118 WHIP last season, he had a 3.38 ERA and 23.6% strikeout rate in Japan. Fujinami displayed better command in 2022, but it has been an issue for him before. Expect him to have an up-and-down first year in the big leagues, but he will be heading to a nice ballpark for pitchers.

    Jan 11 · Source via Shintaro Fujinami
  • Jay Jackson Signs Deal With Blue Jays

    The Toronto Blue Jays signed free-agent right-hander Jay Jackson to a minor-league deal on Wednesday that includes an invitation to major-league spring training. Jackson became a free agent in November after he was outrighted to the minors by the Atlanta Braves. The 35-year-old only pitched in 1 1/3 innings at the major-league level in 2022 for the Braves, and he has a 4.21 ERA (4.16 FIP) and 1.32 WHIP with 80 strikeouts and 31 walks in 57 2/3 innings over 59 career MLB appearances (one start) over four seasons. Jackson will attempt to win a major-league roster spot out of spring training for Toronto as low-leverage bullpen depth.

    Jan 11 · Source via Blue Jays Jay Jackson closers
  • Hanser Alberto Agrees To Minor-League Deal With White Sox

    The Chicago White Sox agreed with free-agent infielder Hanser Alberto on a minor-league deal on Wednesday, according to sources. Alberto is likely to receive an invitation to major-league spring training after playing in 73 games for the Los Angeles Dodgers in 2022. In those 73 contests, the 30-year-old hit .244/.258/.365 with a .623 OPS, two home runs, 15 RBI and 13 runs scored in 159 plate appearances. If Alberto makes the White Sox's Opening Day roster out of spring training, he'll likely be filling a utility infield role and is unlikely to see regular playing time. In his seven-year major-league career, Alberto has slashed .272/.294/.380 with a .674 OPS, 19 home runs, 121 RBI, 149 runs and 12 stolen bases in 458 games with the Dodgers, Royals, Orioles and Rangers.

    Jan 11 · Source via White Sox Hanser Alberto
  • Rockies Avoid Arbitration With Austin Gomber

    The Colorado Rockies avoided salary arbitration with left-hander Austin Gomber on Wednesday by agreeing to a one-year, $1.65 million deal, according to sources familiar with the deal. Gomber was a key piece in the blockbuster trade that sent third baseman Nolan Arenado to the St. Louis Cardinals. The 29-year-old southpaw appeared in a career-high 33 games (17 starts) in his second season in Colorado in 2022 and went 5-7 with a career-high 5.56 ERA (4.54 FIP), 1.37 WHIP and career-low 18.0% strikeout rate in 124 1/3 innings pitched. Depending on how he fares in spring training, Gomber could be a candidate to start the regular season in Colorado's starting rotation, but he'd be a pretty shaky streamer in deep leagues.

    Jan 11 · Source via Rockies Austin Gomber
  • Mets Considering Andrew McCutchen

    The New York Mets are considering free-agent outfielder Andrew McCutchen as their fourth outfielder, according to sources. However, it's unclear if McCutchen is interested in a role as a bench outfielder behind Starling Marte, Mark Canha and Brandon Nimmo. The Mets also have right-handed-hitting Darin Ruf on the bench as a potential right-handed designated hitter. The 36-year-old McCutchen showed a sharp dip in power last year with the Milwaukee Brewers, finishing with a career-low .700 OPS to go along with a .237/.316/.384 slash line, 17 home runs, 69 RBI, 66 runs scored and eight stolen bases in 580 plate appearances and 134 games for the Brew Crew. Other potential outfield options for the Mets on the free-agent market include Adam Duvall, David Peralta and Jurickson Profar.

    Jan 11 · Source via Mets Andrew McCutchen
  • Dodgers Looking To Acquire Miguel Rojas

    The Los Angeles Dodgers are deep in trade talks for Miami Marlins shortstop Miguel Rojas, according to sources. No deal is done yet, but it could be headed that way. The Dodgers lost star shortstop Trea Turner to the Philadelphia Phillies in free agency this offseason, so Rojas would step in as a temporary solution for the Dodgers at the 6 in 2023. The 33-year-old hit a disappointing .236/.283/.323 with a .605 OPS, six home runs, 36 RBI, 34 runs scored and nine stolen bases in 140 games for the Fish in 2022, but he also played most of the season with a wrist injury that required surgery. In nine major-league seasons, he's been a .260/.314/.358 hitter with a career .672 OPS. If healthy and in a much stronger Dodgers lineup, Rojas will have much more fantasy appeal.

    Jan 11 · Source via Marlins Dodgers Miguel Rojas
  • Carlos Correa Passes Physical With Twins

    Shortstop Carlos Correa has passed his physical with the Minnesota Twins, and the team is expected to officially announce their six-year, $200 million deal with the 28-year-old on Wednesday. Correa's physical was a big deal after both the San Francisco Giants and New York Mets backed out of big deals with him due to concerns over a surgery that he had on a fractured right fibula back in 2014 when he was in the minors. The Twins signed Correa to a one-year, $35.1 million deal in 2022, so they were likely more comfortable with his medical records. If Correa remains healthy well into his new deal, he could stick with the Twins for up to 10 seasons due to vesting options that could net him an additional $70 million.

    Jan 11 · Source via Twins Carlos Correa
  • Nelson Cruz Agrees With Padres On One-Year Deal

    The San Diego Padres and free-agent designated hitter Nelson Cruz agreed to a one-year, $1 million deal on Wednesday, pending a physical, according to sources familiar with the deal. Cruz wants to win a World Series ring and was willing to take less money to play for a contender. He is also familiar with general manager AJ Preller from their days in the Texas Rangers organization. Boomstick looked his age (42) in 2022 with the Washington Nationals, hitting .234/.313/.337 with only 10 home runs, 64 RBI, 50 runs scored, four stolen bases and a 23.6% strikeout rate. Cruz ended the year on the injured list and eventually needed surgery on his left eye, but he should be good to go for the start of the 2023 season. Fantasy managers shouldn't expect a whole lot from the seven-time All-Star in what is likely to be his final season, but he could provide some modest power numbers as a part-time DH in his new digs.

    Jan 11 · Source via Padres Nelson Cruz
  • Diamondbacks Designate J.B. Bukauskas For Assignment

    The Diamdonbacks announced they’ve designated righty J.B. Bukauskas for assignment. The move creates a 40-man roster spot for Zach Davies, who has officially signed his one-year free agent guarantee to return to the desert. According to the team, Davies’ deal also contains a mutual option for the 2024 campaign. Bukauskas was a first-round pick of the Astros…

    Jan 11 · MLB Trade Rumors Diamondbacks J.B. Bukauskas
  • White Sox, Hanser Alberto Agree To Minor League Deal

    The White Sox have agreed to a minor league contract with free-agent infielder Hanser Alberto, reports Robert Murray of FanSided. The CAA client will be in Major League camp as a non-roster player this spring. Alberto, 30, spent the 2022 season with the Dodgers and batted .244/.256/.365 with a pair of homers, nine doubles and…

    Jan 11 · MLB Trade Rumors White Sox Hanser Alberto
  • Phillies Release Vinny Nittoli

    The Philadelphia Phillies have released right-handed pitcher Vinny Nittoli, per a tweet from the team's official Twitter account on Tuesday afternoon. The Phillies tweeted the following: "RHP Vinny Nittoli (DFA'd on 1/4) has been released." Nittoli made his Major League debut for the Seattle Mariners and appeared in a pair of games for the Phillies in 2022. He previously pitched to a 3.81 ERA in 52 innings at the Triple-A level last year while logging 64 strikeouts compared to 14 walks allowed in the process.

    Jan 11 · Source via Phillies Vinny Nittoli
  • Phillies Outright Francisco Morales

    The Phillies announced that right-hander Francisco Morales has cleared waivers and has been outrighted to Triple-A Lehigh Valley. He had been designated for assignment last week when the club signed Craig Kimbrel. Morales, 23, was working in the lower levels of the Phillies’ system before the pandemic. His walks were on the high side but…

    Jan 11 · MLB Trade Rumors Phillies Francisco Morales
  • Tigers Claim Edwin Uceta Off Waivers

    The Detroit Tigers have claimed right-handed pitcher Edwin Uceta off waivers from the Arizona Diamondbacks, per a tweet from the American League Central club's public relations Twitter account. Uceta, 24, has appeared in 24 games at the Major League level in the last two seasons, throwing a total of 37.1 innings. Last year in 17 innings for the Diamondbacks, the right-hander pitched to a 5.82 ERA and a 4.52 FIP in 10 appearances, striking out 13 batters compared to seven walks in the process. He turned in a 4.86 ERA, a 5.50 FIP, 70 strikeouts, and 30 walks in 50 Triple-A innings last year. The reliever will give the Tigers some additional bullpen depth heading into the 2023 season.

    Jan 11 · Source via Tigers Edwin Uceta
  • Athletics, Shintaro Fujinami Agree To One-Year Deal

    The Athletics have agreed to a one-year contract with right-hander Shintaro Fujinami, reports ESPN’s Jeff Passan (Twitter link). The hard-throwing 28-year-old was posted by the Hanshin Tigers of Japan’s Nippon Professional Baseball back on Dec. 1. His agreement is pending a physical, and the A’s expect to use him out of the rotation, Passan adds.…

    Jan 11 · MLB Trade Rumors Athletics Shintaro Fujinami
  • Scott Oberg Announces Retirement

    Pitcher Scott Oberg is retiring, per a tweet from The Gazette's Danielle Allentuck on Wednesday. Allentuck tweeted the following while also tweeting a picture of Oberg's announcement from his Instagram account: "Scott Oberg, after multiple bouts with blood clots, announces that he has accepted a part time position with the #Rockies and that he will no longer be pursuing baseball as a player." Oberg appeared in 259 games at the Major League level from 2015 through 2019, pitching to a 3.85 ERA and a 3.98 FIP. The relief pitcher's best season came in 2018 when he posted a 2.45 ERA and a 2.87 FIP in 58.2 innings of work for the Rockies.

    Jan 11 · Source via Scott Oberg
  • Kyle Garlick Designated For Assignment

    The Minnesota Twins have designated outfielder Kyle Garlick for assignment on Wednesday. Garlick appeared in 66 games for the team during the 2022 season, logging 162 plate appearances for the American League Central club. In those 162 plate appearances, the outfielder hit .233 with a .284 on-base percentage and nine home runs while adding 23 runs scored and 18 RBI. As has been the case for much of his career, Garlick was much more productive against left-handed pitching, with an .805 OPS against left-handers compared to just a .631 OPS against right-handed pitching.

    Jan 11 · Source via Twins Kyle Garlick
  • Rangers Among The Suitors For Bryan Reynolds

    According to a tweet from MLB Network's Jon Morosi on Wednesday morning, the Texas Rangers are reportedly "among the top remaining suitors for Pittsburgh Pirates outfielder Bryan Reynolds. The Pirates want high-upside pitching prospects for Reynolds, and Texas has three pitchers among MLB's top 100. Reynolds is coming off a solid year at the plate, both for fantasy managers and the Pirates alike. He wasn't quite able to replicate the success he had in 2021, but he still turned in a quality season. The outfielder hit .262 with a .345 on-base percentage, 27 home runs and seven stolen bases in 614 plate appearances for the Pirates last season. The home run tally represented a career-high for the 27-year-old.

    Jan 11 · Source via Pirates Bryan Reynolds
  • Trevor Kelley Elects Free Agency

    The Brewers announced that right-hander Trevor Kelley cleared waivers and was assigned to Triple-A Nashville, per Adam McCalvy of MLB.com. Kelley had been designated for assignment last week when the club acquired Bryse Wilson. Kelley has rejected the assignment and elected free agency, which was his right as a player with a previous career outright.…

    Jan 11 · MLB Trade Rumors Brewers Trevor Kelley Bryse Wilson
  • Julian Merryweather Designated For Assignment

    The Toronto Blue Jays have designated right-handed reliever Julian Merryweather for assignment, per a tweet from the American League East team's official Twitter account on Tuesday afternoon. Toronto made the move in order to clear space on the club's 40-man roster for new signing Brandon Belt. Merryweather has appeared in parts of three seasons with the Blue Jays, logging 52.2 innings in the Majors since the start of the 2020 campaign. He pitched to a 6.75 ERA and a 4.35 FIP in 26 appearances spanning 26.2 innings for Toronto this past season. In those 26.2 innings, the reliever logged 23 strikeouts compared to seven walks allowed while also registering a hold.

    Jan 11 · Source via Blue Jays Julian Merryweather closers
  • Orioles Acquire Darwinzon Hernandez, Designate Lewin Diaz

    The Orioles announced Wednesday that they’ve acquired lefty Darwinzon Hernandez from the Red Sox in exchange for cash. First baseman Lewin Diaz was designated for assignment yet again in order to create a spot on the 40-man roster. The 26-year-old Hernandez will give the O’s an arm capable of missing bats at an elite level,…

    Jan 11 · MLB Trade Rumors Orioles Lewin Diaz Darwinzon Hernandez closers
  • Joey Wendle On Red Sox's Radar

    The Athletic's Chad Jennings reported Tuesday that the Boston Red Sox have Miami Marlins' infielder Joey Wendle on their radar as a potential external option to fill in for Trevor Story (elbow) as he recovers from an internal bracing procedure of the UCL in his right elbow. The 33-year-old bats left-handed and spent time at second base, shortstop, and third base in 2022. Offensively, he slashed .259/.297/.360 with three home runs, 32 RBI, and 12 stolen bases in 371 plate appearances. A move from the Marlins' lineup to the Red Sox's wouldn't be a huge upgrade, and Wendle's fantasy value is almost solely derived from his stolen base potential.

    Jan 11 · Source via Marlins Red Sox Joey Wendle
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