BLOG 6: Free Agency is Heating Up, So What’s Next?

George Springer is all smiles taking his talents to Toronto

About time. Contending teams across the league are making the right moves to try and build the dream team to take home the Commissioner’s Trophy in 2021. We have seen plenty of moves through both free agency and trades this past week, and the league is slowly starting to come together. Aside from the N.L. Central, where it is becoming seemingly more apparent that being competitive is of zero importance, teams around the MLB are getting better. With George Springer signing for 6 years/$150 million and rumors of J.T. Realmuto somewhere in the 5-6 year/$100-$100 million range, it is clear that COVID-19 has created a depreciating market and teams are taking advantage. Deals are still being finalized, however, and the more deals that occur, the more we can assess what players are worth.

That being said, I expect outfielders such as Jackie Bradley Jr., Joc Pederson, and Kevin Pillar to sign relatively soon with Springer setting the market for outfielders. I also expect relievers such as Brad Hand and Roberto Osuna to wrap up before the end of the month with pitchers such as Liam Hendriks, Kirby Yates, and Archie Bradley reaching deals within the last week. For the higher-end players who have not locked deals yet (Trevor Bauer, Marcell Ozuna, Nelson Cruz) and have had few rumors flowing around, my guess is they value themselves more than what is being offered. Ozuna and Cruz, both DHs, are also most likely waiting to see if the N.L. will have the DH again next season before reaching an agreement. To that point, I believe the Twins need to push for Cruz, especially with the amount of players they are losing this offseason and the presence he has in their lineup. Rumors suggest he is looking for a two year deal, and I see the Twins and White Sox as potential suitors in the A.L. as well as the Braves in the N.L. pending a universal DH.

Due to the substantial amount of rumors around the league and the difficulty keeping up with it all, listed below are the transactions that I found to be the most newsworthy since my last blog to help you keep up to date.

FREE AGENTS:

PlayerPrevious TeamNew TeamContract
George Springer (CF)Houston AstrosToronto Blue Jays6 years/$150 million
D.J. Lemahieu (2B)New York YankeesNew York Yankees6 year/$90 million
Michael Brantley (LF)Houston AstrosHouston Astros2 years/$32 million
Corey Kluber (SP)Texas RangersNew York Yankees1 year/$11 million
J.A. Happ (SP)New York YankeesMinnesota Twins1 year/$8 million
Kirby Yates (CP)San Diego PadresToronto Blue Jays1 year/~ $5 million
Archie Bradley (RP)Cincinnati RedsPhi. Phillies1 year/$6 million
Jon Lester (SP)Chicago CubsWash. Nationals1 year/$5 million*
Jose Quintana (SP)Chicago CubsL.A. Angels1 year/$8 million
Kyle Schwarber (LF)Chicago CubsWash. Nationals1 year/$10 million
*Lester is set to make $2M in 2021 and has a $3M signing bonus due in 2023

TRADES:

San Diego Padres Receive:Pittsburgh Pirates Receive:New York Mets Receive:
P Joe Musgrove (from PIT)CF Hudson Head (from SD)
P David Bednar (from SD)
P Drake Fellows (from SD)
P Omar Cruz (from SD)
C Endy Rodriguez (from NYM)
P Joey Lucchesi (from SD)

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