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Player Notes

  • Kevin Plawecki may now be expendable
    According to Andy Martino of SNY, the Mets plan to head into the 2019 season with Wilson Ramos and Travis d'Arnaud as their catching tandem.

    Advice: That means the Mets don't plan on carrying three catchers, so after agreeing to a deal with Ramos on Sunday, Kevin Plawecki looks to be expendable. The Mets could now look to deal the 27-year-old, who is under team control through the 2022 season, as part of a package to fill other outstanding needs such as a left-handed bullpen arm. Today, 2:31 pm
  • Rays and Dodgers are in the mix for Realmuto
    Joe Frisaro of reports that the Rays and Dodgers are still in the mix to acquire All-Star catcher J.T. Realmuto from the Marlins.

    Advice: The Mets had been one of the teams expressing the most interest in Realmuto, but after they signed Wilson Ramos on Sunday they're out of the running. The Braves also have seemingly dropped out of the race. The Dodgers were also in the mix for Ramos, so unless they plan on bringing back Yasmani Grandal, they may now up their efforts to acquire Realmuto. Today, 2:26 pm
  • Mets agree to two-year, $19 M deal with Ramos
    According to Jon Heyman of Fancred, the Mets have agreed to a two-year, $19 million contract with Wilson Ramos.

    Advice: Piecing this together, Daniel Alvarez Montes was the first to report that the Mets had reached an agreement with the catcher, Ken Rosenthal added that it was a two-year deal and Heyman closed it out by adding the financial details. The contract is still pending a physical, so it's likely that it will not be finalized and made official until Monday. Today, 1:55 pm
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  • Machado to meet with White Sox early in week
    Jon Heyman of Fancred reports that the White Sox plan to meet with free agent Manny Machado early next week.

    Advice: Machado is set to sit down with the Yankees' brass in New York on Wednesday, and it sounds like he may be meeting with the White Sox before then. The White Sox, Yankees and Phillies are currently viewed as the favorites to land the superstar infielder, though there's also supposedly an unidentified mystery team still lurking that he plans to visit as well. Today, 1:25 pm
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  • Eloy Jimenez injures quad in winter ball
    White Sox outfield prospect Eloy Jimenez is expected to be shut down until spring training after suffering a quad injury in the Dominican Winter League.

    Advice: It doesn't seem like the ailment is a long-term concern, but the White Sox will obviously be careful with the stud prospect. Jimenez is set to begin the 2019 season back in the minors but should debut at some point during the first half. He batted .337/.384/.577 with 22 homers over 108 games between Double- and Triple-A in 2018. Today, 8:47 am
  • Tyler Flowers 'could be had' in a trade
    Jon Heyman of Fancred Sports reports that Tyler Flowers "could be had" in a trade.

    Advice: There have been some reports recently downplaying the Braves' interest in J.T. Realmuto, but Flowers being available via trade would suggest they might be trying to clear space for a big addition. Flowers is currently slated to share time behind the plate with Brian McCann next season. Today, 5:37 am
  • Rosenthal: Adams heading back to Nationals
    The Athletic's Ken Rosenthal is reporting free agent Matt Adams is in agreement with the Nationals, pending a physical.

    Advice: Yahoo Sports' Jeff Passan hears it's a one-year, $4 million contract. Adams has spent the past few years rotating between a handful of teams, coming up with the Cardinals before being dealt to the Braves, then joining the Nats ahead of last season before a trade sent him back to the Cards mid-year. Now, he's back in the nation's capital on a one-year deal. As he was deployed by the Nats his first time around, the 30-year-old will likely spell Ryan Zimmerman at first base and could see more playing time if the oft-injured Zimmerman can't stay on the field or his decline escalates in 2019. Yesterday, 1:17 pm
    Player Note
    Matt Adams StL - 1B,OF
    Not Active
  • Brewers interested in 2B Jed Lowrie
    Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reports the Brewers are interested in free agent second baseman Jed Lowrie.

    Advice: The Brewers have an opening at second base now that Travis Shaw will be moving back to third base full time. They've previously been connected with Daniel Murphy and now they are pursuing Lowrie. Brewers' general manager David Stearns is familiar with Lowrie from their mutual time with the Astros in 2015. The 34-year-old Lowrie is coming off the best season of his career after batting .267/.353/.448 with 23 home runs and 99 RBI. Yesterday, 1:10 pm
    Player Note
    Jed Lowrie Oak - 2B,3B
    Not Active
  • Astros talking to free agents Cruz, Brantley
    Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reports the Astros would like to add at least one or maybe two hitters and have been talking to free agents Nelson Cruz and Michael Brantley.

    Advice: The team would like to upgrade from outfielder Josh Reddick, whom they have reportedly tried to trade this offseason. Cruz is 38 years old and is limited to a designated hitter role but remains one of the best hitters in the major leagues. He batted .256/.342/.509 with 37 home runs and 97 RBI this past season for the Mariners. The 31-year-old Brantley can play outfield and first base and is coming off a season in which he slashed .309/.364/.468 with 17 home runs, 76 RBI, 89 runs scored and 12 stolen bases. Yesterday, 12:37 pm
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  • Angels sign Justin Bour for one year
    Angels signed Justin Bour to a one-year, $2.5 million contract.

    Advice: The deal was leaked on Wednesday and it is now official. Bour will see action at both first base and designated hitter, sharing time with Albert Pujols and Shohei Ohtani. He was non-tendered by the Phillies in late November after batting .227/.341/.404 with 20 home runs and 59 RBI in 423 at-bats with the Marlins and Phillies this past season. Those numbers were a disappointment considering he had slashed .289/.366/.536 with a whopping 25 homers and 83 RBI in just 377 at-bats the year before. The 30-year-old could provide a lot of value on a bargain contract for the Angels next year if he has a bounce-back campaign. Yesterday, 11:56 am
  • Palka to play left field after Alonso deal?
    Daniel Palka is likely to play primarily left field following the White Sox' acquisition of first baseman Yonder Alonso in a trade with Cleveland on Saturday.

    Advice: White Sox general manager Rick Hahn says he believes Alonso and Jose Abreu will occupy the first base and designated hitter slots in 2019. He is already on record saying the team has no plans to trade the veteran Abreu. Palka was the club's primary DH in 2018 but he will have to find his playing time somewhere else next year. Hahn said it will be up to manager Rick Renteria whether to put the defensively-challenged Palka in left field or have him come off the bench most days. The 27-year-old batted .240/.294/.484 with 27 home runs and 67 RBI in 417 at-bats this past season as a rookie. Yesterday, 10:13 am
  • Alonso officially traded to the White Sox
    White Sox acquired 1B Yonder Alonso from the Indians for OF Alex Call.

    Advice: The deal was initially reported on Friday and is now official. Alonso batted .250/.317/.421 with 23 home runs and 83 RBI in his first and only season with the Indians. The White Sox already have a good first baseman in Jose Abreu, so one of them will presumably shift to the designated hitter slot. Both of them are 31 years old but Alonso has the better defensive metrics and will likely play the field on most days. The hot gossip on the Internet is that Alonso is Manny Machado's brother-in-law and that this move could be a maneuver by the White Sox to entice the superstar shortstop to choose Chicago over the other teams vying for his services. Yesterday, 7:01 am
  • White Sox have no intention of trading Abreu
    According to Bob Nightengale of USA Today, the White Sox have no intention of trading Jose Abreu, even after acquiring Yonder Alonso from the Indians on Friday.

    Advice: There had already been rumblings that Abreu may have been available, and Friday's acquisition of Alonso seemed to put even more wood on that fire, but perhaps the two can co-exist in Chicago. Alonso is an extremely skilled defender and likely to be the everyday first baseman, which would force Abreu into a full-time DH role, something that in the past he has claimed he does not want to do. This could just be posturing on the White Sox' part in order to get a better offer for Abreu. Friday, 8:00 pm
  • Cubs one of six teams in on Troy Tulowitzki
    Jon Heyman of Fancred reports that the Cubs are one of six teams that have been in contact with free agent shortstop Troy Tulowitzki.

    Advice: The Cubs plan to send a scout to Tulo's upcoming workout to get a feel for what he has left in the tank. With the Blue Jays on the hook for most of his salary, the 34-year-old could wind up being a nice bargain at the veteran's minimum, provided he's able to stay healthy, which is something he has struggled with throughout his career. The Tulowitzki camp has said that they plan to narrow the field of suitors soon. Friday, 6:29 pm
    Not Active
  • Mets continue to show interest in Grandal
    According to Andy Martino of SNY, the Mets continue to show interest in free agent catcher Yasmani Grandal.

    Advice: The Mets are on the hunt for a major upgrade behind the plate and have talked to the Marlins about J.T. Realmuto, but they continue to explore Grandal as well, who is the best catcher available on the free agent market. The White Sox have also been mentioned as a possible destination for Grandal, though their signing of James McCann on Friday could lessen their interest. Friday, 5:50 pm
    Not Active
  • Matt Chapman has shoulder scoped on Friday
    Matt Chapman had his left shoulder scoped on Friday in what was termed a "minor cleanup procedure".

    Advice: The Athletics announced Friday that Chapman should be able to resume swinging in six weeks. They made the decision to have the procedure done after the third baseman felt discomfort during offseason workouts. Barring any setbacks, he'll be healthy and ready to roll for the start of spring training. Friday, 5:08 pm
  • Diamondbacks sign Matt Szczur to minors deal
    Diamondbacks signed OF Matt Szczur to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training.

    Advice: The 29-year-old spent the 2018 season in the Padres' organization, slashing .187/.265/.267 in his 84 plate appearances at the big league level. He'll attempt to crack the Opening Day roster as a reserve outfielder, but will most likely begin the year as minor league depth at Triple-A Reno. Friday, 4:24 pm
    Not Active
  • Giants discussing possible Kevin Pillar trade
    Alex Pavlovic of NBC Sports Bay Area reports that Kevin Pillar is "one name discussed" by the Giants' front office.

    Advice: Steven Duggar is expected to open the season as the Giants' primary center fielder, but the club wouldn't mind finding a platoon partner to play against lefties and they're also considering the benefits of having two center fielder types on the field at the same time. Pillar is only a career .261/.298/.398 hitter but is one of the best defensive center fielders in the game. He's under team control through 2020. Friday, 2:12 pm
  • Mets have talked Castellanos deal with Tigers
    Anthony Fenech of the Detroit Free Press reports that the Mets have discussed a possible Nicholas Castellanos trade with the Tigers.

    Advice: There's no indication at this point that the talks have advanced past the preliminary stage, but it's no surprise at this point to see Brodie Van Wagenen and the Mets connected to another player on the trade block. Fenech notes that the asking price for Castellanos is "high" even though he's only under contract for one more year. The Mets could use a center fielder much more than a corner outfielder, so it remains to be seen whether talks for Castellanos gain any traction. Friday, 1:54 pm
  • Carlos Asuaje to sign with Korean team
    Jared Diamond of the Wall Street Journal reports that Carlos Asuaje is close to signing with a team in South Korea.

    Advice: Asuaje just went from the Padres to the Rangers via the waiver process earlier this week, but it sounds like he's headed overseas. The 27-year-old is a career .240/.312/.329 hitter over 586 major league plate appearances. Friday, 1:45 pm
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