Now that the winter meetings are in the rearview mirror and the new year is just a couple of weeks away, it's time to face the facts: the offseason is nearing the halfway point. It won't be long until teams are packing up their trucks for spring training. But while every team figures to make a few more moves between now and then, some have a lot more to do than their peers. With that in mind, let's take a look at eight teams we suspect will have a busier back nine. Do note that this is for entertainment purposes, and that teams are listed in alphabetical order.
We covered the Diamondbacks' situation on Monday. It boils down to this: Mike Hazen stands to lose seven of his top 10 highest-paid players after this season. He could just run the same crew (well, the same crew ) back with an addition or two and hope for the best. But Hazen seems more likely to buy and sell this winter, swapping out Robbie Ray (and maybe others) to fill needs on his roster. Hazen pulled the same trick last winter and the Diamondbacks ended up winning 85 games. There's no telling at this point if he can match or exceed that success in 2020.
The Red Sox want to get underneath the luxury-tax line; they've made that obvious for months. The easiest way to do that is to find takers for David Price and Jackie Bradley Jr., with a Mookie Betts trade serving as a last resort. A number of teams are known to be interested in Price, suggesting Chaim Bloom ought to be able to work something out. Either way, the Red Sox are going to look different on the field and in the ledger by the time the 2020 season rolls around.
Tom Petty said the waiting is the hardest part, but that's all the Cubs can do with Kris Bryant until his grievance stemming from service-time manipulation is resolved. Granted, the Cubs probably would have waited until after Josh Donaldson signed to move Bryant anyway, but he's not the only core member potentially on the move. League sources expect the Cubs to listen to offers on basically anyone and everyone on the roster, ranging from Willson Contreras to Kyle Schwarber to Anthony Rizzo and beyond. The Cubs figure to make at least one big trade.
Another situation Francisco Lindor is traded, don't be surprised if Mike Clevinger, Jose Ramirez, and Brad Hand see their names included on the rumor mill. And, if Lindor isn't traded, Cleveland should be opportunistic about using the savings accrued through the Trevor Bauer and Corey Kluber trades to load up on vets seeking one-year deals., Cleveland is going to be busy no matter if the team looks to build up or tear down ahead of the spring. If
The Rockies are known to be willing to discuss third baseman Nolan Arenado, for whatever reason, and would love to move some contracts they consider burdensome -- think Ian Desmond's and Wade Davis'. The seriousness of those talks are unclear, but it only takes one team uttering the right collection of names and figures for things to heat up. Even if the Rockies can't connect on a blockbuster deal, they should look to tweak their club after a poor season.
Obviously, right? The Dodgers came up empty on their swings for the top free agents on the market, leaving them no choice but to investigate trades if they're to acquire an impact talent. Lindor has been the name most commonly connected to them, but Andrew Friedman tends to investigate all the angles. Who knows, maybe he ends up with another star after all.
Yes, the Marlins. Miami has already added a few respectable veterans, and it wouldn't be a surprise for them to dip their toes into the free-agent waters for an outfielder. Alternatively, don't be shocked if the Marlins trade another starter. They've had talks on Jose Urena, and might be open to moving Jordan Yamamoto in a similar fashion to how they moved Zac Gallen at the deadline -- trading a young big-league starter whose stock has improved over the past year for a quality prospect.