MLB rumors: Cardinals want to extend Paul Goldschmidt; Reds acquire Sonny Gray from Yankees

In a little more than three weeks spring training camps will open across Arizona and Florida. Cactus League and Grapefruit League games are about five weeks away. Baseball is coming, sooner than you may realize.

At the moment 18 of our top 50 free agents are unsigned, including the top two and four of the top seven. Looks like we're again headed for big signings throughout February and March. With that in mind, we're going to keep track of the day's free agent and trade rumors right here in this handy post. Make sure you check back often for the latest hot stove rumblings.

Cards want to go long with Goldy

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Paul Goldschmidt STL • 1B • 46
BA.290
R95
HR33
RBI83
SB7

The Cardinals earlier this offseason acquired All-Star first baseman Paul Goldschmidt from the Diamondbacks despite the fact that he was headed into his walk year. Not long after the trade, Cardinals brass brushed away the idea of signing Goldschmidt to an extension, possibly in an effort to lower expectations and keep the focus on the strength of the 2019 roster. Now, though, the organization seems to be thinking more long-term with Goldschmidt. Here's this quote from owner Bill DeWitt, as reported by MLB.com's Jenifer Langosch ... 

"As you guys know, we've been fortunate over the years in making deals for players with one year left on their contract and retaining them," DeWitt said. "I think worst case is we get a top Draft choice, but that's not our goal when we trade for a player like Paul Goldschmidt."

This, in tandem with a remark from president of baseball operations John Mozeliak also found in Langosch's story, strongly suggests the Cardinals intend to make a contract offer to Goldschmidt. Buying out a frontline player this close to free agency is typically difficult to do, but this offseason's curiously slow market may factor in Goldschmidt's thinking. Players are generally loath to talk contract once the season has begun, so don't be surprised if this develops fairly quickly. It'll cost the Cardinals to keep Goldy in St. Louis beyond 2019, but the state of free agency may make it more possible than you might think. 

Pump the brakes on Pirates rumors

Monday occasioned a couple of tantalizing Pirates rumors: One, they were in talks with the Dodgers about a possible Starling Marte trade, and two, they're a sleeper candidate to sign Manny Machado. Well, here's Jon Heyman with the requisite supply of cold water ... 

The Pirates' signature move this offseason is probably signing Lonnie Chisenhall, and that figures to remain the case. While every team has the resources to afford a Machado, the Pirates -- like a lot of other teams -- don't seem especially committed to getting better.

Reds, Yankees finally complete deal for Sonny Gray 

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Sonny Gray CIN • SP • 54
ERA4.90
WHIP1.50
IP130.1
BB57
K123

On Monday, the Reds and Yankees finalized a long-rumored deal that sends right-hander Sonny Gray to Cincinnati. Gray at the same time inked a contract extension with the Reds, and then the Yankees flipped the prospect they received from Cincinnati -- Shed Long -- to the Mariners. Get all the details here.

Rangers talking to Buchholz

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Clay Buchholz ARI • SP • 32
ERA2.01
WHIP1.04
IP98.1
BB22
K81

The Rangers have been accumulating rotation depth all winter -- Lance Lynn, Drew Smyly, Shelby Miller -- and it looks like they're not content just yet. Per Jon Heyman of FanCred Sports, the Rangers have been in contact with free-agent right-hander Clay Buchholz:

Buchholz is coming off a resurgent season with the Arizona Diamondbacks in which he posted a 2.01 ERA in 98 innings across 16 starts. While there's no reason to expect him to repeat last season's numbers, and every reason to think he'll miss a fair chunk of time (he hasn't topped 150 innings since 2014), he would make sense as a one-year signing.

Whether or not the Rangers can get a deal done is anyone's guess. But expect someone to give Buchholz a deal, be it Texas or someone else. 

CBS Sports Staff

R.J. Anderson joined CBS Sports in 2016. He previously wrote for Baseball Prospectus, where he contributed to five of the New York Times bestselling annuals. His work has also appeared in Newsweek and... Full Bio

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