The winter meetings are firmly in the rearview and while there was a bunch of activity, plenty of big-to-medium-to-possibly-helpful free agents remain. We haven't even really seen much from the trade market to this point in the offseason, either. Simply, there are plenty of offseason transactions to come.
We'll round up the latest from the rumor mill here.
At least three teams after Correa
The biggest-name free agent left on the market is Carlos Correa. He's a two-time All-Star, Platinum Glove winner, has won a World Series championship, finished fifth in MVP voting in 2021 and is still only 28 years old. Given some of the deals we've seen so far this winter, it's reasonable to believe he'll get at least 10 years with around $350 million (or more!) total.
As things stand, the Giants, Cubs and Twins are involved in the bidding for Correa's services, according to Jon Heyman.
That list isn't too surprising. The Cubs are known to be ready to make a big splash as they look to turn the proverbial corner. The Twins had Correa last season and would love to have him back. The Giants seem to have a ton of money burning a hole in their pockets, too, and lost out on Aaron Judge and several others so far in the offseason.
The next step in the bidding process is surely the emergence of a "mystery team," but for now, the odds are one of these three teams inks Correa.
Judge had jaw-dropping offer from Padres
We all know by now that the Yankees retained Aaron Judge on a nine-year, $360 million deal. The New York Post reports that the Padres offered Judge $400 million and that isn't even the "jaw-dropping" part. No, that deal was set to be for 14 years. Fourteen!
Now, Judge surely doesn't have 14 years left in him. He's 30. What matters here is the offer itself shows that at least the Padres -- and others might follow suit -- are willing to go longer in years than the player can play in order to spread out the full payment in order to have a lesser impact in the luxury tax. Yes, deferrals have long been part of payment plans in player contracts, from Bruce Sutter to the notorious Bobby Bonilla deal to Max Scherzer with the Nats. But the luxury tax counts the average annual value for each year of the contract instead of what the player is actually being paid in that specific year. In spreading the deal, officially, to that many years, teams could skirt luxury tax rules.
Unsurprisingly, the report indicates such an agreed-upon deal might force commissioner Rob Manfred to hop into action.
Where is the line? It's hard to tell. The Padres got 30-year-old Xander Bogaerts for 11 years and nothing happened to stop it. But if they went to 14 for Judge, perhaps Manfred would've intervened.
Basically, this is something to watch moving forward.
Cubs interested in Mancini
As noted above, the Cubs are involved in the shortstop market (including Dansby Swanson in addition to Correa), but they are casting a much wider net to fill more holes on the roster. Catcher and one more starting pitcher (Kodei Senga is mentioned) are on the list, according to Bruce Levine of 670 The Score Chicago, as is a 1B/DH type. On the latter front, the Cubs are looking at free agent Trey Mancini.
Mancini, 30, hit .239/.319/.391 (101 OPS+) with 23 doubles, 18 homers and 63 RBI in 519 plate appearances between the Orioles and Astros last season.
Diamondbacks interested in Fujinami
The Diamonbacks are among the teams interested in 6-foot-6 right-handed starting pitcher Shintaro Fujinami, per Nikkan Sports (via MLB Trade Rumors).
Fujinami, 28, is still under contract with NPB's Hanshin Tigers and was posted on Dec. 1, so that means there's a 45-day window in which to negotiate for a contract. If no deal is reached, Fujinami will stay put with Hanshin.
In 25 starts last season in NPB, he was 7-6 with a 2.77 ERA, 1.12 WHIP and 115 strikeouts in 107 1/3 innings.