Major League Baseball's offseason is here, and with it comes a delightful daily heaping of rumors, news, and notes. Below, you can find all of the most notable to surface on Friday.
Dodgers pondering Judge
The Los Angeles Dodgers on Friday made the somewhat surprising decision to non-tender outfielder and former NL MVP Cody Bellinger. While it's still possible that Bellinger returns to L.A., the non-tender has increased speculation that the Dodgers this offseason will seek to add yet another star to the roster. That star might be Aaron Judge:
With the Yankees last season, Judge set the American League single-season record with 62 home runs, and that plus his other jaw-dropping numbers made him the AL MVP for 2022. The Yankees are expected to bid vigorously to keep him in the fold, but the Dodgers have comparable resources and an even stronger recent commitment to winning. The thought of adding Judge to a lineup that already includes Freddie Freeman, Mookie Betts and Will Smith, among others, is no doubt a tantalizing one for Dodgers fans.
Mets meet with Senga
Kodai Senga, one of the according to The Athletic., recently met with the New York Mets,
Senga, a true free agent (meaning he won't be subjected to the posting system the way most NPB players are), was ranked as the 23rd best free agent available by CBS Sports. Here's what we wrote at the time:
Senga, 29, is expected to pursue a big-league contract this winter after spending the first 11 seasons of his career with the Fukuoka Softbank Hawks of Japan's Nippon Professional Baseball league. He's an accomplished right-hander who posted a 1.89 ERA and a 3.18 strikeout-to-walk ratio this season across 148 innings. Senga's best pitches are his lively mid-90s fastball and his devastating "ghost" forkball, a true out pitch in the majors or anywhere else. He's capable of stair-stepping with that combination, raising the heat before burying the fork. (If he lands in Chicago, maybe his nickname should be The Bear?) He also throws a decent curveball.
Senga's agent, Joel Wolfe, has previously stated that he would like to pitch for a contender located in a big market. Obviously the Mets would meet those predilections.
Yankees on the trading block
Kiner-Falefa, acquired in the same trade that fetched Josh Donaldson earlier this year, had a disappointing first season with the Yankees. He struggled offensively and public-facing defensive metrics were split on his performance with the glove. Kiner-Falefa has one year remaining before he qualifies for free agency.
Torres, meanwhile, has failed to build upon his early career success that saw him make consecutive All-Star teams in his first two seasons. He is coming off his best effort in the Pandemic Era (114 OPS+), but the Yankees are evidently open-minded about moving him all the same. He's two seasons away from free agency.