Recent MLB Player News

Brewers' Mike Moustakas reportedly agrees to one-year deal on Sunday

The Milwaukee Brewers and third baseman Mike Moustakas have reportedly agreed to a one-year contract on Sunday.

What It Means:

Moustakas will remain with the Brewers after reportedly signing a one-year contract on Sunday. Look for the veteran infielder to remain at third while Travis Shaw starts at second base.

In 54 games with Milwaukee last season, Moustakas produced 8 home runs and 33 RBI.

Mallex Smith's (elbow) Opening Day status for Mariners in air

Seattle Mariners outfielder Mallex Smith (right elbow) will be limited the first 7-10 days of spring training, manager Scott Servais said.

What It Means:

The Mariners expect Smith to be an everyday starter in center field and the injury is to his throwing arm, so the club understandably wants to err on the side of caution with his recovery. "I don’t know right now," Servais replied when asked if Smith would be ready for Opening Day. "I don’t know if you are going to have a good idea until he picks up a ball again. We’re just trying to let it calm down." Smith, 25, was acquired in a trade with the Tampa Bay Rays earlier this offseason and is expected to be an elite source of steals in 2019.

Smith slashed .296/.367/.406 with 40 stolen bases over 141 games (544 plate appearances) last season, adding 65 runs scored, 40 RBI, and 2 taters.

Ronald Acuna may lead off for Braves again this season

Atlanta Braves outfielder Ronald Acuna could bat leadoff again this season, manager Brian Snitker said.

What It Means:

"There's a few different ways we could go that are all really good," Snitker said. "We're just going to wait to see where we're at in a couple weeks. All those things will play itself out. You've got to start somewhere with a lineup. Then you kind of adjust and adapt as it goes and as players go, kind of similar to last year." Acuna said he enjoys leading off and would prefer to stay there. The reigning National League Rookie of the Year Award winner posted his best numbers at the top of the order in 2018, with a .328/.409/.634 slash and 1.042 OPS over 301 plate appearances.

The 21-year-old slashed .293/.366/.552 with 26 home runs, 64 RBI, 78 runs scored, and 16 steals across 487 plate appearances during last year's rookie campaign.

Source: MLB.com

Pirates' Jameson Taillon will start on Opening Day

Pittsburgh Pirates pitcher Jameson Taillon will be the Opening Day starter against the Cincinnati Reds.

What It Means:

Taillon will be the Pirates' Opening Day starter for the 2019 season after being picked to pitch against the Cincinnati Reds. The Pirates' rotation for the first week after Taillon will be Trevor Williams, Joe Musgrove, and then Chris Archer.

Look for Taillon to build off a successful 2018 season where he pitched to a 14-10 record with a 3.20 ERA and 179 strikeouts.

Orioles sign shortstop Alcides Escobar to minor league contract on Saturday

The Baltimore Orioles signed shortstop Alcides Escobar to a minor league contract on Saturday.

What It Means:

Escobar will join the Orioles after agreeing to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training. Look for Escobar to provide depth at second base and shortstop primarily.

In 140 games last season, Escobar produced 112 hits and 8 stolen bases.

Source: Joe Trezza

Yankees' CC Sabathia will retire after 2019 season

New York Yankees starting pitcher CC Sabathia will retire after the 2019 season.

What It Means:

Sabathia held a press conference on Saturday to announce the 2019 season will be his last. The veteran will head into his 19th year with a career record of 246-153 and 2986 strikeouts in 538 starts.

In ten seasons with the Yankees, Sabathia has pitched to a 129-80 record with 1593 strikeouts.

Source: MLB.com

Yankees' Luis Severino agrees to four-year $40 million dollar extension on Friday

New York Yankees starting pitcher Luis Severino will avoid arbitration after agreeing to a four-year $40 million dollar extension on Friday.

What It Means:

Severino will continue serving as the ace of the Yankees' starting staff after agreeing to a four-year extension on Friday. Look for the 24-year old to build off his strong 2018 season despite struggling after the All-Star break.

In 32 starts last season, Severino went 19-8 with a 3.39 ERA and 220 strikeouts.

Source: MLB.com

Nick Senzel could start for Reds in 2019

Cincinnati Reds manager David Bell said that it is "very possible" that prospect Nick Senzel will be the starting center fielder.

What It Means:

Senzel has never played in the outfield, but the Reds are confident he can make the transition. "Having never seen him on the field, my first impression was, 'This guy can really move. He's an athlete. This is more than possible,'" Bell told reporters. Senzel may have to wait until mid-to-late April to make his MLB debut due to service time rules, but it shouldn't be long before the 23-year-old becomes an everyday player for Cincinnati.

Senzel slashed .310/.378/.509 in 44 games (193 plate appearances) at Triple-A Louisville in 2018 before suffering a season-ending finger injury in June.

Yangervis Solarte, Giants reportedly agree to terms

The San Francisco Giants have agreed to terms on a contract with infielder Yangervis Solarte, reports Robert Murray of The Athletic.

What It Means:

Murray adds that the deal is pending a physical. Solarte primarily played third base while appearing in 122 games for the Toronto Blue Jays last season, but he can contribute all over the infield. Solarte turns 32 in July.

Solarte slashed .226/.277/.378 with 17 home runs, 54 RBI, and 50 runs scored across 506 plate appearances in 2018.

Blue Jays' Vladimir Guerrero Jr.'s MLB debut undetermined

Toronto Blue Jays top prospect Vladimir Guerrero Jr.'s MLB debut has "no firm timeline," general manager Ross Atkins said Thursday.

What It Means:

Guerrero Jr. likely won't debut until mid-to-late April due to baseball's service time rules. He turns 20 next month.

Vlad Jr. turned in a phenomenal .381/.437/.636 batting line with 20 home runs, 78 RBI, and 67 runs scored over 95 games (408 plate appearances) last season across four different levels of the Blue Jays' minor league system.

Jacob deGrom named Mets' Opening Day starter

New York Mets pitcher Jacob deGrom will be the club's Opening Day starter, manager Mickey Callaway announced Thursday.

What It Means:

deGrom is the reigning National League Cy Young Award winner and coming off an absolutely dominant campaign, so it would have been shocking if Callaway named anyone else. The Mets tee the 2019 season off in Washington against the Nationals on March 28.

The 30-year-old right-hander led the majors with a 1.70 ERA last season, the sixth-lowest ERA among qualified pitchers since Major League Baseball lowered the mound in 1969. He also struck out 269 batters over 217 innings.

Source: Mike Puma

Angels' Shohei Ohtani (elbow) not expected to be ready to DH until May

Los Angeles Angels pitcher/designated hitter Shohei Ohtani (elbow) is not expected to be ready to play until May, per manager Brad Ausmus.

What It Means:

Ohtani underwent Tommy John surgery on his elbow this offseason and will not be able to pitch in 2019. He will, however, be able to remain the Angel's primary DH, but not until May at the earliest. Albert Pujols and Justin Bour will likely cover first base and DH until Ohtani is ready to play.

Ohtani slashed .285/.361/.564 with 22 homers, 61 RBI, and 10 steals in 367 plate appearances in 2018.

Free agent Bryce Harper currently not considering short-term deals

Free-agent outfielder Bryce Harper will not sign or even consider any short-term deals, per Jon Heyman of MLB Netowrk.

What It Means:

With pitchers and catchers already have reported, the saga of Harper and free agency continues to drag on. The outfielder has been tied to the Philadelphia Phillies, San Francisco Giants, San Diego Padres, and Washington Nationals but there appears to be no clear favorite at the moment. Harper is looking for a 10-year, $300M offer, but seems unlikely to get one now.

Harper slashed .249/.393/.496 with 34 home runs, 100 RBI, and a league-high 130 walks over 695 plate appearances in 2018.

Francisco Lindor (calf) expected to be out nearly two months

Cleveland Indians shortstop Francisco Lindor will reportedly miss about the next two months after suffering a calf strain.

What It Means:

The Indians said Lindor "is expected to return to Major League game activity in 7-to-9 weeks," and opening Day is in exactly seven weeks from now. He'll be cutting it close based on this timeline, but there's enough time for him to recover in time to start the season healthy.

In 158 games last season, Lindor hit for a .277 batting average with 38 home runs, 129 runs, 92 RBI, 25 stolen bases and an OPS of .871.

Astros' Carlos Correa awarded $5 million in arbitration

Houston Astros shortstop Carlos Correa has won his arbitration case against the team.

What It Means:

Correa was offered $4.25 million for his services this season, but after taking the case to mediators, he was awarded the full $5 million he requested.

In 110 games last season, Correa hit for a .239 batting average with 15 home runs, 60 runs, 65 RBI and an OPS of .728.

Source: Jon Heyman

Tommy Pham wins arbitration case with Tampa Bay

Tampa Bay Rays outfielder Tommy Pham has won his arbitration in the amount of $4.1 million.

What It Means:

Pham was offered a salary of $3.5 million by Tampa Bay, but he decided to go to arbitration. It worked out for Pham, as he received a $600,000 raise.

In 137 games last season, Pham hit for a .275 batting average with 21 home runs, 102 runs, 63 RBI, 15 stolen bases and an OPS of .830.

Source: Jon Heyman

Yankees trade starting pitcher Sonny Gray to the Reds

The New York Yankees have traded pitchers Sonny Gray and Reiver Sanmartin to the Cincinnati Reds in exchange for infielder Shed Long and a 2019 competitive balance pick.

What It Means:

After the trade, Gray agreed to a three-year, $30.5M contract extension with Cincinnati. The starting pitcher hopes a reunion with former college pitching coach Derek Johnson will help him bounce back from an awful season in New York. The 29-year is just three seasons removed from finishing third in the AL CY Young voting and making his lone All-Star appearance.

Gray posted a 4.90 ERA and 1.49 WHIP with 123 strikeouts in 103 1/3 innings pitched for the Yankees in 2018. He owns a career ERA of 3.66 and 155-146 record in 6 seasons.

Ben Gamel dealt to Milwaukee on Friday by Seattle

The Seattle Mariners have traded outfielder Ben Gamel, along with minor-leaguer Noah Zavolas to the Milwaukee Brewers in exchange for outfielder Domingo Santana.

What It Means:

Gamel likely will start the season in Triple-A for Milwaukee as their outfield is already full with Christin Yelich, Ryan Braun, and Lorenzo Cain penciled in as starters. The soon-to-be 27-year-old Gamel played in over 230 games for the Mariners the last two seasons.

Gamel batted .272 with 1 homer and 7 steals in 293 plate appearances in 2018.

Mariners acquire Domingo Santana from Milwaukee

The Milwaukee Brewers have traded outfielder Domingo Santana to the Seattle Mariners in exchange for outfielder Ben Gamel and minor leaguer Noah Zavolas.

What It Means:

The Brewers were destined to make a move with their crowded outfield, but it's a surprise they waited until the offseason. At just 26, Santana likely figures into the M's long-term rebuilding plans.

Santana batted .265 with 5 homers in 235 plate appearances in 2018 but also had a 30-homer season in 2017.

Kyle Farmer headed to Cincinnati in seven-player trade

Los Angeles Dodgers center Kyle Farmer has been traded to the Cincinnati Reds in a seven-player deal on Friday.

What It Means:

Farmer will be headed to the Reds along with Matt Kemp, Yasiel Puig and Alex Wood. Coming back to the Dodgers are Homer Bailey, Jeter Downs and Josiah Gray. Farmer will likely slot in behind Tucker Barnhart.

In 39 games last season, Farmer hit for a .235 batting average with a .635 OPS.

Dodgers move Yasiel Puig to Cincinnati on Friday

The Los Angeles Dodgers traded outfielder Yasiel Puig in a seven player deal with the Cincinnati Reds on Friday.

What It Means:

Puig will finally be moved to a new home after being part of trade rumors for almost his whole Dodgers' career. The talented outfielder should be a full-time starter as a Red.

Puig finished 2018 with 23 home runs and 63 RBI in 125 games.

Alex Wood traded to Cincinnati in seven-player deal

Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Alex Wood has been traded to the Cincinnati Reds in a seven-player deal.

What It Means:

Heading to Cincinnati with Wood are Yasiel Puig, Matt Kemp and Kyle Farmer. Coming back to Los Angeles are Homer Bailey and prospects Jeter Downs and Josiah Gray. This trade opens up some luxury tax room for the Dodgers, who are in pursuit of multiple big-name free agents.

In 151.7 innings last season, Wood had a 9-7 record with a 3.68 ERA and a 1.21 WHIP.

Cincinnati Reds acquire outfielder Matt Kemp in multi-player trade on Friday

The Cincinnati Reds traded Homer Bailey, Jeter Downs and Josiah Gray to the Los Angeles Dodgers for Alex Wood, Matt Kemp, Yasiel Puig, and Kyle Farmer.

What It Means:

The Reds and Dodgers made a blockbuster trade on Friday, swapping a total of seven players including outfielder Matt Kemp. Expect Kemp to platoon with Jesse Winker in left field next season.

Kemp finished 2018 with 134 hits including 21 home runs and 85 RBI.

Reds ship Homer Bailey to Los Angeles in seven-player deal

Cincinnati Reds starting pitcher Homer Bailey has been traded to the Los Angeles Dodgers in a seven-player deal.

What It Means:

Bailey will head to the bright lights of Los Angeles along with prospects Jeter Downs and Josiah Gray. In return, the Dodgers will send back Alex Wood, Matt Kemp, Yasiel Puig and Kyle Farmer. With Bailey owed $25M, it's expected that the Dodgers cut him imminently.

In 106.3 innings last year, Bailey went 1-14 with a 6.09 ERA and a 1.64 WHIP.

Angels sign Matt Harvey to 1-yr, $11M deal

MLB.com's Mark Feinsand reports that free agent pitcher Matt Harvey has agreed to a contract with the Los Angeles Angels.

What It Means:

The deal is reportedly for one-year, $11M with another $3M available with incentives. The soon-to-be 30-year-old Harvey hopes he can rebuild his value with a strong year in pitcher-friendly Angels Stadium, before pursuing one last long-term deal in 2019.

Havery posted a 4.94 ERA and 1.30 WHIP with 131 strikeouts in 155 innings between the New York Mets and Cincinnati Reds in 2018.

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