If you are frantically searching for news from MLB teams, relax and enjoy a few days of either presents or silence and maybe work on your lists (you can never have too many lists or update them often enough). Part of the delay in new signing or trades is because the MLB offices in New York are closed until Wednesday.
There is another reason that Michael Bourn and others haven’t been signed yet – the new rules on draft pick compensation require that to be eligible for an extra draft pick teams must have made a $13.3 Million qualifying offer. While this part of the changes is good in eliminating compensatory picks for good middle relievers, there is a downside – in order to sign of the players who was made a qualifying offer that team would forfeit its first round pick (unless they have a top ten pick in which case they forfeit their second round pick.
In addition to the huge amount of money to sign Bourn a team also had to give up a first round pick AND the associated money to sign that draft pick. That is quite a heavy investment. Teams who have a top ten pick – yes like the Cleveland Indians won’t lose their top ten pick but will forfeit their second round pick and slot monies. This not only makes it advantageous for those teams but now enables them to make some very creative trades.
We haven’t seen this yet but I will guess we see at least one of these “sign and trade” deals made soon and Cleveland is in the primary position because now they would only lose their third round pick. So they could sign Bourn, forfeit the third rounder and then trade Bourn to a team that doesn’t want to lose its first round pick for a very good minor leaguer – a better player than they would have been able to draft.
Now we just have to wait until Wednesday to see if teams are smart enough to make one of those trades.
Another team that looks to be on the verge of a trade is the Arizona Diamondbacks who recently signed OF Cody Ross to a three year deal. The problem is that Ross is now the fifth outfielder on that team along with Justin Upton, Jason Kubel, Gerardo Parra, and Adam Eaton. Ross would be a fine platoon partner with Parra so the most likely player to be traded would appear to be Kubel who has one year left at a reasonable $7.5 million. Tampa Bay is a team looking for more power so that might be a good match but any other AL team that has the DH slot might also be interested in Kubel. Of course there is always the chance the Diamondbacks finally find a team that wants to overpay for Upton but the matches there seem hard to find. Having “invested” a lot in SS Didi Gregorius the only thing the DBacks could really want to upgrade their lineup would be a STUD third baseman. Hard to see that trade or one for a number one SP.We will just have to wait and see