According to David Lennon of Newsday, Carlos Beltran indicated that he would consider waiving his no-trade clause this winter. Newsday has that pesky paywall, so go ahead and read the full story here.
“I have to,” Beltran said. “I have to do what’s best for me and they
have to do what’s best for them. I want to win. I want to win a
championship before I’m gone from this game, so I have to listen to them
and what they have to say. If it works for everybody, then it works for
everybody. Right now, I’m not thinking about that. Let’s just hope next
year we can be better.”
There’s a certain segment of Mets fans that have never liked Beltran at all, so I can only imagine what the conversation will be on New York sports talk radio after hearing this.
Beltran, who underwent right knee surgery in January, is batting just .222/.336/.333 with two home runs, 14 RBI and a 669 OPS over 126 at-bats this season. In addition to his lack of production at the plate, he also hasn’t looked nearly as spry in center field with that anchor of a knee brace has has to wear.
Believe it or not, next year is the final year of his seven-year, $119 million contract. Even if the 33-year-old enjoys a fantastic finish this season, the Mets would likely have to take on a substantial portion of his $18.5 million salary for next season in a potential trade.
According to Jorge Castillo of the Washington Post, Nationals infielder Danny Espinosa declined to attend the team’s annual Winterfest because of his dissatisfaction with management following their trade for outfielder Adam Eaton.
A source told Castillo that Espinosa’s unhappiness stemmed from a belief that the acquisition would jeopardize his starting role in 2017. With Eaton in center field, Trea Turner will likely return to his post at shortstop, leaving Espinosa out in the cold — or, as the case may be, on the bench. The move shouldn’t come as a big surprise to Espinosa, however, as Nationals’ GM Mike Rizzo spoke to the possibility of trading the infielder or reassigning him to a utility role back in early November.
Offensively, the 29-year-old had a down year in 2016, slashing just .209/.306/.378 with 24 home runs in 601 PA. Defensively, he still profiles among the top shortstops in the National League, with eight DRS (Defensive Runs Saved) and 8.3 Def (Defensive Runs Above Average) in his seventh year with the club.
Espinosa will reach free agency after the 2017 season.
The Red Sox might be trying to move the wrong pitcher, according to the Boston Globe’s Nick Cafardo. Cafardo revealed that while the Sox have been trying to market right-hander Clay Buchholz, more teams would be interested in trades involving southpaw Drew Pomeranz.
The club appears reluctant to deal Pomeranz, especially because his price tag comes in at a cool $4.7 million to Buchholz’s $13.5 million in 2017. Those who have already expressed interest in the veteran hurlers, including the Twins, Mariners and Royals, also seem put off by Buchholz’s salary requirements as he enters his 32nd year.
Health could be another factor preventing teams from jumping to make trade offers, as Cafardo quotes an AL executive who believes the “medicals on both Pomeranz and Buchholz probably aren’t that great.” Neither pitcher suffered any major injuries during the 2016 season, though Pomeranz missed just over a week of play due to forearm soreness.
Pomeranz outperformed his fellow starter in 2016, pitching to a 3.32 ERA and career-best 9.8 K/9 through 170 2/3 innings with the Padres and Red Sox. He got off to an exceptionally strong start in San Diego, where his ERA dropped to 2.47 through the first half of the year before the Padres dealt him to Boston for minor league right-hander Anderson Espinoza. Buchholz, on the other hand, struggled with a 4.78 ERA and saw a decline in both his BB/9 and K/9 rates as he worked out a career-low 1.69 K/BB through 139 1/3 innings with the Sox.