Mets “kicking the tires” on Cody Ross

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According to Mike Puma of the New York Post the Mets are “kicking the tires” on free agent outfielder Cody Ross, which is always one of my favorite go-to phrases of any offseason.

Puma reports that the Mets are unlikely to offer Ross more than two years, but if he’s willing to sign in the same price range as Ryan Ludwick did with the Reds–getting $15 million for two years–he could be an option in New York.

Early in the offseason the assumption was that Ross would wind up back with the Red Sox, but that’s been all but ruled out after Boston signed Shane Victorino, Jonny Gomes, and Mike Napoli.

Report: Giants showed some interest in Phillies’ Maikel Franco at Winter Meetings

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Jim Salisbury of NBC Sports Philadelphia reports that the Giants were “sniffing around” on Phillies third baseman Maikel Franco at the recently completed Winter Meetings.

Franco, 25, would be a nice buy-low candidate for the Giants, who don’t have a reliable third baseman yet. Currently, Pablo Sandoval would get the lion’s share of starts at the hot corner. Franco was a consensus top-100 prospect going into the 2014 and ’15 seasons, but hasn’t lived up to the hype over the last two seasons. In 2017, he hit .230/.281/.409 with 24 home runs and 76 RBI in 623 plate appearances.

Moving Franco wouldn’t necessarily solve any problems for the Phillies. After signing first baseman Carlos Santana, Rhys Hoskins is expected to play in the outfield full-time. As a result, the Phillies have too many outfielders with Odubel Herrera, Nick Williams, and Aaron Altherr. Technically, the Phillies could move Santana to third base as he has experience there, but he hasn’t played the hot corner since 2014.

Franco is arbitration eligible over the next four seasons, which might be the most attractive thing about him to other teams.