Mets and Blue Jays agree “in principle” on seven-player trade involving knuckleballer R.A. Dickey

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We’re finally nearing the finish line, folks.

According to Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports, the Mets and Blue Jays have agreed “in principle” on a seven-player trade that will send knuckleballer R.A. Dickey, catcher Josh Thole and a (non-elite) prospect to Toronto in exchange for catcher Travis d’Arnaud, right-handed pitcher Noah Syndergaard, catcher John Buck and a (non-elite) prospect.

The only hold-up at this point is a 72-hour negotiating window which the Blue Jays will use to attempt to work out a contract extension with their new ace.

That negotiating window expires on Tuesday at 2 p.m. ET.

Dickey, who’s owed just $5 million in 2013, posted a 2.73 ERA, 1.05 WHIP and 230/54 K/BB ratio in 233 2/3 innings this summer for New York en route to capturing Cy Young Award honors in the National League.

Syndergaard and d’Arnaud ranked third and first, respectively, on Baseball America‘s most recent listing of the Blue Jays’ Top 10 prospects. They should be great pieces to build around for the Metropolitans.

Kyle Schwarber is “probably, arguably” in The Best Shape of His Life

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Joe Maddon just held his annual media availability here at the Winter Meetings. During the scrum he said that Kyle Schwarber “looked great the other day” at a Cubs community event and that . . . wait for it . . . “he’s in, probably, arguably in the best shape of his life.” Maddon went on to say that, if Schwarber looks good in spring training, he might even be the Cubs leadoff hitter in 2018.

Schwarber is only 24, but the former catcher turned outfielder is going to spend most of his career as a DH, with another team obviously, unless he shows the Cubs that he can be a regular defender. The Cubs would love to see him in better shape whether they keep him or shop him, and if it’s the latter, they’ll want to show potential trade partners that he can play defense so as not to limit his market. It’s in everyone’s interests for him to be lean, mean and a bit more flexible once spring training starts.

To that end, according to a recent report, Schwarber “has been on a mission this offseason to transform his body.” And now Maddon is playing up the BSOHL angle. Whether that’s salesmanship or not, all eyes are going to be on Schwarber come February.