It’s a bit early for the hot stove to start firing up, but we gotta kill time until the A’s-Tigers game starts, right? According to Daryl Van Schouwen of the Chicago Sun-Times, the White Sox are planning a hard push this offseason for free agent outfielder Curtis Granderson.
Which, OK, the Sox are kind of a mess and need to rebuild, and a 32 year-old outfielder who spent most of 2013 injures is usually not the stuff of rebuilding. At the same time, however, there’s no rule that says every rebuilding club has to level the old structure and start fresh. Granderson could put some butts in seats and, if the Indians and Tigers falter, could put the Sox in something akin to contention with a bounce back year.
OK, now baseball games. We’ll talk about this stuff more in a month.
MLB Network’s Jon Morosi reports that the Orioles have interest in free agent right-hander Alex Cobb, who rejected his one-year, $17.4 million qualifying offer from the Rays earlier this week. Cobb was most recently linked to the Cubs, who reportedly reached out to his agent during the GM Meetings and garnered mutual interest from the righty, but nothing appears to be set in stone yet.
Cobb, 30, completed his sixth season with the Rays in 2017. He went 12-10 in 29 starts and turned in a respectable 3.66 ERA, 6.4 SO/9 and career-best 2.2 BB/9 in 179 1/3 innings. Despite losing a couple of weeks to turf toe, he remained healthy for most of the year and showed no signs of the elbow issues that robbed him of the majority of his 2015-2016 campaigns.
It’s still fairly early for any deals to come to fruition, but Morosi notes that the Orioles seem to be focused on bulking up their rotation during the first few months of the offseason. It’ll take more than a healthy Alex Cobb to right that ship, however: Orioles’ starters earned a collective 5.70 ERA and 5.5 fWAR in 2017, good for worst and fourth-worst marks in the league, respectively. Behind Kevin Gausman and Dylan Bundy (and perhaps Gabriel Ynoa/Miguel Castro), they still need three viable starters to compete in 2018. Whether or not they can afford to spring for a single starter with Cobb’s price tag (four years, $48 million, per MLB Trade Rumors) remains to be seen.