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Mets to exercise Asdrubal Cabrera’s option for 2018

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Newsday’s Marc Carig reports that the Mets are ‘almost certain’ to pick up Asdrubal Cabrera‘s $8.5 million option for 2018. Cabrera has been vocal about his desire to return to the team next season, too. “I love this team,” he told reporters back in August. “We’ve got good talent now, young guys and they’re learning a little bit. It’s going to be a good team next year if everybody stays healthy.”

Cabrera, 31, didn’t always feel so fortunate to be on the Mets. He reportedly asked for a trade back in June and was dissatisfied with his role as a utility infielder, playing backup to talented young players like Amed Rosario, Dominic Smith and Gavin Cecchini. Nevertheless, he managed to carve out a place for himself in the lineup with a .280/.351/.434 batting line, 14 home runs and 1.3 fWAR in 540 PA. While he didn’t get the same surge in power that he enjoyed back in 2016, his steady contributions and defensive flexibility appear to be convincing enough for the Mets to take another chance on him in 2018.

The Mets could still decline his option, of course, in which case they’d owe him a $2 million buyout. That doesn’t seem likely, however, even with Rosario firmly entrenched at shortstop next season. Cabrera will likely be relegated to second or third base, where he’ll presumably split duties with Wilmer Flores, T.J. Rivera and any offseason acquisitions the Mets pursue.

Giants, Cardinals reportedly have offers on the table for Giancarlo Stanton

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We’re entering what is typically one of the slowest news weeks in the baseball calendar. Occasionally some big free agents sign around now. For example, it was 20 years ago today Andres Galarraga signed with the Braves, and I still remember being in an airport on the way home to visit my parents when I heard the news. I’m an old man.

The biggest news that is likely to happen this offseason is Giancarlo Stanton being traded. That hasn’t happened yet, but here are the latest bits of news on that:

Jon Morosi of MLB Network reports that the Cardinals have made a formal trade offer to the Marlins for Stanton. No word what they’re offering, but the clubs have been in discussion for some time and it has been reported that the Marlins are the most interested in doing a deal with St. Louis due to the prospects they could send to Miami. There is a sense, however, that Stanton would be hesitant to approve a trade to the Cardinals because he prefers to play on the West Coast;

The Giants play on the west coast, and over the weekend they were reported to be the “most aggressive team” in trade talks for Stanton at the moment. Ken Rosenthal reports that the Giants have likewise made an offer. Their farm system is nowhere near as stocked as that of the Cardinals, so it’s unclear whether they have the prospects to make Miami happy. They could, of course, eat a lot of Stanton’s $295 million contract to make up for that, of course, but (a) doing so would put them over the luxury tax; and (b) the Marlins no doubt want to spur a rebuild with a Stanton trade, so if they can’t get some blue chip prospects back in return, what’s the point?

UPDATE: Who knows if this is anywhere close to enough — I’m guessing not — but this is what the Giants reportedly have on the table:

Anyway, that’s where we are as we begin Thanksgiving week.