Update 2 (9:21 PM ET): The Athletics are working on multiple trades, per Rosenthal. His source says GM Billy Beane is “re-working the club”.
Update (9:10 PM ET): Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports says that the trade the Athletics are working on does not, in fact, involve Samardzija. MLB.com’s Jane Lee adds that the player involved isn’t Brandon Moss, either.
Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle reports on Twitter that the Athletics are close to “a fairly significant deal” involving starter Jeff Samardzija. She adds that the Athletics would be getting back several pieces and that the club is targeting hitters.
The Athletics acquired Samardzija and Jason Hammel in a trade with the Cubs in early July, sending prospect Addison Russell as well as Dan Straily and Billy McKinney to the Cubs. Samardzija posted a 3.14 ERA with a 99/12 K/BB ratio over 111 2/3 innings with the A’s. The right-hander is eligible for arbitration for the third and final time, and is projected to earn $9.5 million according to arbitration projections on MLB Trade Rumors.
We’ll keep you updated on the deal as details emerge.
Japanese League commissioner Atsushi Saito announced that Japan’s professional baseball season will open on June 19. Teams can being practice games on June 2. There will be no fans. Indeed, the league has not yet even begun to seriously discuss a plan for fans to begin attending games, though that may happen eventually.
The season will begin three months after its originally scheduled opening day of March 20. It will be 120 games long. Teams in each six-team league — the Central League and Pacific League — will play 24 games against each league opponent. There will be no interleague play and no all-star game.
The announcement came in the wake of a national state of emergency being lifted for both Tokyo and the island of Hokkaido. The rest of the country emerged from the state of emergency earlier this month. This will allow the Japanese leagues to follow leagues in South Korea and Taiwan which have been playing for several weeks.
In the United States, Major League Baseball is hoping to resume spring training in mid June before launching a shortened regular season in early July. That plan is contingent on the league and the players’ union coming to an agreement on both financial arrangements and safety protocols for a 2020 season. Negotiations on both are ongoing. Major League Baseball will, reportedly, make a formal proposal about player compensation tomorrow.