Kendrys Morales is looking for “Billy Butler money”

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Kendrys Morales hit just .218/.274/.338 with eight home runs and 42 RBI in 98 games this past season between the Mariners and Twins, but the Scott Boras client is again aiming high on the free agent market.

ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick heard from an American League executive Monday at the Winter Meetings that the 31-year-old designated hitter is seeking “multiple years and substantial dollars.” Specifically, Morales is said to want “Billy Butler money.”

Butler snagged a three-year, $30 million free agent deal from the Athletics in mid-November.

Good luck with all that, Kendrys.

Yasmani Grandal signs a four-year, $73 million deal with the White Sox

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The first truly big free agent signing of the offseason has gone down: the Chicago White Sox just announced that they have signed catcher Yasmani Grandal to a four-year, $73 million deal.

Grandal, 31, was the best catcher available in free agency. He is coming off a fine year with the Milwaukee Brewers, with whom he had to settle for a one-year pact in 2019. He hit .246/.380/.468 with 28 homers and 77 driven in. It was his fourth straight season with 20+ homers. While his catching has been criticized due to some high-profile mistakes in the postseason, the two-time All-Star once again proved himself to be one of the best pitch-framers in the game if not the best. Between the bat and the glove he has a claim to being one of the best all-around catchers in baseball.

The signing leaves open the question of what happens to James McCann, who was himself an All-Star this year. It’s not that hard a question, of course, as Grandal is a far superior catcher to McCann in every respect. The Sox could make McCann a backup. Alternatively, they could try to trade him to fill other holes on the roster.

The White Sox finished 72-89 in 2019 but are showing signs of coming out of rebuilding mode and into contention mode. This signing pushes them a big step into that direction.