Manny Machado
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Report: White Sox offered Machado eight-year, $250 million deal

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Free agent Manny Machado doesn’t appear any closer to accepting a major league deal these days, but we may be starting to get a better idea of the offers that are on the table — at least when it comes to the White Sox. Héctor Gómez of Z Digital reports that the club proposed an eight-year, $250 million offer to Machado, a full $75 million above the previously (and erroneously) reported seven-year, $175 million deal that was said to be in play. Naturally, neither Machado’s agent nor the White Sox have confirmed the report.

There’s no clear indication that Machado has been leaning toward any particular team of late, though the White Sox, Phillies, and Padres are thought to be among his primary suitors. On Friday, analyst and former general manager Jim Duquette suggested that the Yankees had also extended a seven- to eight-year, $220 million deal to the 26-year-old infielder. He added that “a lot of teams” were in the same range, making the Yankees’ offer somewhat underwhelming, but later walked back all of his statements as pure speculation. While stands to reason that any organization truly invested in bringing the All-Star on board would be mulling over a contract of similar length and price, no one seems to be closing in on the 10-year, $300+ million figure Machado’s camp is reportedly seeking, either.

As for the lack of movement in the free agent market, The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal spoke to several reasons behind the long wait for Machado and fellow free agent Bryce Harper to find a landing spot this winter. He maintained that both players are anticipating future offers north of $300 million, which creates something of a conundrum for teams who, like the White Sox, are unwilling to jump into a fruitless bidding war. Rosenthal also pointed out that while the Padres have been the most transparent in their pursuit of Machado so far, that kind of strategy may work against them if the Phillies or White Sox (or an as-yet undisclosed mystery team) decide to up the ante in the weeks to come.

Giants nearing deal with Cameron Maybin

Cameron Maybin
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The Giants are finalizing a minor league deal for free agent outfielder Cameron Maybin, according to Andrew Baggarly and Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic. The team has not confirmed the signing, but it’s in keeping with their stated goal of adding more veteran presence and outfield options to their roster in advance of the 2019 season.

Maybin, 31, appeared in back-to-back gigs with the Marlins and Mariners in 2018. He slashed an underwhelming .249/.326/.336 with four home runs, 10 stolen bases (in 15 chances), a .662 OPS, and 0.5 fWAR through 384 plate appearances for the two clubs, a clear improvement over his totals in 2017 but still shy of the career numbers he posted with the Padres all the way back in 2011. It’s not only his offense that has tanked, but his speed and defense in center field, all of which he’ll try to improve as he jockeys for a roster spot in camp this month.

The Giants’ outfield has been largely depleted of any kind of consistent talent lately, especially taking into account the recent departures of Hunter Pence, Gregor Blanco, and Gorkys Hernández. Even with the acquisition of, say, All-Star right fielder Bryce Harper, there’s nothing standing in the way of Maybin and fellow veteran signee Gerardo Parra grabbing hold of full- or part-time roles this year, though they’ll need to outperform candidates like Chris Shaw, Steven Duggar, Drew Ferguson, Mac Williamson, Austin Slater, Craig Gentry, Mike Gerber, and others first.

In a previous report on Friday, Baggarly revealed that a “handshake understanding” had been established with several veteran players already this offseason, all but guaranteeing them regular starting opportunities over the course of the season. How those agreements will be affected by spring training performances remains to be seen, but at least for now, the Giants appear prepared to give their newest players a long leash as they try to get back on top in the NL West.