February 8, 2023

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Rosenthal: What I hear at the MLB Winter Meetings

In recent weeks, one of the rumors swirling around baseball is that Justin Verlander and Max Scherzer They didn’t like each other, dating back to their time together tigers From 2011 to 2014.

The uproar led me to contact two other members of these Tiger teams to ask if it was true. Both said that Verlander and Scherzer were already competitive with each other as teammates, as one might expect from two Type-A aces. However, none of the previous Tiger thought he would turn me down mets of signing with Verlander and reuniting with Scherzer.

It clearly hasn’t, as Verlander and the Mets agreed on Monday to a two-year, $86.66 million contract with a third-year vesting option. The average annual value of $43.33 million matches Scherzer as the highest in major league history.

Both shooters are much older now—Verlander turns 40 on February 20, and Scherzer turns 38. They both became world championship champions after leaving the Tigers, with Verlander Astros In 2017 and 2022, Scherzer with Citizens In 2019. They both want to win again.

• The Veles Xander Bogaerts was considered a reasonable replacement for Trea Turner. Bogaerts is, in the opinion of a number of clubs, the best hitter among the Big Four shortstops. He has proven that he can play in a demanding market, and can feature in another position, if needed, in the future. May also sign for fewer years than Turner.

The The Padres twice came face to face with Turner, the climate and lifestyle of San Diego appeal to many players. However, Turner is from Florida and his wife is from New Jersey. He thought he would prefer the East Coast. (updated: Tria Turner signed with the Phillies for 11 years, 300 million dollars, according to sources)

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Another thing to consider is a challenge PadresAnd the AngelsAnd the Dodgers And the giants All facials in free agency: California state income tax He is the highest in the nation.

• The free agent market for hunting Christian Vazquez includes the Cubs, basicsPadres Guardians And the twins. The Astros also have an interest in keeping Vázquez, but in more involvement with him Martin Maldonado.

It looks like Vazquez, 32, will be getting a three-year deal. During the postseason, opponents scored just one run in the 33 innings he scored for the Astros, in JT RealmotoTenth inning off a homer Luis Garcia In the first game of the World Series.

While the Astros’ pitching team deserves a lot of credit, Vasquez was behind the plate for the last 12 innings of the Division Series playoffs against sailorsthe shutdown is a combined nine runs of Yankees in Game 3 of the ALCS and a combined no-hitter in Game 4 of the World Series.

• Speaking of the Astros, they are looking at three left-handed batters – Andrew Benintende, Michael Brantley and Michael Conforto.

All three finished the season with various slumps. Benintende, 28, fractured his right hand bone on September 2. Brantley, 35, did not play after June 26 and had surgery on his right shoulder on August 12. He injured his shoulder in January, had surgery in April, and didn’t play at all last season.

• The Angels are looking to get promoted at shortstop and stay in a spending position, but their immediate focus is a way to get rid of the back end.

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For now, Angels’ options are short Andrew VelazquezAnd the Louis Rengifo And the David Fletcher. The big four – Turner, Carlos Correa, Bogaerts and Dansby Swanson – are likely to join clubs better positioned to compete.

Many freebies are still available, but the Angels, like many clubs, are wary of price hikes.

• Finally, here’s Verlander’s career earnings by a decade, now that he’s starting his new contract with the Mets in his 40s.

Twenties: $46.515 million
30s: $271 million
40s: $86.66 million

(Photo: Mark Cunningham/ MLB (Images via Getty Images)