I have a feeling that tonight’s Winter Meetings wrap up is going to be a bit more boring than it was on Monday or Tuesday, don’t you think? Of course, that’s because the Yankees already claimed their big prize last night, signing 29-year-old righty Gerrit Cole to a monstrous nine-year, $324 million contract late last night.
Even though the big business is done, though, there was a lot happening in Yankeeland and around the league. The Meetings will wrap up tomorrow night, and so to will this little mini-series. Anyway, let’s get right to it.
1. Cole, Cole, Cole, Here’s Some More Cole: We have absolutely blasted this website with content related to Gerrit Cole today, as one does. Derek kicked us off with his thoughts this morning. Randy followed up with his take on the Yankees’ white whale. I followed suit this afternoon with my own thoughts after digesting the news a bit. That’s it for our content for now, of course, though there will be more to come.
I’ve rounded up the most interesting tidbits related to the big signing here in addition to my favorite reads of the day. I know if you’re anything like me–and let’s be honest, if you’re reading this site, you are–you probably can’t get enough Cole, so be sure to check out all of this stuff, too. Here’s the latest and the greatest:
- Remember when fans were freaking out about Cashman’s comments? Turns out Cashman already knew the deal was pretty much in place. Absolutely hilarious. (Andy Martino)
- Andy Pettitte, Cole’s favorite Yankee and starting pitcher on the night of the famous Cole photo, played a big role in the negotiations. (Joel Sherman) As I said on Twitter, though, obviously the money mattered more.
- Brian Cashman said the Yankees are always looking to use the “whole toolbox”, including spending a lot of money when necessary. (Erik Boland)
- Hal Steinbrenner okay’d the ninth year himself and the Yankees are rightfully responding to industry blowback with “too bad!” (Jon Heyman) He even spoke directly with Boras to okay the move himself, which got the deal over the finish line. (Buster Olney)
- Alex Cora is sad. (Erik Boland)
And here were some good reads:
- Behind the paywall of The Athletic, Lindsey Adler and Marc Carig each explored the move.
- Zack Kram at The Ringer took a look, too.
- Over at FanGraphs, the great Jay Jaffe took a fairly in-depth look at Cole’s arsenal and projections.
2. Other Yankees News: Believe it or not, there was actually other stuff happening with the Yankees today aside from Gerrit Cole. Crazy, I know. We got an update on the backup catcher situation, heard about Dellin Betances, and that was that. The Yanks will probably re-sign Gardner before the Winter Meetings end and then look to trade Happ. That’s my guess, anyway. Here’s the rundown:
- Austin Romine will likely not return to the Yankees in 2020. (Dan Federico)
- Martin Maldonado might take his place. (Mark Feinsand) He was Cole’s personal catcher with Houston. (Lucas Apostoleris) It would be hilarious to just poach all of the Cole apparatus away from Houston, in my opinion, even if Catcher ERA is the dumbest stat in baseball.
- Signs point to Dellin Betances not returning to the Bronx. (Kristen Ackert)That would suck! Good news is that it’s mostly speculation at this point.
We’ll keep you posted as these storylines develop, of course. Hopefully, it’s a quiet night from here on out. I’d like to get some sleep, but I also want to continue to enjoy Cole Day™.
Around the League
These Winter Meetings have been a whole hell of a lot more eventful than the last few, huh? It’s great. I’m enjoying it. I mean, look at this monster rundown from today:
- MLB’s investigation into the Astros’ sign-stealing operation will extend into the new year. (Ken Rosenthal, subs req’d)
- The Rangers, Nationals, Angels, and Dodgers are engaged with Anthony Rendon. (Ken Rosenthal) The Angels want to get a deal done tonight. (Ken Rosenthal)
- Colorado, for some reason, will entertain offers for Nolan Arenado. (Jon Heyman) The Dodgers are involved in the talks. (Jon Morosi)
- Los Angeles is also in on Francisco Lindor. (Bob Nightengale)
- After missing out on Cole, the Angels are now linked to Cleveland’s Corey Kluber. (Fabian Ardaya)
- Madison Bumgarner may end up with the hated Dodgers. (Ken Rosenthal) The Diamondbacks are also pursuing him.
- The Dodgers signed Blake Treinen to a one-year, $10 million deal. (Jeff Passan) That’s more than he was projected to receive from arbitration before he was non-tenured. I covered Treinen here.
- Rick Porcello has a three-year offer but wants to take a one-year deal to rebuild his value. (Jon Heyman)
- Former Yankee Edwin Encarnación has interest from at least five teams and understandably prefers to remain in the AL. (Jon Heyman)
- Toronto responded to the big Cole signing by inking a deal with Tanner Roark. (Ben Nicholson-Smith and Shi Davidi) It’s a two-year, $24 million deal. (Buster Olney)
- The Nationals and reliever Daniel Hudson have a deal. (Brittney Ghiroli)
- The Brewers and righty Josh Lindbloom signed a deal today, too. (Jeff Passan)
- New York’s other team signed Michael Wacha. (Joel Sherman)
- Miami is linked to Eddie Rosario. (Jon Heyman)
- The league released a study about the balls. Spoiler: they were different, no matter how they frame it. (Jeff Passan)
- Good news! All 30 stadiums will have extended netting next year. (Jon Heyman) It’s about freakin’ time. (Jon Heyman)
- Hawk Harrelson was inexplicably awarded with the 2020 Ford C. Frick Award. (Baseball Hall of Fame)
Enough about these other teams, though Today was such a good day this was for the Yankees. I had a pep in my step all day despite sleeping approximately five minutes last night. Good stuff.