MLB | Mark Feinsand: About a week ago, MLB announced the postponement of spring training games through March 5th. As CBA negotiations keep taking place in Jupiter, FL, the league announced that exhibition games won’t be played until March 8th at the earliest.
Despite nearing an agreement on an amateur draft lottery after a face-to-face meeting between MLB commissioner Rob Manfred and union leader Tony Clark, progress on core economics issues has been minimal and a deal doesn’t look close to being completed. They’ll meet again today with the end-of-February deadline looming to avoid regular season cancellations.
NJ Advance Media | Mike Rosenstein: Jon Heyman of MLB Network reminded us what we knew by now: that the Yankees “called on Carlos Correa” before the lockout. He says, however, that the “likelihood is unclear since it seemed like Seager was higher on the wish list, and Correa was seeking even more $ than Seager got ($330M to $325M).”
One part is clear, though: There will be plenty of competitors for Correa’s services. Heyman listed the Atlanta Braves, Chicago Cubs, Los Angeles Dodgers, Los Angeles Angels, Houston Astros, Toronto Blue Jays, Detroit Tigers, San Francisco Giants, St. Louis Cardinals, and Boston Red Sox as potential suitors. Some of those will surely end up to be much ado about nothing, but someone’s going to pay up for the talented shortstop.
NJ Advance Media | Brendan Kuty: 2009 World Series champion Nick Swisher shared his thoughts about top shortstop prospect Anthony Volpe in an appearance on WFAN. “Everything that kid has, I’m in love with,” he said to Sweeny Murti. “The way he approaches the game. The way he’s just a little kid. The way he wants to get better each and every day. All of those things you’re talking about, are absolutely great.”
Pretty much every prospects publication (including FanGraphs, Baseball America, and Baseball Prospectus) ranked Volpe as the Yankees’ top prospect and a top-20 young talent in baseball.
FanGraphs | Eric Longenhagen, Kevin Goldstein, and Tess Taruskin: The folks at FanGraphs do a wonderful job tracking and evaluating prospects. They have already released their top 100 list and their review of the Yankees’ best minor leaguers. However, another recent article focused on trying to determine which prospects can make 2023’s top 100 list.
They named Trey Sweeney, Roderick Arias, Everson Pereira, and Ken Waldichuk in their report, so it’s refreshing to know that the Yankees have more players who could be considered top-100 prospects one year from now (aside from merely Anthony Volpe, Oswald Peraza, and Jasson Dominguez).
About Sweeney, they said that the team’s 2021 top draft pick “covers the whole plate and has enough power to be dangerous.”
New York Daily News | Deesha Thosar: The New York Mets, despite having more openings in their pitching depth than in the lineup, reportedly “checked in” on free agent first baseman and potential Yankees target Freddie Freeman before the lockout.
Freeman could be an option for the Yankees should they decide to spend big on a first sacker, but there is a more pressing need at shortstop. The 2020 NL MVP slugged 31 home runs and scored 120 times in 2021.
It’s unclear if the Mets will pursue Freeman now after going on a pre-lockout shopping spree late last year, but with Steve Cohen, you should never rule them out.