MLB Free Agency Slowed By Lack Of Impact Talent Available

Shohei Ohtani, Yoshinobu Yamamoto, Josh Hader, Blake Snell represent high-impact talent available in free agency, but beyond them are more complementary players.

Aaron Nola, another frontline starter, was on the open market before re-signing with the Philadelphia Phillies on a seven-year, $172 million contract. Sonny Gray signed with the St. Louis Cardinals for three years and $75 million.

Both deals were signed prior to the start of the 2023 MLB Winter Meetings in Nashville. Some anticipated more movement during the sport’s annual event but Ohtani did not sign and Yamamoto is not expected to hold in-person meetings with teams until this upcoming week.

On Saturday, Ohtani announced he was signing with the Los Angeles Dodgers. His record-setting deal is worth a reported $700 million over 10 years.

As for other free agents available, one general manager was critical of the talent pool and noted that’s partly behind the general lack of movement, according to Bob Nightengale of USA Today:

“There’s just not a lot of good players,” one GM said. “Nobody is jumping out and grabbing mediocre players. And agents are just waiting it out to see if teams start to panic.”

Beyond the top-tier free agents, notable players still available include Cody Bellinger, Jordan Montgomery, Matt Chapman, J.D. Martinez, Jung Hoo Lee, Lourdes Gurriel Jr., Shōta Imanaga, Teoscar Hernández and Rhys Hoskins, among others.

The Dodgers have been connected to Martinez, Kiké Hernández, Michael A. Taylor, Lucas Giolito and Clayton Kershaw, in addition to others.

Quiet free agency could lead to trades

With several teams in searching of starting pitching this offseason, the Chicago White Sox and Milwaukee Brewers could look to strike.

Dylan Cease has drawn interest from the Dodgers, and they also have been mentioned in Corbin Burnes speculation. The Dodgers additionally are thought to have interest in a potential Tyler Glasnow trade, as the Tampa Bay Rays are considered likely to move the right-hander.

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