69 – Number of days until pitchers and catchers report
116– Number of days until Opening Day
Wednesday brought more free agent signings during what has been a crazy week before the Winter Meetings. However, the big news today is that Major League Baseball (MLB) and Nippon Professional Baseball appear very close to a new deal for the posting system. What is going to happen is that instead of old system in which teams submitted blind bids and the highest bid got the exclusive rights to negotiate with the player, now there will be a maximum bid of $20 million. If multiple teams bid $20 million than all those teams will get the opportunity to negotiate with the player. Basically, this has now become free agency. Only the team that gets the player will have to pay the $20 million posting fee and the luxury tax will apply only to the salary, not the posting fee. Overall, this is a good thing for MLB. It will limit what goes to the Japanese teams and it increases the number of teams that can negotiate with the player. The question is why would the Japanese agree to this new deal. MLB has played hard ball and the Japanese teams and they would rather get the $20 million rather than nothing. Since players in Japan have to wait nine years to become a free agent, they may just revolt and leave the country. Masahiro Tanaka is now in play for several teams and not just the New York Yankees and the Los Angeles Dodgers.
MLB NEWS & NOTES
70 – Number of days until pitchers and catchers report
117 – Number of days until Opening Day
The Winter Meetings begin in Orlando next week, but several teams are not waiting to get to Disney World to start rebuilding their teams. Besides the New York Yankees, the obvious theme from this offseason so far has been the low payroll teams that are spending money to this point. The Oakland Athletics have been the most active team as they just made four moves in the last 30 hours, the Houston Astros and the Minnesota Twins have been adding payroll and the Kansas Royals are in the mix to land Carlos Beltran. These are teams that traditionally don't spend money that are spending money this year. It has been alot of fun to this point and we are just getting started!
MLB NEWS & NOTES