As we count down the days until the CBA expires, there's still some action on the MLB rumor mill. We'll get to that in a second.
First, there was a big signing that happened Monday morning. Left-handed starter Eduardo Rodríguez inked a five-year, $77 million deal with the Tigers as the club looks to turn the corner and put the rebuild in the rearview mirror.
As for the rumors of the day, let's get to it.
Yankees showing interest in Freeman
The most obvious conclusion to Freddie Freeman's free agency is him re-signing with the Braves, possibly for the rest of his career. With him hitting free agency before signing an extension, however, the Braves are certainly risking another team swooping in and grabbing Freeman. We've heard about the Dodgers being a possibility, and now the Yankees have been thrown into the mix. Jon Heyman of MLB Network reports that the Yankees met with Freeman's representatives recently.
Yankees met with reps for all top lefthanded-hitting 1B, including Freddie Freeman. Of course the Braves would seem most likely to retain Freeman, while Rizzo and perhaps trade candidate Olson, among others, may be more realistic for NYY. But it’s worth investigating the great FF— Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) November 15, 2021
Still, it's at least interesting to see the teams outside Atlanta peeking in on Freeman. His lefty bat in Yankee Stadium would be a huge plus in that lineup, too.
Correa and Tigers continue to look like a fit
The Tigers landing Rodríguez on a relatively hefty deal this early in the offseason shows how serious they are about spending money to supplement their young, in-house talent. They need a shortstop and current manager A.J. Hinch was the Astros' manager for the first five years of Carlos Correa's career. Tigers general manager Alex Avila has publicly said that, yes, shortstop is a need, too.
This doesn't necessarily mean the Tigers are favorites for Correa or anything, but they absolutely seem like a great fit. Sure enough, Robert Murray of Fansided reports that the Tigers met this Correa's representatives at the general manager meetings last week.
Correa recently declined the Astros' qualifying offer. Speaking of, here's our updated QO tracker.
Carp expected to post Suzuki soon
According to Joel Sherman of the New York Post, the Hiroshima Toyo Carp of Japan's NPB are expected to announce this week they'll be submitting outfielder Seiya Suzuki to the posting system. Suzuki is expected to draw a lot of interest from MLB teams, to the extent that CBS Sports ranked him as the 15th-best free agent available this winter:
Seiya Suzuki is expected to be submitted through the posting system by the Hiroshima Carp once the Japan Series concludes in late November. He's a five-time All-Star in Nippon Professional Baseball with a career .315/.415/.571 slash line who boasts a well-rounded game. In addition to posting above-average exit velocities, he's walked more than he's struck out in two of the past three years. (In 2020, the exception, he finished with one fewer walk than strikeout.) Suzuki also has a high-grade arm that should allow him to make an impact on defense. The one blemish in his game is that he's not a particularly skilled basestealer. Teams will gladly overlook that.
Once Suzuki is officially posted -- likely after the Japan Series ends in late November -- teams will have 30 days to reach an agreement with him. From there, the Carp will receive a financial payout based on the sum of his contract.
Braves sign Piña
The Braves announced on Tuesday night they had signed veteran catcher Manny Piña to a two-year contract worth $8 million that includes a club option for the 2023 season.
Piña, who had originally made CBS Sports' top-50 free-agent rankings, is a good defender with a tolerable bat. He's expected to serve as Travis d'Arnaud's backup.