King of clubs? Teams start to show cards at winter meetings


LAS VEGAS (AP) — Deal the New York Yankees in for the Manny Machado tournament. And J.T. Realmuto? A lot of teams already are sitting at that table.

The baseball winter meetings began in earnest along the Vegas Strip on Monday, and clubs slowly started to show their cards.

Noah Syndergaard and Zack Wheeler are attracting trade interest, the Mets say. Corey Kluber and Madison Bumgarner keep popping up in swap speculation. But still no indication of where hometown slugger Bryce Harper might go.

A couple of moves got done — speedy outfielder Billy Hamilton sprinted to the Kansas City Royals, pitcher Tyson Ross went to Detroit.

The Yankees, as usual, were on the prowl.

GOP Rep Moves to Institute Death Penalty for Child Sex Abusers: 'Let's See Who Tries to Protect Pedophiles'

Always ramping up the rivalry with the champion Boston Red Sox, the Yankees linked themselves to Machado. General manager Brian Cashman said he’s been talking to the infielder’s agent.

“So we are definitely focused in the marketplace on those areas of need and he, obviously, is available and solves that area of need,” Cashman said. “So, not going to deny we’ve had a conversation. Or two.”

Whether that’s substance or merely a smoke screen, the Yankees could use help with shortstop Didi Gregorius expected to miss at least half of next season while recovering from Tommy John surgery.

Realmuto, the prized Miami catcher, is highly coveted.

“I think a lot of teams are taking to the Marlins. I would anticipate his market picking up while we’re down here,” new Mets GM Brodie Van Wagenen said.

Not so fast, countered Miami manager Don Mattingly.

“I look at him as part of our club,” he said.

“He knows how much we like him and what we think about him. He’s handling everything fine. J.T.’s a tough kid. He’s a big-time leader. It’s why we love him. It’s why a lot of teams love him,” he said.

Maybe Realmuto gets traded before the meetings end Thursday, maybe not. In the meantime, don’t expect any movement on contentious MLB-wide issues.

Caitlin Clark and Iowa Fall to Undefeated South Carolina in Epic March Madness Showdown

Sure, there’s a lot of discussion about banning or limiting shifts. And plenty of debate about ways to spark offense.

But in a sign that nothing is imminent, Commissioner Rob Manfred isn’t planning to attend the annual gathering.

Also in play:


Phillies manager Gabe Kapler plans to be publicly critical of his players more in his second season after his team’s late fade.

Philadelphia led the NL East in early August, then went 16-33 and wound up with its sixth straight losing season.

“One thing that I can do immediately that I think will really resonate well with our fans in Philadelphia is … as much as I illuminate some of the things we’re doing very well, I can be a little more assertive in illuminating the things that we need to work on. And I’m committed to taking that step,” he said.


The Seattle Mariners made an interesting move, claiming infielder Kaleb Cowart on waivers from the Los Angeles Angels and also announcing him as a right-handed pitcher. A prep star on the mound and at the plate, the 26-year-old Cowart has not pitched since the Angels drafted in the first round in 2010. He hit .134 with 10 RBIs in 47 games with Los Angeles last season.


Tampa Bay manager Kevin Cash will continue the strategy he began last season — namely, using relief pitchers to start games.

“I think right now we’re discussing internally whether we do it two times through the rotation or three times through the rotation,” Cash said.

Cash might move around more guys on the diamond, too.

“I’m personally a big fan of shifting. And I think we’re going to see it, we’ve already seen the infield take over heavily. I think we’re going to see more outfield shifting,” he said.


More AP MLB: and

The Western Journal has not reviewed this Associated Press story prior to publication. Therefore, it may contain editorial bias or may in some other way not meet our normal editorial standards. It is provided to our readers as a service from The Western Journal.

Truth and Accuracy

Submit a Correction →

We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.

The Associated Press is an independent, not-for-profit news cooperative headquartered in New York City. Their teams in over 100 countries tell the world’s stories, from breaking news to investigative reporting. They provide content and services to help engage audiences worldwide, working with companies of all types, from broadcasters to brands. Photo credit: @AP on Twitter
The Associated Press was the first private sector organization in the U.S. to operate on a national scale. Over the past 170 years, they have been first to inform the world of many of history's most important moments, from the assassination of Abraham Lincoln and the bombing of Pearl Harbor to the fall of the Shah of Iran and the death of Pope John Paul.

Today, they operate in 263 locations in more than 100 countries relaying breaking news, covering war and conflict and producing enterprise reports that tell the world's stories.
New York City