Manny Machado has been one of the game’s best players since debuting in 2012, and he is set to cash in as a first-time free agent this offseason.
Below you will find a list of the latest News and rumors surrounding the infielder.
Yankees’ negotiations with Machado are “either dormant or completely dead”
Jan. 13: After the Yankees have bolstered their infield depth with a pair of veteran former Rockies — second baseman DJ LeMahieu and shortstop Troy Tulowitzki — to go along with promising third baseman Miguel Andujar and second baseman Gleyber Torres, the club might have swung significant leverage in its favor in any potential negotiations with Machado.
In a piece published on Sunday, ESPN’s Buster Olney writes (subscription required) that the Yankees’ negotiations with Machado “are either dormant or completely dead.”
Andujar has long been a speculated trade chip given his breakout rookie campaign and his club control through the 2023 season. But his defense has been a glaring liability at times — Andujar was worth minus-25 Defensive Runs Saved in 2018, per FanGraphs, which was by far the lowest among qualified third basemen. Machado, however, has been one of the Majors’ most elite at the position, though he’s made it clear that he’d ideally like to play shortstop.
The Yankees, per Olney, believe that Andujar’s work ethic could be a propellant for the 23-year-old to make significant strides defensively. If they are committed to a patient approach, the Yankees could avoid shelling out another megadeal to land Machado, even though they are among a handful of clubs with the financial bandwidth capable of doing so.
Machado met with the Yankees in December, along with the White Sox and Phillies. It’s believed that he would choose among those three clubs, though it’s unclear if or what New York’s offer currently is. Machado’s representatives are currently telling his suitors that there is a mystery club involved, per MLB Network insider Jon Heyman.
After meeting with Harper, Phillies optimistic
Jan. 12: Phillies executives Traveled to Las Vegas to meet with superstar free agent Bryce Harper on Saturday, and according to Matt Breen of the Philadelphia Inquirer, they emerged from the meeting “optimistic” about their chances to land either Harper or fellow 26-year-old free agent Manny Machado this offseason.
In addition to the Phillies, the other clubs seen as frontrunners to land Harper on what may be an unprecedented deal are the Nationals and White Sox. Philadelphia and Chicago are also seen as the frontrunners in the chase for Machado. As Breen notes, one area in which the Phillies may be able to stand out is the sheer amount of money they can offer either superstar. Phillies owner John Middleton said earlier this offseason that the club might be “a little stupid” in how it spends its money.
So should money be the ultimate deciding factor, the Phillies may be the favorite. Philadelphia recently hired a mentor of Machado’s, former Orioles third-base coach Bobby Dickerson, as infield coach. And that came after the White Sox traded for Machado’s brother-in-law Yonder Alonso and signed close friend Jon Jay.
Both Harper and Machado are reportedly looking to exceed the record contract Giancarlo Stanton received from the Marlins in 2014, which was for 13 years and $325 million. MLB Network insider Jon Heyman reported that the amounts on the table in Machado’s case are closer to $200 million than they are to $300 million.
Meanwhile, MLB Network Radio on SiriusXM analyst and former MLB general manager Jim Bowden reported Washington made an offer well north of $300 million to Harper, after it initially offered 10 years and $300 million toward the end of the regular season. MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand wrote earlier in the week that momentum appeared to be building for a Harper-Nationals reunion.
A mystery team pushing hard for Machado?
Jan. 11: While the focus in Manny Machado’s free agency so far has been on three clubs — the Phillies, White Sox and Yankees — New York has agreed to a two-year deal with infielder DJ LeMahieu, MLB Network insider Mark Feinsand confirmed, and there may also be a mystery team involved in the Machado chase, according to MLB Network insider Jon Heyman.
Heyman reported earlier this week that Machado is looking for a contract north of the record $325 million deal the Marlins gave Giancarlo Stanton back in 2014, but that no offers on the table had been near that amount. Phillies owner John Middleton famously said earlier this offseason that the organization might be “a little stupid” about how it spends its money, ramping up speculation that Philadelphia was going to make a huge bid for either Machado or fellow 26-year-old free agent Bryce Harper. The Phillies also reportedly hired Machado mentor Bobby Dickerson as bench coach on Thursday.
Likewise, the White Sox have been aggressive this offseason, making several moves including the acquisition of Machado’s brother-in-law Yonder Alonso and close friend Jon Jay.
But is there a mystery team, and if so, which club might it be?
After signing LeMahieu, are the Yankees out on Machado?
Jan. 11: Didi Gregorius‘ elbow injury, which led to Tommy John surgery in October, has caused the Yankees to be more aggressive than expected on the free-agent market with regards to infielders, and they have been connected to Manny Machado for months.
But the Yanks raised some doubts about their place in the Machado sweepstakes by signing Troy Tulowitzki, and New York’s latest move might just close the door entirely on the superstar infielder landing in the Big Apple.
According to MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand, the Yankees have agreed to a two-year deal with former Rockies second baseman DJ LeMahieu. Per Feinsand, New York plans to use LeMahieu as a utility infielder, giving him time at second, third and first. As Feinsand points out, LeMahieu also gives the Yankees insurance against a Tulowitzki injury, as the club could plug in the 30-year-old at second base every day and move Gleyber Torres to shortstop.
Despite Machado’s reported preference to play in New York, the Yankees were already running behind the Phillies and the White Sox in terms of interest, according to MLB.com’s Jon Paul Morosi, and this move further narrows the 26-year-old’s chances of signing with the Yanks.
Even without Gregorius, who can become a free agent after the upcoming season, the Yankees have a glut of infielders, including Torres, Tulowitzki, LeMahieu, Miguel Andujar, Greg Bird and Luke Voit.
Jim Bowden of MLB Network Radio on SiriusXM thinks the Yankees can be crossed off the list of Machado suitors.
“This takes them out on Machado, it means they’re done,” Bowden said. “I’m going to jump to conclusions without any confirmation from the Yankees. None. No confirmation, no inside information. But I don’t know why LeMahieu is going to sign this deal with the Yankees if they’re going to sign Manny.
“I got the impression all along that [Yankees principal owner] Hal Steinbrenner did not want to give that kind of years and money to Machado … and this backs it up. So that leaves Machado probably to the White Sox or Phillies at this point.”
But MLB Network insider Ken Rosenthal writes in an article for The Athletic, that he’ll believe the Yanks are out on Machado only when the superstar dons another club’s uniform.
“This is not to say the Yankees are ‘in’ on Machado, not after reaching agreement on Friday with free-agent second baseman DJ LeMahieu on a two-year, $24 million contract,” Rosenthal writes. “But I’m guessing the Yankees will follow their usual practice. Stay in contact with Machado’s agent, Dan Lozano. Wait for the market to fully form. Then decide at the end if they are willing to meet Machado’s price.”
Rosenthal cites many past examples in which the Yankees have seemingly come out of nowhere to snatch up marquee players via free agency or trade, including Giancarlo Stanton last offseason, Mark Teixeira prior to the 2009 season, and Johnny Damon prior to the ’06 season. He also notes that the Teixeira and Damon moves were under George Steinbrenner, and since Hal Steinbrenner has been at the helm, New York has been conscious about getting under the luxury tax threshold.
“Still, after they spent years trying to get under the luxury-tax threshold, it sure is odd the Yankees might end up exceeding the $206 million boundary for 2019,” Rosenthal writes. “They currently are more than $7 million over, according to RosterResource.com — without signing Machado, Bryce Harper or even left-hander Patrick Corbin.”
Are the Yankees really out on Machado? Machado himself has reportedly expressed his preference to play in the Bronx. Perhaps New York isn’t out until Machado puts pen to paper on a contract elsewhere. More >
Phillies hire Manny’s mentor for coaching staff
Jan. 10: The Phillies are one of three teams seen as the favorites to sign superstar free agent Manny Machado, along with the White Sox and Yankees. And they may have just taken a step that could help them bring Machado to Philadelphia. According to MASN’s Roch Kubatko, the club has hired former Orioles third base coach Bobby Dickerson as infield coach. Dickerson’s mentorship of Machado dates back to before Machado made his MLB debut in 2012.
According to a story by Dan Connolly for The Athletic last October, Machado referred to Dickerson as “one of his most important mentors.” The hiring of Dickerson by the Phillies isn’t the first personnel move made by a potential Machado suitor that involves people close to the infielder. In December, the White Sox traded for Machado’s brother-in-law, Yonder Alonso. And on Wednesday, Chicago reportedly agreed to terms with free-agent outfielder Jon Jay, a close friend of Machado’s.
Along with Bryce Harper, Machado is one of the two premier free agents on the market this offseason. At the outset, it was thought that both could command a long-term contract of more than $300 million. Although it has been reported in recent days that Machado is seeking a contract north of Giancarlo Stanton’s record $325 million deal with the Marlins in 2014, it has also been reported that no team has made an offer that high to this point.
Machado, 26, had his best offensive season in ’18, slashing .297/.367/.538 (146 OPS+) with 37 home runs and 14 steals between the Orioles and Dodgers, helping Los Angeles reach the World Series for a second consecutive year. Phillies owner John Middleton said earlier this offseason that the organization has money to spend and might be “a little bit stupid” about it, raising expectations that Philadelphia would make a giant splash in the free-agent market. It is also rumored to be one of the frontrunners for Harper, and Phillies representatives will be meeting with Harper in Las Vegas on Saturday.
Why White Sox could be ‘perfect’ for Machado or Harper
Jan. 10: The White Sox are in on both Manny Machado and Bryce Harper. But will the franchise’s front office, which has overseen a lengthy rebuild that still holds tons of promise — but hasn’t brought results … yet — be able to persuade either superstar free agent to sign on the dotted line?
The White Sox “continue to try hard” on Machado, in particular, according to MLB Network insider Jon Heyman, who alludes to the club’s acquisitions of Yonder Alonso and Jon Jay — Machado’s brother-in-law and good friend, respectively.
Relatedly, MLB.com’s Richard Justice explores seven reasons why the White Sox are just right for either Machado or Harper.
“White Sox fans are looking for a reason to be excited,” Justice writes. “They’ve read about the young talent that general manager Rick Hahn has accumulated. They’ve read that outfielder Eloy Jimenez is going to be a star, as will catcher Zack Collins, right-hander Dylan Cease , outfielder Luis Robert and others. What they don’t have is a face-of-the-franchise foundation to build around.”
Machado or Harper? Yep, they would fix that — fast.
“To see the White Sox land one of these guys,” Justice writes, “feels like something that would be good for the sport — certainly good for the White Sox — and good for Harper or Machado, too.” But can they pull it off?
Are Phillies, White Sox ahead of Yankees in chase for Machado?
Jan. 9: For a brief period of time Wednesday, it appeared the three-team chase for Manny Machado between the Phillies, White Sox and Yankees might have been narrowed down to two — with New York out of the picture — based on a single report.
Further digging, however, has yet to support that. “The Yankees have not been informed that they are out on Machado,” a source told MLB.com’s Jon Paul Morosi.
“The market for Manny isn’t down to two teams yet,” MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand reported, also citing a source.
MLB Network insider Jon Heyman expressed a similar take — that there’s no word the Yankees have been told they’re out of the running — but did reiterate that New York “hasn’t engaged in negotiations lately or made an official offer.” What’s more, there are questions about just how close the Yankees are willing to get to Machado’s reported asking price, which is believed to be in the range of $325 million — a number that’s signficant for matching Giancarlo Stanton’s contract, currently the biggest in baseball history.
That lines up with what USA Today’s Bob Nightengale pointed out, too, noting that the Yankees “have talked financial concepts with Machado, but have yet to make [an] official offer.” It is worth highlighting, though, that Nightengale went on to say while the Yankees “have not backed out of [the] Machado sweepstakes,” the White Sox and Phillies are “leading the way.”
Are the Phillies stepping up their pursuit of Machado?
Jan. 9: Although the Phillies are preparing to meet with Bryce Harper in Las Vegas on Saturday, per a report from USA Today’s Bob Nightengale, the Nationals appear to be the favorites to land the superstar outfielder.
A source told MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand that momentum is building toward Harper’s return to Washington, causing Philadelphia to step up its pursuit of Manny Machado.
“It’s heating up,” the source said.
The Yankees are believed to be Machado’s preference, but the club is not expected to get into a bidding war for him, which could cause the infielder to choose the Phillies or White Sox instead. New York hasn’t even submitted an official offer yet, according to MLB Network insider Jon Heyman, who notes that Machado’s camp is still seeking more than the record $325 million the Marlins gave Giancarlo Stanton in November 2014. Per Heyman, neither Philadelphia nor Chicago is believed to be close to the $300 million mark.
Despite that, sources told Bruce Levine of 670 The Score in Chicago that Machado is expected to decide on a team within a week.
Per Levine, “the prevailing feeling across the MLB landscape is that momentum is building for the White Sox,” even though Chicago isn’t expected to go beyond seven years for the 26-year-old.
While money will likely be the prevailing factor in Machado’s decision, the White Sox have tried to make themselves more appealing by adding Machado’s brother-in-law Yonder Alonso and workout partner Jon Jay to the mix this offseason.
The Phillies, though, will have even more motivation to outbid other teams for Machado if Harper indeed re-signs with the division-rival Nats.
Video: After Jay, is Machado next for White Sox?
How White Sox’s acquisition of Jon Jay affects Machado
Jan. 8: The White Sox are finalizing a one-year, $4 million deal with free-agent outfielder Jon Jay, according to multiple reports, including from MLB Network insider Ken Rosenthal. Acquiring the 33-year-old veteran wouldn’t necessarily preclude them from their pursuit at the top of the free agent market. In fact, it might help them — specifically with Manny Machado.
Jay has trained with Machado and Machado’s brother-in-law Yonder Alonso, who Chicago acquired from the Indians earlier this offseason. Bringing in Jay could help the club’s courtship of Machado, Rosenthal speculated. Each of the three wrote about their training in a 2017 piece for the Player’s Tribune.
“The three of us all come from the similar backgrounds. I’ve known Yonder since he was 10. And we’ve both known Manny since he was a young kid coming up. We’re from the same neighborhoods, the same culture, so it’s just natural for us to stick together,” Jay wrote at the time.
A nine-year veteran, Jay is coming off a year in which he slashed .268/.330/.347 over 143 games between stints with the Royals and D-backs. He was the Cubs’ primary leadoff hitter in 2017 after Dexter Fowler departed via free agency and signed with the Cardinals. Jay was a second-round Draft pick by St. Louis in 2007 out of the University of Miami.
The White Sox have holes in their outfield after letting right fielder Avisail Garcia leave via free agency after not tendering him a contract. As it stands, Nicky Delmonico, Adam Engel and Leury Garcia are slated to be their regular outfielders, though the club has been among the most aggressive in the Bryce Harper sweepstakes this offseason.
Having Jay and Alonso on the roster certainly doesn’t hurt the White Sox chances to land Machado, but MLB.com’s Jim Duquette argues that it’s going to take more than that to actually seal the deal.
“[There’s] friends of Manny, and then there’s actually Manny,” Duquette said Tuesday on MLB Network Radio. “I think if I’m a White Sox fan, if I could choose between one or the other, I want Manny first. … And to get Manny, it’s going to cost you 10 years. So step up, and go get Manny now, while you’re at it.”
Source : MLB