Yelling About the 2018 Winter Meetings

Last week the Major League Baseball winter meetings took place in Las Vegas. This is when all of the MLB and minor league teams come together and make trades or deals via emojis. (Not really, but I’d like to think so.) The meetings took place December 9-13, and it can be really good for your team or it can be really bad.

IE: 2016 winter meetings.

So below you will find a list of transactions that occurred, and hopefully no baseball executives ended up like Doug from The Hangover.

Seattle Mariners claimed infielder Kaleb Cowart off waivers from the Los Angeles Angels. I have no clue who this is. I’m assuming he’s in his 20s if his first name starts with a “K”. 

Some cryptic things happened with the New York Mets. Which really isn’t any different than how they normally run day to day baseball operations. There were some rumors about Noah Syndergaard going to the New York Yankees. But nothing came of it.

Chicago Cubs White Sox acquired Ivan Nova from the Pittsburgh Pirates. He’s a pretty average pitcher—finishing the season with a .500ish record and an ERA around 4.00—so I mean it doesn’t seem like he’ll hurt the Cubs White Sox. (Editor’s note: I originally had said he was acquired by the Cubs. I was incorrect. He was acquired by the other Chicago team, the White Sox.)

Philadelphia Phillies acquired Andrew McCutchen from the New York Yankees. Ya girl forgot he played for the Yanks this season. Because I started to write “San Francisco Giants” and then went to his Baseball Reference page. He’s getting a three year deal with a team that was 80-82 this season. BUT HE GETS TO GO HANG OUT WITH MY FAVORITE PERSON, GABE KAPLER ❤

Toronto Blue Jays released Troy Tulowitzki. The dude’s been hurt a lot since 2016 with hamstring injuries and a bone spur in his right ankle. He got surgery earlier this season, causing him to miss all of 2018. He’s a free agent now. If he can stay healthy, he’s good. But I think he’s got the injury bug.

Kansas City Royals signed outfielder Billy Hamilton to a one year deal. He’s okay from looking at his B-Ref page. He hits in the low .200s and 30-40 RBIs per season. Maybe his defense is good?

Tampa Bay Rays and pitcher Charlie Morton agreed to a free agent contract. The numbers appear to be $15 million for the next two seasons. In his last two seasons with the Houston Astros, he was 14-7 with a 3.62 ERA in 2017 and was 15-3 with a 3.13 ERA in 2018. Not too shabby. This is probably a good pick up for the Rays. He’s also 35? I thought he was younger than that.

Texas Rangers and Lance Lynn agreed to a three year, $30 million deal. He also played for the Yankees this season? Did I even watch any Sox/Yanks games this year?! He’s not as good as he used to be when he was with the Cards. So this is kind of a meh signing for Texas.

Cinncinati Reds acquired RHP Tanner Roark from the Washington Nationals for RHP Tanner Rainey. Whelp, this seems weird. Maybe each team has a Tanner quota they need to keep.

Yankees and J.A. Happ agreed to a two year deal with a third year option based on innings pitched/starts. So he’ll be staying in the Big Apple, hand, foot, and mouth disease and all. 

Angels agreed to a deal with Justin Bour. The name didn’t sound familiar to me until I looked at his B-Ref page and saw he played for the Miami Marlins. He seems to be a stable first baseman. But isn’t Albert Pujols still in his 10 year contract with the Angels?

Mets signed Jeurys Familia, who was a free agent, for three years. He spent the first six and a half years of his career with the Mets before going to the Oakland Athletics in a trade before the 2018 deadline. He was suspended for the first 15 games of the 2017 for violating the league’s personal conduct policy regarding his previous domestic violence incident that occured in October 2016. (I knew I remembered his name for some reason and didn’t like him.)


This three way deal: Carlos Santana, Jake Bauers, and cash go to the Cleveland Indians; Edwin Encarnacion, 2019 competitive balance draft pick, and cash go to the Mariners; and Yandy Diaz and Cole Sulser go to the Rays. Alright, so this didn’t make sense to me at first, and then I went to Wikipedia. Because I didn’t understand how Carlos Santana was coming from the Mariners when he signed a three year deal with the Phillies in 2017. On December 3, the Phillies traded Santana and J. P. Crawford to the Mariners for Jean Segura, Juan Nicasio, and James Pazos. So Santana was only with the Mariners for ten days before he was traded back to the Indians. 

So this is what the trade looks like:

  • Encarnacion: Indians –> Mariners
  • Santana, $6 million: Mariners –> Indians
  • Bauers: Rays –> Indians
  • Diaz, Sulser, 77th pick in 2019 competitive draft: Indians –> Rays
  • $5 million: Rays –> Mariners

These last two occurred on the 14th and 15th, so not during the winter meetings, but close enough.

San Diego Padres signed free agent Ian Kinsler to a two year, $8 million deal. Yeah so he had that one throw in the World Series this year that made me pull my hair out, but I’ve always liked him, okay? And the Padres? Gross.

White Sox acquired Yonder Alonso from the Indians for Alex Call. Fun fact: Alonso’s sister is married to Manny Machado—who I’m patiently waiting for to sign with a team so I can yell about it. As a first baseman, Alonso hit 23 home runs and had 83 RBIs with the Indians in 2017.

Meanwhile, over in the NBA…


  1. Hey Becky,

    – Ivan Nova is with the White Sox, not the hated Cooooo (Cubs).

    – Billy Hamilton is all about stolen bases. He’s pretty much the fastest player we’ve ever seen. He was with the Reds but KC likes fast dudes so that explains it. He hasn’t hit enough but if he can get on base he’s a definite difference maker. Plus, his defense in CF is outstanding.

    – Big move by L.A. getting Joe Kelly. They needed more help with their bullpen this season. One of these days they’ll get over the hump.

    Thanks for the Winter Meetings recap!


    Liked by 1 person

    • Hmph, that’s what I get for seeing “Chicago” and thinking the Cubs for some reason. I’ll make the appropriate changes in the post haha.

      I mean, someone’s gotta be good at stealing bases. That means more runs in the end, and I figured he had pretty good defense.

      Especially after these last two seasons, it’s like the Dodgers almost reach the top and then they just fall apart. After watching the World Series I agree that they need some bullpen help but I would have loved to have Joe Kelly stay in Boston.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Kelly is awesome. I’m sure BoSox fans are not happy.

        Ironically, a different Billy Hamilton played over 100 years ago and the guy is in the top 10 in all-time stolen bases. Weird!

        Liked by 1 person

  2. I had missed some of these, like the Justin Bour thing. I don’t know what the Angels are doing. Same with the Mariners, are they trying to suck? Oh well, don’t care! I’m here for a Troy Tulowitzki rant.

    He gave the Blue Jays 1.5 good years and the rest has just been one trip to the DL after another. At the end of last season, he finally showed up on the bench at games and the media asked him what his plans were for next year. He said he’s a shortstop and if there’s someone better than him, he’ll pack his bags and go home. OH!? Well we do have a replacement for him who will be better than he would be next season, so when asked if he would move positions he said, “I’m a shortstop.” And hence, we gave him about $40 million to go away and avoid that headache in the spring. THEN, the minute he becomes a free agent, his ages says he’s the “healthiest he’s ever felt” (or something like that) and that he wants to play in the Bay Area and will play any position for $600,000. So basically, Oakland has their second baseman for next season if they want him. I guess he finally realized on team was going to trust him to be their shortstop, or he wanted to force his way out of Toronto since we suck right now.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I feel like you’ve ranted about Tulo before to me. But that’s okay. That’s why we’re friends. (At least I think we’re friends.)

      I would play any position for $600,000 a year, and I have no athletic ability whatsoever. Maybe all of the thin air he breathed in Colorado with the Rockies messed him up. Did he have any years left on his contract with the Jays? I feel like since he basically missed all of this year and hasn’t been healthy he had to see him getting cut coming. Because he was dead weight for the Jays.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Becky, we are definitely friends lol

        He sat out the whole year and was only with the team for a total of two weeks. He had 2 years/$38 million left on his deal so we give him all of it to go away. That’s why he wouldn’t mind playing for $600,000 since he already got a nice chunk. Maybe he thinks warm weather will be easier for him to stay loose and not get hurt.

        Liked by 1 person

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