MLB rumors: Brewers discussing Brandon Woodruff trade before deadline, Giants interested in Cody Bellinger

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The first significant trade of the offseason went down late Thursday night, with the White Sox shipping lefty reliever Aaron Bummer to the Braves for a five-player package that included Michael Soroka. More trades are likely coming prior to the non-tender deadline at 8 p.m. ET on Friday. Players on the non-tender bubble (like Soroka) could be dealt to teams willing to give them guaranteed roster spots. Here now are Friday’s hot stove rumors.
Giants interested in Bellinger
Cody Bellinger CHC • CF • #24 BA 0.307 R 95 HR 26 RBI 97 SB 20 View Profile
Count the Giants among the clubs showing interest in Cody Bellinger this offseason, reports ESPN. Bellinger and Giants president of baseball operations Farhan Zaidi have a history dating back to their time together with the rival Dodgers. San Francisco has of course had trouble landing star free agents in recent years. Bellinger is our No. 3 free agent.
On paper, Bellinger is an excellent fit for the Giants. The 28-year-old is a premium defensive center fielder, which is a must have in spacious Oracle Park, plus the Giants badly need a middle of the order power bat. Furthermore, Bellinger’s suddenly contact-heavy approach would fit well in San Francisco, where there is plenty of room to find grass when you spray the ball around.
Red Sox seek multiple starters
In a rumor that qualifies as unsurprising, the Red Sox want to add multiple starting pitchers this offseason, according to the New York Post. The only locks for Boston’s 2024 rotation are impressive youngster Brayan Bello and erstwhile ace Chris Sale, who has missed a lot of time with injuries in recent years. Kutter Crawford, Tanner Houck, Nick Pivetta, and Garrett Whitlock are also rotation candidates, though they’ve all been more effective in relief roles.
This is not an especially deep free agent pitching class beyond the tippy-top names: Jordan Montgomery, Aaron Nola, Blake Snell, and Yoshinobu Yamamoto. Given his age (25) and pedigree, Yamamoto is an obvious fit for the Red Sox, though there figures to be a ton of competition for him. Could Boston reunite with Eduardo Rodriguez? They’re certainly familiar with him and know he can handle their market. Rodriguez is a possible option this offseason.
Blue Jays, Nationals interested in Candelario
Jeimer Candelario CHC • 1B • #9 BA 0.251 R 77 HR 22 RBI 70 SB 8 View Profile
The Blue Jays and Nationals are among the teams with interest in free agent corner infielder Jeimer Candelario, reports ESPN. The Angels, Diamondbacks, and Reds are also in the mix. Candelario signed a one-year contract with Washington last offseason and played well enough to get traded as a rental at the deadline. He is our No. 17 free agent.
Toronto could lose Matt Chapman to free agency, and while his third base defense would be close to impossible to replace, Candelario’s bat fits their offensive needs better. He’s a switch-hitter, something the Blue Jays badly need to balance their righty-heavy lineup, plus Candelario doesn’t strike out or swing and miss nearly as much as Chapman. The Nationals are still rebuilding, though Candelario left a good impression last year.
Brewers discussing Woodruff in trades
Brandon Woodruff MIL • SP • #53 ERA 2.28 WHIP .82 IP 67 BB 15 K 74 View Profile
The Brewers are discussing right-hander Brandon Woodruff trades prior to Friday’s non-tender deadline, according to MLB.com. Woodruff had shoulder surgery recently and will miss most, if not all, of 2024. He is projected to make roughly $12 million in 2024, his final year of team control. If they can’t trade him, Milwaukee is likely to non-tender Woodruff rather than pay him that sum for what will amount to a rehab year. An alternative is signing him to a multiyear contract with a low base salary in 2024, though shoulder surgery carries significant risk.
Rockies trade for Quantrill
Cal Quantrill CLE • SP • #47 ERA 5.24 WHIP 1.46 IP 99.2 BB 35 K 58 View Profile
The Rockies have acquired right-hander Cal Quantrill from the Guardians, the team announced Friday. Single-A catcher Kody Huff goes to Cleveland in the trade. Quantrill pitched poorly around shoulder trouble in 2023 and Colorado is hoping they can get him back to his 2021-22 form (3.16 ERA in 336 innings). The Rockies made out very well in a trade with the Guardians last season when they pried Nolan Jones loose. They’ll look to recreate that magic with Quantrill, who can remain under team control as an arbitration-eligible player in 2025. That said, Quantrill posted below average strikeout and ground ball rates in 2023. On paper, he’s a poor fit for Coors Field.

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