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MLB Hot Stove Evening Briefing: Cubs want prized free agent to call Wrigley Field home, Blake Snell honors late Padres’ chairman and owner, Ex-Red Sox outfielder on DBacks’ Corbin Carroll
The Chicago Cubs would like another crack at landing free agent phenom Shohei Ohtani. The Cubs heavily pursued Ohtani when he was a free agent back in 2017, unfortunately, the designated hitter rule hadn’t been adopted in the National League yet, impacting their ability to land the two-way star.
"It was pretty clear he wanted to do both [hitting and pitching], and DHing was the best option for that," Cubs president of baseball operations Jed Hoyer said last week at the general managers meetings. "As good as the meeting with him went, we always knew it was going to be an uphill climb."
The Cubs were one of the clubs vying for Ohtani’s services when he was a free agent before landing with the Angels.
Ohtani is expected to land a massive payday in free agency this winter. Teams will keep their interest in Ohtani private, Ohtani is reportedly valuing his privacy through this very public process.
“If visits between Ohtani and a team are reported publicly, it will be held against the team, so the circles will be tiny and tight,” ESPN’s Jeff Passan reported.
Nez Balelo, Ohtani’s agent, is letting all teams know that the negotiations for his client will be held behind closed doors and out of the media.
“If there is one thing to know about Shohei Ohtani’s free agency, it’s that you are unlikely to know much about it until he signs somewhere,” Passan wrote.
Blake Snell wins his second career Cy Young, honors late Padres owner
Padres free agent lefty won his second career Cy Young award on Wednesday night. Snell became the seventh pitcher in MLB history, joining Roger Clemens, Randy Johnson, Pedro Martinez, Max Scherzer, Gaylord Perry and Roy Halladay to win the award in both the AL and NL.
Snell reflected on Peter Sadler’s passing and impact on the franchise following his win.
"He was just the most genuine and pure soul. He was such a great man," Snell said. "And I know today, if he was with us, I know he would have called me and he would have said how proud he was in repping San Diego and and that means a lot."
Corbin Carroll is very good and former big leaguers are taking notice
The Arizona Diamondbacks young outfielder Corbin Carroll won the 2023 National League Rookie of the Year award unanimously and former Red Sox outfielder Jonny Gomes believes this is just the beginning for the star player.
“The scary thing is, from seeing this guy from so young to now, like this season, this season’s his baseline,” Gomes told MLB Network Radio on Monday. “Every once in a while you see, like, career-year or this or that. This is what you’re gonna get out of Corbin Carroll every single year. Book it.”
Carroll was spectacular this season, playing in 155 games, slashing .285/.362/.506 with 25 home runs, 25 doubles, 10 triples and 76 RBIs. The speedy outfielder also swiped 54 stolen bases, finishing third amongst NL leaders.
During the postseason, Carroll showcased his ability on the national stage. He batted .273/.364/.409 with two homers, one double and one triple, driving in 10 RBIs while stealing five bases.
“He’s gonna get better as an outfielder and guess what? He can play all three (outfield positions),” Gomes added. “… It’s just scary to think the Diamondbacks have a guy for a long time. Unanimous Rookie of the Year and this is his baseline.”
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