PT TODAY: Yankees net a new ace in Cole

Team-by-team playing time allocation charts can be found in our Teamview pages.

American League | National League
 
Yankees | New York signs Gerrit Cole
The New York Yankees agreed to terms with free agent RHP Gerrit Cole on a nine-year, $324 million contract, according to ESPN's Jeff Passan.  Source: ESPN - Jeff Passan
 
BHQ take: Yankee starters/ openers pitched to a 4.51 ERA and a 3.3 Cmd, averaging 4.8 IP per start. Cole's 2019 results (2.50 ERA, 6.8 Cmd, 6.4 IP/start) make his placement at the top of the NYY rotation obvious and guaranteed for the foreseeable future. All of the incumbents (James Paxton, Masahiro Tanaka, Luis Severino) will take one step backwards in the pecking order, leaving the fifth spot filled by some combination of J.A. Happ (reportedly on the trading block), Domingo German (domestic violence investigation) and Jordan Montgomery (June 2018 Tommy John surgery). Cole's 2019 results may be hard to duplicate when pitching half of his games in Yankee Stadium (net +38 % LHB HR and +12% RHB HR with the move), but he will still be one of the truly elite SP options in 2020 drafts.   —Matt Dodge
 
Impact: High
Cole, Gerrit        
Happ, J.A.        
German, Domingo        
Montgomery, Jordan        
 

 
Rangers | Nomar Mazara dealt for Steele Walker
Texas Rangers OF Nomar Mazara was dealt to the Chicago White Sox Wednesday, Dec. 11, in exchange for OF Steele Walker.  Source: MLBRosterMoves
 
BHQ take: By trading Mazara, TEX clears out some payroll space, but also cements regular playing time for LF Willie Calhoun (and perhaps more for 2019 rebound story Danny Santana). In his first extended MLB look, Calhoun showed flashes of why he was the linchpin of the Rangers' 2017 Yu Darvish trade. Notably, Calhoun managed to carry most of his solid MiLB batting Eye to TEX, which provides a solid BA floor, and he fared well against both left- and right-handed pitching. In addition, Calhoun's modest power rebounded well from a 2018 lull, and a flyball lean and solid HctX suggest room for more growth there. The 25-year-old Calhoun carries easy .280-30 HR upside into 2020.  —Rod Truesdell
 
Impact: Med
Calhoun, Willie        
Santana, Daniel        
 

 
Rangers | Joely Rodriguez signs with Texas
Free-agent RP Joely Rodriguez signed a two-year, $5.5 million contract Monday, Dec. 9. The deal includes a club option for 2022.  Source: MLBDepthCharts.com - Jason Martinez
 
BHQ take: Rodriguez' MLB stats are horrendous, but he seemed to find himself over the last two years with the Chunichi Dragons in Japan. In 2019, Rodriguez posted a gaudy 1.64 ERA for Chunichi, fanning 77 in 60 IP against just 14 walks. With TEX lacking another established lefty in their bullpen, Rodriguez could at least be in line for some holds and a vultured win or two should his NPB Central League success translate back to the majors.  —Rod Truesdell
 
Impact: Low
Rodriguez, Joely        
 

 
 
 
National League | American League
 
Mets | Michael Wacha headed to Queens
Free-agent RHP Michael Wacha agreed to a one-year, $3 million contract with the New York Mets on Wednesday, Dec. 11. The deal could be worth $7 million with incentives.  Source: New York Post - Joel Sherman
 
BHQ take: Wacha apparently will have the inside track to replace Zack Wheeler in the Met rotation. Wacha had a couple of nice seasons in the middle of the decade now ending, but has struggled with health, gopher balls, and diminishing Cmd the last few years. The 2020 Baseball Forecaster summed up Wacha with “avoid”. This signing does nothing to change that recommendation.  —Phil Hertz
 
Impact: Med
Wacha, Michael        
 

 
Phillies | Philadelphia lands Didi Gregorius
Free-agent SS Didi Gregorius agreed to terms on an undisclosed contract with the Philadelphia Phillies on Tuesday, Dec. 10. Terms of the deal were not immediately disclosed.  Source: ESPN - Jeff Passan
 
BHQ take: Gregorius will attempt to boost his long term value after signing a one-year deal with the Phils. He missed most of the first half of 2019 following Tommy John surgery. He continued to hit homers although skills indicate that could take a step back. On the other hand, his .227 AVG was the product of some bad luck. His H% was a career low 24% and his xBA of .262 was much more palatable. Also in evaluating Gregorius’ 2020 production, remember that while Citizens Bank Park is generally considered to be a hitters’ park, it’s no Yankee Stadium. Gregorius is expected to play short, pushing incumbent Jean Segura to second. Segura did play 142 games at second in 2016.  —Phil Hertz
 
Impact: High
Gregorius, Didi        
Segura, Jean        
 

 
Nationals | Stephen Strasburg agrees to record deal
Free-agent RHP Stephen Strasburg reportedly agreed to sign a seven-year contract worth $245 million to remain with the Washington Nationals on Monday, Dec. 9, according to MLB Network's Jon Heyman.  Source: MLB Network - Jon Heyman
 
BHQ take: Strasburg was coming off perhaps the best season of his very successful career. It included a career high in strikeouts and a very successful post-season. Perhaps the most important feature of his 2019 campaign: no trips to the IL. Strasburg is an elite pitching option, so long as he can avoid that IL.  —Phil Hertz
 
Impact: High
Strasburg, Stephen        

 

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Playing Time Key

The playing time percentage changes at the bottom of most news items correspond to BaseballHQ.com's Teamview pages. The percentages approximate changes in AB, IP and Saves in the following manner:

  • For batters, each 5% of PT% ~ 31 AB (100% total for each position = 618 AB)
  • For pitchers, each 3% of PT% ~ 44 IP (100% total for a team's entire pitching staff)
  • For relievers, each 5% of Svs ~ 2 saves (100% of a team's total = about40 saves)

A complete explanation of BaseballHQ.com's playing time allocations can be found in the article "How the Projections are Created."

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  For more information about the terms used in this article, see our Glossary Primer.