It’s that time of the year: our MLB offseason preview 2021-22 is finally here.
We expect this offseason to be one of the ages. There are multiple offseason trade candidates, players who won’t take their qualifying offer, and some that will most definitely change teams and get paid a big buck for the next couple of years.
MLB offseason preview 2021-22
The Washington Nationals and Atlanta Braves have proved that you don’t need to have the most stacked team to win the World Series. Then again, that won’t stop ballclub from spending a small fortune to reinforce their squads. So, what’s going to happen next?
10. Rafael Devers will get paid
Rafael Devers proved his ability to carry an offense when people thought the Red Sox would fall apart after Mookie Betts‘ departure. Now, after an even more impressive season in 2021, we expect the 24-year-old star to get paid as the player he is.
The Red Sox won’t hesitate to pull the trigger and sign Devers to a long-term extension and nearly triple his $4 million salary for next season. He’ll still be on a bargain deal. He’s their best player not named Xander Bogaerts and they know it.
9. Yankees sign Corey Seager
The Yankees have been linked to Trevor Story for quite some time now but we don’t see that happening with Corey Seager also on the market. They have a huge need at shortstop and would love to address it by adding the former World Series MVP.
Brian Cashman said that he has spoken with the reps for “most, but not all” of the FA shortstop group: Carlos Correa, Corey Seager, Marcus Semien, Trevor Story and Javier Baez. “I’ll get there.” #yankees
— Bryan Hoch (@BryanHoch) November 11, 2021
Seager isn’t likely to stay with the Dodgers due to their salary situation but the Yankees can make him a 10-year, $300+ million offer. Sadly, that won’t be enough for them to compete as Brian Cashman’s reluctance to improve their rotation won’t change this offseason.
Read more: MLB free agency predictions
8. Carlos Correa reunites with A.J. Hinch
Even though he’s spent his entire career with the Astros, we fully expect Carlos Correa to move on and get a fresh start somewhere else. Maybe, that will be the only way to stop the jeers and boos everywhere he goes. All jokes aside, we see him joining the $300 million club with a non-contending team.
Correa will sign with the Tigers to reunite with his manager A.J. Hinch and try to help turn around a struggling franchise with a bright future. He’s the best shortstop in this year’s free-agent class and will be worth every penny.
7. The Mets will run it back
The Mets had plenty of offseason trade candidates and they have more questions than answers in terms of front office and management right now. That’s why we expect them to just play it safe and avoid long recruiting pitches by just running it back with their current guys.
Some rivals believe Mets took a chance giving $18.4M qualifying offer to Noah Syndergaard. Their call to give one to Stroman last year turned out correct, they obviously need starters and it’s a plus they are willing to spend. But after 2 IP over 2 years, $18.4M seems high.
— Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) November 10, 2021
They’ll keep Noah Syndergaard, Michael Conforto, Marcus Stroman, and Javier Báez and look to avoid another meltdown like the one they suffered this year. But, first things first. They need to get a competent manager once and for all.
6. We won’t hear of Trevor Bauer
Remember when the Trevor Bauer signing was the biggest story of the offseason? Those were the days. Bauer wasn’t able to finish the season with the Dodgers due to sexual assault allegations and we haven’t heard much about him ever since.
Bauer is currently on paid leave but will most likely be suspended as soon as his legal turmoil gets clearer. Some believe that he will never take the mound again in MLB. That could be a bit of a reach but it doesn’t seem like the storm will pass any day soon.
5. Astros get Trevor Story
Somehow, someway, the Astros always get their way. So, even if they lose Carlos Correa, they’ll still get a top-notch replacement in Trevor Story. Story was inexplicably not traded last season and the Rockies will forever go down as the team that wasted him and Nolan Arenado.
The Rockies have extended a qualifying offer to SS Trevor Story.
— Rockies Club Information (@RockiesClubInfo) November 7, 2021
The Astros, on the other hand, will get a reliable and consistent player to fill in for the injury-prone Correa and make another run at the World Series title. He’s an offensive force and will keep his production even outside of the confines of hitter-friendly park Coors Field.
4. The Giants will sign Justin Verlander
The Giants were the most surprising team in 2021. Most people expected the Padres to challenge the Dodgers for the top spot in the division, yet they came out of the blue to win a league-best 107 games, which also happened to be a franchise record.
Now, the Giants will look to bolster their rotation with the addition of veteran troublemaker Justin Verlander. The controversial flamethrower wasn’t able to pitch in 2021 but he said he wants to pitch late into his 40s. Also, he’s looked great in his recent workouts and will gauge plenty of interest in free agency.
3. Mariners get a star in Marcus Semien
The Mariners were a pleasant surprise this season. Notably, they even won more games in the regular season than the Braves, yet that wasn’t enough to make the playoffs. The future is bright in Seattle and they want to put an end to their embarrassing postseason drought.
Blue Jays appear aggressive in market. Would love to keep both Ray and Semien, who had superb years after prescient signings by Toronto. Very good team seeks to step forward.
— Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) November 10, 2021
The Mariners have enough money to make a run at a couple of top-notch free agents and a huge need in the infield, especially at second base. Marcus Semien will draw a lot of interest in free agency but we expect the Mariners to get the upper hand with a deal worth north of $140 million through 6 years.
2. Max Scherzer stays in LA
In a surprising turn of events, we believe that Max Scherzer will stay put with the Dodgers even if they can’t offer him as much money as other teams. Scherzer has already made plenty of cash throughout his career and he clearly wants to win another World Series.
Even despite their well-documented meltdowns in the playoffs and Dave Roberts‘ questionable decision-making, the Dodgers are still the team to beat out of the National League and that won’t change for the foreseeable future. So, if Mad Max wants to win, then re-signing should be a no-brainer.
1. Clayton Kershaw will retire
The Dodgers didn’t hand Clayton Kershaw a qualifying offer. And even though most people expect them to work things out in free agency and run it back for another year, we believe that the southpaw is actually going to call it a career after giving it much consideration. This will be the biggest shocker of the offseason, for sure.
Kershaw admitted that he thought about retirement after winning the World Series. He wants to spend time with his family and chances are that he won’t get back to his former level at this point in his career and after a long layoff.
Our boldest MLB free agency prediction is that he won’t play for any other team and will retire as a Dodger.
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