making Roberts’ club the first to publicly admit a sit-down with the unique two-way player

A recent MLB story via AP:NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Dave Roberts started dodging the question about Shohei Ohtani, rocking back and forth in his seat and remaining silent for three seconds before making his big confession:“Yes, we met with him,” the Los Angeles Dodgers manager said Tuesday during the winter meetings.

In doing so, Roberts’ club became the first to publicly acknowledge a matchup with the one-time two-way player who is likely to break baseball’s salary record.Officials from other teams meticulously danced around the question as if it had been choreographed by Bob Fosse. Toronto general manager Ross Atkins, who sparked speculation about a possible meeting by holding his press release Monday over Zoom rather than at the Winter Meetings Hotel, said: “Some meetings that are happening that haven’t happened place, I didn’t do them. » I’ll go into detail.Craig Counsell, the new manager of the Chicago Cubs, deflected Ohtani’s questions as if he were being cross-examined. After Counsell said he hadn’t met with Ohtani, he was asked if anyone in the Cubs front office had. The lawyer replied: “I didn’t.

“Japanese pitcher Yoshinobu Yamamoto, another prized free agent, could be sought by the New York Yankees and Mets, who set payroll records this year in their third season under owner Steve Cohen.

The Mets’ projected final payroll for 2023 is about $346 million and their luxury tax bill is about $102 million.“I don’t know if anyone can compete with Steve Cohen,” Yankees general manager Brian Cashman said. “He clearly IS a titan of the industry.

He was very successful and built an empire that allowed him to do things like the Mets. …We can just focus on what we’re going to focus on. Obviously he’s an interesting player and we’re going to fight for him and see where it takes us and whether it’s enough or not enough.Cashman also spoke about his attempt to acquire San Diego slugger Juan Soto.

The outfielder is eligible for free agency after next season, and Padres president of baseball operations A.J. Preller has spoken about the trades.New Padres manager Mike Shildt plans to meet with Soto in December in Miami. 17.“He’s a transformative hitter. He’s one of the best batsmen in the game. So he’s influential, period,” Cashman said. “I know A.J.

it’s probably just about being open-minded and doing a lot of different things.Meanwhile, the Yankees completed a rare trade with their rival Boston Red Sox, acquiring outfielder Alex Verdugo for reliever Greg Weissert and two minor league pitchers. Only a relatively modest addition was announced during the day. Tampa Bay has agreed to a one-year, $1.1 million contract with backup Chris Devenski that includes a club option for 2025.Erick Fedde, a 30-year-old right-hander who spent this year in South Korea with the NC Dinos, agreed to a two-year, $15 million contract with the Chicago White Sox, a person familiar with the matter said. The person spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the deal was contingent on a successful physical exam.

Catcher Victor Caratini and the Houston Astros have agreed to a two-year, $12 million contract, a person familiar with the matter told the AP on condition of anonymity because the deal was contingent on a review successful physics. Marco Gonzales’ time with the Atlanta Braves lasted just two days and ended when the left-hander was traded to Pittsburgh for cash for a player or cash that didn’t yet been named.

Atlanta acquired the 31-year-old left-hander from Seattle on Sunday night along with outfielder Jarred Kelenic, infielder Evan White and $4.5 million for right-handers Cole Phillips and Jackson Kowar.Additionally, Cleveland won the MLB draft lottery and will have the first pick in the July 14 draft for the first time.

Roberts said Ohtani met with the team for two to three hours at Dodger Stadium a few days earlier and called the two-time AL MVP “our top priority.”“I think he had some questions for us and just wanted to know more about the landscape. But being in this league for six years, he has a pretty good feel for the Dodgers, what we stand for, the city itself,” Roberts said. Cashman traveled to Japan to watch Yamamoto and saw him throw his second career no-hitter on September 9 for the Orix Buffaloes against the Lotte Marines. “A lot of teams went there with their leaders, and I certainly wouldn’t make the mistake of not being one of the leaders that went there,” Cashman said. “Negotiations are definitely a big part of it, but I also think those kinds of personal touches are important. »

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