Spring Notes: Trading Spaces?

In 2023 the American League Central completely owned by the Minnesota Twins. Let’s take a look at where all these teams are after a slow off season around the league that has many free agents still looking for a home a few days before opening day.

Minnesota Twins

After being sent home by the Astros in 2023 were busy all winter in an effort to find their way to the American League Championship Series this season. Let’s take a look at the players they added through trades and free agency who made their opening day roster.

They needed a starter setup man and a couple of relievers. So they went out and traded for Justin Topa and Steven Okert. They also signed Jay Jackson and Josh Staumont. Their other needs were in the rotation and a couple holes in the batting lineup so they went out and signed First Baseman Carlos Santana then they made a couple trades in January and February for Starter Anthony DeSclafani and in February they traded for Manuel Margot.

The Twins are expected to win approximately 86-88 games again this season holding down while defending their division title from last year with another playoff berth.

Detroit Tigers

In Detroit they did not do much this winter except replace guys who opted for free agency. The few players they did add all made the opening day roster. So, let’s take a look at who they added.

They added Relief Pitchers Shelby Miller and Andrew Chafin, Starting Pitchers Kenta Maeda and Jack Flaherty, as well as Starting Left Fielder Mark Canha and Starting Third Baseman Gio Urshela. These moves filled most of the glaring holes they had as a result of players leaving to free agency last year or injuries.

The Tigers are expected to stay right there as the second place team in the AL Central.

Cleveland Guardians

The Guardians were fairly quite in the off season signing only backup Catcher Austin Hedges. They did make a couple of trades too. Trading for starting Center Fielder Estevan Florial and Relief Pitcher Scott Barlow.

After being so quiet this off season Cleveland is expected to stand their own and hold the third spot in the central this season.

Chicago White Sox

Although the White Sox were busy this off season signing seven guys out of free agency much to say here after they traded away their ace Dylan Cease during spring training because it has become clear they are rebuilding and focusing on getting that new stadium slightly north of 35th street.

The White Sox are expected to fall to the basement of the Central this year.

Kansas City Royals

As basement dwellers in 2023 you’d think the Royals had a very busy off season making roster changes. Let’s look at the players they brought in who will be on the opening day roster.

They traded for Setup man Nick Anderson back in November the bulk of their moves were free agent signings which came after that though. Their first signing also came in November when they signed backup Shortstop Garrett Hampson. December was their busiest month when they signed Right Fielder Hunter Renfroe, Closer Will Smith, and Reliever Chris Stratton as well as Starting Pitchers Seth Lugo and Michael Wacha. They capped off their offseason at the end of January signing Third Baseman Adam Frazier.

Considering the holes the White Sox have in the starting rotation and at Shortstop the Royals are expected to win a few more games than the White Sox this year.

Here’s the thing folks: The offseason was so quiet around the AL Central because of the White Sox making changes in the front office and making it obvious they were in rebuilding mode. As a result of that things will be status quo in 2024 with one exception; the White Sox and Royals are expected to trade places with the White Sox ending up in the basement this year.

With that…. we are only three days away from opening day!

If you cannot play with them, then root for them.

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