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MLB rumors: Red Sox negotiating extension with young starting pitcher, Yankees haven’t started talks yet

Major League Baseball’s regular season will begin in less than a month. The uneven, at times non-existent pace of the offseason means that some clubs still have shopping to do before they can get their seasons going. In turn, that necessitates that we continue to track all of the latest news, notes, and rumors from the day that was. Below, you’ll find Wednesday’s assortment. 

Yankees yet to approach Holmes, Torres about extensions

The Yankees have not engaged reliever Clay Holmes in extension talks ahead of his walk year, according to Joel Sherman of the New York Post. Ditto for second baseman Gleyber Torres, who told reporters on Wednesday that he wants to be a “Yankee for life,” per Pete Caldera of the Bergen Record.

Holmes, 30, is entering his third full season with the Yankees. In 153 appearances to date, he’s compiled a 2.50 ERA (167 ERA+) and a 3.62 strikeout-to-walk ratio. He’s also collected 44 saves the last two years, and was selected for the 2022 All-Star Game. Torres, for his part, turned 27 in December and has hit for a career 115 OPS+ while making two All-Star Games. Both players are expected to be ranked in the top 25 of next winter’s free-agent class if they are permitted to test the waters.

It should be noted that the Yankees often allow their top free agents to hit the open market before then reaching new agreements with them. As such, the lack of movement toward an extension does not necessarily indicate that they intend to go their separate ways once the upcoming season passes.

Bello, Red Sox engaged in extension talks

The Red Sox and right-hander Brayan Bello appear to be making progress toward a long-term extension, the pitcher told Chris Cotillo of MassLive.com.

Bello, 24, had a promising first full season in the majors. He started 28 times and amassed a 4.24 ERA (107 ERA+) and a 2.93 strikeout-to-walk ratio thanks in part to a high-grade changeup. His contributions were worth an estimated 3.1 Wins Above Replacement, per Baseball Reference’s calculations.

Bello is not slated to qualify for arbitration for another two seasons, suggesting that if the deal gets done the Red Sox are likely to be receiving a big-time discount on the extension cost relative to Bello’s market value.

Mariners moves likely to be ‘on the margins’

Four of CBS Sports’ top 10 free agents remain unsigned, in lefties Blake Snell and Jordan Montgomery, third baseman Matt Chapman, and outfielder Cody Bellinger. Mariners GM Justin Hollander didn’t completely close the door on pursuing any of the four, but he did indicate that a big move is unlikely.

“You never know. I think this group of players that we have — our 40-man roster as is —  we may add on the margins. We may add in a more significant way, but I would expect it’s probably more on the margins than a real significant way based on where we’re at,” Hollander told reporters, including MLB.com’s Daniel Kramer.

Ryan Divish of the Seattle Times had previously reported that the Mariners have had internal conversations concerning Chapman. It’s unclear if those talks have progressed to the point where they’ve engaged with Chapman’s camp in recent days.

Twins not in market for top free agents

The Mariners may or may not make a move at the top of the market, but you can safely rule out the Twins from doing the same based on comments owner Joe Pohlad made during a radio appearance on Wednesday.

“We’re not going to go out and spend $30 million on a player right now,” Pohlad said. “The players that are out there right now that probably a bunch of fans are talking about, we are not in the market for those players.”

The Twins have had a quiet offseason in part because of concerns about their local television broadcast deal. Minnesota’s largest free-agent signing to date has been first baseman Carlos Santana. The Twins have also added a number of relievers and obtained veteran starter Anthony DeSclafani in a trade with the Mariners.

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