Major League Baseball’s 2015 winter meetings in Nashville recently came to a close, with a ton of big deals, and star players being moved. Some teams already won the offseason at winter meetings, even though there are still many months, and probably many deals to be made before opening day.
Other’s didn’t do much but let big players get away in Nashville, so it will be interesting to see how these teams try to salvage the rest of the offseason, in order to become contenders in 2016. Below are the biggest winners of The MLB Winter Meetings, 2015.
Arizona Diamondbacks– Arizona managed to land possibly the biggest free agent of the offseason, starting pitcher Zack Greinke. Greinke signed a contract good for $206.5 million, over 6 years.
He led the MLB this year in ERA with a stingy 1.66, and was a Cy Young finalist. They also added starter Shelby Miller from the Braves, who got a pretty good package in return. Miller and Greinke make their starting rotation almost as impressive as their explosive offense.
Boston Red Sox– Boston landed the other gigantic free agent, starter David Price. Price signed for 7 years, and $217 million. The only shaky part of this deal is that Price is a couple years into his 30’s, and a long term deal like this one is a big gamble for an older pitcher. Price had an ERA of 2.45, and 225 strikeouts last season, playing for both Toronto and Detroit.
Chicago Cubs– The Cubs traded infielder Starlin Castro, who had a down year in 2015, for veteran Ben Zobrist. It was a tough trade emotionally, due to Castro being the first brick in the gigantic rebuilding process of the Cubs, but it was the right move for the team.
Zobrist will likely play second base with the Cubs, but he is very versatile, which is what caught the eye of Cubs Manager Joe Maddon. Zobrist took less money to come to Chicago, which is a recurring theme this offseason for the young and talented Cubs team. He ended up signing a 4 year contract for around $56 million. Zobrist was on the World Series Champion Kansas City Royals last season, where he had a .303 average in the postseason, with 20 hits and 2 home runs.
It’s worth mentioning they also added Jason Heward, the league leader in WAR, shortly after the meetings. Heward also took less money to be a part of the winning atmosphere that’s becoming a staple of the Chicago Cubs.
Once again, it’s obvious the offseason is far from over, but usually Winter Meetings are a good indicator of how teams are planning to attack both the free agent and trade markets before opening day. The cliche Champions are built in the offseason doesn’t just apply to individuals.