The MLB lockout not only put the season on hold, it also held up a free-agency period for some of the biggest available names.
On Dec. 1, just prior to the lockout, teams spent a single-day record of $1.4 billion on free agents. In November, they spent $1.7 billion — more than the total previous offseason.
Now that a CBA has been reached, the dominoes should begin to fall for a handful of high-profile stars.
- After hiring super-agent Scott Boras in January, SS Carlos Correa is expected to sign for at least $300 million — the Cubs are the current frontrunners.
- Longtime Braves 1B Freddie Freeman is projected to receive six years, $180 million; if he doesn’t re-sign with Atlanta, the Dodgers and Yankees are potential landing spots.
- Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw (one year, $20M), whose elbow injury could delay his decision, is rumored to be mulling a Texas homecoming with the Rangers, a return to the Dodgers, or retirement.
Where they go and the money they command could start a chain reaction for the remaining names on the market, including SS Trevor Story, 3B Kris Bryant, and Nippon Professional Baseball OF Seiya Suzuki.
No matter what happens, this offseason is expected to be a historic one.
The record for most money spent in an offseason currently stands at $2.4 billion (2015-16). With a projected $1 billion still to be spent, MLB should cruise by that number.