Latest Otto Porter Jr. injury update is worst case scenario for Raptors

Latest Otto Porter Jr. injury update is worst case scenario for Raptors

The Toronto Raptors are never considered a free agent destination, which made their ability to lure Otto Porter Jr. away from the Golden State Warriors that much more impressive. He seemed like a perfect fit for a team who needed veteran leadership and some shooting. While Porter had the most impactful season of his career […]
Latest Otto Porter Jr. injury update is worst case scenario for Raptors – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

Read More

Author: Mike Luciano / Raptors HQ

Cole Hamels wants to pitch in 2023. There’s no way the Blue Jays would be interested, right? RIGHT?!

Amidst the several free agent moves made on the hot stove recently, one former MLB pitcher has announced that he still wants another shot at taking the mound.

Multiple reports emerged on Wednesday afternoon that Cole Hamels still has ambitions of pitching in the MLB, per his agent, John Boggs.

Cole Hamels, still only 38, would like to pitch in 2023, his longtime agent John Boggs said. Hasn’t pitched since 2020.
— Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) December 7, 2022

Hamels is a four-time All-Star, as well as a four-time top-8 finisher in Cy Young voting. His resume is stacked with postseason accomplishments, pitching in 17 playoff games, starting 16 of them, as well as being the MVP of the 2008 NLCS and the 2008 World Series.
Hamels owns a career 3.43 ERA, 2,560 strikeouts, and a .572 winning percentage. While his tenure with the Phillies highlights his career, Blue Jays fans may know Hamels well from his time with the Texas Rangers. He pitched against Toronto in both ALDS match-ups in ’15 and ’16.
Hamels hasn’t seen big league action since the COVID-shortened 2020 season with the Atlanta Braves. He only pitched 3.1 innings that year, as shoulder fatigue and triceps tendonitis kept him on the injur …

Read More

Author: Evan Stack / Blue Jays Nation

Jacob DeGrom signs with the Texas Rangers

The first huge domino of free agency has fallen, as Jacob DeGrom has signed with the… Texas Rangers? What?

According to ESPN’s Jeff Passan, the 34-year-old has signed a five-year, $185,000,000 contract with the Toronto Blue Jays son.

BREAKING: Right-hander Jacob deGrom has signed a five-year, $185 million contract with the Texas Rangers, sources tell ESPN. Physical is passed. Deal is done. Includes conditional sixth-year option that would take total deal to $222 million. Full no-trade clause. A massive haul.
— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) December 3, 2022

 
This sets a trend of the Rangers committing serious money to free agents, as they signed Corey Seager to a 10-year, $325,000,000 contract and Marcus Semien to a $175,000,000 contract over seven seasons before the 2022 season.
Last season, DeGrom finished with a 3.08 ERA and 2.13 FIP in 64.1 innings pitched. He also amassed an insane 42.7 K% and an incredibly low 3.3 BB%. However, injuries have been a concern for our generation’s best pitcher, as he’s been limited to only 26 starts the past two seasons. Usually, a starter appears in around 32 games if fully healthy.
He’s also on the wrong side of 30, so they’ll always be a concern there. However, teams have been committing serious money to older pitchers still performing excellently.. For example, the Mets signed Max Scherzer to a 3-year, $130,000,000 contract before the 2022 season when he was 37 years old.
Furthermore, reigning American League Cy Young winner Justin Verlander is looking for a big payday, like Max Scherzer’s the season prior. Verlander will be 40 years old before the season starts.
What about the rest of the Texas Rangers pitching st …

Read More

Author: Brennan Delaney / Blue Jays Nation

Ross Stripling was ranked No. 28 on Keith Law’s Top-50 MLB Free Agents list

The Athletic released Keith Law’s Top-50 MLB Free Agents list for the 2022-23 off-season and the Toronto Blue Jays’ lone impact free agent, Ross Stripling, is ranked at No. 28.

Law said that Stripling found success last season due largely to improved fastball command which led to him cutting down walks and keeping balls in the park. While he might not have success to the tune of a 3.01 ERA over 134 innings again, Law believes that Stripling will continue to bring value as a back-of-the-rotation arm moving forward…
He’s been underpaid for years while he was stuck in the arbitration process, which doesn’t do any favors to pitchers who’ve bounced between starting and relieving, but that’s part of his value to another club – he’s a perfect fifth starter/swingman, especially for a club that believes it has a pitching prospect who might break in during the season.
I wouldn’t go over two years but I’d give him $12 million or so per.
The note about Stripling being the perfect pitcher for a team that has a pitching prospect that might break through is an interesting one for the Blue Jays, as Ricky Tiedemann could certainly be a part of the team’s starting rotation at some point in 2023 after he saw success in Low-A, High-A, and Double-A in 2022.
If the Blue Jays were to qualify Stripling and he accepted, he wo …

Read More

Author: Cam Lewis / Blue Jays Nation

Carlos Correa is opting out of his deal with the Twins, adding another star to this winter’s free agent market

Carlos Correa is a free agent again.

According to ESPN, the 28-year-old All-Star will exercise the opt-out clause in his contract with the Minnesota Twins and will hit the open market for the second consecutive winter.
Last year, Correa was one name in a huge list of star infielders who hit free agency at the same time, including Marcus Semien, Corey Seager, Javier Baez, and Trevor Story. While those four aforementioned players signed long-term contracts, Correa opted to ink a short-term deal with the Twins with the option that he could soon test the market again when there weren’t as many quality names available at the same position.
Correa’s deal with the Twins was worth $35 million annually for three years with an opt-out after the first and second seasons. He slashed a .291/.366/.467 line with the Twins in 2022 and was worth 5.4 wins above replacement, according to Baseball-Reference. It wasn’t as good as his 2021 season with the Astros in which he was worth 7.1 wins and finished fifth in AL MVP voting, but Correa’s competition in free agency is lighter this time around, as the other two big names out there are Trea Turner and Dansby Swanson.
There was some talk last off-season during the dog days of winter that the Blue Jays co …

Read More

Author: Cam Lewis / Blue Jays Nation

NBA GMs confirm what we knew about Nick Nurse, Raptors fans

NBA GMs confirm what we knew about Nick Nurse, Raptors fans

The Toronto Raptors may not be the biggest free agent destination in the world, but Nick Nurse and Masai Ujiri have built one of the league’s most consistent and respected franchises. The Raptors have been consistent winners for a decade, with a championship ring in their possession. While a roster led by Rookie of the […]
NBA GMs confirm what we knew about Nick Nurse, Raptors fans – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

Read More

Author: Mike Luciano / Raptors HQ

Winners and Losers after Raptors sign Juancho Hernangomez

Winners and Losers after Raptors sign Juancho Hernangomez

The Toronto Raptors got in one last free agent signing at the eleventh hour before training camp starts. Juancho Hernangomez, who is known for his role in Adam Sandler’s “Hustle” as Bo Cruz, signed with Toronto on a one-year contract after spending 2021-22 with the Utah Jazz. Hernangomez is likely going to compete for a […]
Winners and Losers after Raptors sign Juancho Hernangomez – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

Read More

Author: Mike Luciano / Raptors HQ

Around the Atlantic: Breaking down each team’s notable additions and exits

Around the Atlantic: Breaking down each team’s notable additions and exits

It has now been five days since NHL free agency began and teams around the league are starting to take shape. There are several new faces in the Atlantic division and a few notable exits. The Ottawa Senators and Detroit Red Wings were the most active teams. Both look to be much improved. The Montreal Canadiens and Buffalo Sabres don’t appear to be ready for a playoff push, but the rest of the division should be in contention. Here is a look at how each team has fared since free agency opened. (Trades and free agent acquisitions have been included.)
Florida Panthers
Notable additions: Nick Cousins (C/LW), Rudolfs Balcers (LW), Marc Staal (D), Eric Staal (C/LW)
Notable exits: Claude Giroux (C/RW), Ben Chiarot (D), Mason Marchment (LW)
Losing Claude Giroux was inevitable, they simply didn’t have the cap flexibility to keep him. The exits of both Ben Chiarot and Mason Marchment create holes in their roster but over last few seasons, depth players have consistently shined in the Panthers system. In Cousins they get a solid defensive forward with experience. Balcers isn’t a physical player, but he is responsible in his own zone. He scored a career high 11 goals in 61 games last season on a San Jose Sharks team that struggled to produce offence. Playing on a third …

Read More

Author: Scott Ony / The Leafs Nation

Rating the Leafs offseason (so far)

“It’s not even a week into free agency, why are rating the offseason already?”
A legitimate question conjured up reader, I’m glad you asked. While it’s still relatively early in the offseason, we’ve seen the draft go by as well as the most critical early days of free agency, it’s very easy to have an opinion at this point and you’ve probably been subject to a lot of them on social media. The intention here is to not only identify our 1-10 rating of the Leafs offseason so far, but weigh in on how Kyle Dubas and the Leafs could improve their score with us.
So let’s get started.
Mark Norman
(This was written before the Jarnkrok signing. That probably brings it to a 5.)
I think it’s a 3 out of 10 thus far. Taking into account that it was unlikely the Leafs were going to bring in A-listers because of their cap situation, I don’t think you could even call Nicolas Aube-Kubel, Adam Gaudette, Jordie Benn, or Victor Mete B-list options. And while, sure, they may provide some positive value, these feel like the type of moves you make in the second week of free agency, not the first two days. My excitement for these moves pales in comparison to my excitement about Nick Ritchie and Ondrej Kase last summer, even with knowing how Ritchie played out.
On the goaltending …

Read More

Author: Jon Steitzer / The Leafs Nation

A crowded Leafs blueline means that someone could soon be traded

The 2022 Free Agent Frenzy has only been three days old and the Leafs have made a number of signings already. But besides the addition of Ilya Samsonov, most have been depth additions or fringe players on low-risk deals.
Two more players were given such contracts when the Leafs nabbed Victor Mete and Jordie Benn to identical one-year deals on Thursday night. Regardless of whether they get NHL action or not, it is clear Kyle Dubas wants to ensure his team has its bases covered for each position.
Related:
Leafs add Jordie Benn and Victor Mete as defensive depth
As a by-product of these signings, the Leafs now have eight NHL defensemen under contract along with Rasmus Sandin, who was given a qualifying offer but remains unsigned. Simply put, there are too many bodies on the blueline and something has to give or else someone won’t be getting much playing time.
Surely, this means a trade will soon follow, right?
Let’s start by crossing off the players who are unlikely to be dealt. Morgan Rielly’s new contract is set to kick in and is their best defenceman, he’s not going anywhere. Mark Giordano just signed a two-year deal so it’s unlikely he gets dealt so soon, especially since he provided a ton of value. TJ Brodie has been an integral piece on the blueline for the past two years and is also staying put. And Timothy Liljegren is not getting dealt because he has made impressive strides …

Read More

Author: Michael Mazzei / The Leafs Nation