Mike Clevinger’s contract with the White Sox further indicates an expensive free-agent market this winter

After a lull in the baseball world over the past week, we got a pair of signings on Sunday and Monday, as Jose Abreu inked a multi-year contract with the Houston Astros and Mike Clevinger inked a show-me deal with the Chicago White Sox.

This flurry of moves sees the White Sox move on from Abreu, who slashed a .292/.354/.506 line with the team over the course of nine seasons, and add a reclamation project to their starting rotation. Clevinger was moved in a big trade from Cleveland to the San Diego Padres during the 2020 season. He made just four starts with the team and underwent Tommy John surgery and then missed the entirety of the 2021 season.
In his first year back from Tommy John, Clevinger posted a 4.33 ERA over the course of 114 1/3 innings. His fastball velocity hovered around 93.5 miles per hour, a noticeable drop from where it was during his successful seasons in Cleveland. As a result, his strikeout rate dipped to 18.8% in 2022 compared to 27.5% in 2020 and 22.6% in 2019.
Now, why does any of this matter? Because Clevinger’s contract, which has $12 million guaranteed, further indicates just how expensive this winter’s free-agent market is going to be…

$12M is more than I e …

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Author: Cam Lewis / Blue Jays Nation

The Houston Astros have won the 2022 World Series, bring on the transactions!

The Houston Astros have won the 2022 World Series.

This is the second World Series in their 51 years of existence. Their first one came back in 2017, but there’s a huge asterisk next to that one due to the trash bin banging scandal which came to light in 2019.

SOAK IT IN, HOUSTON! @astros pic.twitter.com/RaONvzDRx5
— FOX Sports: MLB (@MLBONFOX) November 6, 2022

It was well deserved for the good team in Texas, as they dominated the American League with a 106-56 record, the second-best record in Major League Baseball.
To get to the position, they swept the Seattle Mariners in three games in the American League Divisional Series All three games were relatively close, including an 18-inning marathon game that saw the Astros win 1-0 to clinch the sweep.  In my opinion, even if the Blue Jays beat the Mariners in the Wild Card Series, they weren’t getting by the Astros.
They also swept the New York Yankees in the American League Championship Series, a lot less close than the ALDS, but still funny as hell.
The Philadelphia Phillies were the first to beat the Astros, winning games one and three. However, the experience of the Astros was too much for the Phillies to overcome, as they fell in six games in Houston. Yordan Alvarez gave the Astros a 3-1 lead, and they never looked back.

YORDADDY TO THE MOON. pic.twitter.com/4BiiPpjcTM
— Houston Astros (@astros) November 6, 2022

This snaps a trend of a different National League East team beating up on the Phillies, as the Washington Nationals won in 2019, and the team from Atlanta won in 2021. The plague season doesn’t count.
Had the Phillies won, current Blue Jays 5th outfielder Bradley Zimmer would’ve been entitled to a ring, as he spent a few weeks with the Phillies before being re-claimed off waivers by the Jays. However, former Blue Jays Aledmys Diaz has won his first ring.
The Astros winning the World Series is also notable because 73-year-old Dusty B …

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Author: Brennan Delaney / Blue Jays Nation

News and Notes: The insurance on Hyun Jin Ryu’s contract, Yankees have “uneasy feeling” about Aaron Judge’s free agency, and more!

The World Series kicks off on Friday. Do you know what that means? It’s almost Transaction Season.

The big talk around Blue Jays land over the past few days has been about Hyun Jin Ryu, specifically the insurance on his contract. The Twitter account Blue Jays Hotstove brought up that the Blue Jays fully ensured Ryu’s contract and that they’ll allocate the money they were expecting to pay him back into the payroll for 2023…

Not sure if this has already been reported but the Blue Jays have Ryu’s contract fully ensured in case of injury so they will recoup all dollars for time missed.
The plan is for the club to reallocate that money back into the payroll for next season
— BLUEJAYS HOTSTOVE (@bluejayhotstove) October 27, 2022

This is something that’s been talked about quite a bit in the past but the details are a little murky.
Ryu, of course, inked a four-year, $80 million deal with the Blue Jays back in December of 2019. He had an excellent showing in the pandemic-shortened 2020 season, started off well in 2021 but faded as time went along, and then completely fell off early in 2022 and wound up having season-ending elbow surgery in June. There’s a chance that Ryu comes back late in 2023 but the reasonable bet here is that he’s thrown his last pitch for the Blue Jays.
Given Ryu’s injury history (he missed all of 2015 and most of 2016 after undergoing shoulder surgery and was limited to 15 starts in 2018 because of a groin injury), having his contract insured would have been t …

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Author: Cam Lewis / Blue Jays Nation

Notes from Team Canada vs. Czechia at the World Juniors

Covering the World Juniors is strange. No ads on the boards. No ads during stoppage of play. The Zambonis are plain white. There’s not a Tim Hortons, Canadian Tire, or Telus ad in sight, and while this is generally a positive thing, how we got there is certainly not, and that reasoning has been looming all day as I experienced my first couple of games of World Juniors coverage.
Watching Canada play is definitely a bit different too. In contrast to the game between the United States and Austria, there was certainly a notable crowd for the game between Canada and Czechia, but in the lower bowl the number of empty seats still outnumbered the filled. Those who chose to show up are certainly showing up for Canada though. There’s no hesitation to cheer for the Canadian players, no matter what the Hockey Canada jersey might represent at the moment.
As for the game itself, both teams certainly delivered on providing a product worth tuning into. The early first period push by Czechia, and their ability to pull ahead with a shorthanded goal while killing off a five minute major was not expected. That should have been the end of Czechs then and …

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Author: Jon Steitzer / The Leafs Nation