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MLB Offseason Round-Up: Winter Storylines to Follow in New Year

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MLB offseason, Blake Snell

This is one in a series of daily articles highlighting the latest news and notes from the MLB offseason. 

As the calendar flips to January and a new year begins, there is plenty of work to be done across the league before spring training commences six weeks from now.

There have already been a handful of headline-grabbing transactions so far this MLB offseason. Shohei Ohtani signed a record-setting contract with the Los Dodgers. Yoshinobu Yamamoto joined Ohtani in Los Angeles. Aaron Nola returned to the Phillies and Sonny Gray inked a deal with the Cardinals.

On the trade front, the Yankees made a big splash by acquiring outfielder Juan Soto in a trade with the Padres. Tyler Glasnow headed to the ever-so-active Dodgers in a trade with the Rays.

What should you keep an eye out for as the winter continues?

WHERE DO TOP REMAINING FREE AGENTS LAND?

Though Ohtani is off the board, there is still plenty of star-power left on the free agent market. Reigning National League Cy Young winner Blake Snell is still seeking a new team. Fellow left-hander Jordan Montgomery is as well. In the bullpen, relief ace Josh Hader is seeking a nine-figure contract. Plus, position players Cody Bellinger and Matt Chapman have yet to find new homes.

There has already been major paydays committed around the league, and there is still plenty of money yet to be spent.

HOW MANY MORE STARTERS GET DEALT?

The Glasnow trade is likely the first of multiple in terms of front-line starting pitchers.

Corbin Burnes (Brewers), Shane Bieber (Guardians) and Dylan Cease (White Sox) have proven to be Cy Young candidates at various points in their careers and have all be tabbed as potential trade candidates this offseason.

Down a bit on the ladder, names such as Bryan Woo and Bryce Miller (Mariners), Edward Cabrera (Marlins), Paul Blackburn (A’s) and Alek Manoah (Blue Jays) are all other names to look out for.

TOP TWO FOREIGN STARTERS LEFT

In what has proved to be a deep class of international free agents this MLB offseason, there are a pair of starting pitchers left who are drawing plenty of interest.

Japanese left-handed starter Shōta Imanaga is one of the top starting pitchers left on the market. Cuban right-hander Yariel Rodríguez, who has spent the past couple of seasons pitching in Japan, is also getting interest from multiple teams. The Pittsburgh Pirates have been linked to the latter.

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