, pub-3283090343984743, DIRECT, f08c47fec0942fa0 Tim Dierkes’ MLB Mailbag: Boras Four, Cubs, Blue Jays, Gambling
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Tim Dierkes’ MLB Mailbag: Boras Four, Cubs, Blue Jays, Gambling

I'm back for this week's mailbag!  We've got questions on the Boras Four, the Cubs' plan at catcher, available righty relievers, Juan Soto's defense, the Blue Jays' offense, the recent gambling suspensions, my one-third award picks, and much more.

Doug asks:

Do you think that front offices will feel even more compelled to depress free agent salaries after all of the prolonged drama about "The Boras Four" and none of those players panning out to be very good? Will any of Chapman, Bellinger, Snell, or Montgomery opt out of their contract?

Owners and players will be diametrically opposed on player salaries until the end of time, or at least until the end of Major League Baseball.  But to your point, it stands to reason that if the early performance of the late-signing Boras pitchers holds up, more front offices will be wary of giving big AAVs to hurlers signing well into spring training, even on short-term deals.

Blake Snell has been terrible, and since debuting April 8th has separate IL stints for adductor and groin strains.  Snell recently told reporters, "The one thing I would say is that big-league spring training, you need it. You have to go to spring training. I hope teams see that. I don’t know what [Jordan] Montgomery is doing, but I bet it’s tough for him."

Montgomery, who expressed a similar sentiment, sits at a 5.48 ERA after eight starts, with the worst strikeout rate of his career.

Some pitchers have succeeded after signing late, notably Ervin Santana signing on 3-12-14 and putting up a 3.2 WAR season for the Braves.  But both Snell and Montgomery signed later than Santana did, and most examples show pitchers struggling without a normal spring training.

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