The Student News Site of Great Neck North High School

Guide Post

The Student News Site of Great Neck North High School

Guide Post

The Student News Site of Great Neck North High School

Guide Post

Swinging Deals and Shifting Dynamics

The art of negotiations, player swaps, and strategic maneuvers is poised to shape the landscape of the upcoming 2024 MLB season.

The Major League Baseball offseason uncovers a thrilling time for baseball enthusiasts as teams strategically strengthen their lineups for a chance to bring home a championship. Teams evaluate their strengths and weaknesses, recognizing certain positions where they may be lacking full potential. 

To start with possibly the largest deal in sports history, 29-year-old, Shohei Ohtani signed a contract worth $700 million over 10 years. After numerous reports suggesting that Ohtani would sign with the Toronto Blue Jays, on November 9, he announced that he agreed to a long-term deal with the Los Angeles Dodgers. This deal makes Ohtani the highest-paid player in MLB history.

“I just saw my contract was 10 years, I’m not sure how long I will be able to play the game, so I do prioritize winning,” said Ohtani.

Shohei Ohtani in his new Dodgers uniform (Credit: Reason Magazine).
Shohei Ohtani in his new Dodgers uniform (Credit: Reason Magazine).

After six seasons with the Los Angeles Angels, Ohtani has a .274 batting average as a hitter with 171 home runs, 437 runs batted in, and 86 stolen bases. On the defensive side, he has a 38-19 career record as a starting pitcher with 608 strikeouts and a 3.01 earned run average. From the Dodger’s perspective, Ohtani will continue to make significant contributions in both offensive and defensive capacities. 

The New York Yankees also made notable moves this offseason. The Yankees acquired outfielders Juan Soto and Trent Grisham from the San Diego Padres in exchange for five players; Michael King, Jhony Brito, Drew Thorpe, Randy Vásquez, and Kyle Higashioka. 

Yankee fans rejoiced at the prospect of welcoming Soto, a three-time All-Star and four-time Silver Slugger, to the Bronx. Throughout his six-year tenure in the major leagues, playing for both the Nationals and Padres, Soto has compiled 160 homers and 483 RBIs across 779 games. 

“…I’m gonna meet those guys and try to get a good relationship, try to really stick together, get to know those guys and push and try to get the same goal,” said Soto. 

Soto reaches to build strong relationships with his teammates and is anticipated to play a pivotal role in the Yankees’ lineup for the upcoming season.

Along with Soto, the Yankees also signed outfielder Alex Verdugo from the Boston Red Sox.

Alex Verdugo, who was once a Red Sox, will be wearing pinstripes in the future (Credit: Sportsnet).
Alex Verdugo, who was once a Red Sox, will be wearing pinstripes in the future (Credit: Sportsnet).

As Verdugo approached free agency following the 2024 season, Boston placed him on the trade market. Despite multiple teams expressing interest, the Yankees ultimately secured him. This only marks the eighth trade between the rivalries since 1969, leaving fans in awe. 

In return, the Red Sox received Richard Fitts, Greg Weissert, and Nicholas Judice. 

Further, the long-term Yankees pitcher, Luis Severino, has inked a one-year worth $13 million with the New York Mets. Having dedicated all eight years of his career to the Yankees, Severino has demonstrated remarkable effectiveness when in good health. 

Throughout his seasons with the team, Severino has pitched 638 innings, maintained a 3.39 ERA, and recorded 709 strikeouts against 181 walks. His standout performances in 2017 and 2018 positioned him among the elite pitchers in baseball, finishing third and ninth in Cy Young Award voting.

However, in 2019, shoulder and lat injuries surfaced, leading Severino to undergo Tommy John Surgery, subsequently causing him to miss the entire 2020 season and an immense portion of the 2021 season. Making a strong comeback in 2022, he showcased a 3.18 ERA across 19 starts and 102 innings. Unfortunately, he faced challenges in 2023, posting a 6.65 ERA over approximately 89 innings.

Luis Severino taking steps to recovery from Tommy John surgery in 2021 (Credit: Sports Illustrated).
Luis Severino taking steps to recovery from Tommy John surgery in 2021 (Credit: Sports Illustrated).

Will Severino prove advantageous for the Mets in the 2024 season, or will his health concerns linger longer than anticipated by the team?

“I think Severino will help the Mets pitching next season and increase their chances at winning the World Series,” said sophomore Ben Rokhsar. 

As the trades are just getting underway, numerous prospects are yet to decide and reveal the teams they will join. Fans are pondering which offseason moves will have the greatest impact on their respective teams in the 2024 season and Major League Baseball as a whole.

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About the Contributor
Emma Lavian, Associate Editor
Emma Lavian is one of Guide Post’s associate editors. Along with being a hardworking student, she is a dedicated three-sport athlete. With her favorite sport being soccer, she plays on North High’s varsity soccer team as well as the basketball and softball teams. Emma is also an active member of many clubs such as Pre-Med and Dentistry, Athletic Leadership, and AIDS Awareness. When she is not doing her school work, she loves to hang out with friends and family, play sports, go on walks, or read.

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