There are some interesting MLB rumors surrounding outfielder Michael Conforto, arguably the biggest name in the remaining free agent position player pool.
MLB rumors: Michael Conforto health a concern?
According to MLB insider Ken Rosenthal in an article for The Athletic (subscription required), “Some of the teams considering free-agent outfielder Michael Conforto are concerned about his ability to throw at full strength, citing the surgery he underwent on his right shoulder last April.”
It’s an interesting note on the 29-year-old Conforto, who was rumored to possibly return last year before the surgery news shut those rumors down. As Rosenthal notes, if there are concerns about Conforto’s shoulder, it could limit his value to serving primarily as a designated hitter in 2023. However, Conforto’s agent, Scott Boras, has said that Conforto is throwing at 150 feet which, as Rosenthal notes, would put him ahead of players who have yet to prepare for spring training.
MLB insider Jon Heyman says at least one team is still in the chase for Conforto while others are likely ensuring they have all of the health data necessary.
It’s an interesting development to keep an eye on as the holidays draw near.
MLB rumors: Baltimore Orioles open to a trade?
Also in his article, Rosenthal also mentions that the Orioles might be open to trading shortstop Jorge Mateo “in the right deal.” The 27-year-old Mateo stole an American League-high 25 bases but slashed just .221/.267/.379 in 494 at-bats. Still, with team control through the 2025 season and his defensive abilities, Mateo might be a solid but costly alternative for a team that missed out on the big names in the shortstop free agent market this offseason.
Would Baltimore consider trading Mateo? It’s a possibility, but likely a slim one unless another team can dangle a big return for him.
MLB rumors: San Diego Padres getting calls on Kim Ha-Seong, Trent Grisham
With Xander Bogaerts now on the San Diego roster and Fernando Tatis Jr. due back from his PED suspension early in the season, Padres general manager A.J. Preller “acknowledged,” according to Rosenthal, that other MLB teams are interested to see what San Diego plans to do with Kim Ha-Seong, who was San Diego’s primary shortstop last season with Tatis out.
However, it’s believed that Preller will keep all of his shortstop options plus outfielder Trent Grisham, who has also drawn some interest as a potential trade chip. In what should be a very interesting National League West next season, the Padres feel they have the talent to compete … but don’t be surprised if they still work to shore up their pitching.