December 18, 2018 / 12:57 AM / 2 months ago

MLB notebook: Machado kicks off free-agent tour

Manny Machado plans to visit the New York Yankees and Philadelphia Phillies this week with additional teams lining up for weekend appointments.

FILE PHOTO: Oct 16, 2018; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Los Angeles Dodgers shortstop Manny Machado (8) celebrates with catcher Yasmani Grandal (9) after scoring on an RBI single by center fielder Cody Bellinger (not pictured) defeat the Milwaukee Brewers in the thirteenth inning in game four of the 2018 NLCS playoff baseball series at Dodger Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Richard Mackson-USA TODAY Sports

On Monday, Machado met with the Chicago White Sox and toured Guaranteed Rate Field. Machado’s agent said his client will next be at Yankee Stadium on Wednesday and Citizens Bank Park with the Phillies on Thursday.

Machado, 26, reportedly is seeking at least a 10-year, $300 million contract. He will be entering his eighth season in 2019 after spending his first 6 1/2 seasons with the Baltimore Orioles and the second half of last season with the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Last season, Machado totaled 37 home runs and 107 RBIs, but he was the target of criticism in the postseason for his apparent lack of hustle.

—The Houston Astros agreed to terms on a two-year, $32 million deal with outfielder Michael Brantley on Monday evening, according to multiple reports.

The deal was not yet official but both sides agreed to the terms, Yahoo Sports’ Jeff Passan reported. The contract reportedly runs through the 2020 season and does not include any club or player options.

Brantley, 31, is a three-time All-Star who has spent all 10 of his major league seasons with the Cleveland Indians. He hit .309 with 17 home runs, 76 RBIs and 12 stolen bases in 143 games last season.

—The Yankees officially re-signed left hander J.A. Happ to a two-year deal with a third-year vesting option, the team announced.

Terms were not announced, but according to multiple reports, the deal is worth $34 million through 2020, while a $17 million option for 2021 would become guaranteed if Happ starts 27-plus games or pitches 165-plus innings in 2020.

Happ, 36, did not arrive in the Bronx until late July via trade from the Toronto Blue Jays, but the 12-year veteran made a big impact for the Yankees. He went 7-0 with a 2.69 ERA in 11 starts down the stretch in helping the team to a 100-62 record and a playoff berth.

—The Pittsburgh Pirates signed free agent right-hander Jordan Lyles to a one-year contract, the team announced.

Lyles will receive $2.05 million, according to multiple reports. Pittsburgh is hoping the 28-year-old will be its fifth starter as a rotation spot is open after the recent trade of right-hander Ivan Nova to the White Sox.

Lyles went 3-4 with a 4.11 ERA in 35 appearances (eight starts) last season while splitting the campaign between the San Diego Padres and Milwaukee Brewers. His work with the Brewers — including 22 strikeouts and just three walks in 16 1/3 innings — caught the attention of the Pirates.

—CC Sabathia gave up half a million dollars to show he had his teammate’s back. Instead, the Yankees paid their veteran left-hander for his loyalty.

The 38-year-old pitcher was two innings from receiving a $500,000 for pitching 155 innings last season when he was ejected for throwing at the Tampa Bay Rays’ Jesus Sucre in the sixth inning of Sabathia’s final outing. Rather than pitch out of the bullpen to get his bonus, Sabathia stayed at 153 innings.

A review of the Yankees’ final luxury tax payroll for the season revealed the Yankees paid Sabathia the $500,000 bonus, multiple outlets reported.

—The Texas Rangers signed Matt Bush to a minor league contract while the right-hander continues his recovery from September’s elbow surgery.

Bush, who turns 33 in February, partially tore the ulnar collateral ligament in his throwing elbow last season but didn’t have Tommy John surgery. He isn’t expected to be ready to pitch until July.

Bush’s last appearance of the season came on June 13. He had a 4.70 ERA in 21 relief appearances.

—Field Level Media

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