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Mark P
Time to dig into some questions for the Weekend Chat!  We'll wait a minute for people to enter the queue, and then get rolling....
JJ Royals
What moves, is any, do we make in the off-season?   Give me a legit (but long shot) and a most likely.
Mark P
Legit = they ink Witt to a long-term extension.  I don't consider this "most likely" since the Royals would have to spend at a record level to ink Witt to such a deal, and there's no immediate need just yet since he's still under team control for so many years.  But, it should certainly be on their radar, since he has stepped up as a cornerstone.

Most likely = signing a few veterans to one-year contracts, in the hopes of either flipping them at the deadline a la Chapman or hoping they can contribute to a young team that finally starts clicking
Mister E. Person
How impressive have the Orioles been this year? Seems like nobody had them as a playoff team entering the year
Mark P
They won 83 games last year, so it's not like they're completely out of nowhere.  But yeah, Baltimore has certainly exceeded even the most optimistic of expectations.  They have a genuine chance to win the 2023 World Series, which no Orioles fan would've thought possible even 16 months ago
With the Yankees disappointing performance this season do you see them replacing both Aaron Boone and Brian Cashman?
Mark P
After 3 seasons studying under Dave Dombrowski, do you think another team (probably not Boston) would try to poach him to run their baseball ops department soon?
Mark P
I'm assuming you're referring to Sam Fuld here?  Fuld certainly seems like a sought-after candidate and he'll definitely get some calls about bigger jobs.

However, there's also a scenario where he eventually takes over for DD in Philly
White Sox Fan
Why do we have such a hard time drafting and developing players?
Mark P
By many accounts, the White Sox are simply behind in the times in terms of modern scouting and evaluation methods.  Getz faces a big challenge in getting the organization turned around, and there's a a perception (rightly or wrongly) that the fresh start the Sox seem to need can't happen if the new GM was already part of the front office
deGrom Texas Ranger
Does Ohtani ditching his team midseason impact his free agency value and/or his MVP candidacy?
Mark P
It's not midseason and he didn't "ditch his team," so the framing of this question is a little off.  Ohtani is still going to win the MVP, his numbers are just too incredible
red sox fan
do you think the firing of chaim bloom signals ownership is angry and going to spend big this off-season, or more of the same spending wise with a different head of ops?
Mark P
The Red Sox are still spending big in relation to most teams, but not by their past top or near-top of the league standards.  But, as we've seen several times this decade, Boston's ownership is very impatient, so they might pivot to a slightly more Dombrowski-esque "win now" mode.

Whether that translates to splashy signings or trades remains to be seen.  But, keep in mind that the next GM/PBO/CBO might not have the same attachment to Boston's top prospects. This doesn't mean that Mayer or Rafaela or the very top-tier guys are getting dealt, but it could mean that the prospect depth Bloom built up could be somewhat quickly mined for more immediate help
Padres are on their first 4 game winning streak of the year! Making a surprised playoff run right right?
Mark P
Better late than never!

And man, it took until mid-September for even a modest win streak like that.  What a weird season for SD
What moves can Cleveland make in the offseason?
Mark P
Since Francona has been leaning more and more towards retirement, finding a new manager is likely to be the first order of business.  

In terms of roster moves, the Guardians still need hitting, and lots of it.  Bieber is likely to be dealt in search of a bat, though after all of the pitching injuries this season, I wonder if there's a better chance the Guards hang onto him for extra depth.  They could still potentially look to move him at the deadline if need be, or maybe let him walk and recoup a draft pick after the season.
do rhys hoskins and aaron nola get qualifying offers this winter i would think both would be in line for it
Mark P
Nola will definitely get a QO, but Hoskins won't.  It's a big risk for the Phillies to spend $19MM on a player coming off major knee surgery, especially when the team already has something of a logjam of DH types
With the results of the Astros regular season so far, could we see major changes in the off-season?
Mark P
I hear James Click is available!

More seriously, I don't think any major changes are in store for a team that is still on a path to the playoffs, even if naturally the Astros are looking a lot less dominant than they were in previous seasons.  Brown was just hired last winter, and Baker probably has the managerial job as long as he wants it, or at least until Houston has a more significant downturn in performance.
Scott S.
Who’s gone of the Jays miss the playoffs or lose in the WC series? Thanks!
Baseball Girl
Do you think the Jays need to make coaching/managerial changes? (I think they do) & does a playoff appearance mean those areas don't get addressed?
Mark P
This season has been so shaky that I hope the Jays wouldn't just be all "everything's fine" if they squeak into the playoffs.  The lack of offense is troubling enough that hitting coach Guillermo Martinez's job could be in jeopardy, for one
If they missed the playoffs entirely, firing John Schneider would certainly have to be a possibility, given the team's high expectations.
Better next year?
Mets or Yankees ?
Mark P
Who will have the better 2024 season?

Mets (43.6% | 201 votes)
Yankees (56.4% | 260 votes)

Total Votes: 461
Chet Lemonaid
Is Torkelskon no longer considered a bust after his finish to the year?
Mark P
If anyone considered Torkelson to be a bust after one rookie season, that's a mistake.  Still some holes in his game, but you can see the hitting potential start to emerge this year
The big yo
I have a sneaky feeling the A’s wil be a wildcard team next season. They seem to have put a few nice little pieces together and everyone else’s in the west seems to be getting worse. Thoughts?….
Mark P
I applaud your optimism!
AL and NL CY Youngs—Who would you vote for?
Mark P
It's a real tossup in both leagues.  Gerrit Cole seems to have a narrative edge in the AL, but pitchers like Gausman, Eflin, or Sonny Gray have a case on the WAR front.

If I had a ballot, I'd go for Cole and Zac Gallen, but there are plenty of good options in either league
Matt Arnold
With David gone, do I go into full rebuild this offseason and trade Burnes, Woodruff, and Adames to put my stamp on the organization?
Mark P
Nope.  The Brewers are about to win the NL Central and they have those three guys controlled through 2024.  Why blow everything up and start over?  

It's certainly possible (or even probable) at least one of those players could be dealt this winter.  But if that happens, the Brewers will look for a package of win-now and young-talent pieces
Given the Mets are targeting 2025 to be real contenders, what steps this off-season get them on that path?
Mark P
I think the Mets entirely plan to contend in 2024, just in a more streamlined way.  Stearns is going to have a lot more payroll flexibility than he did in Milwaukee, but he won't make a bunch of massive splurges --- it'll be more targeted spends to address a bunch of needs, rather than throwing money at star names for a quick fix
Mike W
Do you think the Pirates have a shot at signing Yamamoto?
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