Bovada releases list of teams with best odds to sign Jake Arrieta, Mike Moustakas, others


Bovada releases list of teams with best odds to sign Jake Arrieta, Mike Moustakas, others

At this point, it's anyone's guess when the MLB's remaining top free agents will sign a contract for the 2018 season and beyond.

The MLB season is officially three weeks away, yet the likes of Jake Arrieta and Mike Moustakas, to name a few, remain unsigned. With the season fast approaching, Bovada is giving its best guess as to where the former All Stars will play in 2018.

According to Bovada, the Brewers have the best odds to sign Arrieta at 7/4, followed by the Nationals at 5/2, the Padres at 11/4, the Phillies at 9/2 and the Twins at 8/1.

Arrieta, 32, put together a stellar string of years with the Cubs in which he won the 2015 Cy Young Award and was named an All Star in 2016. He owns a 3.08 ERA in nine career postseason starts, all coming with the Cubs from 2015-2017.

Arrieta joining either the Brewers or Nationals would surely intensify the National League pennant race. The Brewers finished six games back of the Cubs in the NL Central in 2017, so Arrieta could theoretically help get them over the hump in 2018.

The Nationals have a stellar starting rotation as is, with the likes of Max Scherzer, Stephen Strasburg and Gio Gonzalez. However, adding Arrieta and his postseason success would only help a Nationals team seeking its first postseason series win in franchise history.

Bovada gives the White Sox the best odds to sign Moustakas at 6/5, followed by the Royals at 8/5, the Yankees at 4/1 and the Brewers at 5/1.

Although Moustakas, 29, has recently been linked to the White Sox, such a move seems unlikely. The White Sox currently have Yolmer Sanchez and Matt Davidson on the roster to play third base, both of which experienced success in 2017.

Sanchez hit a respectable .267 in 141 games with the White Sox in 2017, while Davidson hit .220 with 26 home runs in 118 games.

Moustakas has spent his entire seven-year career with the Royals, winning the World Series in 2015. He would be a significant addition, as he hit .272 with 38 home runs and 85 RBIs in 148 games in 2017.

At the same time, the White Sox could be looking to play younger players and not dip into free agency until they are closer to contention. Of course, this might not be for a few more seasons, so Moustakas might have to look elsewhere for his new home.

For the full free agency odds, go to Bovada's official website. 

Update: After publication, Moustakas and the Royals agreed to a one-year contract with a mutual option for 2019.

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Ozzie Guillen compared Sammy Sosa to Michael Jordan...and Michael Jackson

Ozzie Guillen compared Sammy Sosa to Michael Jordan...and Michael Jackson

Ozzie Guillen is no stranger to saying outlandish things.

So it's not surprising that Guillen would agree with Sosa when the former Cubs outfielder said he made the city of Chicago what it is today.

Thirteen months ago, Sosa gave a candid interview to Chuck Wasserstrom and compared himself to Jesus before saying: "When nobody knew who Chicago was, I put Chicago on the map."

Guillen echoed that sentiment on the latest White Sox Talk Podcast.

Maybe from where they sit, that's exactly what has occurred. Sosa and Michael Jordan certainly helped make the Cubs, Bulls and Chicago sports in general on the map internationally.

"People know who the Cubs were because Sammy put them back on the map," Guillen said. "... For the city of Chicago, when Sammy was Sammy — that race with [Mark] McGwire, then people noticed what Chicago was."

Ozzie said — from his perspective — when people hear about Chicago, they ask, "Oh, you know Sammy?" or "You know Michael?" referencing Michael Jordan.

Guillen also weighed in on Sosa's ever-changing appearance that has sparked A LOT of attention lately.

"But the color, I'm tired. I think he uses the same product Michael Jackson did," Guillen said. "It's funny because I work with him — we talked to him a lot for ESPN Deportes. When you're lying, that's when people don't get it.

"Listen, if you want to change your color, why not? You got the money, you got the time if that's what you want to be. But if you say, 'Well, I got too much color because of the sun when I was playing.' OK...You live in Miami, you grew up in the Dominican. To me, I just laugh."

Scouting the Cubs' competition: Will the Nationals finally win it all before Bryce Harper leaves?


Scouting the Cubs' competition: Will the Nationals finally win it all before Bryce Harper leaves?

The expectations couldn't be any higher for the 2018 Chicago Cubs. 

It's 2016 all over again. The goal isn't just a trip to the playoffs or another NL pennant. It's World Series or bust for this group of North Siders.

With that, let's take a look at all of the teams that could stand in the way of the Cubs getting back to the Fall Classic:

Washington Nationals

2017 record: 97-65, 1st place in NL East

Offseason additions: Miguel Montero, Matt Adams, Joaquin Benoit, Matt Reynolds, Jeremy Hellickson, Tommy Milone

Offseason departures: Adam Lind, Stephen Drew, Jose Lobaton, Jayson Werth, Matt Albers, Oliver Perez, Joe Blanton

X-factor: The health of their stars

Health is an X-factor for any team, but it carries more weight in D.C. than anywhere else in baseball.

Bryce Harper, Trea Turner and Stephen Strasburg are three of the Nationals' best players and yet three guys that can't seem to stay healthy for a full season. Couple that group with leadoff hitter Adam Eaton and Daniel Murphy coming off knee injuries, the health questions are running rampant in Washington.

Those are the Nationals' projected Top 4 hitters and No. 2 starter. If they all stay healthy, they'll put up some whopping numbers. But if history repeats, it will make the road quite a bit tougher despite a weak NL East.

Projected lineup

1. Adam Eaton - LF
2. Trea Turner - SS
3. Bryce Harper - RF
4. Anthony Rendon - 3B
5. Ryan Zimmerman - 1B
6. Howie Kendrick - 2B
7. Matt Wieters - C
8. Michael Taylor - CF

Projected rotation

1. Max Scherzer
2. Stephen Strasburg
3. Gio Gonzalez
4. Tanner Roark
5. A.J. Cole


When healthy, this may be the most talented roster in the NL. Harper, Rendon, Murphy and Turner could all wind up as serious contenders in the 2018 MVP race while Scherzer and Strasburg figure to garner some Cy Young votes once again.

The Nationals also have the advantage of a pretty rough division, at least on paper. Three teams are rebuilding and the Mets haven't made the playoffs in a couple years now. Getting to play 18+ games against all four of those teams is a godsend.

Which is good news for a Nationals fanbase that is absolutely starving for some actual postseason success. Wade Davis and the Cubs knocked Washington out last fall and 2018 represents what figures to be the final chance to win it all (or even win A playoff series) with Harper before he gets a $400 million deal elsewhere (like Chicago??).

The 2018 Nationals have no holes. If any of their starters falter, they have Hellickson available. If any of their position players struggle, they have depth in the form of Kendrick (once Murphy is healthy), Montero, Adams, Wilmer Difo and Brian Goodwin.

And the bullpen is very, very good thanks to a bunch of moves before the 2017 Trade Deadline and also have Benoit and Koda Glover expected to start the season on the DL.

The Nationals will be playing in October this year. But what they do in the postseason is a question that won't be answered for 6 months. 

Prediction: 1st in NL East, playoffs