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24 Predictions for Signings, Trades, Hirings, and More in the 2023-24 MLB Offseason by Bowden

Free agency officially began on Monday, but it was the managers, not the players, who stole the show. The Cubs made a surprising move to acquire Craig Counsell, headlining a series of managerial hires which also included Carlos Mendoza by the Mets and Stephen Vogt by the Guardians. Although the trades and signings have not yet started in earnest, several teams have exercised club options on potential free agents, such as the Giants with Alex Cobb, the Rangers with José Leclerc, and the Cubs with Kyle Hendricks. Additionally, some teams have cut ties with their franchise players, as the White Sox declined their option on Tim Anderson and the Reds did the same with Joey Votto. Players such as Eduardo Rodriguez and Marcus Stroman have opted out of contracts, while Josh Bell has opted into a contract with the Marlins. There has also been a trade, with the Tigers acquiring Mark Canha from the Brewers for a minor-league reliever. Furthermore, there have been significant front office moves, with the Marlins hiring Peter Bendix to be their president of baseball operations and the Red Sox choosing Craig Breslow to be their chief baseball officer.

The big moves are still to come, but here are 24 predictions for the 2023-24 offseason, what should be another exciting and unpredictable winter in baseball.

1. None of the seven players who received the one-year, $20.325 million qualifying offer will accept it.
2. Shohei Ohtani will sign with the Texas Rangers in a surprising move.
3. Aaron Nola will sign a five-year, $125 million deal with the Dodgers.
4. The Phillies will sign lefty Jordan Montgomery on a five-year, $127 million contract after missing out on Nola.
5. The Yankees will trade for three-time All-Star Juan Soto.
6. The Yankees will then sign Yoshinobu Yamamoto to a seven-year, $211 million deal.
7. The Giants will sign outfielder Jung Hoo Lee to the largest contract of any position player in this year’s free-agent class.
8. The Cubs will bring back Cody Bellinger on a six-year, $144 million deal.
9. The Astros will hire Joe Espada to be their next manager.
10. Lou Piniella and Jim Leyland will be elected to the Hall of Fame.
11. The Orioles will sign both Adley Rutschman and Gunnar Henderson to long-term deals.
12. Julio Urías of the Dodgers and Wander Franco of the Rays will receive lengthy suspensions.
13. The Twins will not make any significant moves during the offseason.
14. The Angels will hire Darin Erstad as their new manager.
15. The Washington Nationals will be sold and the new ownership group will include future Hall of Fame executive Theo Epstein.
16. Bruce Bochy of the Rangers and Skip Schumaker of the Marlins will be named managers of the year.
17. Joe Maddon, Buck Showalter, and Dusty Baker will not be hired as managers this offseason.
18. Yadier Molina will join the Cardinals coaching staff.
19. The Oakland A’s move to Las Vegas will be approved by MLB.
20. MLB will begin more concrete discussions about expansion.
21. MLB will approve the Automated Ball-Strike System with a challenge format for the 2024 season.
22. Shohei Ohtani and Ronald Acuña Jr. will be named the MVPs of their respective leagues.
23. Gerrit Cole and Blake Snell will be named Cy Young Award winners.
24. Gunnar Henderson and Corbin Carroll will take home Rookie of the Year honors.

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