Live: Sailors’ offseason follow-up: Follow the latest trades news and free agency signings

After a cold winter and a 99-day MLB lockout, baseball returns — and with it, optimism and hope for a new season coupled with occasional sun breaks in Seattle in April .

With Thursday’s agreement to a new five-year collective bargaining agreement, we can finally turn our attention away from contentious talks at the bargaining table and instead focus on the 2022 Mariners.

With just over $70 million in salary pledged so far, the M’s have cash to spend and potential deals to strike. And with spring training games slated to begin as early as next week, a full offseason of offers will have to be squeezed in a week.

As Mariners beat reporter Ryan Divish, it’s time for GM Jerry Dipoto.

The sailors are back

When we stopped, the Mariners had just signed defending Cy Young winner Robbie Ray and added infielder Adam Frazier to kick off the offseason in November. But Seattle has since been linked to other big names still in the market, including Kris Bryant, Trevor Story and Seiya Suzuki.

The M’s knocked on the playoff door last season. Will they take the necessary steps to push them to the top in what should be a frantic week of action? Follow the latest news and rumors here.

Buckle up.

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Sailor Off-Season Additions

As MLB free agency and the offseason ramp-up resumes, here are the additions the Mariners have made so far.

We’re all ready to move on after a damaging MLB lockdown ends

Before we were so abruptly cut off, the Mariners needed one bat – probably two – for their offense and really needed one more veteran arm for their pitching rotation.

You remember the Mariners, don’t you? Seattle team that plays in Major League Baseball, which until Wednesday was crippled by an owner-imposed lockout, losing esteem and fans day by day.

Three and a half months and a bitter union deadlock later, the M’s still have the same needs. And so, with the ink from Wednesday’s deal that lifted the 99-day lockdown still fresh and the vitriol not yet dissipated, the fun part of baseball season begins. Ultimately.

Mariners general manager Jerry Dipoto, start your cell phone.

This impending feeding frenzy of free agent signings over the next 48 hours or so will be unlike anything the sport has seen – around 300 players still need jobs and 30 teams still need players. Pronto.

Read more.

—Larry Pierre

The latest on MLB free agency

Sailor Top Free Agents and Trade Targets

Top Free Agent Targets

Kris Bryant, IF/OF

History of Trevor, SS

Seiya Suzuki, DE

Tyler Anderson, LHP

Potential trade targets

Matt Chapman, 3B, A

Matt Olson, 1B, A

Frankie Montas, RHP, A’s

Chris Bassitt, RHP, A’s

Sonny Gray, RHP, Reds

Bryan Reynolds, DE, Pirates

Brian Anderson, DE, Marlins

—Ryan Divish

Here’s who the Mariners could target once MLB free agency resumes

After 99 excruciating days of waiting and wondering when or if he would return, watching the back and forth of pugilistic negotiations between the owners of Major League Baseball and the MLB Players Association unfold on social media, one of the most anticipated seasons of recent Mariners history can restart with the same sense of urgency felt at the end of the 2021 season.

On Thursday afternoon, the lockout initiated by MLB owners on Dec. 2 officially ended with an agreement reached by both parties on a new five-year collective bargaining agreement.

This means the offseason that was put on hold with a trading freeze due to the lockdown can now resume, meaning teams can now sign free agents and trade with other teams.

Or more simply: it’s Jerry Dipoto time.

The Mariners president of baseball operations can finally resume his offseason plans of adding impact hitters to a roster that struggled to hit or score runs with any sort of consistency last season and is now without Kyle Seager, who hit 35 homers and drove 100 RBI in 2021.

Will they make a run on versatile infielder/outfielder Kris Bryant, a former Cubs MVP, who can play third base, left field and first base while providing an offensive punch?

Or are they trying to go after Rockies shortstop Trevor Story and give him a contract north of $150 million to play second or third base?

Read more.

—Ryan Divish

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