MLB offseason about to heat up

MLB offseason about to heat up
November 26, 2012, 1:48 am
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While football -- both NCAA and NFL -- has dominated the attention of the sports world of late, the baseball offseason is quietly heating up.

MLB free agency has been active for a few weeks now, and neither Chicago baseball team has made much of a ripple, with the Cubs inking Scott Baker and Dioner Navarro to deals and the White Sox retaining the services of Jake Peavy and Gavin Floyd.

The main winter event -- the MLB Winter Meetings -- kicks off next week, starting Dec. 3 and extending until Dec. 6. On the final day of the Winter Meetings, the Rule 5 Draft will take place, allowing teams to select players who are not protected on 40-man rosters.

Here's how the rest of the MLB offseason will play out (ht to MLBTR for the breakdown):

--Nov. 30: Deadline for teams to tender contracts to arbitration-eligible players (explanation)
--Dec. 3-6: MLB Winter Meetings
--Dec. 6: Rule 5 Draft
--Jan. 18: Teams and players exchange arbitration figures
--Feb. 1-21: Arbitration hearings held in Phoenix
--Mar. 2-11: Teams can renew contracts of unsigned pre-arbitration eligible players

Comcast SportsNet will have you covered all winter with Chicago Baseball Hot Stove, running every Tuesday at 5 p.m. The first episode airs this week.