MLB Rumors: 2 Teams That Could Steal Anthony Rizzo From Yankees

It was made official yesterday: Anthony Rizzo will be declining the $19.65M Qualifying Offer from the New York Yankees. And although it's expected that the two sides will try to work out a two-or-more year extension, it's still conceivable that another team can swoop in and offer Rizzo an attractive alternative if the Yankees don't meet his price. Two teams that make sense:

Houston Astros

Rizzo is 33 now, and he wants a shot at another World Series. Sure, the Yankees could theoretically get there, but recent history says the Astros are a better bet. And it just so happens that the newly-crowned champs have an opening at first base with Yuli Gurriel entering free agency (and entering his age-39 season). 

Rizzo would be a natural fit in that clubhouse, with his leadership abilities, and, at five years younger, would greatly improve the defense and offensive production from the position. Don't put it past the Astros to sniff around to determine Rizzo's interest.

Tampa Bay Rays

This is a team that needs a boost, both in the clubhouse and in the lineup. The leadership and championship pedigree intangibles that Rizzo brings could be a very nice add for the Rays. They're also in need of another bat in the lineup that can deliver some power. 

Rizzo's days as a high-average guy might be gone, but he topped the 30-HR mark in 2022 in just 130 games, while maintaining a solid .817 OPS. He's now familiar with the AL East division and could make for a nice fit in Tampa. His contract demands won't be of the exorbitant variety so as to eliminate the usually budget-conscious Rays. 

Photo: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports