The present series has set Mr. Von der Ahe to thinking, and he has agents now out on a still hunt for players. There will probably be a new short-stop in the team next year, a new right-fielder, a couple of pitchers, and another good catcher. The latter has been secured in the person of Gibson, late of the Philadelphia club. A new pitcher has been signed. He comes from the Eastern league, and is said to be a first class twirler. Hudson will no doubt be sold and Knouff released. Foutz, too, will be called on to do better work, or he may also receive his walking papers. The Browns may be deprived of the services of Bushong next season. The Doctor told a Globe-Democrat representative lately that he was going to California this winter, and it was very questionable if he returned. The Browns can ill-afford to lose the great catcher.An Offer For Caruthers.Caruthers, too, claims that he will quit ball playing next year. This will weaken the Browns beyond measure. Caruthers, besides being a great pitcher is a reliable batter and one of the finest fielders in his position in the world. It will be a sorry day for the Browns when they lose Caruthers. The trouble with Caruthers is this, that an Association manager, presumably Charley Byrne, of the Brooklyn Club, has made him dissatisfied by offering him a fabulous salary if he could secure his release from the Browns. Caruthers gets but $3000 with the Browns, while Mr. Byrne has offered him $4500.
-St. Louis Globe-Democrat, October 23, 1887
Von der Ahe also had an offer for Latham from the Louisville club. While it was noted that he turned down the offer, it kept coming up in the press during October so it's possible that there was some kind of negotiation going on.
Putting that aside, however, it's interesting how much change the Globe foresaw for the team. While they weren't completely accurate in their speculation, they had a lot of the pieces of the puzzle a month before everything went down. Somebody was obviously talking to somebody and that leads me to think that the sales may have been arranged (or at least initial talks began) when the Browns went East for the series.