As new Diamondbacks GM Kevin Towers looks to remake his bullpen, he may choose to cut 29-year-old right-handed reliever Blaine Boyer loose. Towers will need to decide by the December 2nd non-tender deadline, as Boyer is arbitration eligible for the second time in his career after earning $725K in 2010.
Boyer tossed 57 innings out of Arizona's pen this year, with a 4.26 ERA, 4.6 K/9, 4.6 BB/9, and 0.5 HR/9. His 65.8% groundball rate stood out; that ranked third among all pitchers with at least 50 innings. He also throws hard, averaging a 94.6 mph fastball this year.
Boyer has moved around in his career since coming up with the Braves. The Braves traded him to the Cardinals in April of '09, and then the D'Backs claimed him off waivers two months later after he'd been designated for assignment. Former D'Backs GM Josh Byrnes designated Boyer again in May of this year, but he cleared waivers and was added back to the roster in June.
Boyer's control in 2010 had been horrible prior to his demotion, but an arm slot adjustment led to a 3.7 BB/9 after his recall. That's tolerable, but with so few strikeouts it's tough to make that formula work even with frequent groundballs.