7:41pm: Gregg will receive a $2.1MM pro-rated salary upon being called up, which means he’ll earn right around the same amount ($1.4MM) that the Marlins will now forego in draft bonus slot money, reports Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com (via Twitter).
5:37pm: MLB.com’s Joe Frisaro reports (via Twitter) that Gregg’s deal is technically a minor league deal. The Marlins won’t have to make a 40-man move immediately, and they won’t have to make a procedural move like placing Gregg on optional waivers before sending him to the minors, as the Red Sox did with Stephen Drew.
3:51pm: The Marlins have agreed to sign right-hander Kevin Gregg, pending a physical, reports Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports (Twitter link). Gregg will spend eight or nine days getting up to speed in the minors before joining the Major League club.
In a second tweet, Rosenthal adds that part of the reason behind Miami’s decision to trade their No. 39 overall pick to the Pirates in exchange for Bryan Morris was to clear room to sign another reliever (Gregg). The draft slot traded by the Fish was valued at $1.4MM.
The 35-year-old Gregg (he turns 36 later this month) posted a 3.48 ERA with 8.1 K/9, 4.7 BB/9, a 36.6 percent ground-ball rate and 33 saves in 62 innings for the Cubs in 2013. Though that marked the most success that Gregg had enjoyed since a solid 2010 season with the Blue Jays, Gregg didn’t find an offer to his liking this winter. The veteran told reporters in April that he wasn’t sure why he couldn’t secure a guaranteed big league deal this offseason but felt he could still get outs at the Major League level and was waiting for the right offer.
Gregg, a client of the Beverly Hills Sports Council, has had an up-and-down career but owns a 4.07 ERA and 177 saves in 700 2/3 Major League innings. The Marlins are hoping that he can help to bolster a relief corps that has, to this point, produced a 4.04 ERA that ranks 23rd among MLB bullpens. The team’s most recent attempt to revitalize a former Cubs closer didn’t pan out well, as Carlos Marmol pitched to an 8.10 ERA before being released.
This marks Gregg’s second stint with the Marlins, as he served as the team’s closer back in the 2007-08 campaigns, saving 61 games. The team has been a pleasant surprise this season, going 28-28 through its first 56 games, placing them three games back of the Braves in the National League East and one game out of a Wild Card spot.
Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.