THURSDAY, 10:34am: Jenks is looking for "closer money," according to Jon Heyman of SI.com (Twitter link). Heyman suggests that means Jenks is looking for at least $8MM.
WEDNESDAY, 9:07pm: It's a good time to be a free agent reliever, and one of the biggest on the market (both literally and figuratively) is former White Sox closer Bobby Jenks. Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports tweets that there is "heavy action" on the right-hander, with both the Rays and Yankees showing interest. Jenks is not close to a decision, however.
Jenks, 30 in March, was non-tendered a few weeks ago after earning $7.5MM in 2010. Although his 4.44 ERA this season was the worst of his career, he struck out 10.4 batters per nine innings while walking just 2.9 unintentionally. Jenks also had a 58.3% ground ball rate, tenth best among relievers with at 50 IP, and his trademark velocity even crept up late in the season.
Rafael Soriano is the best reliever on the market, but Jenks represents a reasonably priced alternative for teams looking to add a proven closer. The Rays are looking to replace Soriano while the Yankees have some money to spend after losing out in Cliff Lee. They would use Jenks in a setup role, of course.