TODAY: Wright is set to receive a guarantee of about $1.7MM, Rob Bradford of WEEI.com tweets.
YESTERDAY: The Orioles have agreed to terms on a one-year contract with left-handed reliever Wesley Wright, reports Roch Kubatko of MASNsports.com (on Twitter). Wright, a client of Reynolds Sports Management, was non-tendered by the Cubs at the beginning of the month.
Wright, who turns 30 next month, posted a 3.17 ERA with 6.9 K/9, 3.5 BB/9 and a 52.1 percent ground-ball rate in 48 1/3 innings with the Cubs this past season. In 85 plate appearances, opposing left-handed hitters batter just .273/.321/.273 against Wright. He’s been reasonably effective against left-handed hitters throughout his career, as they’ve batted .238/.315/.331 against him. Right-handed hitters, on the other hand, own a .264/.354/.479 batting line against Wright, indicating that he’s best suited for a role as a lefty specialist.
Left-handed relief wasn’t necessarily a clear area of need for the O’s, who already have a southpaw closer in Zach Britton and a pair of left-handed relief options in Brian Matusz and T.J. McFarland. However, Matusz’s struggles against right-handed hitters were more pronounced, and he’s projected to earn a presumably more expensive $2.7MM. Matusz’s name has come up in trade talks recently, and it stands to reason that Wright could present an alternative if the former first-rounder Matusz is dealt to another club.