Some items about notable names on the open market….
- Mike Napoli received some interest from the Mariners earlier this month, though one club official tells Bob Dutton of the Tacoma News Tribune that Napoli “doesn’t fit” into Seattle’s roster plans. The M’s intend to give Dan Vogelbach and Ben Gamel a clear shot at the regular first base and right field jobs, with Danny Valencia the top choice to spell both against left-handed pitching. Guillermo Heredia, Richie Shaffer and Taylor Motter are also in the mix as right-handed bats to platoon with Gamel or Seth Smith. (Dutton’s piece was written before the Mariners acquired yet another right-handed hitting outfielder in Mitch Haniger from the D’Backs.) With all of these platoon pieces on hand and Nelson Cruz getting the bulk of DH at-bats, there just isn’t room for Napoli. Mariners GM Jerry Dipoto said earlier today that he is happy with his club’s position players and will now turn his focus to adding starting pitching.
- Could Colorado native Mark Melancon return to his home state in a Rockies uniform? Patrick Saunders of the Denver Post has serious doubts, as the Rockies have been burned on big pitching contracts in the past and the team would have to outbid several big-market teams in need of a closer to land Melancon’s services. Making the signing, on the other hand, would show that the Rockies are serious about contending with their current core of talent, and Melancon would obviously be a big upgrade for a Colorado bullpen that struggled last year.
- Ben Revere has long been considered a non-tender candidate, and Mark Zuckerman of MASNsports.com still thinks that will be the case, it isn’t out of the question that Revere returns to the Nationals. Zuckerman points out that Revere was bothered by an oblique injury for much of the season, which likely contributed to his career-worst .217/.260/.300 slash line over 375 plate appearances. While Revere could very well bounce back if fully healthy in 2017, I would guess that the Nats would only re-sign him for a backup role or even a minor league deal.