The Marlins are interested in free agent relievers Brad Ziegler and Koji Uehara as fallback options if they’re unable to reel in Kenley Jansen or Aroldis Chapman, according to Joe Frisaro of MLB.com. Miami could sign both Ziegler and Uehara if it loses out on Jansen and Chapman, per Frisaro (Twitter links). Ziegler and Uehara each carry strong track records, though the former is 37 and the latter will turn 42 in April. The pair finished last season in Boston, where Uehara has pitched since 2013. In other Marlins-related bullpen news, the club is “highly unlikely” to re-sign left-hander Mike Dunn, but it continues “monitoring his status,” tweets Clark Spencer of the Miami Herald.
More bullpen-related rumors:
- The Nationals offered “at least $10MM less” than the Giants’ winning four-year, $62MM bid for closer Mark Melancon, the New York Times’ Tyler Kepner told MLB Network Radio on Monday (Twitter link).
- The Tigers are gauging interest in southpaw setup man Justin Wilson and right-handed reliever Shane Greene, per Joel Sherman of the New York Post (Twitter link). This is the second time Wilson’s name has hit the rumor mill since last week. The 29-year-old impressed with a 9.97 K/9, 2.61 BB/9 and 54.6 ground-ball rate in 58 2/3 innings last season. However, a .340 BABIP (47 points higher than his career .293 mark) and a 12.2 percent home run-to-fly ball ratio (up from a lifetime 8 percent mark) helped lead to an unspectacular ERA of 4.14. Wilson has two years of arbitration eligibility remaining, and MLBTR contributor Matt Swartz projects a reasonable $2.7MM salary for next season. Greene, 28, comes with four years of team control – including a pre-arb year in 2017 – but he posted a 5.82 ERA in 60 1/3 frames last season despite an 8.8 K/9, 3.28 BB/9 and 47.6 grounder rate.
- With only Randall Delgado and Jake Barrett as strong in-house bets to crack the Diamondbacks’ bullpen next April, the club wants to add “multiple” relievers and has enough spending room to do so, general manager Mike Hazen told Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic. Moreover, Hazen expects the D-backs’ lack of established options to serve as an advantage in reeling in outside help. “Most times, a lot of players in a lot of cases want opportunity or some definition of role,” Hazen said. “I think we can offer those things in a lot of cases. We’re not asking some of the players that we’re talking to to come here and do something you’re unaccustomed to. That does give us a little clarity. We’re not the only ones that have that ability, but we do have that right now in the bullpen.” Ziegler and Daniel Hudson, two longtime Diamondbacks, are among the free agents the team has contacted this offseason.
I’d be satisfied if Boston would just go ahead and offer Koji 2/10m total and hope carson Smith really will be back after the AS break. If Koji can pitch every other day? Hope hembree, Kelly, Barnes and Ross can up it a notch in between.
Koji and Ziegler are the 2 names on top of my personal list, so I much prefer this Marlins rumor to spending so much on a reliever, especially when it would cost such a high percentage of the payroll. Otherwise, Id like to see them back in Boston