More from the National League:
- Reds center fielder Billy Hamilton has drawn trade interest – including from the Rangers – but Cincy has a high asking price because it doesn’t believe the 26-year-old has reached his ceiling, a source told Mark Sheldon of MLB.com. Additionally, the Reds realize replacing the baserunning dynamo and defensive ace would be a daunting task. “Billy is an integral part of the defense and pitching,” commented GM Dick Williams. Along with Hamilton, “there’s definitely interest” in right-hander Anthony DeSclafani, said Williams. The team is reluctant to part with either, however, per Sheldon. DeSclafani would surely merit a sizable return, especially considering the lack of appealing starters on the open market. The soon-to-be 27-year-old is coming off two strong seasons and won’t be a free agent until after the 2020 campaign.
- The Dodgers have talked to free agent reliever Greg Holland, according to Ken Gurnick of MLB.com. Los Angeles was one of many teams at Holland’s showcase in November, and it could now lose as many as three bullpen mainstays – Kenley Jansen, Joe Blanton and J.P Howell – in free agency. The 31-year-old Holland, formerly with the Royals, was among the majors’ best relievers before undergoing October 2015 Tommy John surgery and missing all of last season.
- Elsewhere on the Dodgers front, they’re “aggressively” looking into third base alternatives in case they’re unable to re-sign Justin Turner, a major league source informed Jerry Crasnick of ESPN.com. The hot corner’s other top free agent options – Luis Valbuena and Trevor Plouffe – are far less enticing than Turner. On the trade market, the Dodgers have reportedly discussed third baseman Yangervis Solarte with San Diego.
- The Cardinals are in the market for a reserve catcher because they’d rather have 22-year-old Carson Kelly play regularly in the minors than sparingly in the majors, writes Jenifer Langosch of MLB.com. Starter Yadier Molina has long been a workhorse, having appeared in at least 136 games in seven of the past eight years, which hasn’t led to many opportunities for his backups. St. Louis had a veteran No. 2 catcher on hand in Brayan Pena, but it released him last month and will eat at least $2MM as a result.