MONDAY: In addition to the Rockies and Cubs, the Nationals are said to be “expressing strong interest” in Ramos, per Bob Nightengale of USA Today (via Twitter). Ramos has previously been tied to the Nats, though those talks reportedly took place before the team’s recent addition of a pair of late-inning relievers. Of course, Washington is still said to be looking at yet more relief targets.
SATURDAY: The Diamondbacks, Rockies, Rays, Red Sox, Cubs, Brewers and others all have interest in Marlins closer AJ Ramos, FanRag’s Jon Heyman tweets. ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick and others tweeted earlier this week that the Marlins were taking calls on Ramos.
The Marlins, of course, recently traded reliever David Phelps to Seattle for a package including outfield prospect Brayan Hernandez, and Ramos could potentially be an even more desirable trade target. The 30-year-old has a 4.08 ERA and 4.8 BB/9 this season, but with a strong 11.5 K/9. He also has 89 career saves and a long history of success in the ninth inning, making him a strong late-inning option for a contender. (Of course, many clubs on Heyman’s list of interested teams, including the Rockies, Red Sox, Cubs and Brewers, appear set at closer, but that wouldn’t preclude them from having interest in another good late-inning arm.) Ramos can be controlled through 2018 via the arbitration process.
With Phelps gone, the Marlins are expected to lean harder on Junichi Tazawa, as MLB.com’s Joe Frisaro recently explained. Tazawa has pitched nine scoreless innings this month. The team also has Kyle Barraclough, Nick Wittgren and Dustin McGowan to pitch in the late innings. It’s not yet clear, however, who would take over the closer role should Ramos depart.