A few items from the National League…
- Atlanta’s a speculative landing spot for closer Craig Kimbrel, who starred with the Braves from 2010-14 and is now the most proven reliever available in free agency. However, barring a drop in Kimbrel’s asking price, it’s “highly unlikely” he’ll rejoin the Braves this offseason, Mark Bowman of MLB.com writes. MLBTR predicts the 30-year-old Kimbrel will reel in a whopping $70MM guarantee, which could be too much for an Atlanta team that may not be in position to make a big-money splash this offseason, as general manager Alex Anthopoulos suggested last month. Anthopoulos has made it known the Braves are interested in adding a closer this winter, though, so whether it’s Kimbrel or someone else, it appears the club is primed to bring in some late-game help.
- Dodgers closer Kenley Jansen announced Friday that he’ll undergo heart surgery Nov. 26, per Chad Thornburg of MLB.com. The procedure comes with a two- to eight-week recovery timeline, meaning Jansen should be fine by spring training. It’ll be the second heart surgery since 2012 for Jansen, who missed time with an irregular heartbeat that season and during both the 2011 and ’18 campaigns. The 31-year-old has been particularly susceptible to an irregular heartbeat at high altitude – the issue cropped up in Colorado in 2012, and he was hospitalized after a game at Coors Field last August. As a result, Jansen sat out a road series against the Rockies in September on doctors’ recommendation.
- The Reds have hired J.R. House to serve as their third base coach and catching coach, Mark Sheldon of MLB.com reports. The 39-year-old House will replace Billy Hatcher, who had been the Reds’ third base coach, and ex-catching coach Mike Stefanski, though it’s not yet known if those two will stay in the organization in different roles, per Sheldon. House, a former professional catcher and first basemen, spent the past seven seasons in player development with the Diamondbacks. He’s the third new hire for rookie manager David Bell, who previously tabbed Derek Johnson as the Reds’ pitching coach and Turner Ward as their hitting coach.