4:32pm: Robert Murray of FanSided relays the terms. It will be two years and $6.25MM with a $4MM mutual option for 2025 that comes with a $750K buyout.
4:12pm: The Diamondbacks officially announced the move, with lefty Tyler Gilbert designated for assignment in a corresponding move.
3:14pm: The Diamondbacks have agreed to a two-year contract with right-hander Scott McGough, reports Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic. The former Marlins right-hander has spent the past four years pitching in Japan’s Nippon Professional Baseball, where he’s solidified himself as a quality late-inning reliever. The 33-year-old McGough, who also won a Silver Medal pitching for the United States in the Olympics, will now return to the Majors for the first time since 2015.
McGough has just 6 2/3 innings of Major League experience, during which he yielded seven runs on a dozen hits and four walks with four strikeouts. However, he’s now spent four seasons with NPB’s Yakult Swallows, logging a combined 2.94 ERA with a 26% strikeout rate against a 7.6% walk rate. The 2022 season was his finest in Japan, as McGough notched personal bests in ERA (2.35), saves (38) and walk rate (6%). He’s also upped his strikeout rate over the past two seasons in NPB, jumping from 21% in 2019 to 26% in 2020 before peaking at a combined 28.5% from 2021-22 — his first two seasons as a full-time closer.
It’s not the first time the D-backs have tapped into the NPB and KBO markets to find relatively inexpensive pitching help. Arizona got two strong years out of righty Yoshihisa Hirano, who’d been the closer for NPB’s Orix Buffaloes, back in 2018-19. Even more impactfully, the Snakes been leaning on right-hander Merrill Kelly as a fixture in their rotation for the past four seasons after signing him on the heels of a strong run with the Korea Baseball Organization’s SK Wyverns (now known as the SSG Landers).
McGough, a 2011 fifth-rounder of the Dodgers who was traded to Miami in the 2012 Hanley Ramirez swap, averaged 94 mph with his heater in 2022 and upped the usage of his splitter to a 30.3% clip as well, tweets Sung Min Kim (previously of FanGraphs and The Athletic). The D-backs view McGough as a possible late-inning option in the ’pen, Piecoro writes. He’ll join holdovers Mark Melancon, Joe Mantiply, Kevin Ginkel and fellow offseason signee Miguel Castro in manager Torey Lovullo’s bullpen.
Worth a shot.
After last season, everyone is worth a shot.
Welcome back to the States. I love to root for these guys who get a second chance.
Of course Hazen signs him a couple hours after the DBacks ZiPS were released lol
My dbacks love these guys and hope for lighting in a bottle. Worked with Merrill Kelly. I’m all for these moves buy they can’t be the only ones.We need to spend some money.
This one belongs to the Reds
Two year deal and hasn’t pitched in MLB since 2015? Good luck.
The quality of play in NPB is estimated to be somewhere between AAA and MLB; the fact that he put up decent numbers there is an encouraging sign at the very least.
This one belongs to the Reds
I’d say that was pretty accurate.
The new crime dog.
69 Saves the past two seasons in NPB. Could be a solid addition to a D’Backs bullpen that struggled to close out games last season
69 saves? Nice.
Wonder what he cost?
Me, too. These deals for guys to return to MLB from international leagues can be such a toss up.
Could be 2 years/$6M, could be 2 years/$32M.
I’d guess for a pitcher who could be an elite bullpen arm that got lured back, probably a minimum of like 2 years/$10M and closer to 2 years/$20M.
I hope Tyler Gilbert finds his footing with another team, so he doesn’t go down as one of those random pitchers who has fewer than 20 career starts in the Majors, with one of them being a No-Hitter.
Fun Fact: Scott’s dad, Tom was on the Cleveland Indians in the 1970’s but never got into a game during his brief call-up. Tom then would have in the 2000’s a nationally syndicated Christian sports talk show. Great story. Congrats, Scott!
the A’s made a pair of trades and stocked their bullpen, meanwhile, the D’Back’s are picking cherry blossoms in Nippon. there were a lot of good arms in the rule 5 draft too. Seems like a reach.
Stu Macher’’s bunner
I like it. Now go get Alex Reyes. I know his injury history is a turn off but wouldn’t hurt to try