The Rays are reported to be nearing a big league deal with veteran righty Collin McHugh, but they’ve also been active in minor league free agency this week. Tampa Bay has agreed to non-roster invitations with lefty Brian Moran and right-handers Joey Krehbiel and Louis Head, per Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times. They’ve also signed righty Stetson Allie to a minor league deal and Spring Training invite, as announced by agent Gavin Kahn on Twitter.
Each of Moran and Krehbiel have some big league experience under their belts. Moran, the older brother of Pirates first baseman Colin Moran, has pitched 11 innings between the Marlins and Blue Jays over the past two seasons. He’s surrendered eight runs in that time and displayed some problematic control (14.5 percent walk rate, three hit batters, three wild pitches), but Moran has also whiffed 31 percent of opponents. The 32-year-old has pitched in parts of five Triple-A seasons with a 3.67 ERA and 30.2 percent strikeout rate.
The 28-year-old Krehbiel tossed three scoreless frames for the 2018 D-backs but hasn’t made it back to the Majors since that time. Like Moran, Krehbiel has some bat-missing ability (25 percent strikeout rate in Triple-A) but problematic control that has held him back (12.5 percent walk rate in Triple-A).
Allie may be a familiar name to some due to his status as a once-touted pitching prospect. The 2010 second-rounder was considered one of the top high school arms in the draft and landed on a few Top 100 lists before injuries stalled his career. Allie pivoted and tried to make it as a first baseman/outfielder for several years before returning to the mound on a full-time basis in 2018. He’s spent time with the Pirates, who drafted him, and the Dodgers. He’s yet to make it to the big leagues, but the Rays will hope to coax another level out of the now-29-year-old righty, whose fastball has in the past reached triple digits.
Head, a longtime Indians farmhand who spent 2019 with the Dodgers organization as well, is a career reliever who posted strong numbers through Double-A but hasn’t yet matched that success in Triple-A. He has a 5.46 ERA in 90 2/3 frames of Triple-A ball while striking out just shy of a quarter of opponents against an 11.5 percent walk rate he’ll need to reduce.