The offseason marches on, and thanks to a relatively slow winter meetings we’ve got plenty of big names still on the board. To give you an idea of the buzz that’s out there on Thursday, we’re here to round up all the notable trade and free agency rumors, as well as reported signings and injuries. As always, our Free Agent Tracker is a great way to catch up on what’s already happened on that front.
Cardinals sign Andrew Miller to multi-year deal
The Cardinals‘ biggest priority this winter was adding to their relief corps, and Miller, a top tier left-handed reliever, will provide a powerful presence in the back end of their bullpen. The unit finished 12th in the National League in ERA (4.38) while posting the league’s second-highest walk rate (4.34 per nine innings) and fourth-lowest strikeout rate (8.31 per nine innings) in 2018.
Rockies sign Daniel Murphy to two-year deal
The Colorado Rockies are in agreement with veteran infielder Daniel Murphy, It will be a two-year deal worth $24 million, reports Jeff Passan of Yahoo. The veteran infielder will most likely play at first and second base for Colorado, filling a gap left by DJ LeMahieu, who didn’t receive a qualifying offer from Colorado.
In his 10 year-long career, he’s spent more time at second base (834 games) but has time at first (225 games) under his belt as well. He will turn 34 on April 1, missed the first 65 games of 2018 while recovering from surgery on his right knee. He posted a .299/.336/.454 line in 91 games with the Washington Nationals and Chicago Cubs. Murphy can still hit and his bat should play well at Coors Field, but he’s a downgrade defensively.
Nats sign Anibal Sanchez to two-year deal
The Washington Nationals have agreed to terms on a contract with free agent right-hander Anibal Sanchez, according to multiple reports. The deal is reportedly for two-years, $19 million with incentives, pending a physical.
Sanchez, 34, will step into the rotation spot that was recently vacated when Max Scherzer, Patrick Corbin and Stephen Strasburg in the Nats’ rotation. After joining the Atlanta Braves on a minor league contract in spring training, the veteran finished 2018 with a 2.83 ERA with 8.9 K/9, 2.8 BB/9, 0.99 HR/9 and a 45 percent ground ball rate in 136 2/3 innings.Sanchez joins
The Machado Tour concludes?
Free agent superstar Manny Machado has been this week. He met with the White Sox earlier in the week, was with the Yankees on Wednesday and Thursday, it was the Phillies. As expected, they rolled over the proverbial red carpet and had an unexpected pitchman ( ) who met the superstar free agent:
According to Jim Salisbury of NBC Sports Philadelphia, Machado was to spend several hours visiting with Phillies officials, including general manager Matt Klentak, manager Gabe Kapler, managing partner John Middleton and club president Andy MacPhail.
Machado and his wife, Yainee, were reportedly to have lunch in a suite overlooking the field with Machado’s image on the stadium’s scoreboard. The team also planned dinner for Machado and his crew at an undisclosed location Thursday evening before heading home to Miami on Friday.
Angels sign Cahill to one-year deal
The Angels have been , but they continue to stay active this offseason. They agreed to sign free agent swingman Trevor Cahill to a one-year deal, the club announced. It is for $9 million, reports Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic.
Cahill, 30, was 7-4 with a 3.76 ERA, 1.19 WHIP and 100 strikeouts in 110 innings last season for the A’s. He’s been used heavily as both a starter and reliever through his career, but he hasn’t topped 150 innings since all the way back in 2012. In 208 career starts, Cahill has a 4.13 ERA and in 96 career relief appearances he’s pitched to a 3.59 ERA.
The signing comes on the heels of the Angels also adding Matt Harvey on a one-year deal.
However one would like to sort them right now, the Angels prospective rotation appears to be comprised of Harvey, Cahill, Andrew Heaney, Tyler Skaggs and Jaime Barria with Nick Tropeano and Felix Pena also being options.
Mariners extremely unlikely to trade Haniger
As everyone reading this likely knows by now, the Mariners were incredibly active in offloading players earlier in the offseason. One player who appears to be staying put is All-Star outfielder Mitch Haniger.
On one hand, Haniger is the type of player you build around. He’s in his prime, hit .285/.366/.493 with 26 homers last season and doesn’t hit free agency until after the 2022 season. He’s also a fan favorite and teams probably shouldn’t completely alienate their fans during a rebuild.
On the other, isn’t this exactly the type of player that lands a huge return? The Mariners are in the midst of a pretty radical rebuild. Those generally take four to five years. By the time the Mariners are ready to contend, Haniger will be in his 30s and eyeing free agency. And on the alienating fans thing, ask Cubs and Astros fans if they are OK with their radical rebuilds now.
Rangers, Holland reunion coming?
Holland, 32, was 7-9 with a 3.57 ERA (109 ERA+), 1.29 WHIP and 169 strikeouts in 171 1/3 innings last season with the Giants. It was a nice bounce-back season after a disaster of a 2017 campaign (6.20 ERA, 69 ERA+).
The Rangers currently figure to have four firmly in their rotation in Mike Minor, Lance Lynn, Drew Smyly and Edinson Volquez. Perhaps Holland ends up the fifth starter. Grant also reported, though, that the Rangers could consider Holland as a multi-inning reliever, a role that is becoming more and more popular.
Smith ruptures Achilles
During an offseason workout, Astros veteran reliever Joe Smith suffered a ruptured Achilles tendon. Obviously, Smith has undergone surgery and will miss a significant amount of time. The Astros announced the timetable as six-to-eight months. Sure, there are a few months left in this offseason, but even a six-month timetable gets us to June 20, at which point Smith would need to work into game shape and then go through a minor-league rehab assignment. He’ll almost certainly be out until the second half and might miss nearly all of the season.
Smith, 34, had a 3.74 ERA, 1.01 WHIP and 46 strikeouts in 45 2/3 innings for the Astros last season.
Padres announce Ian Kinsler deal, DFA Clayton Richard
The San Diego Padres officially announced the addition of some needed infield depth Thursday when they agreed to terms with veteran second baseman Ian Kinsler on a The deal also reportedly includes a club option. Kinsler, 36, is coming off a 2018 season in which he batted .240/.301/.380 (87 ) in a combined 128 games for the Angels and Red Sox.
To make room for Kinsler, the Padres designated left-handed pitcher Clayton Richard for assignment. Richard, 35, finished the 2018 season with a 5.33 ERA and 108:60 K:BB across 27 starts (158.2 innings). In August, Richard underwent season-ending surgery on both knees, but is expected to be back to full health for 2019 spring training. San Diego will be on the hook for a $3 million salary for Richard in the coming season unless the organization is able to find a trade partner or Richard is claimed on waivers. Richard may find work elsewhere given his 10-year big-league career, it just seems like the Padres didn’t want him taking away innings from the younger pitchers.