Tigers, Jose Iglesias Avoid Arbitration

Jan 17, 2018 | No Comments

The Tigers announced that they’ve agreed to a one-year deal with shortstop Jose Iglesias for the 2018 season, thus avoiding arbitration. Terms of the deal weren’t disclosed, though Anthony Fenech of the Detroit Free Press reports that Iglesias will earn $6.275MM on the deal (Twitter link). That rather handily tops the $5.6MM projected arbitration salary from MLBTR contributor Matt Swartz. Iglesias is represented by Magnus Sports. Iglesias, 28, is entering his final year of team control and will be a free agent next winter. He’s coming off his worst season at the plate, having batted just .255/.288/.369 as Detroit’s primary shortstop in 2017.

Braves Acquire Shane Carle

Jan 17, 2018 | No Comments

The Braves announced that they’ve acquired right-hander Shane Carle from the Pirates in exchange for a player to be named later or cash considerations. Pittsburgh had designated the 26-year-old Carle for assignment over the weekend in order to clear space on the roster for the players acquired from Houston in the Gerrit Cole trade. Carle made his Major League debut with the Rockies in 2017, tossing four innings and surrendering three runs on six hits and no walks with four strikeouts. It’s not a lengthy sample, to be sure, but Carle’s fastball averaged a healthy 93.6 mph in that short time. The 2013 10th-round pick (by the Pirates) spent the bulk of the year in Triple-A in Colorado, where he struggled to a 5.37 ERA in a hitter-friendly setting.

Yankees To Sign Wade LeBlanc

Jan 16, 2018 | No Comments

The Yankees have agreed to a minor-league deal with lefty Wade LeBlanc, according to ESPN.com’s Jerry Crasnick (via Twitter). He’ll receive an invitation to MLB Spring Training and an opt-out opportunity just before the start of the season, per Crasnick, who notes that the deal comes with a potential $1MM base rate of pay. LeBlanc, 33, engineered a return to the majors after spending a season in Japan in 2015 (and then appearing on the MLBTR Podcast). After spending some time as a swingman for the Mariners in 2016, he landed with the Pirates and threw well enough to earn a major-league contract in the following offseason. Things didn’t go quite as hoped in 2017, as LeBlanc managed only a 4.50 ERA with 7.1 K/9 and 2.3 BB/9 in his 68 innings in Pittsburgh. He did carry a personal-best 9.6% swinging-strike rate, though, and fielding-independent pitching metrics valued his output as better than the results (e.g.

Blue Jays To Sign Curtis Granderson

Jan 16, 2018 | No Comments

The Blue Jays have reached an agreement with free agent outfielder Curtis Granderson on a one-year deal worth $5MM, reports Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic (via Twitter). The contract, which is pending a physical, includes additional incentives. Granderson is represented by agent Matt Brown of Pro Prospects, Inc. More to come.

Twins Sign Addison Reed

Jan 15, 2018 | No Comments

Jan. 15: The Twins have announced the signing and confirmed the financial figures on the deal. Jan. 13, 12:41pm: The pact is worth $16.75MM, Jon Heyman of FanRag tweets. 12:11pm: The Twins have agreed to a two-year contract worth slightly less than $17MM with free agent reliever Addison Reed, Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reports (Twitter link). The deal is pending a physical. Reed is a Wasserman client. The fact that the Twins will reel in Reed on such a short-term commitment comes as a surprise, given that MLBTR had projected a four-year pact for the right-hander. Reed had three-year offers on the table at times this offseason, but his desire was to join a team in the Midwest, per Yahoo Sports’ Jeff Passan (Twitter link).

Pirates To Extend Felipe Rivero

Pirates To Extend Felipe Rivero

Jan 15, 2018 | No Comments

4:39pm: USA Today’s Bob Nightengale tweets that Rivero will earn $2.5MM in 2018, $4MM in 2019, $5.25MM in 2020 and $7.25MM in 2021. The deal also comes with a $2MM signing bonus, and his contract contains a pair of $10MM options for the 2022 and 2023 seasons. The 2022 option comes with a $1MM buyout, and the 2023 option has a $500K buyout. 4:34pm: The Pirates have agreed to a four-year deal with closer Felipe Rivero, reports Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic (on Twitter). The deal, which will buy out all of Rivero’s arbitration seasons, is believed to guarantee Rivero about $22MM in total, per Rosenthal. It also contains a pair of club options for his first two free-agent seasons.

Twins Designate Buddy Boshers For Assignment

Jan 15, 2018 | No Comments

The Twins announced that they’ve designated left-handed reliever Buddy Boshers for assignment. His roster spot will go to right-hander Addison Reed, whose previously reported two-year, $16.75MM contract has been announced by the team. Boshers, 30 in May, parlayed a minor league deal with the Twins in the 2015-16 offseason into 71 innings of work and more than a year of service at the big league level. In parts of his two seasons with Minnesota, the southpaw turned in a 4.56 ERA. Boshers impressed with an 8.2 K/9 rate against 2.2 BB/9, but he’s also been somewhat homer-prone (1.3 HR/9). He’s also been clobbered by right-handed opponents in that time; while Boshers limited lefties to a lowly .231/.262/.345 batting line through 122 plate appearances, righties knocked him around at a .268/.330/.485 clip in 183 PAs. Boshers does have a minor league option remaining and has had his share of success against left-handed opponents, so it’s possible that he latches on elsewhere as a potential lefty specialist. If not, he’ll return to a Twins organization where he’s now behind Taylor Rogers, offseason signee Zach Duke and young Gabriel Moya on the depth chart for left-handed relievers.

Nationals, Howie Kendrick Agree To Two-Year Deal

Jan 15, 2018 | No Comments

2:14pm: Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reports that the two sides have reached an agreement, pending a physical (Twitter links). The contract contains an additional $2.25MM worth of incentives that can be unlocked based on plate appearances. 10:01am: The Nationals are nearing a deal with infielder/outfielder Howie Kendrick, according to Bob Nightengale of USA Today (via Twitter). The prospective contract would promise the Reynolds Sports Management client $7MM over two years. If the contract is finalized, Kendrick will return to the place that he thrived in a late-season stint in 2017. His role is not immediately clear, but odds are he’ll see time around the infield as well as the corner outfield. Most importantly, perhaps, adding Kendrick will help the Nats ease the burden on All-Star second baseman Daniel Murphy as he returns from microfracture surgery

Justin Morneau To Retire, Join Twins As Special Assistant

Jan 15, 2018 | No Comments

JANUARY 15: Morneau will indeed retire, MLB.com’s Rhett Bollinger tweets. He’s expected to hold a press conference to announce the move on Wednesday. JANUARY 9: Long-time Twins star Justin Morneau is slated to join the team as a special assistant, according to Bob Elliott of the Canadian Baseball Network (via Twitter). It would appear that the decision spells the end of his playing days, though there’s no clear word yet of that. Morneau, 36, told Ben Nicholson-Smith and Arden Zwelling of Sportsnet.ca in late October that he was not ready to retire officially, but also seemingly acknowledged his playing career was likely over. At the time, Morneau said he had hoped to play in 2017 but had not been willing to go down to Triple-A and wait for a phone call. It has never seemed likely that the opportunities would improve over time, particularly now that Morneau did not play in the just-completed season.

Minor MLB Transactions: 1/15/18

Jan 15, 2018 | No Comments

We’ll cover the day’s minor moves in this post … The Blue Jays have brought back second baseman Jon Berti on a minors deal, per Anthony Fenech of the Detroit Free Press (via Twitter). A former 18th-round pick who’ll soon turn 28, Berti will remain with the only professional organization he has played for. He has appeared mostly in the upper minors for the past several seasons but hasn’t yet earned a promotion to the majors. In 237 Triple-A plate appearances in 2017, the fleet-footed Berti carried a .205/.271/.321 slash line with three home runs and 23 steals.