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Player Notes

  • Wade LeBlanc drawing significant interest
    ESPN's Jerry Crasnick reports that Wade LeBlanc is drawing interest from six teams.

    Advice: The Pirates declined LeBlanc's $1.25 million option for 2018, but it sounds like he's not going to have a hard time finding new work. The left-hander posted a 4.50 ERA and 54/17 K/BB ratio over 68 relief innings in 2017. Today, 6:20 am
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  • Rosenthal: Gallardo headed back to Brewers
    The Athletic's Ken Rosenthal reports the Brewers and free agent starter Yovani Gallardo are in agreement on a deal.

    Advice: Gallardo was the Brewers' second-round pick in 2004 and had some really strong years at the top of Milwaukee's rotation. Things have gone less well in recent years, as the 31-year-old has bounced around American League clubs with little success. This past season, he posted a 5.72 ERA in 130 2/3 innings for the Mariners before the team declined his option last month. No terms of the deal were immediately available. Yesterday, 2:53 pm
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  • Cubs officially sign Cishek to two-year deal
    Cubs signed RHP Steve Cishek to a two-year, $13 million contract.

    Advice: The two sides reached an agreement on Thursday, but the deal didn't become official until Saturday after the right-hander passed his physical. He'll function in a setup capacity for the Cubs in 2018. Yesterday, 10:21 am
  • Koda Glover (shoulder) to throw in January
    Koda Glover (shoulder) said Saturday that he expects to begin throwing off of a mound by January.

    Advice: The right-hander ascended to the Nationals' closer role during the 2017 season before shoulder and back issues cut his season short cut his season short in June. With Sean Doolittle, Ryan Madson and Brandon Kintzler now in the mix, Glover will have to battle for a setup role in the Nationals' bullpen. Yesterday, 8:18 am
  • Doolittle (shoulder) begins light throwing
    Sean Doolittle (shoulder) said Saturday at Nationals' Winter Fest that he has already started light throwing.

    Advice: Doolittle battled some shoulder issues during the 2017 campaign, but insists that he's full healthy and ready to go for the upcoming season. The 31-year-old posted a 2.81 ERA, 0.86 WHIP and 62/10 K/BB ratio over 51 1/3 innings between the Athletics and Nationals in 2017. Barring the club signing a high-end closer like Wade Davis, Doolittle should open the season as the favorite for saves in the Nats' bullpen. Yesterday, 7:29 am
  • Matt Albers close signing two-year contract
    Jerry Crasnick of ESPN reports that Matt Albers will sign a two-year contract next week.

    Advice: Crasnick didn't identify the team that he's expected to sign with. Given the recent flurry of activity in the relief pitching market, Albers has become one of the better options available. The 34-year-old hurler posted a dominant 1.62 ERA, 0.85 WHIP and 63/17 K/BB ratio over 61 innings for the Nationals in 2017. Yesterday, 6:13 am
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  • Swarzak officially signs with Mets
    Mets signed RHP Anthony Swarzak to a two-year, $14 million contract.

    Advice: The Mets made the deal official today after Swarzak passed his physical. He turned in the best season of his career in 2017, registering a 2.33 ERA with 91 strikeouts in 77 1/3 innings while pitching for the White Sox and Brewers. The Mets will be the sixth major league team for the 32-year-old right-handed reliever. He will see action in a set-up role in front of closer candidates Jeurys Familia and A.J. Ramos. Friday, 6:48 pm
  • Koehler to sign with Dodgers
    Chris Cotillo of SB Nation reports the Dodgers will sign RHP Tom Koehler to a one year deal.

    Advice: The 31-year-old began the 2017 season in the Marlins' rotation but was sent to the minors after getting pounded in 12 starts. He went 1-5 with a 7.92 ERA in 55 2/3 innings. He was then traded to the Blue Jays and turned things around to the tune of a 2.65 ERA in 17 innings, mostly in relief. Despite that late-season success he was non-tendered by Toronto last week in an effort to avoid paying him the $6 million he was expected to earn via the arbitration process. The Dodgers will likely use him as a middle reliever in 2018. Friday, 5:14 pm
    Player Note
    Tom Koehler Tor - SP,RP
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  • Chavez considering offers from five teams
    Jerry Crasnick of reports that Jesse Chavez has received offers from five teams and will make a decision this weekend.

    Advice: He went 7-11 with a 5.35 ERA in 21 starts and 17 relief appearances with the Angels last year. He would like to start but may have to prove himself in a swingman role first. The Brewers are the only team known to have made their interest in Chavez public. Friday, 4:48 pm
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  • Alex Wimmers inks minors deal with Marlins
    Marlins signed RHP Alex Wimmers to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training.

    Advice: A former first-round pick, Wimmers has been unimpressive in his chances in the majors with a 4.38 ERA and ugly 21/19 K/BB ratio across 24 2/3 relief innings. He'll compete for a bullpen job in spring training. Friday, 2:26 pm
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  • Astros' deal with Hector Rondon is official
    Astros signed RHP Hector Rondon to a two-year, $8.5 million contract.

    Advice: Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic first reported the agreement earlier Friday and now has the particulars after Rondon passed a physical. Rondon had a disappointing 4.24 ERA in 2017, but his velocity was fine and he had a career-best 29.1 percent strikeout percentage. He'll help the Astros in a setup role if he can stay healthy. Friday, 12:14 pm
  • Reds interested in Craig Stammen's Mark Sheldon reports that the Reds have spoken with Craig Stammen's representatives recently.

    Advice: Stammen had a nice bounce-back year in San Diego with a 3.14 ERA and 74/28 K/BB ratio over 80 1/3 innings. He's also from Ohio, so playing in Cincinnati might appeal to him. Friday, 11:16 am
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  • Twins announce deal with Fernando Rodney
    Twins signed RHP Fernando Rodney to a one-year, $4.5 million contract with a club option for 2019.

    Advice: Rodney got off to a rotten start in April with the Diamondbacks this past season but was excellent the rest of the way with a 2.38 ERA and 52/19 K/BB ratio over his final 45 1/3 innings. He recorded 39 saves in 2017 and should option 2018 as the Twins' closer. Friday, 10:51 am
  • Jake McGee officially re-signs with Rockies
    Rockies re-signed LHP Jake McGee to a three-year, $27 million contract with a $9 million club option for 2021.

    Advice: McGee's first season in Colorado was a dud, but he bounced back with a 3.61 ERA and 58/16 K/BB ratio over 57 1/3 innings last year to earn a multi-year contract. He'll likely be a setup man but could potentially be in the mix for saves if the Rockies are unable to land a closer. Friday, 10:47 am
  • Bryan Shaw's deal with Rockies is official
    Rockies signed RHP Bryan Shaw to a three-year, $27 million contract.

    Advice: The deal is now official after being reported earlier this week. Shaw boasts a 3.13 career ERA in 446 1/3 major league innings and he led all MLB pitchers in appearances in 2017. He'll help set up in Colorado. Friday, 10:44 am
  • Jose Ruiz designated for assignment
    Padres designated RHP Jose Ruiz for assignment.

    Advice: The move clears a spot on the 40-man roster for the addition of Freddy Galvis. A former catcher, Ruiz spent nearly all of 2017 at the High-A level, holding a 5.98 ERA and 45/25 K/BB ratio over 49 2/3 innings. He'll likely clear waivers. Friday, 10:19 am
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  • Tommy Hunter's deal with Phillies is official
    Phillies signed RHP Tommy Hunter to a two-year, $18 million contract.

    Advice: The deal was first reported Tuesday and is now official. ESPN's Jerry Crasnick says a "significant portion" of the $18 million Hunter will receive comes in the form of a signing bonus. The veteran reliever had a nice bounce-back 2017 season, posting a 2.61 ERA, 0.97 WHIP, and 64/14 K/BB ratio over 58 2/3 innings with the Rays. He'll help set up for Hector Neris. Friday, 9:50 am
  • Marlins DFA left-hander Hunter Cervenka
    Marlins designated LHP Hunter Cervenka for assignment.

    Advice: Miami had to clear some 40-man roster space following the finalization of the five-player Marcell Ozuna trade deal with the Cardinals. Cervenka, 27, allowed eight earned runs in 4 1/3 innings at the major league level in 2017. Thursday, 11:43 am
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  • Sandy Alcantara part of return for Ozuna
    Marlins acquired RHP Sandy Alcantara, OF Magneuris Sierra, RHP Zac Gallen, and LHP Daniel Castano from the Cardinals for OF Marcell Ozuna.

    Advice: Alcantara is the headliner of this package for Miami and the most highly-rated prospect the Marlins have acquired between all their different trades so far this winter, including the Giancarlo Stanton and Dee Gordon swaps. The hard-throwing 22-year-old right-hander has the upside of a potential No. 2 major league starter, though he has to figure out his control issues before he can meet that kind of lofty long-term outlook. There are some talent evaluators who believe Alcantara might ultimately wind up as a reliever. Another full season in the minors would probably do him a whole lot of good. Thursday, 11:34 am
  • Diamondbacks pick Albert Suarez in Rule 5
    Diamondbacks selected RHP Albert Suarez from the Giants with the 14th pick in the Rule 5 draft.

    Advice: Suarez has pitched in the big leagues for parts of the last two seasons, though the results haven't been all that great. The 28-year-old right-hander will be competing for a long relief spot in Diamondbacks camp next spring. Thursday, 7:36 am
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