Pedro to start Wednesday; Moyer to the pen

Leave a comment

Pedro Martinez is going to be activated before Wednesday’s game against the Cubs, and Jamie Moyer is going to the bullpen.  It’s a move that makes sense in that if anyone was going to lose their job in the rotation it had to be Moyer, who’s getting abused lately and currently has a 5.47 ERA.

I know everyone is going to be watching Pedro, but I’m actually more curious as to how Manuel is going to deploy Moyer.  The impulse — because he’s a veteran with a year left on his contract and no one wants to put him out to pasture yet — would be to use him as a lefty specialist or some other semi-prominent role.  If so, Manuel should avoid this impulse given that, over his career, lefties have actually hit Moyer better than righties (.765 OPS vs. .742 OPS), even though that’s not the case in 2009.

What I’d really like to see is Moyer used as an old-timey swingman, they type of which we just don’t see much anymore in this age of bullpen specialists. Lots of mopup. Lots of use as a longman. A spot start here or there if a particular matchup makes sense or if the Phillies build a bit more of a division lead.  If they do that right — and if Moyer doesn’t simply implode in his new role — Philadelphia could maybe reduce the number of guys in the pen and do some things with its bench that other teams can’t do such as have a pure speed guy hanging around or something.

We’ll see if that happens.  And we’ll see Wednesday if Pedro has anything left in the tank. 

Report: Royals and Eric Hosmer have discussed a long-term contract extension

SAN DIEGO, CA - JULY 12:  Eric Hosmer #35 of the Kansas City Royals and the American League rounds the bases after hitting a home run against the National League in the 2nd inning of the 87th Annual MLB All-Star Game at PETCO Park on July 12, 2016 in San Diego, California.  (Photo by Denis Poroy/Getty Images)
Denis Poroy/Getty Images
4 Comments

Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports that the Royals and first baseman Eric Hosmer have discussed a long-term contract extension. However, Hosmer also indicated that he will head into free agency if a deal is not consummated by Opening Day.

Hosmer, 27, avoided arbitration with the Royals last month, agreeing to a $12.25 million salary for the 2017 season. He is one of four key Royals players who can become a free agent after the season along with Mike Moustakas, Alcides Escobar, and Lorenzo Cain. If Hosmer does reach free agency, he would arguably be the top free agent first baseman.

Hosmer finished the past season hitting .266/.328/.433 with 25 home runs and 104 RBI while making his first All-Star team.

Yankees sign Jon Niese to a minor league deal

PHOENIX, AZ - AUGUST 17:  Jonathon Niese #49 of the New York Mets delivers a pitch during the first inning against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field on August 17, 2016 in Phoenix, Arizona.  (Photo by Jennifer Stewart/Getty Images)
Jennifer Stewart/Getty Images
2 Comments

Joel Sherman of the New York Post reports that the Yankees have signed pitcher Jon Niese to a minor league contract, pending a physical. Assuming the deal is finalized, Sherman notes that the Yankees will have Niese work as both a starter and a reliever in big league camp this spring.

According to Sherman, the Yankees were interested in lefty relievers Jerry Blevins and Boone Logan, but didn’t want to commit at their asking prices. They are looking for a lefty set-up man along with Tommy Lane.

Niese, 30, pitched for the Pirates and Mets last season, finishing with a 5.50 ERA and an 88/47 K/BB ratio over 121 innings.