Phillies showing interest in Fernando Rodney

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FOXSports.com’s Ken Rosenthal reports that the Phillies “are showing preliminary interest” in Fernando Rodney.
General manager Ruben Amaro Jr. has rightfully made upgrading the bullpen a priority this offseason, but as I wrote about earlier this week Rodney may not be the right guy to target.
His going 37-for-38 converting saves this season vastly overstates the effectiveness of a 33-year-old pitcher with a 4.28 career ERA, although it’s unclear if the Phillies would be looking at Rodney as a potential replacement for Brad Lidge at closer or merely as a compliment to Ryan Madson in the seventh and eighth innings. Either way, the shiny save totals are likely to make him significantly overpaid and there are far better setup options available.

Marlins catcher J.T. Realmuto reportedly asks to be traded

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Craig Mish of MLB Network Radio is reporting that Marlins catcher J.T. Realmuto has requested a trade out of Miami. Jon Heyman is characterizing it as Realmuto telling the team that he “wouldn’t mind” a trade.

Either way, Realmuto has no power to force a trade. This isn’t the NBA or something. Still, it’s evidence of just how dreary a prospect remaining in Miami is for Marlins veterans in the wake of trades that sent Giancarlo Stanton to New York, Marcell Ozuna to St. Louis.

Realmuto, who will turn 27 just before the 2018 season, hit .278/.332/.451 with 17 homers, 65 RBI, and eight steals over 141 games this past season. He only has three years of service time and is arbitration eligible for the first time this offseason. He made just $562K in the 2017 and will get a big raise this year, but he’s still going to be underpaid based on his production. If the Marlins wanted to trade him, they’d get a nice return. Why they would want to trade him, I have no idea.

Expect more of this sort of thing as the Marlins slash payroll and make it clear that their immediate priorities are more about saving money and less about winning baseball games. Which may or may not be a valid goal for the team’s new owners, but is certainly a letdown for baseball players and fans.