Report: Phillies in mix to acquire Halladay

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SI.con’s Jon Heyman is hearing the Phillies are in the mix for Roy Halladay, along with the Angels, Yankees and Red Sox.
The Phillies are supposed to be just about out of money after signing Placido Polanco and loading up their bench, though they have kept enough in reserve to land a setup man along the lines of Brandon Lyon. Ownership, though, might be willing to go above and beyond in order to bring in Halladay and make the team the overwhelming favorite to represent the NL in the World Series for the third straight year.
Halladay will make $14.6 million next season, but it’d really be more of a $7.5 million obligation for the Phillies, considering that a Halladay acquisition would almost surely result in Joe Blanton being sold off. Blanton might even fetch the eighth-inning guy the Phillies desire, whether it be George Sherrill or someone else.
The Phillies also have the talent to pull off a move. The Blue Jays would want three players from a group of four: RHP Kyle Drabek, OF Domonic Brown, LHP J.A. Happ and OF Michael Taylor. However, they might be willing to settle for two and lesser prospects, as long as either Drabek or Brown is involved. It doesn’t seem likely anyone else has stepped up with a big offer yet.

Josh Johnson retires from baseball

PEORIA, AZ - FEBRUARY 21: Josh Johnson #55 of the San Diego Padres poses during Picture Day on February 21, 2014 at the Peoria Sports Complex in Peoria, Arizona. (Photo by Mike McGinnis/Getty Images)
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Oft-injured pitcher Josh Johnson is retiring from baseball, ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick is reporting.

Johnson, 32, hasn’t pitched in the majors since 2013. The right-hander underwent his third Tommy John surgery in September 2015 but wasn’t able to bounce back.

Johnson spent most of his career with the Marlins, but also pitched for the Blue Jays in the big leagues, as well as the Padres in the minors. He retires with a career 3.40 ERA, 915 strikeouts across 998 innings in the majors, and two All-Star nominations. Johnson led the National League with a 2.30 ERA in 2010, finishing fifth in NL Cy Young Award balloting. One wonders what he could have accomplished if he was able to stay healthy.

Report: Angels close to a multi-year deal with Luis Valbuena

HOUSTON, TX - JULY 08:  Luis Valbuena #18 of the Houston Astros hits a three run walkoff home run in the ninth inning to defeat the Oakland Athletics 10-9 at Minute Maid Park on July 8, 2016 in Houston, Texas.  (Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images)
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The Angels are nearing a multi-year deal with free agent third baseman Luis Valbuena, Jeff Fletcher of the Orange County Register reports. It’s believed to be a two-year contract with a third-year option.

Valbuena, 31, hit .260/.357/.459 with 13 home runs and 40 RBI in 342 plate appearances in 2016. He missed most of the second half with a hamstring injury, for which he underwent surgery in late August.

Valbuena has played a majority of his career at third base, but also has extensive experience at second base and has racked up innings at first base and shortstop as well. He won’t play every day for the Angels, as Yunel Escobar lays claim to third base and C.J. Cron first base, but he will give them flexibility and a left-handed bat off the bench.