Phillies sign mystery reliever

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Jason Bay may have a mystery team courting him, but he’s got nothing on the Phillies who have come to terms with a mystery closer:

According to a person with knowledge of the situation, the Phils have
an agreement in place with a pitcher that they believe will help
fortify their bullpen. The person could not divulge the name of the
reliever, but did say the agreement is pending a physical, which would
take place during the first week of January.

I don’t know his name, but I have a pic of him. Check him out.

All this cloak-and-dagger over someone who is almost certainly Danys Baez?  A bit dramatic, don’t ya think?

Yankees re-sign Jon Niese to a minor league deal

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The Yankees have re-signed pitcher Jon Niese to a minor league contract, George A. King III of the New York Post reports. Niese was released on Sunday, but he’ll stick around and provide rotation depth for the Yankees.

Niese had knee surgery last August and got a late start to spring training as a result. In six spring appearances lasting an inning each, the lefty gave up three earned runs on five hits and a walk with five strikeouts.

Niese, a veteran of nine seasons, put up an aggregate 5.50 ERA with an 88/47 K/BB ratio in 121 innings last season between the Pirates and Mets.

Orioles acquire Alec Asher from the Phillies

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The Phillies announced on Tuesday that the club traded pitcher Alec Asher to the Orioles for a player to be named later.

Asher, 25, was the victim of a roster crunch. He was not going to make the 25-man roster and the starting rotation at Triple-A Lehigh Valley was already full. The Phillies acquired him from the Rangers in the July 2015 Cole Hamels trade.

Asher had good results in 27 2/3 innings in the big leagues last year, posting a 2.28 ERA with a 13/4 K/BB ratio. While it didn’t show in those stats, the right-hander sometimes struggles with command and he doesn’t miss bats often enough to make up for it. The Orioles, however, are happy to add some pitching depth.