With the Jason Bay negotiations at an utter standstill, that whole “we think Jason Bay may be easier to sign than Matt Holliday” stuff we had previously heard from the Mets may no longer be operative. I mean sure, Holliday is represented by Boras, but at least Boras will return your calls. Bay is apparently off on Mars contemplating existence or something.
Omar acknowledged this last night when he said “we are pursuing Matt Holliday.” He still said Bay would be an easier deal to make, but he probably has to say that unless and until Bay finally tells him that he wants no part of the Mets.
Holliday may or may not want to play in New York — if he uses the Mets as leverage against the Cardinals the Cards will probably tell him to have fun in Queens — but he’d probably be a better choice for the Mets than Bay would in terms of defense, age and all of that.
The Braves have signed reliever Blaine Boyer to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training, MLB.com’s Mark Bowman reports. Bowman adds that the right-hander has a “good chance” to make the Braves’ bullpen out of spring training.
Boyer, 35, spent the past season with the Brewers, finishing with a 3.95 ERA and a 26/17 K/BB ratio in 66 innings.
Boyer, of course, started his professional baseball career with the Braves as they selected him in the third round of the 2000 draft. Since the Braves traded him in 2009, Boyer has pitched for the Cardinals, Diamondbacks, Mets, Padres, and Twins along with the Brewers.
Update (6:48 PM EST): Topkin reports the contract will be of the major league variety.
Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports that the Rays and free agent reliever Shawn Tolleson are close to finalizing a contract.
Tolleson, who turns 29 years old on Thursday, had an ugly 2016 season, finishing with a 7.68 ERA and a 29/10 K/BB ratio in 36 1/3 innings. He was one of the Rangers’ best relievers in the two seasons prior to that, however, which included saving 35 games in 2015.