You can add the Phillies to the list of suitors interested in Dan Haren, joining the Nationals and the Cardinals. Indeed, Jerry Crasnick tweets
that the Diamondbacks are scouting Phillies’ prospects to see what they might get in return.
Haren doesn’t appear to be having his best year ever — he’s 7-6 with a 4.56 ERA — but his strikeout and walk rates are pretty much the same as they ever are and not having a good bullpen behind him (to say the least) is likely contributing to a lot of runs being charged to him after he’s been lifted. The guy’s been a horse for several years now and would make a great addition for anyone who can afford him.
In a year when everyone is looking at Cliff Lee, Haren may wind up being nearly the difference maker that Lee is.
Last Thursday, we learned that the MLBPA was challenging the Nippon Professional Baseball posting system, delaying Japanese superstar Shohei Ohtani’s move to Major League Baseball. The latest collective bargaining agreement removed a lot of the incentive for players to come to the U.S. by capping pay. Ohtani, for example, can only receive a signing bonus between $300,000 and $3.53 million while his team — the Nippon Ham Fighters — would receive $20 million for posting him.
Jon Morosi reports that the deadline for this issue to be resolved is 8 PM ET on Monday evening. He notes that key NPB officials have worked through the night in Japan to try to reach a resolution. It is possible that even if no agreement is reached, the deadline could be pushed further back.
Ohtani, 23, has become a heralded hitter and pitcher in Japan. At the plate over his five-year career, he has compiled a .286/.358/.500 triple-slash line with 48 home runs and 166 RBI in 1,170 plate appearances. On the mound, he has a 2.52 ERA with a 624/200 K/BB ratio across 543 innings.