The Diamondbacks are on the verge of sending reliever Chad Qualls to the Rays in exchange for a player to be named later. Chad Qualls is 1-4 with an 8.51 ERA and has a salary of over $4 million this year. Word is that the Rays are picking up all that’s left of the salary.
Qualls has been horrendous this year, but his numbers have improved somewhat in the last month. As Aaron noted back in June, there is no reason for him to be as bad as he’s been — he really did just fall off a cliff this year — and it’s possible he had some injury issues early in the season that he wasn’t telling anyone about.
He’s depth for Tampa Bay, I suppose, who aren’t in need of a closer.
The Rangers will not sign free agent reliever Seung-hwan Oh after all. Reports from MLB.com’s TR Sullivan indicate that negotiations were brought to a halt after a physical issue was found with the pitcher. While the specifics have yet to be released, Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News says the issue was revealed on an MRI of the right-hander’s arm.
Oh was thought to be in talks with the Rangers last week, though a deal was never officially announced by the club. The 35-year-old righty is fresh off of a two-year run with the Cardinals, during which he posted a cumulative 39 saves, 2.85 ERA, 2.1 BB/9 and 10.2 SO/9 in 139 innings. He struggled with consistency in his sophomore season, however, and finished 2017 with a disappointing 4.10 ERA and 4.44 FIP in 62 appearances for the team.
While Oh hasn’t experienced any setbacks with his arm in the majors so far, he does have a history of prior injuries during his time in KBO. He sustained a shoulder injury in 2009 and underwent surgery to remove bone spurs from his elbow in 2010. It’s possible that the Rangers saw an entirely different problem on the MRI, but clearly it was enough to give them strong reservations about inking the righty to a $2.75+ million deal. It’s still possible that another of Oh’s suitors will offer him a contract prior to Opening Day; the Giants were rumored to be interested in the veteran reliever, among other teams, though their recent acquisition of lefty reliever Tony Watson will likely take them out of the running now.