The market for left-hander Jorge De La Rosa is heating up.
According to Troy Renck of the Denver Post, the Nationals, Pirates and Orioles have been the most aggressive suitors thus far and other teams are expected to join the fray.
The Nats have been on the hunt for a reliable long-term starter since their move to the nation’s capital and have shown a willingness to offer large free agent contracts in the past.
ESPN.com’s Jerry Crasnick says that Washington GM Mike Rizzo met with De La Rosa’s agent down in Orlando, Florida this week and it seems like the two sides have mutual interest. Rizzo has also been in touch with the representatives for Cliff Lee, but that still looks like a two-team race between the Rangers and Yankees.
Thought of as this offseason’s second-most valuable free agent starter, De La Rosa is likely to cash in despite the pedestrian 4.22 ERA and 1.33 WHIP that he registered over 122 2/3 frames for the Rockies this past season.
The Pirates have reportedly made him their primary offseason target and the O’s boast enough financial resources to strike a deal.
The Rays acquired right-handed reliever Sergio Romo from the Dodgers, the teams announced Saturday night. Tampa Bay manager Kevin Cash hinted that the team was in on Romo during the offseason, but couldn’t quite make a deal happen at the time. The righty reliever was designated for assignment by the Dodgers on Thursday and will net the club cash considerations or a player to be named later.
Romo, 34, struggled to find his footing in his first season with the Dodgers. He left a closing role in San Francisco to play set-up man to established closer Kenley Jansen, and saw mixed results on the mound with a 6.12 ERA, 4.3 BB/9 and 11.2 SO/9 through his first 25 innings of 2017. It’s a far cry from the sub-3.00 ERA he maintained in 2015 and 2016, but the Rays don’t seem to have ruled out a second-half surge just yet.
The veteran right-hander is expected to step into a bullpen that already boasts a solid core of right-handed relievers, including Alex Colome, Brad Boxberger, Erasmo Ramirez, Chase Whitley and Tommy Hunter. According to FOX Sports’ Ken Rosenthal, the Rays were intrigued by Romo’s extensive postseason experience, affordability and hefty strikeout rate, but will likely continue to hunt for additional bullpen depth in the weeks to come.
Astros’ third baseman Colin Moran was carted off the field on Saturday night after a foul ball caught him in the left eye. He was forced to leave in the sixth inning when a pitch from Orioles’ right-handed reliever Darren O'Day ricocheted off the handle of his bat and struck him in the face, causing considerable bleeding and bruising around his eye. The full extent of his injury has yet to be reported by the team.
Prior to the injury, Moran was 1-for-2 with a base hit in the third inning. He was relieved by pinch-hitter/third baseman Marwin Gonzalez, who polished off the end of the at-bat by catapulting a three-run homer onto Eutaw Street.
Evan Gattis and Carlos Beltran combined for another two runs in the ninth inning, bringing the Astros to a four-run lead as they look toward their 65th win of the season. They currently lead the Orioles 7-4 in the bottom of the ninth.