UPDATE: According to Jon Heyman of SI.com, the White Sox have signed Ohman to a two-year, $4 million contract, pending a physical.
Friday, 7:10 PM: Jon Heyman of SI.com tweeted earlier this afternoon that reliever Will Ohman had narrowed his choice to three teams. We’re beginning to piece this thing together.
According to Dan Connolly of the Baltimore Sun, the Orioles are not one of the three finalists mentioned by Heyman. Meanwhile, a source tells him that the White Sox are considered the favorites to sign him. Ohman is reportedly “close” to making a decision, but a deal is not yet completed.
Ohman, 33, posted a 3.21 ERA and 43/23 K/BB ratio over 42 innings between the Orioles and Marlins last season. Largely used as a LOOGY-type during his career, he held left-handed batters to a meager .229/.323/.313 batting line and 636 OPS over 99 plate appearances in 2010.
This wouldn’t be a significant signing on the surface, but the addition of Ohman, another left-hander, could mean that the White Sox would push Matt Thornton to the closer role, bumping Chris Sale to the starting rotation. Just speculation for now, but it’s at least something to ponder on a slow Friday.
Clayton Kershaw had nothing left to prove when he exited the mound during his last Cactus League start on Friday. He finished camp with a 0.00 ERA, made all the more impressive after he extended his scoreless streak to 21 1/3 innings following 6 2/3 frames of one-hit ball against the Royals.
In six spring training starts this year, the Dodgers southpaw racked up 12 hits, four walks and 23 strikeouts. His velocity appeared to fluctuate between the high-80s and low-90s from start to start, but manager Dave Roberts told reporters that he expects Kershaw to get back up to the 93 m.p.h. range next week. Kershaw is tabbed for his eighth consecutive Opening Day start on Thursday.
The 30-year-old lefty is poised to enter his 11th season with the club in 2018. He went 18-4 in 27 starts last year and turned in a 2.31 ERA, 1.5 BB/9 and 10.4 SO/9 over 175 innings. He suffered his fair share of bumps and bruises along the way, including a lower back strain that required a five-week stay on the disabled list.
The Dodgers will open their season against the Giants on Thursday, March 29 at 7:08 PM ET. Given the sudden rash of injuries that hit the Giants’ rotation earlier today, Kershaw’s Opening Day opponent has not yet been announced.