Jon Heyman reports that the Yankees and the Orioles are sniffin’ around Freddy Garcia.
Or, I should say, sniffin’ around again. Heyman reported last month that multiple teams including the Yankees had requested his medical records. At the time I opined that Garcia is not a guy who is going to make a difference for a contending team. He threw 157 decent innings last year but he doesn’t strike anyone out anymore. He’s a right-handed flyball pitcher who will get eaten alive in Yankee Stadium, Camden Yards. And in Fenway Park it should be noted too, as the Red Sox have some monster lefties.
Not that there’s anyone much better left for teams seeking pitching help. It’s just that Garcia is no one to get too excited about.
The Orioles singlehandedly kept the rumor mill churning this weekend. MLB Network’s Jon Morosi reports that the club is interested in making a play for free agent right-hander Lance Lynn, adding him to a list of potential candidates that also includes free agent righty Alex Cobb. The two are expected to command similar contracts in free agency, but Morosi notes that the Orioles may prefer Cobb based on his familiarity with the AL East.
Lynn, 30, is two years removed from Tommy John surgery on his right elbow. Despite missing the 2016 season, he bounced back with a respectable 11-8 record in 33 starts and complemented his efforts with a 3.43 ERA, 3.8 BB/9 and 7.4 SO/9 over 186 1/3 innings for the 2017 Cardinals. He lost several days with a blister on his pitching hand in early September, but managed to avoid any major injuries and can reasonably be expected to shoulder another heavy workload in 2018.
Lynn may not be the Orioles’ first choice to beef up their starting rotation, but there’s no doubt that he’ll be in high demand as one of very few viable starters on the market this winter. The veteran righty rejected his one-year, $17.4 million qualifying offer from the Cardinals on Thursday and will likely be seeking a multi-year contract, one that Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch estimates around five years and $100+ million. If the Orioles are willing to bite that bullet, they’ll still need to compensate the Cardinals with their third pick in next year’s draft.