In the first arbitration hearing of the year Ross Ohlendorf has defeated the Pirates, meaning the 28-year-old right-hander will receive $2.025 million this season rather than the $1.4 million figure submitted by the team.
Ohlendorf won the case despite going 1-11 in 21 starts last season, which means he already has as many victories in 2011 as he had in all of 2010. Sort of.
With a 4.07 ERA in 108 innings (and a 3.92 ERA in 177 innings in 2009) he pitched much better than his ugly win-loss record suggests, so it’s interesting that Ohlendorf came out on top in a situation where rulings often come from people not particularly well-versed in modern baseball analysis.
Perhaps the Princeton graduate made a compelling case for himself or at least a compelling case against the importance of win-loss records for pitchers. Either way, it’s a victory for … well, not caring about victories.
The Braves have signed reliever Blaine Boyer to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training, MLB.com’s Mark Bowman reports. Bowman adds that the right-hander has a “good chance” to make the Braves’ bullpen out of spring training.
Boyer, 35, spent the past season with the Brewers, finishing with a 3.95 ERA and a 26/17 K/BB ratio in 66 innings.
Boyer, of course, started his professional baseball career with the Braves as they selected him in the third round of the 2000 draft. Since the Braves traded him in 2009, Boyer has pitched for the Cardinals, Diamondbacks, Mets, Padres, and Twins along with the Brewers.
Update (6:48 PM EST): Topkin reports the contract will be of the major league variety.
Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports that the Rays and free agent reliever Shawn Tolleson are close to finalizing a contract.
Tolleson, who turns 29 years old on Thursday, had an ugly 2016 season, finishing with a 7.68 ERA and a 29/10 K/BB ratio in 36 1/3 innings. He was one of the Rangers’ best relievers in the two seasons prior to that, however, which included saving 35 games in 2015.