More fun morning linkage: over at The Platoon Advantage, The Common Man has the second installment of what is shaping up as a regular feature: tracing baseball transaction family trees.
The idea is simple: player A is traded for player B who leaves via free agency with the compensation pick turning into Player C and on and on until you reach a current player. You’ve probably engaged in such exercises yourself in the past. The Common Man just expands it over time and breadth and makes actual graphical transactional trees.
Last week TCM did it with the Twins and Chuck Knoblauch and the Astros and Glenn Davis. Those were fun, but they only go back to the 80s. This time he does it with the Mets and John Matlack, that titular 4th round pick of the 1967 draft, tracing how he ultimately became David Wright. So to speak.
This is the kind of thing you can get lost in after a while. But that’s OK. I talked to your boss and your significant other and they both told me that you got nothin’ better to do.
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.