The Rays aren’t ready to go into sell-mode yet.
According to Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com, the Rays made a play for Francisco Rodriguez before the the Brewers “swooped in late.”
Rosenthal expounded on the subject in today’s “Full Count” video, citing K-Rod’s past connection with Rays manager Joe Maddon as a potential reason for their interest.
Of course, Kyle Farnsworth has been a revelation out of the closer’s role for the Rays this season, posting a 1.95 ERA, 18 saves in 20 chances and a 26/5 K/BB ratio over 37 innings. While it’s an interesting “what if” scenario, you’d have to think Scott Boras would have worked out a similar deal to waive K-Rod’s vesting option for 2012. It’s pretty clear he wanted him to be a free agent all along.
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.