Jeff Zrbiec of the Baltimore Sun has written recently that he didn’t think that the Oriole would trade starter Jeremy Guthrie, because they need to have an innings eater around to protect their young arms. Fair enough.
Today, however, he rethinks it a bit. He doesn’t change his general view of things, but does note the limited circumstances under which the O’s might trade Guthrie:
… the Orioles aren’t in a position to give away a pitcher who is on track to log more than 200 innings for a third straight year. They likely are going to have to get at least one Major League-ready starter as part of the package back for him.
Question: if you already had an expendable “Major League-reader starter” available, why in the hell would you be trading for Jeremy Guthrie?
Oft-injured pitcher Josh Johnson is retiring from baseball, ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick is reporting.
Johnson, 32, hasn’t pitched in the majors since 2013. The right-hander underwent his third Tommy John surgery in September 2015 but wasn’t able to bounce back.
Johnson spent most of his career with the Marlins, but also pitched for the Blue Jays in the big leagues, as well as the Padres in the minors. He retires with a career 3.40 ERA, 915 strikeouts across 998 innings in the majors, and two All-Star nominations. Johnson led the National League with a 2.30 ERA in 2010, finishing fifth in NL Cy Young Award balloting. One wonders what he could have accomplished if he was able to stay healthy.
The Angels are nearing a multi-year deal with free agent third baseman Luis Valbuena, Jeff Fletcher of the Orange County Register reports. It’s believed to be a two-year contract with a third-year option.
Valbuena, 31, hit .260/.357/.459 with 13 home runs and 40 RBI in 342 plate appearances in 2016. He missed most of the second half with a hamstring injury, for which he underwent surgery in late August.
Valbuena has played a majority of his career at third base, but also has extensive experience at second base and has racked up innings at first base and shortstop as well. He won’t play every day for the Angels, as Yunel Escobar lays claim to third base and C.J. Cron first base, but he will give them flexibility and a left-handed bat off the bench.