Wandy Rodriguez

Report: Astros place Wandy Rodriguez, Brett Myers on waivers

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The Astros have decided to see if anyone will bite on their two most expensive starters, as they placed both Wandy Rodriguez and Brett Myers on waivers, SI.com’s Jon Heyman reports.

The salaries make it possible neither will be claimed.  Rodriguez is owed $36 million from 2012-14, while Myers will make $11 million next year and then either $10 million or a $3 million buyout for 2013.

Despite the big contract, Rodriguez is the more attractive property of the two.  He’s 8-9 with a fine 3.50 ERA this season.  He has a 3.44 ERA and a 35/14 K/BB ratio in 36 2/3 innings since the All-Star break.

Myers is currently 3-12 with a 4.72 ERA.  He’s still going six innings every time out, but almost always while giving up three or four runs.  His last win came on June 17.

For what it’s worth, Heyman says Rodriguez is 10:1 to get claimed, while there’s no chance of Myers getting claimed.  Danny Knobler of CBS Sports said last week that Rodriguez would likely get claimed by an NL team.

Josh Johnson retires from baseball

PEORIA, AZ - FEBRUARY 21: Josh Johnson #55 of the San Diego Padres poses during Picture Day on February 21, 2014 at the Peoria Sports Complex in Peoria, Arizona. (Photo by Mike McGinnis/Getty Images)
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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.

Report: Angels close to a multi-year deal with Luis Valbuena

HOUSTON, TX - JULY 08:  Luis Valbuena #18 of the Houston Astros hits a three run walkoff home run in the ninth inning to defeat the Oakland Athletics 10-9 at Minute Maid Park on July 8, 2016 in Houston, Texas.  (Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images)
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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.