That may be the most comprehensive headline I’ve ever written too, but really there’s no other way to go with this.
Bojan Koprivica of The Hardball Times has a huge article up today in which he attacked the issue of catchers blocking pitchers in the dirt, explaining how to go at the problem, how to make good measurements of and adjustments to the data and eventually coming up with a rating of the best and worst catchers in this regard.
Tops: Humberto Quintero, Yadier Molina and Matt Wieters. Worst: Rob Johnson, Jorge Posada and Miguel Olivo.
But the journey is more important than the destination. If you care about measuring catching defense and stretching the boundaries of what we can quantitatively say in baseball, this stuff is for you.
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.