Sean McAdam of CSNNE.com reports that the Red Sox and Cubs will not discuss compensation for Theo Epstein until at least after Tuesday. That’s the day each team will hold a press conference, the Cubs to introduce Epstein and Jed Hoyer, the Red Sox to announce the promotion of Ben Cherington to the GM chair.
Only after that, McAdam reports, will the two teams resume compensation negotiations. And even then, they’ll only have a few days to come to some sort of agreement, as Bud Selig has given the clubs a November 1 deadline to figure it out. If they haven’t by then, Selig will mediate the matter. And given how little tolerance Selig has for nonsense and acrimony between ballclubs, it’s probably safe to ream the word “mediate” as “unilaterally impose a settlement and order everyone to move on.”
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.