Before you read this, go back and read this. OK? Great. I won’t make you do that again every time we talk free agent stuff, but do please try to remember it.
Anyway, C.J. Wilson gave an interview to Scoreboarddaily.com and said this when asked if he might return to the Rangers:
Yeah, there’s a great chance because I like it here and I’ve won here. I’ve proved that I can be a good pitcher here.
The Rangers could certainly end up being the most desirable suitor for Wilson’s services. Indeed, rumblings out of the Yankee Universe — long thought the most likely team to bid on Wilson — have grown decidedly negative lately, and weren’t helped at all by Wilson’s lackluster postseason. But ultimately — as is the case with every free agent, money is going to play the largest role.
All things being equal, sure, Wilson chooses to stay where he’s comfy. But when was the last time all things were equal in the upper end of the free agent market?
It was first reported that the Blue Jays and Jose Bautista were close to a deal last night. Now Ken Rosenthal reports that the deal is near completion. It will likely a two-year contract in the $35-40 million range.
Bautista had a tough 2016, hitting .234/.366/.452 with 22 home runs and 69 RBI, and some clubs likely considered a long-term deal for the 36-year-old too risky, this leading to the relative lack of reported interest in Bautista by other clubs. But back-to-back ALCS appearances by the Jays and the success and popularity Bautista has experienced in Toronto make his re-signing there a pretty sensible move for all involved.
The Jays, who already lost Edwin Encarnacion to free agency, get their slugger back on a short term deal. Unlike anyone else, they don’t have to give up the draft pick attached to him via the qualifying offer. Bautista, in turn, will make, on average, more than he would’ve made on the qualifying offer if he would’ve accepted it and a raise over the $14 million he made in 2016.
The Padres have signed Trevor Cahill to a one-year, $1.75 million contract.
As recently as the middle of the 2015 season it looked like Cahill’s career would meet a premature end, but after being released by the Braves and signing with the Cubs in August of that season he has been a remarkably effective reliever. He has posted a 2.61 ERA in 61 games in Chicago and has posted a strikeout rate far above his career norms.
He’s not someone you necessarily want taking the hill when the leverage is high, but in San Diego the leverage won’t be all that high all that often.