UPDATE: Jerry Crasnick of ESPN.com reports that the Twins are the lucky winners of the Jamey Carroll derby and are closing in on a multi-year deal. He’s expected to be their starting shortstop. Terms aren’t disclosed, but I presume it won’t be four years, $50 million. UPDATE: Rosenthal says it looks like two-years, $7 million. Seems pretty damn reasonable, actually.
11:00 AM: Jerry Crasnick of ESPN.com reports that Jamey Carroll is close to signing a multi-year contract. We don’t know who with — Mystery Team!! — but a lot of teams have expressed interest ranging from the Tigers, Rockies, Dodgers, Indians and Braves.
Maybe a multi-year deal is sort of nuts, but in a world where Willie Bloomquist gets one Carroll is certainly entitled. Because, like, he’s better. Indeed, he seems poised to get a starting job someplace, either at short or at second base, even at age 38, having just batted .290 with a .359 OBP. And he’s thought of as a model baseball citizen, great clubhouse presence kind of guy.
So much so that I’m shocked that the Braves haven’t signed him already. Like, last week. He’s the most Braves player to hit the market in five years, I bet. And I’m not complaining. He’d be better than Alex Gonzalez for a year or perhaps two while the Braves’ shortstop prospects mature. This is a team that found a home for Walt Weiss, so they can certainly make room for Carroll.
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.