UPDATE: Or not. Mark Sheldon of MLB.com hears that the Reds do not appear to be seriously pursuing Jurrjens. Another issue is that the two sides don’t match up well for a deal. The Braves are said to be looking for a power-hitting outfielder in return while the Reds best trade chips — Yonder Alonso and Juan Francisco — don’t exactly fit the bill.
7:40 PM: Jon Heyman of SI.com reports that the Reds are “very interested” in a potential deal for Braves right-hander Jair Jurrjens.
It’s not clear who the Braves would ask for in return, but they are in the process of gauging interest in an effort to clear salary to upgrade their lineup. As you may recall, Jurrjens was floated in a potential deal with the Royals last month.
Jurrjens earned $3.25 million in 2011 while posting a 2.96 ERA and 90/44 K/BB ratio over 152 innings. His salary could rise north of $5 million in his second year of arbitration.
While Heyman notes that 10 teams have expressed interest in Jurrjens, the potential return could be impacted by concerns about his troublesome right knee. The 25-year-old right-hander had arthroscopic surgery on the knee last October and was limited to just seven starts after the All-Star break this season due to a bone bruise.
CC Sabathia‘s contract with the Yankees expires after the 2017 season but the lefty feels that he has enough left in the tank to pitch in 2018 and beyond, Mark Feinsand of the New York Daily News reports.
Sabathia said, “I just know myself. I know I feel like it’s not my time yet. Barring any crazy injuries I know I can pitch past next year. I feel like this is just the beginning of what I’m trying to do. I feel like there’s a lot more still to learn and a lot better to get. It’s exciting.”
The 36-year-old lefty currently holds a 4.02 ERA and a 144/63 K/BB ratio in 172 1/3 innings. It’s his best and healthiest season since 2012. He battled a knee injury last season and checked into rehab for alcohol addiction last October. Sabathia said that being treated for his addiction put him “in a good spot.”
Sabathia is owed $25 million through a vesting option for the 2017 season.
The Red Sox can thank the Orioles for not having to fight to clinch the division on Thursday or later. The Orioles came from behind to defeat the Blue Jays 3-2 on Wednesday evening, clinching the AL East for the Red Sox.
A few minutes after that game went final, the Red Sox squandered a 3-0 lead taken in the eighth inning, culminating in a walk-off grand slam by Mark Teixeira in the bottom of the ninth inning. Closer Craig Kimbrel started the ninth, but didn’t have control over any of his pitches. He allowed a leadoff single followed by three consecutive walks to force in a run. Joe Kelly relieved Kimbrel and seemed to be close to wriggling out of the jam, getting Starlin Castro to strike out looking and Didi Gregorius to pop up. But after starting Teixeira with a first-pitch curve ball for a strike, Teixera clobbered a 99 MPH fastball, sending it over the fence in right-center to end the game.
For the Yankees, the come-from-behind victory was crucial as it staved off Wild Card elimination for one more day.
This is the first time the Red Sox have clinched the AL East since 2013, also the last year they won the World Series.