Nationals target Roy Oswalt after missing out on Mark Buehrle

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The Washington Post’s Adam Kilgore reports that the Nationals have moved on to Roy Oswalt after coming up short in their bid for Mark Buehrle.

A source told Kilgore that the Nationals failed to match the Marlins’ four-year, $58 million bid for Buehrle in either years or salary, suggesting that they were at something closer to $40 million for three years.

That’s a deal Oswalt would be happy with, though it’s unclear whether the Nationals see the two as equals. Oswalt probably offers a bit more upside, but his chronic back woes make him a risky signing. While Buehrle has pitched 200 innings in 11 straight seasons, Oswalt has fallen short of that mark in two of the last three. Last year, he went 9-10 with a 3.69 ERA in 139 innings for the Phillies.

Yankees re-sign Jon Niese to a minor league deal

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The Yankees have re-signed pitcher Jon Niese to a minor league contract, George A. King III of the New York Post reports. Niese was released on Sunday, but he’ll stick around and provide rotation depth for the Yankees.

Niese had knee surgery last August and got a late start to spring training as a result. In six spring appearances lasting an inning each, the lefty gave up three earned runs on five hits and a walk with five strikeouts.

Niese, a veteran of nine seasons, put up an aggregate 5.50 ERA with an 88/47 K/BB ratio in 121 innings last season between the Pirates and Mets.

Orioles acquire Alec Asher from the Phillies

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The Phillies announced on Tuesday that the club traded pitcher Alec Asher to the Orioles for a player to be named later.

Asher, 25, was the victim of a roster crunch. He was not going to make the 25-man roster and the starting rotation at Triple-A Lehigh Valley was already full. The Phillies acquired him from the Rangers in the July 2015 Cole Hamels trade.

Asher had good results in 27 2/3 innings in the big leagues last year, posting a 2.28 ERA with a 13/4 K/BB ratio. While it didn’t show in those stats, the right-hander sometimes struggles with command and he doesn’t miss bats often enough to make up for it. The Orioles, however, are happy to add some pitching depth.