According to MLB.com’s T.R. Sullivan, the Red Sox have joined the Orioles in asking the Rangers about Koji Uehara, and with Texas known to be interested in infielder Jed Lowrie, there would seem to be a fit.
Texas lost faith in Uehara after he got shelled in the postseason, so it’s no surprise that he’s been made available. However, the 36-year-old has posted a 2.56 ERA and an 147/17 K/BB ratio out of the pen the last two years. The Red Sox wouldn’t necessarily see him as a closer, but he’d have a chance to occupy a key role in the seventh and eighth innings.
Lowrie, 27, has struggled to stay healthy as a major leaguer, but he could well be an above average regular at second base or an adequate one at third base if he can shake the injuries. The Rangers would use him as a utilityman. He hit .252/.303/.382 in 309 at-bats for the Red Sox last season.
Jon Morosi of MLB Network and FOX Sports reports that the Mariners have acquired starter Chris Heston from the Giants. The Giants will receive a player to be named later, per Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports.
Heston, 28, logged only five innings in the majors this past season as he battled an oblique injury and otherwise spent most of his time with Triple-A Sacramento. Heston was solid out of the Giants’ rotation in 2015, posting a 3.95 ERA with a 141/64 K/BB ratio in 177 2/3 innings over 31 starts.
Heston will be under team control through 2021. He’ll provide depth for the Mariners’ rotation in the meantime.
Joe Nathan‘s agent, David Pepe, says his client wants to pitch in 2017, per ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick. “He’s like the Energizer Bunny,” Pepe said.
Nathan, 42, came back from Tommy John surgery in July, pitching two scoreless innings for the Cubs with four strikeouts and two walks. The Cubs released him and the Giants picked him up, and Nathan went on to pitch 4 1/3 scoreless innings down the stretch with five strikeouts and two walks.
According to FanGraphs, Nathan’s velocity wasn’t where it used to be, which is to be expected of a pitcher in his 40’s coming back from major elbow surgery. Still, with teams always on the hunt for bullpen depth, it would be shocking if Nathan didn’t get any bites before spring training starts.