As expected, shortstop Jimmy Rollins and outfielder Raul Ibanez have declined arbitration from the Phillies.
This according to MLB.com’s Todd Zolecki.
Rollins is in search of a five-year contract, so the decision on his part was a no-brainer. With Ibanez, it’s a bit trickier. He’s unlikely to score a significant deal on the open market this winter and accepting arbitration would have netted him a salary of nearly $14 million for 2012. But it’s quite clear that the Phillies and Ibanez had a handshake agreement in place.
The Phillies can now get one draft pick when Ibanez signs elsewhere and two more picks if Rollins leaves.
The Braves have signed reliever Blaine Boyer to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training, MLB.com’s Mark Bowman reports. Bowman adds that the right-hander has a “good chance” to make the Braves’ bullpen out of spring training.
Boyer, 35, spent the past season with the Brewers, finishing with a 3.95 ERA and a 26/17 K/BB ratio in 66 innings.
Boyer, of course, started his professional baseball career with the Braves as they selected him in the third round of the 2000 draft. Since the Braves traded him in 2009, Boyer has pitched for the Cardinals, Diamondbacks, Mets, Padres, and Twins along with the Brewers.
Update (6:48 PM EST): Topkin reports the contract will be of the major league variety.
Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports that the Rays and free agent reliever Shawn Tolleson are close to finalizing a contract.
Tolleson, who turns 29 years old on Thursday, had an ugly 2016 season, finishing with a 7.68 ERA and a 29/10 K/BB ratio in 36 1/3 innings. He was one of the Rangers’ best relievers in the two seasons prior to that, however, which included saving 35 games in 2015.