Last month the Marlins were said to be looking at Joe Saunders to fill out their rotation and agent Scott Boras is still trying to find Edwin Jackson a lucrative new home, but Joe Frisaro of MLB.com writes that Miami “has little to no interest” in either free agent starter.
However, according to Frisaro the Marlins would like to add a veteran starter to the rotation alongside Mark Buehrle, Josh Johnson, Anibal Sanchez, and Ricky Nolasco. He suggests Matt Garza as their ideal target, but it’s unclear if the Marlins are willing to pay the Cubs’ substantial asking price.
If they fail to make another move Chris Volstad is the current fifth starter, but there’s been speculation about him being trade bait all offseason and clearly the Marlins would be willing to part with the 25-year-old right-hander to make room for Garza or another high-profile veteran. Miami has thrown around money this offseason, but acquiring Garza would take prospects rather than cash and the Marlins’ farm system isn’t elite.
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.