To the Giants?
ESPN.com’s Jerry Crasnick reports that the Mariners are close to dealing reliever Brandon League to an undisclosed team that isn’t the Braves or Rangers. The San Francisco Chronicle’s Hank Schulman is hearing that it might be the Giants, while Danny Knobler of CBS Sports says the Mariners and White Sox have discussed League.
League was 37-for-42 saving games for Seattle last year, but he lost his job in May and hasn’t been able to regain it from Tom Wilhelmsen, even though his ERA is down to 3.05. He could spend the rest of the season as a setup man or a closer, depending on what team he’s traded to. He’ll be a free agent for the first time this winter.
6:25 p.m. EDT update: A deal must not be that close: League is currently working the eighth inning with the Mariners up 5-2.
The Orioles singlehandedly kept the rumor mill churning this weekend. MLB Network’s Jon Morosi reports that the club is interested in making a play for free agent right-hander Lance Lynn, adding him to a list of potential candidates that also includes free agent righty Alex Cobb. The two are expected to command similar contracts in free agency, but Morosi notes that the Orioles may prefer Cobb based on his familiarity with the AL East.
Lynn, 30, is two years removed from Tommy John surgery on his right elbow. Despite missing the 2016 season, he bounced back with a respectable 11-8 record in 33 starts and complemented his efforts with a 3.43 ERA, 3.8 BB/9 and 7.4 SO/9 over 186 1/3 innings for the 2017 Cardinals. He lost several days with a blister on his pitching hand in early September, but managed to avoid any major injuries and can reasonably be expected to shoulder another heavy workload in 2018.
Lynn may not be the Orioles’ first choice to beef up their starting rotation, but there’s no doubt that he’ll be in high demand as one of very few viable starters on the market this winter. The veteran righty rejected his one-year, $17.4 million qualifying offer from the Cardinals on Thursday and will likely be seeking a multi-year contract, one that Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch estimates around five years and $100+ million. If the Orioles are willing to bite that bullet, they’ll still need to compensate the Cardinals with their third pick in next year’s draft.