It’s a good guess that if Jose Canseco had any actual drawing power, he would have stuck with one of these indy league teams for a bit, at least until something better came along. Not that anything better was ever likely to come along.
The 48-year-old Canseco landed a new gig Friday, signing with the Rio Grande Valley WhiteWings of the North American Baseball League. He’s slated to make his debut for the club Saturday.
It’ll be Canseco’s second stint with the NABL. He hit .256/.371/.427 with eight homers in 199 at-bats as a player-manager for Yuma last year. Earlier this season, he hit .194/.310/.250 with one homer in 72 at-bats for Worcester of the Can-Am Association.
Canseco was also in the news earlier this week after filing for bankruptcy in Nevada. He listed $21,000 in assets and nearly $1.7 million in liabilities. He owes a cool $500,000 to the IRS.
MLB Network’s Jon Morosi reports that the Orioles have interest in free agent right-hander Alex Cobb, who rejected his one-year, $17.4 million qualifying offer from the Rays earlier this week. Cobb was most recently linked to the Cubs, who reportedly reached out to his agent during the GM Meetings and garnered mutual interest from the righty, but nothing appears to be set in stone yet.
Cobb, 30, completed his sixth season with the Rays in 2017. He went 12-10 in 29 starts and turned in a respectable 3.66 ERA, 6.4 SO/9 and career-best 2.2 BB/9 in 179 1/3 innings. Despite losing a couple of weeks to turf toe, he remained healthy for most of the year and showed no signs of the elbow issues that robbed him of the majority of his 2015-2016 campaigns.
It’s still fairly early for any deals to come to fruition, but Morosi notes that the Orioles seem to be focused on bulking up their rotation during the first few months of the offseason. It’ll take more than a healthy Alex Cobb to right that ship, however: Orioles’ starters earned a collective 5.70 ERA and 5.5 fWAR in 2017, good for worst and fourth-worst marks in the league, respectively. Behind Kevin Gausman and Dylan Bundy (and perhaps Gabriel Ynoa/Miguel Castro), they still need three viable starters to compete in 2018. Whether or not they can afford to spring for a single starter with Cobb’s price tag (four years, $48 million, per MLB Trade Rumors) remains to be seen.