While Joe Mauer’s soiree on the waiver wire made big headlines, the fact that Felix Hernandez was out there too was unknown until Friday, when FOXSports.com’s Jon Morosi reported that both Hernandez and Jason Vargas have been claimed on waivers.
Kevin Millwood cleared waivers and is thus eligible to be traded. However, he’d have to be moved today in order to be postseason eligible for another team.
Morosi reports that neither Hernandez nor Vargas will be traded to the teams that claimed them. That was a given with Hernandez, but perhaps a deal could have been worked out with Vargas.
Hernandez has won his last nine decisions to move to the forefront of the AL Cy Young race. He’s 13-5 with a league-best 2.43 ERA.
Sportsnet’s Ben Nicholson-Smith reports that the Blue Jays and third baseman Josh Donaldson are tabling extension talks as the two sides weren’t able to build any momentum towards agreement on a new contract.
Donaldson said, “We’re not quite there. That, to me, right now is not the major focus and I’m turning the page.” He added, “I want to play this season and really focus on winning games because, ultimately, our goal is to win a World Series and I don’t want to hinder that at all.” Donaldson also said he expects to hit free agency.
The 32-year-old avoided arbitration with the Blue Jays last month, agreeing on a $23 million salary for the 2018 season. He’s a free agent at season’s end. Last year, the three-time All-Star hit .270/.385/.559 with 33 home runs, 78 RBI, and 65 runs scored in 496 plate appearances. Donaldson missed six weeks in the first half with a calf injury, but was able to return and post terrific numbers, so his health — at least that aspect of it — shouldn’t be a concern going into spring training.
If Donaldson does reach free agency, he’ll join a star-studded group that will likely also include Bryce Harper, Manny Machado, Charlie Blackmon, and A.J. Pollock.