Marco Scutaro didn’t hit much for the Rockies, batting .271 with a .684 OPS in 95 games, but he’s been on fire since a July 27 trade to the Giants with a .341 batting average, .808 OPS, and 30 RBIs in 44 games.
At the time of the trade Scutaro seemed unhappy to be leaving Colorado, but he’s apparently quickly taken a liking to San Francisco and the impending free agent told Andrew Baggarly of CSNBayArea.com that he “would love to come back here.”
Scutaro indicated that he’d be willing to re-sign before hitting the open market as a free agent and Baggarly writes that “the Giants will make every effort to re-sign Scutaro after this season” because even though he’s 37 years old they lack any other in-house options at second base.
Obviously he’s playing way over his head since coming to the Giants, but Scutaro’s overall numbers this season (.293 batting average, six homers, .724 OPS) are right in line with his career marks. He’s always been a good, solid all-around player and no one loves good, solid veterans more than the Giants.
A report from the Baltimore Sun’s Dan Connolly suggests that free agent catcher Welington Castillo currently tops the Orioles’ list of potential backstop targets for the 2017 season. With Matt Wieters on the market, the Orioles lack a suitable platoon partner for Caleb Joseph behind the dish, and Connolly adds that the club has been discussing a multi-year deal with Castillo’s representatives since the Winter Meetings.
Castillo batted .264/.322/.423 with the Diamondbacks in 2016, racking up 14 home runs and driving in a career-high 68 RBI in 457 PA. His bat provides much of his upside, and Connolly quoted an anonymous National League scout who believes that the 29-year-old’s defensive profile has fallen short of his potential in recent years.
For better or worse, both the Orioles and Castillo appear far from locking in a deal for 2017. Both the Rays and Braves have expressed interest in the veteran catcher during the past week, while the Orioles are reportedly considering Wieters, Nick Hundley and Chris Iannetta as alternatives behind the plate.
The Phillies reportedly signed veteran outfielder Daniel Nava to a minor league contract, according to Matt Gelb of the Philadelphia Inquirer.
Nava began the season on a one-year contract with the Angels, during which he slashed .235/.309/.303 through 136 PA in the first half of 2016. He was flipped to the Royals in late August for a player to be named later and saw the remainder of his year go down the drain on an .091 average through 12 PA in Anaheim. After getting the boot from the Angels’ 40-man roster in November, the 33-year-old outfielder elected free agency.
Nava is expected to compete for a bench role on the Phillies’ roster in the spring. As it currently stands, the club’s projected 2017 outfield features Howie Kendrick and Odubel Herrera, with precious little depth behind them. Nava’s bat is underwhelming, but at the very least he offers the Phillies a warm body in left field and a potential platoon partner for one of their younger options, a la Tyler Goeddel or Roman Quinn.