Yesterday I said I’d be utterly shocked if David Ortiz wasn’t back with the Red Sox in 2013. I still will be, but Ken Rosenthal reports that there is at least some competition for Big Papi’s services:
The Boston Red Sox are not alone in their pursuit of designated hitter David Ortiz. The Texas Rangers also have expressed serious interest in Ortiz, major-league sources say, envisioning him as a left-handed hitting replacement for their own free agent, Josh Hamilton.
I find that more interesting for what it means for the Rangers — that they are possibly looking to add a big bat — than what it means for Ortiz and the Red Sox.
And I’m sure some people would be more concerned about what it means for Michael Young’s playing time. Not reasonable people, of course. Reasonable people would be quite happy about that.
The Braves have signed reliever Blaine Boyer to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training, MLB.com’s Mark Bowman reports. Bowman adds that the right-hander has a “good chance” to make the Braves’ bullpen out of spring training.
Boyer, 35, spent the past season with the Brewers, finishing with a 3.95 ERA and a 26/17 K/BB ratio in 66 innings.
Boyer, of course, started his professional baseball career with the Braves as they selected him in the third round of the 2000 draft. Since the Braves traded him in 2009, Boyer has pitched for the Cardinals, Diamondbacks, Mets, Padres, and Twins along with the Brewers.
Update (6:48 PM EST): Topkin reports the contract will be of the major league variety.
Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports that the Rays and free agent reliever Shawn Tolleson are close to finalizing a contract.
Tolleson, who turns 29 years old on Thursday, had an ugly 2016 season, finishing with a 7.68 ERA and a 29/10 K/BB ratio in 36 1/3 innings. He was one of the Rangers’ best relievers in the two seasons prior to that, however, which included saving 35 games in 2015.