Reds “in serious talks” to re-sign Jonathan Broxton


Ken Rosenthal of reports that the Reds are “in serious talks” to re-sign free agent reliever Jonathan Broxton and adds that the contract is “expected to be a multi-year deal.”

Broxton was traded from Kansas City to Cincinnati on July 31 and the big right-hander threw 22 innings for the Reds with a 2.82 ERA and 20/3 K/BB ratio.  He hadn’t been nearly that dominant for the Royals, posting a 25/14 K/BB ratio in 36 innings, but still managed a 2.27 ERA in his first taste of the American League.

Re-signing Broxton dramatically increases the odds of Aroldis Chapman being given an opportunity to move from the bullpen to the rotation in 2013, because a few weeks ago Reds general manager Walt Jocketty said the decision “depends on if we re-sign Broxton and [Ryan] Madson.”

Broxton has plenty of closing experience for the Dodgers and Royals, and could step into the ninth-inning role for the Reds while Chapman gives starting full time a try.

Mets pitcher Jason Vargas to have surgery on his non-throwing hand

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Yesterday the Mets announced that lefty Jason Vargas sustained a non-displaced fracture of the hamate bone in his right hand as the result of a comebacker during a spring training start. This morning they announced that Vargas will have surgery, which should cause him to miss the first week or so of the season.

Vargas will have the surgery tomorrow. Given that it’s on his non-throwing hand, he won’t miss much time — just a week or so of action, with another few days to get back up to speed afterward. He actually threw a bullpen session this morning. The issue is that he can’t catch a ball right now.

Vargas, 35, signed a two-year, $16 million pact with the Mets last month. With him missing a couple of starts, the Mets should break camp with both Steven Matz and Zack Wheeler in the rotation. The two had been fighting for the final spot.