Ryan Dempster mostly struggled after being traded from the Cubs to the Rangers and will be 36 years old in 2013, but apparently that hasn’t stopped him from generating plenty of interest as a free agent.
Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com reports that the Red Sox, Angels, and Brewers are among the teams pursuing Dempster. And not only that, according to Rosenthal the veteran right-hander is seeking a three-year contract.
Dempster has typically been more of a second or third starter than a true No. 1 guy and his velocity is trending in the wrong direction, so to make a three-year commitment that starts at age 36 seems awfully risky without a ton of upside.
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.