After spending 14 seasons in the majors, including last season with the Red Sox, right-hander Vicente Padilla is headed to Japan.
Jesse Sanchez of MLB.com reports that Padilla has agreed to a one-year, $3.25 million deal with the Softbank Hawks.
Padilla pitched pretty well for the Red Sox last season, throwing 50 innings with a 51/15 K/BB ratio and 4.50 ERA while working as a full-time reliever for the first time since 2001. That performance certainly seems good enough to get him some one-year offers from MLB teams, but $3.25 million is basically as much as Padilla earned during the past two seasons combined and at age 35 that’s a pretty nice score.
If he’s done in the majors Padilla finishes his career with a 108-91 record and 4.32 ERA in 1,571 innings for the Diamondbacks, Phillies, Rangers, Dodgers, and Red Sox.
Jon Heyman reports that the Nationals are closing in on a deal with catcher Matt Wieters. Joel Sherman of the New York Post reports that it’s a two-year deal. UPDATE: Ken Rosenthal reports that the deal is for two years, at $21 million. There is an opt-out for him after year one. He will get $10 million in 2017 and, if he returns in 2018, he’ll get $11 million.
Wieters was not expected to go this long without signing, but his market, which many thought would be robust, never materialized. The Nats had been rumored to be interested for months, but they were apparently waiting to swoop in late and get what one presumes will be a bargain.
Wieters, 30, finished last season hitting .243/.302/.409 with 17 home runs and 66 RBI in 464 plate appearances. The Nationals currently have Derek Norris and Jose Lobaton, so who falls where in the catcher fight in Washington is unclear, but one presumes that Wieters getting a two-year deal puts him at the top of the depth chart.
Ken Rosenthal has an interesting story up about Sergio Romo as he begins spring training with his new team, the Los Angeles Dodgers.
There is some fun stuff about his family, all Dodgers fans from southern California, but the more notable stuff is about Romo himself, who has dealt with a lot more than has been reported over the past couple of seasons. The loss of three of his four grandparents is a big one, as it has thrust the mantle of head of the family on Romo in ways that he was not fully prepared for. There are also allusions to personal and psychological problems Romo has experienced — there is a vague suggestion of alcohol or maybe just late nights out and perhaps depression, but he is not specific about it — which he worked on with the help of friends and teammates on the Giants and which he now has overcome.
There’s always more going on the lives of baseball players than we as fans know.