Hey, a baseball signing on Super Bowl Sunday.
Jon Heyman of CBS Sports reports that the Mets are close to a deal with free agent Brandon Lyon. No word yet on what the terms of the contract might be.
Lyon posted a solid 3.10 ERA and 1.25 WHIP in 67 relief appearances last season between the Astros and Blue Jays, striking out 63 batters in 61 total innings. The 33-year-old owns a 4.12 career ERA.
Lyon will presumably serve in a setup role this summer for New York. He also has experience in the ninth inning, though, and will be capable of providing insurance at closer behind Frank Francisco, who struggled mightily during the 2012 campaign.
Oft-injured pitcher Josh Johnson is retiring from baseball, ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick is reporting.
Johnson, 32, hasn’t pitched in the majors since 2013. The right-hander underwent his third Tommy John surgery in September 2015 but wasn’t able to bounce back.
Johnson spent most of his career with the Marlins, but also pitched for the Blue Jays in the big leagues, as well as the Padres in the minors. He retires with a career 3.40 ERA, 915 strikeouts across 998 innings in the majors, and two All-Star nominations. Johnson led the National League with a 2.30 ERA in 2010, finishing fifth in NL Cy Young Award balloting. One wonders what he could have accomplished if he was able to stay healthy.
The Angels are nearing a multi-year deal with free agent third baseman Luis Valbuena, Jeff Fletcher of the Orange County Register reports. It’s believed to be a two-year contract with a third-year option.
Valbuena, 31, hit .260/.357/.459 with 13 home runs and 40 RBI in 342 plate appearances in 2016. He missed most of the second half with a hamstring injury, for which he underwent surgery in late August.
Valbuena has played a majority of his career at third base, but also has extensive experience at second base and has racked up innings at first base and shortstop as well. He won’t play every day for the Angels, as Yunel Escobar lays claim to third base and C.J. Cron first base, but he will give them flexibility and a left-handed bat off the bench.