Mark Prior’s latest comeback attempt will be with the Reds, as John Fay of the Cincinnati Enquirer reports that the oft-injured right-hander is in camp today after inking a minor-league deal.
That means Prior is reunited with Dusty Baker, who managed the Cubs back when Prior was looking like a future Hall of Famer and allowed him to rack up huge pitch counts that would be pretty shocking by current standards for young arms.
“He called me and asked for a chance,” Baker told Fay. “I talked to [general manager] Walt [Jocketty]. He says he feels good. He feels like he has some unfinished business. This is gives him one more chance or a chance at closure.”
Prior is 32 years old now and hasn’t pitched in the majors since 2006. He spent last season at Triple-A in the Red Sox’s organization, throwing 25 innings with a 3.96 ERA and 38/25 K/BB ratio as a full-time reliever.
Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports that the Rangers have signed outfielder Carlos Gomez to a one-year deal. Joel Sherman of the New York Post reports that Gomez will earn $11.5 million next season.
Gomez, 31, struggled with the Astros to a .594 OPS before the club released him in mid-August. The Rangers signed him shortly thereafter and were immediately rewarded. Gomez hit .284/.362/.543 with eight home runs and 24 RBI in 130 plate appearances through the end of the regular season.
As presently constructed, Gomez would likely take over in center field with Nomar Mazara handling left and Shin-Soo Choo in right.
Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports reports that the Diamondbacks are close to signing free agent reliever Fernando Rodney.
Rodney, 39, has been inconsistent over the past two seasons. This past season, he was lights-out with the Padres, posting a 0.31 ERA in 28 appearances. After the Marlins acquired him at the end of June, he struggled to a 5.89 ERA in 39 appearances.
Brad Ziegler, who closed for the Diamondbacks in the first half last season, went to the Red Sox in a midseason trade and is now a free agent. The Diamondbacks had six other relievers register a save, but only Daniel Hudson and Jake Barrett recorded more than one. Adding Rodney will give the club some stability in the ninth inning.