Carlos Marmol

Dodgers acquire Carlos Marmol from Cubs for Matt Guerrier

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In a swap of relievers who were designated for assignment, Bruce Levine of ESPN Chicago reports that the Cubs have traded Carlos Marmol and about $200,000 in international signing bonus money to the Dodgers for Matt Guerrier.

Marmol certainly has a lot more upside than Guerrier, who’s been little more than middle relief-caliber since signing a three-year, $12 million deal with the Dodgers two-and-a-half seasons ago. This year Guerrier had a 4.80 ERA and 21/12 K/BB ratio in 30 innings. Of course, Guerrier is also much less likely to completely implode on the mound, which Marmol has done far too often this season.

On the other hand, even while struggling overall this season Marmol racked up 32 strikeouts in 28 innings, posting a double-digit strikeout rate for the eighth consecutive season, and from 2007-2012 he posted a 2.90 ERA with the majors’ highest strikeout rate and lowest opponents’ batting average. If the Dodgers can get him to go from “worst control of all time” to merely “really, really bad control” he’s still capable of overpowering hitters.

Chicago’s move to unload Marmol comes just minutes after the Cubs traded Scott Feldman to the Orioles for Jake Arrieta, Pedro Strop, and about $400,000 in international bonus money.

Angels sign Kole Calhoun to three-year, $26 million extension

ANAHEIM, CA - SEPTEMBER 26:  Kole Calhoun #56 of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim runs to first base during a game against the Oakland Athletics at Angel Stadium of Anaheim on September 26, 2016 in Anaheim, California.  (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)
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Angels outfielder Kole Calhoun had three more years of arbitration eligibility left, but he and the Angels decided to settle that future business at once on Wednesday, agreeing to a three-year extension worth $26 million, per SB Nation’s Chris Cotillo. The contract also includes a $14 million club option for the 2020 season.

Calhoun, 29, has been a dependable right fielder for the Angels over the last three seasons, batting an aggregate .266/.327/.436 with 61 home runs and 216 RBI in 1,895 plate appearances. According to FanGraphs, Calhoun has been the ninth-most valuable right fielder in baseball since the start of the 2014 season with 11.4 Wins Above Replacement. He ranks slightly behind Giancarlo Stanton (11.9) and just ahead of J.D. Martinez (10.9).

The Angels only have a handful of players signed beyond the 2017 season — just Albert Pujols, Mike Trout, Andrelton Simmons, and Calhoun. The club has options on Ricky Nolasco and Huston Street, while many others will be eligible for arbitration.

Bryce Harper lobbies for Matt Wieters and Greg Holland

WASHINGTON, DC - OCTOBER 13: Bryce Harper #34 of the Washington Nationals reacts after hitting a single in the seventh inning against the Los Angeles Dodgers during game five of the National League Division Series at Nationals Park on October 13, 2016 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)
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Nothing is happening as the baseball world waits four more hours for the Hall of Fame announcement. Question: why do it at 6pm? For MLB Network ratings? Let’s be real, there are “Golden Girls” reruns on third-tier basic cable that are gonna draw a bigger audience. Why not announce it now so people can get on with their lives? Oh well.

As we wait, let’s take a look in at Twitter, where Jim Bowden of ESPN passes along the rumor that the Washington Nationals are still interested in signing Matt Wieters and Greg Holland:

Great to know that the Nats’ baseball operations budget is dictated by its capital expenditures. Maybe they shoulda been smart like the Braves and suckered — er, I mean negotiated the local government to pay more for it? GO BRAVES!

Anyway, Bryce Harper had a response to that:

I take that to mean that he’d take the money used to construct the team store and give to Wieters and Holland. I haven’t seen the budget breakdown for the new spring training facility, but that would probably mean a major pay cut for Wieters and Holland. And where would we buy our “Make Baseball Great Again” caps? Think ahead, Bryce. Play the long game here.