Tigers hurler and winner of the 2013 AL Cy Young award Max Scherzer told MLB Network Radio that he doesn’t want the Tigers to trade him even though he is eligible for free agency after the 2014 season. Via ESPN:
“I don’t want to be traded,” Scherzer said. “I got a great thing going in Detroit, we have a great team. I hope they don’t mess with it. I want to be a Detroit Tiger and hopefully get back to the playoffs and try to do the ultimate goal and win something for the city of Detroit.”
Scherzer also told MLB Network Radio that the two sides haven’t discussed a contract extension. MLB Trade Rumors projects Scherzer to take home $13.6 million in his final year of arbitration eligibility. The 29-year-old right-hander finished the season with a 21-3 record and a 2.90 ERA in 214.1 innings of work. He also compiled a 2.83 ERA in 22.1 innings over three starts and one relief appearance in the playoffs, helping lead the Tigers to the ALCS, where they fell to the Red Sox in six games.
Jim Salisbury of CSN Philly reports that the Phillies are close to signing free agent reliever Joaquin Benoit. An announcement is expected before the winter meetings end on Thursday.
Benoit, 39, has quietly been among the better relievers in baseball over the past seven years. This past season with the Mariners and Blue Jays, the right-hander put up an aggregate 2.81 ERA with a 52/24 K/BB ratio in 48 innings. That included a 0.38 ERA in 23 2/3 innings after the Jays acquired him from the Mariners.
Benoit suffered a torn calf muscle during a benches-clearing brawl with the Yankees near the end of the regular season. He’s expected to be healthy for spring training.
The Phillies have now added three relievers this offseason with Benoit, Pat Neshek, and David Rollins.
ESPN’s Pedro Gomez provides a previously unreported detail of the new collective bargaining agreement, agreed to by the owners and the players’ union last week. Players’ meal money for road games is being reduced from $105 to $30 per day. Teams are providing pre- and post-game meals in the visitors’ clubhouse to offset some of the decrease in meal money.
Gomez quotes an unnamed player who said, “I doubt many guys know about the money going down, nor would they have agreed to it.” All of the players Gomez contacted said they were unaware of and unhappy about the change.
Clubhouse attendants are certainly unhappy about this change, too. As Gomez notes, the attendants previously provided food for visiting teams which earned them tips from the players.
EDIT: It’s worth clarifying that chefs are required in clubhouses now as part of the new CBA, so it’s not a complete loss for the players.