Lefty Dallas Braden tossed a perfect game against the Rays on Mother’s Day — May 9, 2010. He finished the year with a 3.50 ERA in 192.2 innings, ranking as a solid #3 option in the Athletics’ rotation behind Gio Gonzalez and Trevor Cahill. Following surgery on the anterior capsule in his left shoulder in 2011, and surgery to mend a partial tear of his rotator cuff in 2012, Braden hasn’t tossed a pitch in professional ball since April 16, 2011.
Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle reports that Braden plans to hold a showcase for interested parties in January in the hopes of attempting a comeback. We have seen pitchers come back in strong form even after spending a year or more out of pro baseball. Scott Kazmir bounced back with the Indians last season after a year in the independent league, and Ryan Vogelsong had a rebirth with the Giants after a three-year gap in his professional career.
The Red Sox continue to move on Tuesday. After acquiring Tyler Thornburg and Chris Sale earlier, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports that the Red Sox have now agreed to a one-year deal with 1B/DH Mitch Moreland. The value of the deal is not yet known.
Moreland, 31, had a career year in 2015 but his numbers slipped quite a bit this past season. He finished with a .233/.298/.422 triple-slash line with 22 home runs and 60 RBI in 503 plate appearances.
The Red Sox haven’t confirmed, but it would make sense if Moreland took over at first base and Hanley Ramirez moved to DH.
Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports reports that the Orioles made a four-year contract offer to slugger Mark Trumbo several weeks ago, but it’s now off the table. As a result, Heyman notes that the Orioles have called on Chris Carter, who was recently non-tendered by the Brewers.
Trumbo, 30, is coming off of a terrific offensive season. He led the majors with 47 home runs while knocking in 108 runs and hitting .256/.316/.533. The O’s, however, may balk at Trumbo’s asking price considering he was still only worth 1.6 Wins Above Replacement in 2016, according to Baseball Reference. That’s because his power is really his only above-average attribute and he cuts into his value by playing abysmal defense.
Carter, soon 30 years old himself, is similar to Trumbo in a lot of ways. He hit .222/.321/.499 with 41 home runs and 94 RBI in 644 plate appearances this past season. The O’s may feel they can come close to replacing Trumbo’s bat at a much cheaper price with Carter.