Jon Heyman of CBS Sports is reporting that the field of applicants in the running for Bronson Arroyo’s services has been narrowed down to four teams: the Reds and Twins, and two unnamed teams. ESPN’s Buster Olney reported earlier that the Reds will offer Arroyo a one-year deal. As for the Twins, Heyman notes that they’re still talking with Mike Pelfrey as well.
Despite his reputation as a slop-thrower, Arroyo has been quite effective in recent years, posting a sub-4.00 ERA in four of the past five seasons. He turns 37 years old on February 24, so a multi-year deal is a bit of a risk, though to his credit, he has appeared to get better rather than worse with age.
The Phillies and Red Sox appear intent on pursuing free agent first baseman Carlos Santana, MLB Network’s Jon Morosi reports. Santana rejected a one-year, $17.4 million qualifying offer from the Indians on Thursday and is expected to draw widespread interest on the market this winter. The Mets, Mariners, Angels and Indians could make a play for the infielder, though no serious offers have been made this early in the offseason.
Santana, 31, is coming off of a seven-year track with the Indians. He batted .259/.363/.455 with 23 home runs and 3.0 fWAR last season, making 2017 the fourth-most valuable year of his career to date. Although he was primarily stationed at first base over the last year, he could step back into a hybrid first base/DH role with the Red Sox, who are hurting for infield depth with Hanley Ramirez still working his way back from shoulder surgery.
As for Santana’s other suitors, the Mariners are far less likely to pursue a deal after trading for Ryon Healy last Wednesday. Neither the Mets nor the Phillies have a DH spot to offer the veteran infielder, and the Phillies’ Rhys Hoskins appears to be blocking the way at first base. Then again, Santana may not find a more enticing offer outside of Cleveland, where Edwin Encarnacion might otherwise be the club’s best option at first base. During the GM meetings, Indians’ GM Mike Chernoff said he “love to have both [Santana and Jay Bruce] back” in 2018, but hasn’t backed up that love with any contract talks just yet.