Looking for some additional rotation depth with Derek Holland sidelined until midseason, the Rangers are in talks with free agent right-hander Tommy Hanson, reports Jon Morosi of FOX Sports.
Hanson was once considered among the best young pitchers in the game, but his career has veered off course since a rotator cuff issue in 2011. Traded from the Braves to the Angels last winter, the 27-year-old right-hander posted a 5.42 ERA and 56/30 K/BB ratio in 73 innings over 13 starts and two relief appearances in 2013. He became a free agent after the Angels non-tendered him in December.
Hanson’s agent, Greg Genske, told Morosi on Thursday that his client has received offers from multiple teams and is “in a great place mentally and physically.” In addition to his struggles on the mound last year, Hanson was mourning the loss of his stepbrother.
Free agent outfielder/slugger J.D. Martinez is reportedly seeking an outfield gig, says Michael Silverman of the Boston Herald. According to Silverman’s sources, Martinez’s suitors have been informed that the veteran slugger would give preference to teams that can offer a corner outfield spot, rather than a DH-only role.
That could spell trouble for the Red Sox, who appear to be Martinez’s biggest suitors so far this offseason. Outfielders Mookie Betts and Andrew Benintendi are firmly established at the corners, and prior reports from club president Dave Dombrowski suggest that center fielder Jackie Bradley Jr. is not going anywhere anytime soon (thereby eliminating the possibility of reshuffling the outfield). The DH spot is still wide open for Martinez, who doesn’t seem to be totally closed off to the idea, but any full-time or part-time role on the field is likely off the table at this point.
Of course, the Red Sox aren’t the only ones pursuing Martinez’s services this winter. The 30-year-old slugger has been linked to both the Diamondbacks and Giants in weeks past, and while they have the roster flexibility to accommodate his preferences, they’ll need to clear another massive hurdle: the seven-year, $250 million contract he’s said to be seeking. Both clubs will need to get creative to make such a deal work. The Diamondbacks are rumored to be shopping right-hander Zack Greinke in an attempt to free up some room on their payroll for Martinez, while the Giants appear more inclined to scour the trade market for outfield help than shell out cash for another hefty contract in free agency.