Free agent right-hander Anthony Bass is reportedly looking for a major league deal in 2017, and MLB.com’s Jason Beck reports that the 29-year-old is already in talks with “five or six teams.” While no offers appear to be on the table just yet, Bass has been linked to both the Tigers and Rangers, the latter of whom was the last organization to give the righty a big league platform.
Bass last appeared in the majors during the 2015 season, pitching to a 4.50 ERA, 2.8 BB/9 and 6.3 SO/9 rate in 64 innings with the Rangers. He was traded to the Mariners in a five-player swap during the offseason, then released by Seattle in January so he could pursue an opportunity with the Hokkaido Nippon Ham Fighters of NPB. During the Fighters’ 2016 campaign, he worked out of the rotation and bullpen, racking up a 3.65 ERA, 4.1 BB/9 and 6.2 SO/9 in 23 relief appearances and 14 starts.
In November, Bass announced his intention to return stateside for the 2017 season via Twitter:
According to Beck, Bass’ first preference is to work out of the rotation, despite having only 18 major league starts under his belt since 2011, but Beck notes that the right-hander is willing to consider a bullpen role if need be.
Jon Morosi of MLB Network said yesterday that the Detroit Tigers and Chicago Cubs have been engaged in trade talks involving starting pitcher Justin Verlander and catcher Alex Avila. Morosi also noted that the Los Angeles Dodgers have shown interest in Verlander as well. Whether this is idyl chitchatting of serious dispute is unclear, of course. Everything is unclear in the leadup to the deadline.
The veteran right-hander is carrying a 4.50 with a 120/57 K/BB ratio over 124 innings. Verlander impressed last year, finishing second in AL Cy Young Award balloting, but he has fallen back to Earth in 2017. His velocity remains high, however, and it’s not hard to imagine him going on a solid run in a way that could help a contender. He is owed $56 million over the next two seasons, however, and has a $22 million option that could vest for 2020, so negotiations for him could be tough. If the Tigers want talent back, they’ll have to eat salary.
Verlander got an ovation from a Detroit crowd last night which seemed to sense that, yes, it’s possible he pitched his last game for the Tigers. Given that he has 10/5 rights, allowing him to veto any trade, that decision is ultimately up to him. It’s not hard to imagine him accepting a trade to a contender, however.
We wait see.
The Dodgers beat the Twins last night thanks to a Cody Bellinger three-run homer. But Bellinger was not the only Dodgers rookie who had a notable game. A far more unconventional one is worth mentioning as well.
That rookie is reliever Edward Paredes, who made his big league debut last night. What makes him unconventional: he’s 30. Turns 31 in September, actually. Paredes pitched professionally for 12 years before making it to The Show. Most of that time was in the affiliated minors in the Mariners, Indians, Angels and Dodgers organizations. He spent time in the independent Atlantic League in 2013-15 as well.
Paredes did not do anything heroic last night. It was more of a right place/right time kind of appearance, retiring the side in order with a fly out, line out and a ground out and remaining the pitcher of record while Bellinger hit that three-run homer. That’s enough for a W, though. A W that Paredes waited a lot longer for than most pitchers who notch one in the bigs.