Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports reports that Marlins reliever Brad Ziegler cleared revocable waivers. However, with the Marlins back in the Wild Card picture, a trade seems “all but out of the question.”
Ziegler, 37, signed a two-year, $16 million contract with the Marlins last December. He’s owed the remainder of his $7 million salary for this season and will earn $9 million next season. The side-winding right-hander is carrying a 4.61 ERA and a 22/14 K/BB ratio in 41 innings.
The Marlins have gone 17-8 in August. As a result, the club enters Monday’s action just 4.5 games behind the Rockies for the second NL Wild Card slot. As Ziegler is signed beyond this season, the Marlins don’t need to rush to trade the veteran reliever.
The Twins have reportedly signed free agent shortstop Erick Aybar to a minor-league deal, LaVelle E. Neal III of the Star Tribune reported Friday. FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman adds that the deal comes with a potential $1.25 million if Aybar reaches the majors, with additional incentives based on plate appearances. He’ll be able to opt out on March 27. The team has yet to confirm the signing.
Aybar, 34, is now four years removed from his career year in 2014. He’s been in a state of steady decline since then, slashing just .234/.300/.348 with seven home runs and 11 stolen bases over 370 plate appearances for the Padres in 2017. His poor performance wasn’t helped by a fractured left foot, either, which cost him almost six weeks on the disabled list.
Still, the Twins see something promising in the veteran infielder, and reportedly intend to use him as another utility option this spring. Per Neal, Aybar will join fellow backup infielders Eduardo Escobar and Ehire Adrianza and may even (temporarily) take over for Miguel Sano at third base if Sano isn’t able to shape up for the role by Opening Day.