In a column in which he looks at the off-season ahead for the Cardinals, Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that GM John Mozeliak expressed interest in bringing back first baseman Brandon Moss for the 2016 season.
The Cardinals acquired Moss in a trade with the Indians ahead of the July 31 deadline. In 151 plate appearances with the Cardinals, Moss hit .250/.344/.409 with four home runs and eight RBI. He had a hit and an RBI in four post-season trips to the plate as well.
Moss, 32, is entering his fourth and final year of arbitration eligibility after earning $6.5 million in 2015.
Pitcher Mark Buehrle was expected to retire after the season, but that may not be the case as ESPN’s Doug Padilla reports. The lefty is still undecided about continuing his career and said that if and when he does choose to retire, he’ll do so quietly.
“I snuck into this league, and I’m going to sneak out,” Buehrle said. He added that, heading into 2016, he would only be interested in signing a guaranteed contract.
Buehrle, 36, posted a 3.81 ERA with a 91/33 K/BB ratio over 198 2/3 innings for the Blue Jays during the 2015 regular season. He was not included on the Jays’ post-season roster.
Troy Tulowitzki‘s three-run home run gave the Blue Jays all the breathing room they needed to stave off elimination in Game 3 of the ALDS against the Rangers at Globe Life Park on Sunday night. Tulowitzki had drawn a bases-loaded walk to push the Jays’ lead to 2-0 before ripping a Chi Chi Gonzalez offering on a line over the fence in left field in the sixth inning, making it 5-0. He finished 2-for-3 with four RBI on the night.
Blue Jays starter Marco Estrada shut the Rangers out over the first six innings, but ran into a bit of a pickle in the seventh, allowing back-to-back one-out singles to Elvis Andrus and Josh Hamilton before departing. Lefty Aaron Loup relieved him, allowing one of the inherited runners to score on an 6-3 ground out. Mark Lowe got the final out of the seventh, striking out Robinson Chirinos. Estrada ultimately allowed just the one run on five hits and no walks while striking out four in 6 1/3 innings.
Jays reliever Aaron Sanchez got two ground outs and a strikeout in a 1-2-3 eighth inning. Roberto Osuna took the mound in the ninth and retired the Rangers in 1-2-3 order to preserve the 5-1 victory.
Rangers starter Martin Perez was on the hook for four runs in total on six hits and three walks with two strikeouts in five innings of work. Gonzalez was charged with only the one run on Tulowitzki’s homer, tossing 1 2/3 innings. Ross Ohlendorf pitched 1 1/3 scoreless innings following Gonzalez. Shawn Tolleson tossed a scoreless eighth inning.
The ALDS will continue on Monday, with Blue Jays knuckleballer R.A. Dickey opposing Rangers lefty Derek Holland at 4:00 PM EDT. The Blue Jays will once again need to win to stave off elimination. If they do, the series will return to Toronto with a do-or-die game for both teams.
Rangers outfielder Leonys Martin wasn’t included on the club’s post-season roster. Upset about the decision, Martin didn’t show up to the Rangers’ instructional league in Arizona, Gerry Fraley of the Dallas Morning News reports. Martin was supposed to work out with a handful of other players in Surprise, Arizona in case the Rangers needed him during the playoffs.
Martin, 27, has had a forgettable 2015 season. He compiled a paltry .576 OPS in 310 plate appearances, losing his outfield job to Delino DeShields and suffered a fractured hamate bone.
J.A. Happ is a free agent, but the left-hander said he would be open to donning a Pirates uniform again in 2016. “It’s a team I would definitely consider, absolutely,” Happ said, via Rob Biertempfel of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review.
Happ thrived under pitching coach Ray Searage when the Pirates acquired him in a trade with the Mariners at the July 31 deadline. In 11 starts, he posted a 1.85 ERA with a 69/13 K/BB ratio over 63 1/3 innings. Happ has a career 4.13 ERA over parts of nine seasons in the majors.
As Travis Sawchik of the Tribune-Review reported back in August, Searage altered Happ’s delivery which previously had too much rotational movement and caused him to lower his arm slot.