* Kyle Kendrick recently got engaged to former Survivor runner-up Stephenie LaGrossa, which is especially interesting because fellow Phillies starter Cole Hamels is married to former Survivor contestant Heidi Strobel. Somewhere a naked Richard Hatch is studying Philadelphia’s depth chart.
* Drew Storen was the first of this year’s draftees to sign and the No. 10 pick has already been promoted to high Single-A
after racking up an amazing 26 strikeouts versus zero walks in 14.2
innings at low Single-A. I’ll be shocked if the former Stanford closer
isn’t in the majors for good by the middle of next season and he could
see Washington as soon as September.
* While the Brewers were trading for Felipe Lopez, the Twins signed Mark Grudzielanek to a minor-league contract in the hopes that the 39-year-old can provide an upgrade over their ugly second base situation despite last playing in a big-league game nearly 12 months ago.
* Matt Gagne of the New York Daily News wrote a lengthy profile
of Sean Forman, who in addition to being one hell of a nice guy runs
the world’s greatest website (besides this one, of course).
Former Red Sox right-hander Nathan Eovaldi is up for grabs this offseason, and Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe says that as many as nine suitors are interested in bringing the righty aboard. While the Red Sox are eager to retain Eovaldi’s services after his lights-out performance during their recent postseason run, they’ll have to contend with the Brewers, Phillies, Braves, White Sox, Padres, Blue Jays, Giants, and Angels — all of whom are reportedly positioned to offer something for the starter this winter.
It wasn’t all smooth sailing for the 28-year-old in 2018, however. After losing his 2017 season to Tommy John surgery, he underwent an additional procedure to remove loose bodies from his right elbow in March and didn’t make his first appearance until the end of May. He was flipped for lefty reliever Jalen Beeks just prior to the trade deadline and finished his season with a combined 6-7 record in 21 starts, a 3.81 ERA, 1.6 BB/9, and 8.2 SO/9 through 111 innings.
Despite his numerous health issues over the last few years, Eovaldi raised his stock in October after becoming a major contributor during the Red Sox’ championship run. He contributed two quality starts in the ALDS and ALCS and returned in Games 1-3 of the World Series with three lights-out performances in relief — including a six-inning effort in the 18-inning marathon that was Game 3.
A frontrunner has yet to emerge for the righty this offseason, but Cafardo points out that the nine teams listed so far might just be the tip of the iceberg. Still, he won’t be the most sought-after starter on the market, as former Diamondbacks southpaw Patrick Corbin is expected to command an even bigger payday following his career-best 6.0-fWAR performance in 2018.