Dejan tweets that the physical is done and the ink has been applied to the contract between Church and the Pirates.
The deal is a one-year, $1.5MM agreement with up to $1.32MM in plate appearance-based incentives, with 600 plate appearances meaning he’ll have realized a raise from last year. Given that the Pirates have said that they’re wanting to use him as something of a swingman, I’m seriously doubting he’ll get the plate appearances, however.
Given this signing, Rick Ankiel may have better luck trying to shop himself as a reliever at this point than an outfielder, because he’s running out of potential landing pads.
Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reports that the Angels and reliever Cody Allen are in agreement on a one-year contract, pending a physical. The value of the contract is not yet known.
Allen, 30, was looking for an opportunity to close and the Angels can certainly provide that. He will likely be the favorite to break camp as the closer. 2018 was the roughest year of his career, however, as he finished with a 4.70 ERA, 27 saves, and a 80/33 K/BB ratio in 67 innings. Among Allen’s six full seasons, his 27.7 strikeout rate and 11.4 percent walk rate represented career-worsts. FanGraphs also shows him losing nearly a full MPH on his average fastball velocity.
The Angels lost closer Keynan Middleton to Tommy John surgery early last season and he likely won’t return until the second half of the 2019 season. Blake Parker, who handled save situations in Middleton’s place, was non-tendered by the Angels in November and ended up signing with the Twins. The closer’s role is Allen’s to lose, it seems.