O's interested in Washburn … sort of … maybe

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The Baltimore Orioles have some interest in Jarrod Washburn. Oh wait, no they don’t. Well, maybe they do. Who knows?

Fox reported the Washburn interest initially, and also mentioned that the team had “discussed” Chien-Ming Wang.

But Peter Schmuck of the Baltimore Sun writes that you can pretty much rule out both pitchers, as the team has not had “recent talks” with the agent for either player. He does mention that Washburn could be a possibility if his price drops, although I suppose if it drops far enough that could be true of any team. I mean, I’d be interested in buying a Ferrari if the price drops, too. Not that I’m comparing Washburn to a Ferrari, mind you (more like a Fiat, I suppose).

Regardless, it doesn’t seem there is much room on the mighty O’s pitching staff after the signing of Mark Hendrickson today. (He’ll be great for the company basketball team, by the way).

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Diamondbacks, T.J. McFarland avoid arbitration

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Bob Nightengale of USA TODAY Sports reports that the Diamondbacks and reliever T.J. McFarland have avoided arbitration, agreeing on a $1.45 million salary for the 2019 season. McFarland, in his third of four years of arbitration eligibility, filed for $1.675 million while the Diamondbacks countered at $1.275 million. McFarland ended up settling for just under the midpoint of those two figures.

McFarland, 29, was terrific out of the bullpen for the D-Backs last season, finishing with a 2.00 ERA and a 42/22 K/BB ratio in 72 innings. While the lefty may not miss a lot of bats, he does induce quite a few grounders. His 67.9 percent ground ball rate last season was the third highest among relievers with at least 50 innings, trailing only Brad Ziegler (71.1%) and Scott Alexander (70.6%).

McFarland was dominant against left-handed hitters, limiting them to a .388 OPS last season, but the D-Backs deployed him nearly twice as often against right-handed hitters, who posted an aggregate .764 OPS against him. It will be interesting to see if the club decides to use him more as a platoon reliever in 2019.