Jarrod Parker may be up in the major leagues next season

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In a chat with fans on MLB.com Thursday, new Diamondbacks GM Kevin Towers indicated that Jarrod Parker has a chance of starting next season with the big club.

More than likely, Jarrod will start the season in Double-A Mobile mainly because of the colder weather at the start of the season in Triple-A Reno. But he may surprise us and start the season in Phoenix if he has a strong Spring Training and appears healthy.

Towers clarified his comments to Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic on Friday.

“Certainly we’re going to be cautious with him,” Towers said, noting that they’ll have to monitor his innings workload. “We’re not going to do anything stupid here, but, to me, I don’t want to have to make that decision until the end of March. I don’t want to be making it in November.”

Parker, who was the No. 9 overall pick in the 2007 First-Year Player Draft, missed the entire 2010 season recovering from Tommy John surgery. He was regarded as one of the top starting pitching prospects in the game prior to the surgery, posting a 3.31 ERA over 44 minor league starts, averaging 8.9 K/9 and 3.0 BB/9.

Towers recently told Tom Krasovic of AOL Fanhouse that the right-hander looks “awesome” and is reaching 95 mph on the radar gun. Parker doesn’t even turn 22 until later this month, so there’s still plenty of reason for optimism here.

AP Source: RHP Eflin agrees to $40 million deal with Rays

Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports
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ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. – Former Philadelphia Phillies pitcher Zach Eflin has agreed to join the Tampa Bay Rays on a three-year, $40 million contract that’s the largest the club has ever awarded in free agency, a person familiar with the deal told The Associated Press.

The person spoke to the AP on the condition of anonymity Thursday night because the agreement was subject to a successful physical and had not been announced.

Eflin, who spent portions of seven seasons with the Phillies, will join a rotation that includes All-Star lefty Shane McClanahan and right-handers Tyler Glasnow and Drew Rasmussen with the Rays, who will pay him $11 million in 2023, $11 million in 2024 and $18 million in 2025.

The 28-year-old right-hander began last season as a starter and later worked out of the bullpen for the NL champions, going 3-5 with a 4.04 ERA in 20 appearances. Overall, he has a 36-45 career record with a 4.49 ERA over 127 games, including 115 starts.

He appeared in 10 games as a reliever during Philadelphia’s postseason run this year, going 0-0 with a 3.38 ERA over 10 2/3 innings.

The $40 million commitment to Eflin is the largest the budget-minded Rays have made to a free agent, surpassing the five-year, $35 million contract pitcher Wilson Alvarez signed in 1998, and the two-year, $30 million deal right-hander Charlie Morton received in 2019.