UPDATE: Jays not near deal with catcher A.J. Pierzynski

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From Joe Cowley of the Chicago Sun-Times comes word that the Blue Jays are close to an agreement with free agent catcher A.J. Pierzynski.

Cowley buried the news in a story about the White Sox signing Adam Dunn, so it’s possible that he doesn’t fully trust the source that passed along the information.  But a marriage between Pierzynski and the Jays would make some sense.

The 33-year-old still has a decent bat and could step in as a full-time catcher if projected Jays starter J.P Arencibia falls flat.

Pierzynski posted a .270/.300/.388 batting line in 2010 for the White Sox with nine home runs and 56 RBI over 474 at-bats.  Chicago is likely to go with Ramon Castro and Tyler Flowers at catcher next season, or they could try to land free agent backstop Miguel Olivo.

UPDATE: Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com says that the rumor is false.  Pierzynski is not close to a deal with the Blue Jays and the White Sox are still hoping to re-sign him.

Kyle Gibson, Orioles finalize $10M, 1-year contract

Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports
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SAN DIEGO – Right-hander Kyle Gibson and the Baltimore Orioles finalized a $10 million, one-year contract on Monday.

The 35-year-old would receive a $150,000 assignment bonus if traded, payable by the receiving team. He also can earn a $25,000 bonus if he is elected or selected for the All-Star team. Gibson was an All-Star in 2021.

Gibson was 10-8 with a 5.05 ERA in 31 starts for Philadelphia last season. He also pitched 2 1/3 scoreless innings in two relief appearances in the postseason for the NL champions.

Baltimore gained another experienced arm as it looks to build on its surprising season. After losing 110 games the previous year, the Orioles contended for an AL wild card for much of the summer before finishing 83-79 for the franchise’s first winning record since 2016.

Gibson was an AL All-Star in 2021, going 6-3 with a 2.87 ERA in 19 starts for Texas. He was traded to Philadelphia that July, and he went 4-6 with a 5.09 ERA in 12 appearances for the Phillies down the stretch.

The 6-foot-6 Gibson was selected by Minnesota in the first round of the 2009 amateur draft. He made his big league debut with the Twins in 2013.

He spent his first first seven seasons with Minnesota, going 67-68 with a 4.52 ERA in 193 games, including 188 starts. He had his best year in 2018, finishing with a career-low 3.62 ERA in a career-best 196 2/3 innings.

Gibson, who signed a $28 million, three-year contract with Texas in December 2019, is 89-91 with a 4.52 ERA in 267 major league games.