According to Bill Ladson of MLB.com the Rangers “have inquired about” Nationals right-hander Todd Coffey as they search for bullpen help with Darren O’Day possibly out for the season and Alexi Ogando all but locked into the rotation.
Coffey was a nice low-cost pickup for the Nationals, signing a one-year, $1.35 million deal after the Brewers let him go despite posting a 3.52 ERA and 128/46 K/BB ratio in 153 innings during the past three seasons.
Coffey has been even more effective early on this year, throwing 19 innings with a 1.89 ERA and 19/6 K/BB ratio, and if the last-place Nationals can turn a $1.35 million investment in a 30-year-old reliever into a decent prospect they should jump at the chance.
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.