Marlins closer Leo Nunez has been the subject of numerous trade rumors as the team contemplates cashing in a good but not great reliever whose value is inflated by his save total.
If they do end up moving Nunez before the July 31 trade deadline manager Jack McKeon told Clark Spencer of the Miami Herald that Edward Mujica would take over as the new closer.
Mujica, who was acquired from San Diego in November as part of the Cameron Maybin trade, has a 2.85 ERA and 35/5 K/BB ratio in 47 innings for the Marlins after posting a 3.80 ERA and 148/25 K/BB ratio in 163 innings for the Padres.
In three seasons as a closer Nunez has a 3.63 ERA while converting 82 percent of his save chances, which is basically right around the MLB average for ninth-inning save opportunities. Getting a solid prospect or two for him, handing Mujica the gig, and then perhaps dealing Mujica for a solid prospect or two in a couple years would make all kinds of sense for the Marlins.
Create closers out of quality setup man, extract value, repeat.
Phillies starter Jerad Eickhoff hasn’t pitched in the majors yet this season as he suffered a lat injury in mid-March and has been on the disabled list since. He started a rehab stint in the minors last week, making a start for Double-A Reading on May 15 and another start for Triple-A Lehigh Valley on Sunday.
Meghan Montemurro of The Athletic reports that Eickhoff went a twinge in the fingertips of his right index and middle fingers late in Sunday’s outing after throwing a curve and on the subsequent pitch. The Phillies have paused Eickhoff’s rehab as a result and will evaluate him further.
Eickhoff went on the disabled list in late August last year due to nerve irritation in his right hand, so this latest setback could be related to that.
Eickhoff showed promise early in his career, posting a combined 3.44 ERA in 41 starts between 2015-16. He struggled to a 4.71 ERA last year before ending his season early with the nerve issue. Eickhoff was one of the many prospects the Phillies got from the Rangers in the Cole Hamels trade.