The Red Sox would have to free up payroll to sign Roy Oswalt

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Things that seem strange to me: (1) that no one has yet (that we know of) offered Roy Oswalt a contract; and (2) that, if the Red Sox are going to, they’re going to have to shed payroll first. Rob Bradford of WEEI:

… the Red Sox are taking the same stance with Oswalt as they did with Kuroda — in order to sign the pitcher at his current asking price a corresponding roster move would have to made in order to free up payroll.

He wants a one-year deal and will likely get, what, $8-9 million? I know business is business and the new Collective Bargaining Agreement makes hitting the luxury tax worse than it used to be, but t just seems strange to me to hear about the Red Sox having to do payroll gymnastics.

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.