Apparently being released by the Rockies last week won’t be the end of the line for Jamie Moyer, as the Orioles have signed the 49-year-old left-hander to a minor-league contract.
Moyer will report to Triple-A and join the rotation in Norfolk, which has amassed quite an amazing collection of former big leaguers. In addition to Moyer the roster also includes Miguel Tejada, Bill Hall, Joel Pineiro, Nate McLouth, J.C. Romero, Lew Ford, Pat Neshek, a recently demoted Tommy Hunter, and a rehabbing Brian Roberts.
As for Moyer, he seemingly has a decent chance to work his way back to the majors if the Orioles’ need some short-term rotation help in the coming weeks, but the AL East doesn’t figure to be any kinder to his high-70s fastball than Coors Field was and he went 2-5 with a 5.70 ERA in 10 starts for the Rockies.
The White Sox announced that they have signed lefty reliever Aaron Bummer to a five-year extension worth $16 million. The deal also includes two club options that could bring Bummer’s total earnings up to $30.75 million. Both options include buyouts for $1.25 million, meaning Bummer is guaranteed at least $17.25 million. Bob Nightengale notes that this is the largest contract extension for a pre-arb non-closer in history.
Bummer wasn’t scheduled to be arbitration-eligible until next offseason, but the White Sox were clearly impressed enough by Bummer’s breakout 2019 to lock him up with a cost-controlled deal right now. After a relatively nondescript first two seasons in the majors, Bummer emerged as a force in the back end of the Chicago bullpen last year. He worked to a 2.13 ERA over 67.2 innings, bolstered by a ridiculous 72.1% ground ball rate. Only Zack Britton induced more grounders. Bummer also boasted a sub-1 WHIP. Baseball Prospectus’ DRA metric graded Bummer out at a 2.99. He’s for real.
Bummer is just 26, and he’s going to have a talented middle infield tandem of Tim Anderson and Nick Madrigal working behind him for a long time to come. This is a great move by the White Sox, and it’s cool to see a team value a pre-arb reliever with just one career save this highly.
Their bullpen isn’t too sexy besides Bummer, with Alex Colomé and Steve Cishek being the main attractions. This is still an area that GM Rick Hahn will need to build on if the Sox want to be true contenders. Getting Bummer to sign a long-term deal is a great first step.