Ken Rosenthal says:
Count the Milwaukee Brewers among the teams interested in free-agent right-hander Ryan Dempster, particularly now that the Los Angeles Dodgers are showing greater interest in other pitchers.
If you stop and just let your mind drift for a minute, you can almost picture Ryan Dempster in a Brewers jersey already. Not envisioning a future in which he pitches in Milwaukee, but an actual past — 2001? 2005? — in which he was in the Brewers rotation.
I know he never played for them, but it seems like he should have for some reason. Like, can we just erase those two years he pitched for the Reds — which I bet most of you had totally forgotten about anyway — and just agree that he spent those years with Milwaukee?
There are a lot of players like that, actually. Guys who never pitched for Team A but for whom it takes almost no effort at all to imagine that they did.
The Royals are in agreement with right-handed reliever Drew Storen on a minor league deal, the team announced Friday. Per Jon Heyman of MLB Network, the deal is worth $1.25 million if the veteran righty breaks camp with the club this spring. Additional, albeit unspecified incentives will be included in the contract as well.
Storen, 31, is coming off of a protracted absence from any MLB duties. After inking a one-year deal with the Reds in 2017, he sustained a right elbow sprain toward the end of the year and underwent Tommy John surgery that October. He was effectively decommissioned for the club’s entire 2018 run and generated little interest around the league this winter, perhaps due in part to the uninspired 4.45 ERA, 3.8 BB/9, 7.9 SO/9, and career-low -0.2 fWAR he posted across 54 2/3 innings during his last healthy season.
While it’s not immediately clear what kind of performance the Royals can expect from Storen in spring training, they’re not exactly in a position to be choosy. Their bullpen ranked dead last among all MLB teams with a collective 5.04 ERA, 4.85 FIP, and -2.2 fWAR last year, and still appears to be in a state of flux as they approach Opening Day. Skipper Ned Yost told reporters Wednesday that he intends to eschew the traditional closer appointment in 2019 and will instead utilize a combination of right-handers Wily Peralta and Brad Boxberger, lefty Tim Hill, and various others as he tackles high-leverage situations in the future.