Freddy Sanchez hasn’t played a game in the majors since June 10, 2011. The reason: shoulder and back surgeries, each of which can, independently, drain a big leaguer of any value he once had. But teams are willing, apparently, to at least give him a chance:
Interest in free-agent second baseman Freddy Sanchez has picked up since the start of the New Year, agent Paul Cobbe told ESPN.com’s Jerry Crasnick. About 20 teams have asked to take a look at Sanchez’s medical records, Cobbe said.
If it’s from the agent take it with a grain of salt, but it would not be shocking to see someone take a chance on Sanchez, hoping for a low-risk addition that could, possibly, bring along some offensive upside. Think of it as an Eric Chavez-lite situation.
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.