Jon Rauch has opted out of his minor-league contract with the Orioles, who released the veteran reliever.
Rauch spent a month pitching at Triple-A for the Orioles, throwing 9.1 innings with a 2.89 ERA and 10/4 K/BB ratio, but they apparently weren’t impressed enough to give him a middle relief gig and the 6-foot-10 right-hander didn’t feel like sticking around in Norfolk any longer.
Rauch was previously released by the Marlins after allowing 14 runs in 16.2 innings to begin the season and at age 34 may be nearing the end of the line following a decade-long run of consistently solid relief work.
The Rangers have signed catcher Jeff Mathis to a two-year contract, per Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic. The deal is pending a physical.
Mathis turns 36 years old at the end of March and has a career .564 OPS across 14 seasons, but he is well-regarded for his defense and ability to handle a pitching staff.
The arrival of Mathis could mean the Rangers are moving on from Robinson Chirinos behind the plate, as he is now a free agent. The Rangers could go after another catcher to complement Mathis or just have Isiah Kiner-Falefa back up Mathis. Though Kiner-Falefa mostly played elsewhere, including three spots across the infield, he did rack up over 300 defensive innings behind the plate in 2018.