Blue Jays “putting together package of young players” for Cubs starter Jeff Samardzjia

25 Comments

Some potentially interesting Sunday morning hot stove tweets …

The Cubs have discussed a long-term contract with Samardzjia, but coming to an agreement could be tough after a few up-and-down seasons. The 28-year-old former Notre Dame wideout had a 3.81 ERA, 1.22 WHIP and 180/56 K/BB ratio in 174 2/3 innings with Chicago in 2012. He then posted a 4.34 ERA, 1.35 WHIP and 214/78 K/BB ratio across 213 2/3 frames in 2013. Samardzija is arbitration-eligible for the second this winter and will be arbitration-eligible for the third and final time next winter. He can then become a free agent.

Toronto registered a brutal 4.25 staff ERA in 2013, which ranked 25th in the major leagues.

Report: Rangers sign Jeff Mathis to two-year deal

Denis Poroy/Getty Images
1 Comment

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.