I’m taking the rest of the week off to take my kids to Disney World. There are downsides to this. For example, it means I have to go to Disney World, which really isn’t how I envisioned using the longest bit of vacation I’ve taken all year. But as Bernie said in “Miller’s Crossing,” well, you stick by your family.
The other downside? I was convinced that I was going to miss out on the biggest free agent signing of the year before I return to cover the Winter Meetings: Robinson Cano. From what we’re hearing today, however, that’s one thing I won’t have to worry much about:
Even if Cano’s $300M+ demand was a fantasy and he chopped, say, $75 million off of it, it’s still in A-Rod territory, and the Yankees can’t really be thinking of doing another A-Rod contract.
At this point it seems like Cano has to try to drum up interest from other bidders. Because there’s nothing out there to suggest that the Yankees are all that inclined to make a big move in his direction.
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.