Beleaguered free agent Joba Chamberlain is drawing interest from the Cubs and Royals, tweets Mark Feinsand of the New York Daily News. Chamberlain, 28, has been ravaged by injuries over the last three seasons. In June 2011, Chamberlain was knocked out for the rest of the season with an elbow injury, eventually undergoing Tommy John surgery. In March 2012, Chamberlain gruesomely dislocated his right ankle while playing on a trampoline with his son. He was already on the mend from the TJ surgery and did not return until August. This past season, he suffered an oblique strain which knocked him out for 27 games.
After Chamberlain was moved out of the starting rotation into the bullpen following the 2009 season, he showed promise when healthy, averaging about 3.5 strikeouts for every one walk thanks to a mid-90’s fastball and a mid-80’s slider. He’s an obvious bounce-back candidate, but he also comes with an injury risk that cannot be ignored.
Free agent first baseman Matt Adams has signed a one-year, $3 million pact with the Nationals, the Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal reports. The contract comes with a $1 million buyout on a 2020 option, bringing the total value to $4 million. Official confirmation is still pending completion of a physical.
The 30-year-old infielder will return to familiar turf in Washington after spending the first half of the 2018 season there. He was dealt to the Cardinals in late August for cash considerations and finished the season batting a collective .239/.309/.477 with a career-high 21 home runs, .786 OPS and 0.8 fWAR through 337 plate appearances for the two National League clubs.
Despite his impressive display of power, Adams experienced a significant decline at the plate over the second half of the season, batting well under the Mendoza Line as the Cardinals pushed for a postseason berth against the division-winning Brewers and Wild Card-contending Cubs. Still, he saw enough early success in Washington to merit a second look and should provide a sturdy backup to Ryan Zimmerman at first base in 2019.