Rays sign reliever Michael Kohn to one-year contract

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In the first move of the post-Andrew Friedman Era, the Rays announced this evening that they have signed reliever Michael Kohn to a one-year, major league contract.

Kohn began this season on the Angels’ Opening Day roster, but he ended up making just 25 appearances in the majors. While he had a 3.04 ERA and struck out 26 batters in 23 2/3 innings, he also issued 20 walks. The 28-year-old right-hander opted for free agency after being outrighted off the 40-man roster earlier this month.

Kohn has never shown great control, but he misses bats with his mid-90s fastball and he showed some potential as a late-inning arm in 2013 after coming back from Tommy John surgery. He’s a decent flier for the Rays, whose coaching staff has a history of success stories.

Report: Rangers sign Jeff Mathis to two-year deal

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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.