The Astros have talked to Sergio Romo and Luke Gregerson

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The Astros had the highest offer out to Andrew Miller before he signed with the Yankees last Friday and they were mentioned as a possibility for David Robertson before he agreed to a deal with the White Sox this week, but they remain determined to land a late-inning bullpen arm.

According to Evan Drellich of the Houston Chronicle, the Astros have talked to free agent relievers Sergio Romo and Luke Gregerson. Both could be options to close with Houston, which could make them a more appealing landing spot.

Romo struggled out of the gate with the Giants this past season before losing his closer job, but he finished the year strong. Gregerson doesn’t have as much closing experience, but he has been one of the game’s premier set-up men since breaking into the majors in 2009 and deserves a shot. Chris Cotillo of MLB Daily Dish reported this morning that Gregerson is likely to get at least a three-year contract.

Giants sign Darin Ruf to minor league contract

Darin Ruf
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The Athletic’s Jayson Stark reports that the Giants have signed 1B/OF Darin Ruf to a minor league contract.

Ruf, 33, played parts of five seasons in the majors with the Phillies from 2012-16, enjoying occasional offensive success. He spent the last three seasons in the KBO League in South Korea with the Samsung Lions, reigniting his career. Ruf hit an aggregate .313/.404/.564 with 86 home runs and 350 RBI over 1,756 plate appearances.

Ruf joins an ever-increasing list of players whose major league careers fizzled out, then found new life overseas — Eric Thames and Miles Mikolas are a couple of examples. Ruf will hope to prove himself as a big leaguer once more in spring training with the Giants.