CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman writes that the Blue Jays have free agent Francisco Rodriguez on their radar, but they are “trying to trade for a closer first.”
Who could the Blue Jays be targeting? There are a couple of notable possibilities out there. Bob Elliott of the Toronto Sun reported during the Winter Meetings that they were interested in Royals closer Greg Holland. Holland’s teammate, Wade Davis, is also believed to be on the block. FOX Sports’ Ken Rosenthal reported earlier this month that the Nationals were shopping set-up man Tyler Clippard. He’d be a pretty nice fit too.
Rodriguez isn’t a bad alternative if they can’t find a match on the trade front. He had a 3.04 ERA with 44 saves and a 73/18 K/BB ratio over 66 innings with the Brewers in 2014. He’ll turn 33 next week.
The Twins have arguably baseball’s scariest offense. Their average of 5.87 runs per game is second only to the Yankees (5.90) while leading the league in slugging percentage (.501), OPS (.840), and home runs (244). White Sox starter Lucas Giolito made their offense look impotent on Wednesday, blanking them over nine innings for his second shutout of the season. The White Sox won 4-0.
Giolito allowed just three hits and walked none while fanning 12 batters over his nine innings of work. He’s now 14-6 with a 3.20 ERA and a 194/51 K/BB ratio in 151 2/3 innings on the season. Giolito is very much in the AL Cy Young Award picture. The Astros’ Justin Verlander leads the league in ERA at 2.81. A strong finish to the season for Giolito could certainly see his ERA dip below 3.00.
As mentioned, Wednesday’s shutout was Giolito’s second of the season. He and the Indians’ Shane Bieber are the only pitchers with multiple shutouts this season. They are two of only 21 pitchers with a shutout.