Mariners acquire reliever Joaquin Benoit from Padres

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New general manager Jerry Dipoto continues to work quickly to make changes to Seattle’s roster, with Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com reporting that the Mariners have acquired right-hander Joaquin Benoit from the Padres.

San Diego picked up its $7.5 million option on Benoit for 2016, knowing he could fetch something in return, and the Padres will get a pair of low minor leaguers (right-hander Enyel De Los Santos and infielder Nelson Ward) back in this deal.

Benoit is 38 years old and his raw stuff has declined somewhat in recent years, but he logged 65 innings with a 2.34 ERA and 63/23 K/BB ratio this past season and has a combined 2.35 ERA in 379 innings since 2010. He’s a big upgrade to Seattle’s late-inning bullpen situation and doesn’t require a multi-year commitment or parting with top prospects.

Michael Kopech has opted out of the 2020 season

Kopech has opted out
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Michael Kopech has opted out of the 2020 season. The White Sox starter informed the team of his decision today, and the team issued a press release to that affect a few minutes ago.

The statement from general manager Rick Hahn. said “we recognize that reaching this decision is incredibly difficult for any competitive athlete, and our organization is understanding and supportive. We will work with Michael to assure his development continues throughout 2020, and we look forward to welcoming him back into our clubhouse for the 2021 season.”

Kopech, 24, has only four big league starts under his belt, all coming in late August and early September of 2018, but after a strong spring training he was likely to make Chicago’s rotation at some point in the 2020 season after sitting out all of 2019 following Tommy John surgery. Kopech was among the players sent to Chicago from the Red Sox in the Chris Sale trade back in December 2016. Others involved in the deal included Yoán Moncada, Victor Diaz, and Luis Alexander Basabe.

Now, however, Kopech has opted out.