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Anthony Bass set to make MLB return with Rangers

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Free agent right-handed reliever Anthony Bass is headed back to the majors, according to SB Nation’s Chris Cotillo. Bass reportedly signed a minor league deal with the Rangers on Friday night, though the team has yet to confirm the contract. He was rumored to be in talks with the Orioles and Tigers this offseason, among several other unidentified clubs.

Bass, 29, last set foot on a major league mound in 2015, when he tossed one season out of the Rangers’ bullpen. He signed with the Mariners prior to the 2016 season, but was released in early January to pursue an overseas opportunity with the Hokkaido Nippon Ham Fighters of Nippon Professional Baseball.

During his lone season with the Ham Fighters, Bass took on a dual role in the rotation and bullpen and delivered a 3.65 ERA, 4.1 BB/9 and 6.2 SO/9 over 103 2/3 innings. It’s pretty close to the career line he developed in five years at the major league level: a 4.40 ERA, 3.5 BB/9 and 6.0 SO/9 through multiple stints with the Padres, Astros and Rangers. As he heads back to Texas, Bass could seek another opportunity in the starting rotation, writes MLB.com’s Jason Beck, though he’ll need to get a leg up on right-handed candidates Andrew Cashner, Tyson Ross, A.J. Griffin, Dillon Gee, Tyler Wagner and Nick Martinez first.

Blake Snell becomes client of Boras Corporation

Blake Snell
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Ken Rosenthal and Josh Tolentino of The Athletic report that Rays starter Blake Snell has switched agencies, going from Apex Baseball to Boras Corporation. Snell is currently signed to a five-year, $50 million contract and will be under contract through 2023.

Snell found himself in hot water two weeks ago when he said on his Twitch stream that he wouldn’t risk his life to play baseball during a pandemic while receiving significantly reduced pay. Some described Snell as tone deaf for saying, “I gotta get my money. I’m not playing unless I get mine, okay?”

Boras represents many of baseball’s highest-paid players, including Gerrit Cole and Bryce Harper. Snell is not likely to win over any of the people he recently irritated by appearing to go after more money by hiring the highest-profile agent. What often goes unsaid is that players have a very limited window in which to use their elite athletic skills to make money.

Snell won the 2018 AL Cy Young Award, going 21-5 with a 1.89 ERA and a 221/64 K/BB ratio over 180 2/3 innings. He did not have nearly the same success last year, going 6-8 with a 4.29 ERA and a 147/40 K/BB ratio in 107 innings.