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Cardinals will pursue Josh Donaldson this offseason

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Bob Nightengale reports that the Cardinals “are expected to strongly pursue” Josh Donaldson this offseason.

Donaldson is not a free agent, of course. He’s still arbitration eligible. The Blue Jays, though, dangled him at the trade deadline and may be willing to shop him again this offseason. Or maybe not: they’re letting Jose Bautista walk, obviously, but there has yet to be any suggestion that they plan to blow things up.

For his part, Donaldson has had another strong season in 2017, batting .272/.389/.564 with 33 homers and 77 RBI. He’s been particularly strong in the second half, hitting 24 of those homers and posting an OPS of 1.009 in 65 games. He missed about a month and a half between mid-April and late May with a strained calf.

Everyone needs a bat — the Cardinals particularly – and if Donaldson is available, he’d be a nice guy to get. I just sorta doubt the Jays will make him available.

Report: Mets sign Brad Brach to one-year, $850,000 contract

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The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal reports that the Mets and free agent reliever Brad Brach have agreed on a one-year deal worth $850,000. The contract includes a player option for the 2021 season with a base salary of $1.25 million and additional performance incentives.

Brach, 33, signed as a free agent with the Cubs this past February. After posting an ugly 6.13 ERA over 39 2/3 innings, the Cubs released him in early August. The Mets picked him up shortly thereafter. Brach’s performance improved, limiting opposing hitters to six runs on 15 hits and three walks with 15 strikeouts in 14 2/3 innings through the end of the season.

While Brach will add some much-needed depth to the Mets’ bullpen, his walk rate has been going in the wrong direction for the last three seasons. It went from eight percent in 2016 to 9.5, 9.7, and 12.8 percent from 2017-19. Needless to say the Mets are hoping that trend starts heading in the other direction next season.