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Red Sox, Carson Smith avoid arbitration

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Evan Drellich of NBC Sports Boston reports that the Red Sox and reliever Carson Smith have agreed to a $850,000 salary for 2018, avoiding arbitration.

Smith only pitched in eight games in 2017 following recovery from Tommy John surgery he underwent in early 2016. Before going under the knife, Smith was an effective relief pitcher for the Seattle Mariners in 2015, appearing in 70 games. Following that season, the Red Sox traded for him and Roenis Elias in exchange for Jonathan Aro and Wade Miley.

Smith should enter spring training at 100%, ready to serve in seventh or eighth inning role ahead of Craig Kimbrel.

Mets are interested in Rick Porcello

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Jon Heyman reports that the Mets are interested in free agent pitcher Rick Porcello and have been speaking to his agent.

Porcello is coming off a pretty dreadful 2019 season in which he went 14-12 with a 5.52 ERA in 32 starts. That ERA was the worst in the majors among qualified starters. He’s also pretty homer happy. But (a) he’s durable; and (b) a change of scenery and a move to a more pitcher-friendly division and park might do him some good, so it’s not like he’s a bad guy for the Mets to be looking at. He’s only going to be 31 next season and he’s just a year removed from a decent season.

There are far worse bounceback candidates.