Free agent right-hander Jumbo Diaz has signed a minor league contract with the Marlins, per a report from SB Nation’s Chris Cotillo. Diaz elected free agency from the Astros last November and had yet to find a landing place for the 2018 season. The club has not officially confirmed the signing.
Diaz, 33, was claimed off waivers by the Rays last March. He went 1-4 in 31 relief appearances and turned in a career-worst 5.70 ERA, 4.5 BB/9 and 8.4 SO/9 in 30 innings. In July, the righty signed a minor league deal with the Astros and found considerably more success with the club’s Triple-A affiliate, producing a 2.92 ERA, 3.6 BB/9 and 8.0 SO/9 in 12 1/3 innings.
The deal presumably comes with an invitation to major league spring training, where Diaz will compete for a bullpen spot among the likes of fellow right-handers Kyle Barraclough, Junichi Tazawa, Drew Steckenrider, Nick Wittgren and Brian Ellington. According to MLB.com’s Joe Frisaro, the Marlins are considering an eight-man bullpen again in 2018 as they look to bolster a questionable rotation. They ranked 23rd among all major league bullpens in 2017 with a collective 4.40 ERA and 2.0 fWAR.
The Royals have acquired outfielder Brian Goodwin from the Nationals, the teams announced Sunday. The Nationals received minor league right-handed reliever Jacob Condra-Bogan in the deal.
Goodwin, 27, was working through his third campaign with the Nationals in 2018. He saw limited playing time in the outfield (mostly due to the trifecta of talent the club already had in Bryce Harper, Adam Eaton, and Juan Soto), and finished the first half of the season with a .200/.321/.354 batting line, three home runs, three stolen bases and a .674 OPS in just 79 plate appearances. The Royals, who appear thin on compelling center field options at the moment, are expected to utilize him on a more frequent basis once he’s added to the active roster.
The 23-year-old Condra-Bogan has yet to break into the majors with any team so far. He got his start in pro ball in 2017 with the independent Washington WildThings of the Frontier League and issued three runs, three walks and 15 strikeouts over 15 1/3 innings before signing on with the Royals as a free agent. This season, he pitched to an impressive 2.08 ERA, 0.7 BB/9 and 13.5 SO/9 through 26 innings in Single-A Lexington before getting transferred to High-A Wilmington for a single appearance. The Nationals have not announced where he’ll be assigned for the remainder of 2018.