Hunter Pence makes Rangers Opening Day roster

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Back in early February the Rangers signed Hunter Pence to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training. Oftentimes when a big name on the back end of his career signs such a deal it, well, doesn’t turn out great and that spring training stint is the swan song of a nice career. That’s not the case with Pence, though. He has made the Rangers’ Opening Day roster.

Pence, 35, is batting .356 in 45 at bats with three homers, seven RBI, five doubles and six stolen bases in six attempts. And I suppose he picked the right team to do his spring thing with, because the Rangers have room for him. The current depth chart doesn’t have a better fourth outfielder option behind Joey Gallo, Nomar Mazara and Delino DeShields.

Whether he sticks on the roster depends on whether this bounce back continues. Last year he played 97 games with the Giants, hitting a mere .226/.358/.332 with four home runs and 24 RBI in 248 plate appearances. Here’s hoping for a better 2019.

Report: Red Sox sign Kenley Jansen to 2-year, $32 million deal

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SAN DIEGO — Veteran closer Kenley Jansen and the Boston Red Sox have agreed to a two-year, $32 million deal, a person familiar with the deal told The Associated Press.

The person spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity because the agreement was pending a physical.

The 35-year-old Jansen went 5-2 with a 3.38 ERA in 64 innings for Atlanta this year. The three-time All-Star led the National League with 41 saves, helping the Braves win the NL East title.

Boston is looking to bounce back after it finished last in the AL East this season with a 78-84 record. The Red Sox went 92-70 in 2021 and lost to Houston in the AL Championship Series.

Jansen spent his first 12 seasons with the Los Angeles Dodgers, winning a World Series title in 2020. The right-hander signed a $16 million, one-year contract with Atlanta in March.

Jansen has a 2.46 career ERA. He was an All-Star in 2016-2018.

His 391 career saves are the second-most among active players (behind Craig Kimbrel‘s 394) and eighth all time.