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Red Sox trade Sandy León to the Indians

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We just talked about the non-tender deadline and, as part of that, we talked about how teams might trade non-tender candidates before tonight’s deadline in order to make some other team pay him in arbitration. Welp, the Red Sox just did that with catcher Sandy León.

León was dealt to the Indians for righty Adenys Bautista, who played in the rookie-level Dominican Summer League in 2019.

León is a glove first — very glove first — catcher who was projected to make north of $2 million in 2020. While his defense is valuable, he doesn’t have any business as a team’s starting catcher, and the suddenly-frugal Red Sox are looking to cut any payroll they can spare. The thinking here is, obviously, that they can pay some league minimum guy to be Christian Vázquez’s backup, though they’ll likely take a defensive hit to do so.

For Cleveland Léon will backup Roberto Pérez. In their case, he’s more or less the same kind of offensive catcher as their previous backup, Kevin Plawecki.

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.