Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News reports that the Rangers have signed free agent third baseman Todd Frazier. MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand adds that Frazier will earn $3.5 million in 2020 and can receive a $1.5 million buyout next year if the Rangers don’t pick up his 2021 club option option, which is worth $5.75 million. All told, it’s $5 million guaranteed.
Frazier, who turns 34 years old next month, spent the last two years with the bets, batting an aggregate .233/.316/.418 with 39 home runs and 126 RBI over 971 trips to the plate. Baseball Reference values him at 4.1 Wins Above Replacement in that span of time.
Frazier will handle third base on a full-time basis for the Rangers. It would seem that this signing would take the Rangers out of the sweepstakes for free agent third baseman Josh Donaldson and Rockies third baseman Nolan Arenado.
The Cincinnati Reds have signed outfielder Nicholas Castellanos to a multi-year deal. That’s the report from C. Trent Rosecrans and Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic. Jon Morosi of MLB.com was the first to report the Reds as frontrunners. The deal is pending a physical. UPDATE: The deal is four years. Financial terms have yet to be reported.
With Castellanos in the fold the Reds are going to have a lot of outfielders when they hit Goodyear, Arizona in a couple of weeks, with newcomer Shogo Akiyama, Jesse Winkler, Nick Senzel, Aristides Aquino, Travis Jankowski, Scott Schebler, and Rule 5 draftee Mark Payton already on the roster. Senzel was an infielder before last year, of course, so he could move back to the dirt, perhaps taking over short from Freddy Galvis, who could be dealt. Alternatively, the Reds could trade from their newfound outfield surplus.
Castellanos, however, will have left field to himself. While he’s shaky at best with the glove, he had a breakout year at the plate in 2019, hitting .289/.337/.525 overall (OPS+ 121), but slugging at a blistering .321/.356/.646 pace (OPS+ 151) after being traded from the Tigers to the Cubs. In Chicago — rescued from cavernous Comerica Park — his big doubles power turned into big homer power.
Now that he’ll be playing in hitter-friendly Great American Ballpark one can only imagine the damage he’d do.