Major League Baseball’s offseason continues on Thursday, with just a few weeks to go until pitchers and catchers report for duty in Florida and Arizona. Teams and players will have to work fast between now and then, with four of our top 10 free agents remaining unsigned. With that in mind, here are Thursday’s rumors, news, and notes.
Mets, others have interest in Germán
Domingo Germán, formerly of the Yankees, is in talks with six teams, according to the New York Post. That group includes the Blue Jays, Orioles, and Mets — though the Mets are described as the “least favorites.”
Germán, 31, has compiled a 97 ERA+ and a 3.37 strikeout-to-walk ratio in 112 career appearances. He threw the 24th perfect game in MLB history against the Oakland A’s on June 28 last year. His season ended prematurely last August, with a clubhouse confrontation resulting in him seeking treatment for alcohol abuse.
In the past, Germán was suspended for 81 games for violating MLB‘s domestic violence policy.
D-backs talking with Pederson
The Diamondbacks‘ desire to add a new DH has led them to having interest in Joc Pederson, according to ESPN’s Buster Olney. Pederson, 31, certainly has ample experience within the NL West, having spent parts of nine seasons with the Dodgers and (most recently) the Giants. Last season, he hit .235/.348/.416 (111 OPS+) with 15 home runs and 51 RBI.
Pederson, the youngest member of the DH quartet, wasn’t able to replicate the top-line success he had in 2022. Even so, there was a lot to like about his performance. He continued to blister the ball, ranking in the top 8% of the league in both average and maximum exit velocity. He walked more than he had since his earliest seasons, and he did that while reducing his strikeout rate. Pederson isn’t someone who should be allowed to play defense or take important at-bats versus left-handed pitchers, but he could bat 15-20% above the league-average mark next year, and that’s worth something.
Angels have interest in Votto
Jon Heyman of the New York Post said on Wednesday that the Angels are one of the teams with interest in veteran first baseman/DH Joey Votto. The Angels, who have Nolan Schanuel to man first base, have an obvious hole at DH after losing Shohei Ohtani to free agency.
Votto, 40, hit .204/.317/.394 (93 OPS+) across 618 plate appearances the last two seasons. It does not appear that the Reds have interest in bringing him back into the fold, meaning that he’ll need to suit up for another organization for the first time in his career if he’s to continue to play.
Rangers interested in Robertson
Robertson heads to his age-39 year after a tale of two seasons. In 40 appearances with the Mets, he had a 2.05 ERA and 1.00 WHIP with 48 strikeouts in 44 innings. He was then traded at the deadline to the Marlins, where he posted a 5.06 ERA and 1.59 WHIP in 21 1/3 innings. He blew just three of his 17 save chances with the Mets but then blew three of seven chances for the Marlins.
The defending champion Rangers have José Leclerc coming back as closer along with Josh Sborz as a setup man. They’ve already signed Kirby Yates as a free agent. It’s possible Robertson would pitch his way into being the primary setup man for Leclerc, should he sign there.
Orioles looking at Lorenzen
The Orioles are on the lookout for starting pitching and while they could add via trade with all their prospect depth, they’ve shown interest in free agent Michael Lorenzen, according to Jon Morosi of MLB.com.
The 32-year-old Lorezen was a reliever for most of his career until he became a full-time starter with the Angels in 2022 (yes, he briefly worked out as an outfielder). Last season, he was an All-Star for the Tigers before being traded to the Phillies. Shortly thereafter, he threw a no-hitter, but ultimately performed poorly down the stretch and wasn’t even a consideration for the playoff rotation. In 153 innings last season, he was 9-9 with a 4.18 ERA (105 ERA+), 1.21 WHIP and 111 strikeouts.
Brewers add Arroyo
Arroyo, 28, spent parts of the last four seasons with the Red Sox. Overall, he amassed a 93 OPS+ and a .264/.306/.411 slash line. His contributions were worth an estimated 2.2 Wins Above Replacement, per Baseball-Reference.
Arroyo figures to compete with Owen Miller for a spot on the Brewers bench.