Good morning, Athletics Nation!
The MLB offseason has finally roared to life after months of tumbleweeds. The signings and trades were flying in our last Rumblings three days ago, and they’ve continued unabated.
For Oakland A’s fans, the biggest news is that second baseman Kolten Wong is off the board to the Brewers, for around the modest terms he was expected to get at 2yr/$18m. He was at the top of a lot of wish lists on Athletics Nation with his blend of OBP and award-winning middle infield defense. We’d already gotten the message that the A’s weren’t going to spend any money this winter, but seeing Wong officially sign elsewhere at a price Oakland could normally have afforded really drives home the reality of the situation.
In AL West news, the Angels added another veteran starter in Alex Cobb, via trade. They now have a rotation full of names you’ve heard of but who aren’t locks to still be good, so their fortunes could go in any direction. Meanwhile, the A’s signed a reliever ... to a minor league contract.
And finally, a couple familiar names found new homes. From the most recent A’s team, Joakim Soria signed with the D’Backs. From A’s teams past, Sean Doolittle landed with the Reds. And from our old nightmares, Felix Hernandez will try out with the Orioles on a minor league deal, and if he makes the roster then it’ll be only the second team he’s pitched for after 15 seasons with the Mariners (he opted out of 2020 instead of pitching for the Braves).
See the MLB Transactions section below for more details on these and other recent moves around the league.
- AN: A’s sign reliever Deolis Guerra to minor league contract
- AN: Arizona Diamondbacks sign former A’s reliever Joakim Soria
- AN Community Prospect List: A.J. Puk is the top prospect
MLB News & Interest
- Passan: San Francisco Giants outfielder Drew Robinson’s remarkable second act
- Ghiroli and Strang: Five women accuse Mickey Callaway of lewd behavior: ‘He was completely unrelenting’ ($$$)
- AN: MLB 2021 season expected to start on time
- Today in Baseball History
An infield with Chapman, Olson, and Wong would have set defensive-metric records
Free-agent second baseman Kolten Wong in agreement with Brewers on two-year, $18M contract with a third-year club option, pending physical, source tells @TheAthletic.— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) February 3, 2021
Cruz stays with the Twins, for less than Khris Davis makes
DH Nelson Cruz agrees to a one-year, $13 million deal to return to the Twins, per source. @JeffPassan first with the reunion.— Mark Feinsand (@Feinsand) February 3, 2021
Twins also add a new closer, swiping Alex Colome from a division rival (though that same rival upgraded to Liam Hendriks)
Colome gets $5M base salary for 2021. Also has an option for 2022. Guarantee is $6.25M. #MNTwins— Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) February 3, 2021
AL West rival Angels add another starting pitcher
Orioles have made the Alex Cobb trade official. The Angels give up INF Jahmai Jones. The Angels are paying $5M of the $15M left on Cobb’s contract according to a source. Some of that will be deferred money.— Dan Connolly (@danconnolly2016) February 3, 2021
Rays bring back Archer, after sending him away a couple years ago in one of the biggest highway robbery trades in recent memory, at the expense of the Pirates
Right-hander Chris Archer and the Tampa Bay Rays are in agreement on a one-year, $6.5 million deal, pending physical, sources tell ESPN.— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) February 2, 2021
Archer, 32, returns to the organization where he debuted and found his greatest success.
See link in A’s Coverage section above for more details on Soria
The Diamondbacks have agreed to terms with reliever Joakim Soria on a one-year, $3.5M deal. He can earn another $500K in bonuses based on appearances. @Ken_Rosenthal was first on the news.— Nick Piecoro (@nickpiecoro) February 3, 2021
Phillies sign a pitcher
#Phillies have a one-year, $4 million agreement with RHP Chase Anderson. 33-year-old averaged 149 innings per season, 3.93 ERA from 2015-19 for Dbacks, Brewers; 7.22 ERA, but 10.2 strikeouts per nine innings last year for Toronto. @ByRobertMurray first with agreement.— Scott Lauber (@ScottLauber) February 3, 2021
Cubs sign a pitcher
Per source, Chafin will earn $2.25 million in 2021. The mutual option is worth $5.25 million with a $500K buyout. He also has $500K in incentives each season ($125K for 50, 55, 60, 65 games pitched). So the total guarantee is $2.75 million if the option isn't picked up. https://t.co/6g7Yhq2MHp— Mark Feinsand (@Feinsand) February 3, 2021
A reunion with Doo would have been awesome, but note that his velocity was down significantly last year
King Felix might finally pitch for the second team of his MLB career
Sources: Felix Hernandez is signing with Baltimore. Minor league deal.— Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) February 4, 2021
Technically the A’s signed a reliever! See link in A’s Coverage section for more details.
A’s add RHP Deolis Guerra and catchers Kyle McCann and Carlos Pérez to list of non-roster invitees for Spring Training. pic.twitter.com/8Cs0Gr7ALk— Martín Gallegos (@MartinJGallegos) February 2, 2021
Best of Twitter
Semien talks about his experience in free agency
Took a while to find, but here's the actual video of Marcus Semien talking about the A's today. pic.twitter.com/VrhAI3Q2Yv— Casey Pratt (@CaseyPrattABC7) February 3, 2021
... Some quotes about the A’s from Semien’s interview
"...and say 'hey, Marcus would like to play short,' and it didn't work, but that's totally fine. I understand the business, understand where everybody's at after this pandemic. I mean, we're still in it. I understand where these owners are at, what decisions they have...— Alex Coffey (@byalexcoffey) February 2, 2021
This is either really good news, or really ominous news (see link in MLB News section for more details)
Major League Baseball plans to start on time.— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) February 2, 2021
Camps scheduled to open Feb. 17.
Opening Day scheduled for April 1.
Angels release a statement about coach Mickey Callaway
This rotation could be anything from pretty good, to decent, to a trainwreck of injury and underperformance
Joe Maddon has hinted at a six-man rotation this year, so the Angels’ projected starters now with Cobb could look like:— Fabian Ardaya (@FabianArdaya) February 1, 2021
Ohtani (if healthy)
Could still probably use another starter to add depth with Barria, Sandoval, etc.
Farquhar suffered a brain hemorrhage in 2018, and retired from pitching the next year (at age 32)
Cool thing to see: The White Sox have Danny Farquhar as their pitching coach at Class A Winston-Salem this year.— Jared Wyllys (@jwyllys) February 3, 2021
All the best to Phegs, who spent half a decade wearing green and gold
Our dear friend and treasured client, Josh Phegley, has made the decision to retire from the game he loves. Family considerations and business opportunities factored into his decision. We thank you, Phegs, for your loyalty and trust. Love ya, buddy. pic.twitter.com/c0tBxDqssj— Pro Star Management (@prostarmgmt) February 3, 2021