Tigers ink Joba
The Detroit Tigers have made a somewhat risky addition to their revamped bullpen, signing Joba Chamberlain to a one-year contract, reports Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports. He will make a base salary of $2.5 million but can earn more in performance bonuses, per Buster Olney of ESPN.
While a $2.5 million contract isn't typically chump change for a reliever, in this crazy market it's actually the fourth smallest big-league deal handed out to a bullpen arm so far.
Chamberlain, 28, has not been healthy for an entire season since 2010, when he made 73 appearances out of the Yankees' bullpen and posted a BABIP-inflated 4.40 ERA. The right-hander has been limited to just 94 appearances in the three seasons since then because of elbow, ankle and oblique injuries, topping out at 42 innings in 2013.
The Nebraska native owns a 4.14 ERA, 1.4 HR/9 and 8.3 K/9 in 91⅓ innings since the injury bug took hold, and hasn't been able to keep his WHIP under 1.500 the last two years. With Joe Nathan now locked in at closer and a full season of Bruce Rondon on the way, Chamberlain should have the chance to re-establish himself in low-leverage situations, which may or may not help him regain the form that made him so hyped when he first came up.
D'Backs re-sign Hudson
The Arizona Diamondbacks have re-signed right-hander Daniel Hudson to a minor-league contract, reports Jerry Crasnick of ESPN. The specific terms of the deal are unknown, but presumably it includes an invite to camp next spring.
Hudson, 26, has been on the shelf since July 2012 recovering from two separate Tommy John surgeries. He was a great asset for the D'Backs in the short time he was healthy -- posting a 3.01 ERA over 44 starts in '10-'11 -- but would have cost Arizona too much money in arbitration this winter given his current state, so the team opted to non-tender him and re-sign him to a much cheaper pact instead.
Hudson is still young enough that a return to form seems more likely than not, so barring any further setbacks he should help bring some nice depth to the rotation in the wake of Tyler Skaggs moving to Anaheim in the Mark Trumbo deal.
Phillies add Hernandez
The Philadelphia Phillies have signed veteran right-hander Roberto Hernandez to a one-year deal, reports Jim Salisbury of CSN Philly. He will make a base salary of $4.5 million but can earn up to $1.5 million more in incentives, per Tim Dierkes of MLBTR.
Hernandez, formerly known as Fausto Carmona, was a reclamation project of sorts for the Rays last season as well, but he didn't pan out there. The 33-year-old amassed a 4.98 ERA and allowed 23 home runs in 24 starts for Tampa Bay in 2013, resulting in his relegation to the bullpen at the end of the season.
The Rays had likely hoped that Hernandez nee Carmona would be able to regain some of the magic that helped make him a Cy Young candidate in 2007 and an all-star in 2010, but it just didn't happen. Outside of those two very successful years, Hernandez has been a largely subpar starter, so if the Phillies are also banking on a rebound the odds don't seem to be in their favor.