Latest Hot Stove News: Kendall, Putz and Wang
Jason Kendall has been signed by the Royals to a three year contract for $6 million. Greg Zaun should do most of the catching for the Brewers to replace Kendall.
The White Sox may have made one of the best deals of the offseason by signing J.J. Putz to a one year contract for $3 million. It surprised me that Putz would sign for half of his $6 million contract he earned with the Mets in 2009.
If Putz returns to his 2007 form the White Sox will be getting a bargain. In 2007 Putz was 6-1 with a miniscule 1.38 ERA for the Mariners. He allowed only 37 hits in 71 innings while striking out 82 and walking only 13. He held hitters to a .153 batting average and had an amazing WHIP of 0.70.
76 Saves Over 2006, 2007 Seasons
He had 76 saves combined during the 2006 and 2007 seasons but only had 17 saves combined during the 2008 and 2009 seasons. He has dealt with injuries lately so they probably were a factor in his performance. If he is healthy in 2010 Putz could return to being a lights out closer for White Sox if Bobby Jenks doesn’t return.
Wang Could Be Non-Tendered By Yankees
Chien-Ming Wang could be non-tendered by the Yankees before the deadline to non-tender players tonight. Wang had back to back 19 win seasons in 2006 and 2007 but has a 9-8 record over the last two seasons.
Not Same Pitcher Since Baserunning Injury
Last season he didn’t play after July 4 and posted a 1-6, 9.64 record. It is doubtful that he would sign with a NL team since he was injured while running the bases in 2008 and hasn’t been the same pitcher since. He will have to prove he is healthy before anyone would sign him for the 2010 season.
Atkins Non-Tendered By Rockies
The Rockies have announced that they have non-tendered Garrett Atkins. Two years ago Atkins seemed to be set to be the starting third baseman for the Rockies for the next several years. He had hit 75 homers and driven in 330 runs during the 2006, 2007 and 2008 seasons.
He slumped in 2009 to a nine homers and 48 runs batted in season and lost his job to Ian Stewart and had 257 fewer at bats than in 2008. Atkins is 30 today so is young enough to be worth taking a chance on. He has no speed with eight stolen bases in seven seasons. He would be a good pickup for a team needing a third baseman because 2009 may have only been a blip for Atkins and he is not likely to earn much more than the $7.05 million he earned in 2009 coming off of a bad season.