Hot Stove roundup: Nats, A's land pitchers in trades
Free-agency pool grows with deadline passing for offers to arbitration-eligible players
The Nationals, looking to bounce back from last season's disappointing finish, had been quiet this offseason -- until Monday. That's when general manager Mike Rizzo announced his entry into the Hot Stove conversation by pulling off a big trade with the Tigers.
Rizzo bolstered his rotation and replaced Dan Haren by acquiring another veteran right-hander, Doug Fister, in exchange for reserve infielder Steve Lombardozzi and young left-handers Ian Krol and Robbie Ray.
The A's were active on both the free-agent and trade fronts. GM Billy Beane brought aboard closer Jim Johnson, sending second baseman Jemile Weeks and a player to be named later to the Orioles. Earlier in the day, Oakland added to its rotation by agreeing to a two-year deal with left-hander Scott Kazmir, who resurrected his career with the Indians last season.
Monday was the last day for teams to tender contracts to their arbitration-eligible players, with the deadline at 11:59 p.m. ET. Any non-tendered player becomes a free agent.
Among the players cut loose were pitchers John Axford of the Cardinals, Andrew Bailey of the Red Sox, Daniel Hudson of the D-backs, Jerome Williams and Tommy Hanson of the Angels, Jeremy Hefner of the Mets and Mitchell Boggs of the Rockies; catcher J.P. Arencibia of the Blue Jays; infielders Mat Gamel of the Cubs, Justin Turner of the Mets, Elliot Johnson and Paul Janish of the Braves, Jayson Nix of the Yankees and Chris Getz of the Royals; and outfielders Sam Fuld of the Rays and Ryan Kalish of the Red Sox.
In other news from around the league:
• The Blue Jays found a new starting catcher, agreeing to a two-year contract with free agent Dioner Navarro, who is coming off a strong offensive year with the Cubs.
• Speaking of catchers, the Pirates swapped backups for starter Russell Martin, acquiring defensive specialist Chris Stewart from the Yankees and designating Michael McKenry for assignment.
• The Yankees, meanwhile, announced the signing of slick-fielding shortstop Brendan Ryan to a two-year deal.
• The Yankees also made a one-year offer to right-hander Hiroki Kuroda, according to ESPN New York. Kuroda is deciding between retirement or playing another season in the Majors or in his native Japan.
• Free-agent outfielder Curtis Granderson could be an option for the Mets.
• Sources told the Boston Globe's Pete Abraham that free-agent catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia is unlikely to return to the Red Sox, with the Marlins among those in pursuit.
• Veteran utility man Willie Bloomquist is heading back to Seattle after three years with the D-backs.