The Indians, in serious need of a relief arm (or two), sat out yesterday’s buy-a-reliever activities. But they just jumped into it today, picking up Cardinals discard, Marc Rzepczynski.
The 27-year-old lefty is having his worst year by far – 7.84 ERA, 1.935 WHIP – and it follows a trend of three meh seasons with the Cardinals. With arbitration looming next year, it’s easy to see why the Cardinals were willing to give him up for minor league infielder Juan Herrera (a mostly non-prospect).
The deal is a signal that the Indians probably didn’t like the market for quality relievers (perhaps especially lefties like James Russell), but wanted to at least do something. The question now is whether Rzepcynski is it for them, or if they’ll try to add another piece before it’s all said and done.
The move probably takes them out of the market for Russell, though we don’t know whether they were really in it at this point (the last we’d heard, the Indians were not explicitly mentioned as a possible suitor). It could also take the Indians out of the market for Kevin Gregg, whom Phil Rogers had connected to the Indians earlier today.
It all just depends on how they view Rzepcynski. A LOOGY worth a zero risk trade? Or the fix to their bullpen woes, because everything else is too expensive?