Transaction Miscellany: Ramos, Perez, Workman, Cishek, Lyles, Harrison, More

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Transaction Miscellany: Ramos, Perez, Workman, Cishek, Lyles, Harrison, More

Chicago Cubs

There were a handful of big deals on Friday and throughout the day, today, including Yusei Kikuchi (Blue Jays), Clayton Kershaw (Dodgers), and Carlos Rodon (Giants), Joe Kelley (White Sox), plus that trade between the Rangers and Blue Jays, the trade between the Mets and A’s (Chris Bassit). And, of course, the lesser signing of Andrelton Simmons (Cubs). But here’s a quick rundown of everything else that happened and didn’t get a standalone post.

•   The Angels signed right-handed reliever A.J. Ramos to a minor league deal with an invite to big league camp. Ramos, 35, has thrown just 27.0 innings over the last four seasons, so who knows what he actually has left in the tank. But he was quite good from 2013-2017, so the Angels will take a shot. Ramos was with the Cubs on a minor league deal for about four days back in 2020.

•   The Rangers signed left-handed starter Martin Perez to a one-year, $4 million deal, following his 4.74, 114.0 IP campaign in 2021. Perez is rarely a very effective pitcher, but he is usually capable of grinding through a lot of starts/innings. And you always need guys like that lying around.

•   The Rangers are also signing former Cub and free agent reliever Brandon Workman to a minor league deal.

•   After leaving the north side, former Cubs reliever Steve Cishek spent time with the White Sox (2020) and Angels (2021). He was pretty bad for the Sox in the shortened season, but he had a nice bounce back campaign in L.A. last year, and turned that into a one-year deal with the Nationals (who always seem to target older relievers with some success).

•   The Baltimore Orioles found some coins under the couch cushion, and used them to buy themselves a free agent starting pitcher, Jordan Lyles. Lyles, 31, has never been very good – or even very healthy – but he tossed 180.0 innings last year and I’m guessing that’s all the Orioles are hoping he does again this season. It’s a one-year, $5.5M deal with a $500K signing bonus and a club option for 2023.

•   The Chicago White Sox added reliever Joe Kelley to replace Ryan Tepera/Codi Heuer and what they thought they were getting from Craig Kimbrel. And immediately after, they went out and added a second baseman to replace Nick Madrigal. The former Pirates top prospect, Josh Harrison, is heading to the South Side on a one-year deal with $7M guaranteed plus a club option for 2023.

•   Harrison, 34, has been a slightly above-average overall offensive contributor over the last two seasons, but he has just never lived up to that big-time 2014 campaign: 137 wRC+, 4.8 WAR. With that said, he has become something of a contact bat lately (~13.3% strikeout rate, .279 batting average from 2020-2021), which is not too far off from what the Sox were probably expecting out of Madrigal (obviously, we’re hoping for better overall offensive production).

•   Jose Igelsias – a comparable alternative to Andrelton Simmons – got more money from the Rockies than Simmons got from the Cubs. They’ve had a similar trajectory in recent years, and I’m not sure I would’ve preferred Iglesias at a higher price. Just saying.

•   And just like that, another middle infielder comes off the board, this time Niko Goodrum, 30, to the Astros. Houston is another one of the potential Carlos Correa suitors, but just like Simmons and the Cubs, a $2.1M (plus incentives) deal for Goodrum shouldn’t really impact the greater pursuit.

So much more is coming, so stay tuned.


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Author: Michael Cerami

Michael Cerami covers the Chicago Cubs, Bears, and Bulls at Bleacher Nation. You can find him on Twitter @Michael_Cerami