LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. - We’re scheduled to meet with Nationals general manager Mike Rizzo in less than an hour, but I’ve got a few notes from the lobby to pass along before we head up to Rizzo’s suite to quiz him on the Nats-related happenings during Day One of the Winter Meetings.
The Nats continue to monitor the market for left-handed relievers, and as they do so, they might have to take one interesting wrinkle into account.
I’ve heard that Boone Logan, a lefty who has spent the last four years with the Yankees, is hoping to land a job as a true set-up guy, as compared to a lefty specialist, the role that he’s served while with the Yankees.
In 2013, Logan appeared in 61 games, but pitched just 39 innings, an average of less than two-thirds of an inning per appearance. Same type of deal in 2012, when Logan pitched in a whopping 80 games, but just ended up with 55 1/3 innings of work.
Logan’s splits against right-handed hitters aren’t bad; he allowed a .254/.319/.460 slash line to righties in 2013 and had a 2.29-to-1 strikeout-to-walk ratio. But those numbers don’t compare to his splits against lefties - .221/.274/.377 with a 5.67-to-1 strikeout-to-walk ratio in 2013.
Just because Logan is hoping to work into more of a set-up role doesn’t mean he’ll get that type of job, but it is interesting, and could affect how the Nationals view the 29-year-old, who posted a 3.23 ERA this last season.
I’ve also heard that while the Nationals don’t seem to be scared off by left-hander Eric O’Flaherty’s Tommy John surgery last May, there are some teams who are concerned with the workload that he handled in recent years under Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez.
O’Flaherty appeared in 78 games and worked 73 2/3 innings in 2011, the season in which he punched up a 0.98 ERA and ridiculous 393 ERA+. He then pitched 58 1/3 innings in 2012, including the postseason, appearing in a total of 65 games that year.
The left-hander then worked 18 innings in 2013 prior to requiring Tommy John to repair a torn UCL.
Again, something to keep in mind as the Nats try and find the right southpaw to stash in their bullpen.
Meanwhile, members of the various public relations staffs for each MLB team, as well as a few front office staffers, took to the podium in the media room to promote the StandUp2Cancer initiative that the league has gotten very into in recent years.
As was the case last year, each team has come up with a couple of cool auctions that fans can bid on, with the proceeds going straight to StandUp2Cancer.
The Nats have two auctions this year - one where Bryce Harper and Anthony Rendon will go to your kid’s school for an afternoon, and another where you get to spend a day with the Nationals’ grounds crew.
Two great auctions that benefit a great cause.