The Toronto Blue Jays, with a payroll surplus of $25-30 million for next year, have made a bold statement that they intend to be big players in the AL East by signing lefty free agent reliever B.J. Ryan to a five-year $47 million contract...
The 6-6, 260-pound 29-year-old Ryan had 36 saves in 41 attempts for the Orioles this past season and had been pursued by the Indians, Tigers and Red Sox, with both the Mets and Phillies viewing him as a fallback in the event they couldn’t sign Billy Wagner.
While I thought Ryan was the best closer on the market, that's still a lot to be paying for a reliever. I suspect the Blue Jays will regert this deal by the time it runs out. The Tigers had been rumored to be interested in Ryan but I'm glad they didn't sign him for what he wound up getting.
Bob Howry, another reliever in which the Tigers reportedly had interest, signed with the Cubs for 3 years 12 million earlier in the week. With Billy Wagner probably headed elsewhere, Kyle Farnsworth might be their prime target at this point. Since the Detroit papers have not been reporting much, I would guess that nothing is imminent on the Farnsworth front or any other front.
Tigers sign Crabtree
It looks like the Tigers have signed their closer after all. Well, not quite...the Jackson Citizen Patriot reports that the Tigers have signed Tim Crabtree to a minor league contract and invited him to spring training. Crabtree last played in the majors for the Rangers in 2001 before injuring his rotator cuff.