Hot Stove roundup: McCann, Yanks turn up heat
Catcher agrees to five-year, $85 million deal; reliever Smith heading to Halos
The Yankees stole the Hot Stove headlines on Saturday, filling their void at catcher by agreeing to a five-year contract with free agent Brian McCann. In a deal first reported by The Dallas Morning News, New York committed to paying McCann $85 million, with a $15 million vesting option for 2019.
The Yankees clearly needed more offense behind the plate, after their catchers combined for a .587 OPS last season. McCann comes in with seven All-Star appearances, five Silver Slugger Awards and a career .823 OPS.
In other news from around the league:
• The Cardinals apparently have found their shortstop, with ESPN's Jerry Crasnick breaking the news that St. Louis is close to an agreement with free agent Jhonny Peralta.
• The Angels will bolster their bullpen by signing free-agent right-hander Joe Smith to a three-year contract worth roughly $15 million.
• Free-agent right-hander Colby Lewis, who missed the 2013 season due to injury, re-signed with the Rangers on a one-year Minor League deal that includes an invitation to Major League camp. Lewis went 32-29 with a 3.93 ERA over 80 starts with Texas from 2010-12, but he hasn't pitched in the Majors since July '12.
• In his morning (Insider-only) column, ESPN's Buster Olney said some executives "see the Mariners as the great sleeping giant in baseball," because of their potential financial clout, lack of long-term contract commitments outside of Felix Hernandez, and solid stable of young players. Olney wonders if the Mariners could go after top free agents Robinson Cano and Jacoby Ellsbury.
• The Cubs have generated a lot of interest in right-hander Jeff Samardzija, with the Blue Jays one of those trying to pry him away, according to Bruce Levine of ESPN Chicago and ESPN Radio 1000.
• There was speculation on Friday that Cano was in Detroit to visit the Tigers. A deal between the two parties would seem to be a longshot considering the club just acquired Ian Kinsler, as FOX Sports' Ken Rosenthal tweeted.