REPORT: Twins Finalizing Deal With Blake Parker
Here's what I wrote about Parker in the non-tender tracker we ran here at Twins Daily on Nov. 30:
Blake Parker will be non-tendered by the Angels, according to Mark Feinsand. This is the most surprising one so far in my book. Parker has pitched to a 2.90 ERA in 138 appearances over the past two seasons with the Angels, racking up 22 saves in the process. He also has an impressive 1.03 WHIP and 4.46 K:BB ratio over that same stretch (10.5 K/9, 2.4 BB/9). Parker, 33, was projected to make a modest $3.1 million.
And I added this in my recap of the day's activity:
Some of these guys could make a lot of sense for the Twins.
Blake Parker is a guy who jumps out in particular, mainly because I think bullpen help is probably the biggest need right now.
At least in my eyes, Parker stacks up favorably when you compare him to some of the other relief pitchers available on the market. That's especially true if we look back at 2017-18 numbers combined.
Past two seasons
2.90 ERA, 3.55 FIP, 1.03 WHIP, 22.8 K-BB%
3.50 ERA, 3.72 FIP, 1.25 WHIP, 18.1 K-BB%
3.82 ERA, 3.87 FIP, 1.26 WHIP, 20.7 K-BB%
3.47 ERA, 4.15 FIP, 1.28 WHIP, 14.5 K-BB%
*Moments after the Parker news broke Jeff Passan of ESPN reported the White Sox signed Herrera to a two-year, $18 million deal with a vesting third-year option.
To be fair, there's a good reason why I zoomed out to the past two seasons. Parker is coming off a much less impressive season than he posted in 2017. Two seasons ago his FIP was 2.71, last year it was 4.40.
According to Baseball Savant, Parker relies on his four seamer 58 percent of the time while mixing in a splitter 31.1 percent of the time and his curve at 10.9 percent. All three of those offerings took a dip in velocity from 2017 to last season, with the four-seam fastball going from 93.5 mph in 2017 to 92.1 last year.
So there are certainly some things to like about Parker and some to be concerned about, as you would expect from a player who was recently non-tendered.
Again, it's important to point out that at this time the signing has not been confirmed, but it would be surprising to see someone like Ken Rosenthal to connect a player to a team without having a strong inclination that things were fairly settled.
Something to keep in mind is the Twins' 40-man roster is currently full, so they'll need to DFA another player to make room for Parker. Last week the Twins designated Aaron Slegers to make room for Nelson Cruz.
4:23 Update: Jeff Passan is reporting that the deal is close and believed to be worth slightly more than $3 million.