Buster Olney reports that Jeremy Bonderman is coming back from reconstructive elbow surgery. Meanwhile, Javier Vazquez is also contemplating a comeback after not pitching professionally last year. Both have some intrigue...
Vasquez is 36, and wasn't signed last season, but that was a weird situation, becasue he sure didnt struggle in 2011. He had a 3.69 ERA and threw 192.2 innings for the Marlins, which is a hell of a good year. I always think of him as a National League pitcher, because he only had one good year in the American League, but that also could be coincidence.
Bonderman had the misfortune of coming of age during the Tigers miserable years and getting thrust into the majors before he seemingly was ready. He had a 5.53 ERA in Detroit in 2010, but pitched 171 innings. Last I heard he was negotiating with Cleveland before 2011, but dropped off the map after that. He says he's only looking for a minor league deal with a spring invite. I have to think the Twins would be an enticing opportunity for him, given all the opportunities in their rotation. By the way - he only just turned 30 years old.
I'm sure neither of these guys is going to excite people much and likely won't make a huge difference in 2013. But I'll add this: I wouldn't be shocked if "semi-retired players" are a significant market inefficiency within MLB. It seems like every year there are a couple of guys that we think are going to get a decent deal, but they over play their hand, and for whatever reason (probably pride?) end up not signing before April. But rather than sit out a year and then get back into the game, they are never heard from again. That seems like it's something a smart team might try to take advantage of.
Blasts from the Past: Bonderman and Javier Vasquez
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