The Houston Astros and Los Angeles Dodgers are both very interested in adding a closer, and both have set their sights on Andrew Miller of the New York Yankees.
It might be surprising the Yankees are willing to give up on Miller, but they have their own set of plans in mind. The 30 year old looked good in 2015 with a 2.04 ERA and 36 saves (only two blown), his first year with the Yankees and his first as the last man on the bullpen order. He makes $9 million a season through 2018, a manageable deal for someone you feel quite confident about regarding the most nervous moments of games.
The Dodgers were supposed to land Aroldis Chapman via trade with the Cincinnati Reds, but that’s on hold due to his domestic violence issues, even if he wasn’t charged with anything; Baseball might still suspend him if they find a reason to. The Astros are also waiting for the Dodgers deal for Chapman to collapse, and hopefully get their hands on maybe the best reliever in the game over the last two or three years, leaving Cincinnati (planned to at least) while they begin another rebuilding phase.
The Yankees are thinking about Marcell Ozuna of the Miami Marlins, and might use Miller in a three way deal to get the centre fielder. The plan is to use Miller in order to get Vincent Velasquez, the 23-year old pitcher from the Astros, in order to use him to get to Ozuna. However, Velasquez has just 19 appearances in Major League Baseball, which makes gambling on him while not knowing if the Marlins agree to a trade for Ozuna a little bit risky for the Yankees, who don’t seem to be planning to make any big moves in free agency, instead looking for trades they can pounce on.