Gems remain in market for starting pitchers
Leake, Kazmir, Chen and possibly Iwakuma among free-agent SP available
With news that the tentative deal between the Dodgers and right-hander Hisashi Iwakuma has hit a potential snag, according to a baseball source, eyes returned Thursday to the starting pitching free-agent market.
The two sides reportedly agreed to three-year, $45 million agreement on Dec. 6, pending a physical. Though the club would not confirm the report, it is expected the Dodgers and Iwakuma could still work something out.
The club however, has quickly shifted its search for a starting pitcher, and it is now in talks with the Rays about right-hander Jake Odorizzi, according to CBS Sports' Jon Heyman.
Odorizzi, 25, was 9-9 with a 3.35 ERA in 28 starts for the Rays last season -- his second full year in the Majors. He was the Brewers' first-round Draft pick in 2008 and went to Kansas City in '10 in the Zack Greinke trade, and then to Tampa Bay in the James Shields /Wade Davis /Wil Myers deal.
Odorizzi is under club control until 2020.
Elsewhere on the market, left-hander Wei-Yin Chen is reportedly seeking a five-year, $100 million contract, according to MASNsports.com, which also reports the Orioles are likely out at that price.
Chen, like Iwakuma, declined a qualifying offer, so the teams that sign them will have to forfeit Draft picks.
Clubs not willing to surrender a pick can look to Mike Leake, Scott Kazmir and Japanese righty Kenta Maeda.
With the Dodgers' deal with Iwakuma now questionable, USA Today's Bob Nightingale reports the team could turn to Leake, who has been talking with the Nationals and Astros, and is reportedly looking for a five-year, $75 million contract. The Dodgers also are interested in Kazmir, per Yahoo's Tim Brown.
Maeda has traveled to Los Angeles to start meeting with teams, according to The Orange County Register.