Over the next few weeks, we’re likely to see a handful of minor acquisitions as the Rangers push forward in the final days of the offseason before pitchers and catchers report to Spring Training in a little over a month. Today’s signing of RHP Jason Frasor is one of those, and it comes at a remarkably cheap $1.5 million price tag.
Frasor, 35, has spent his 9-year career almost exclusively with the Blue Jays, posting a lifetime ERA of 3.77, while striking out nearly a batter per inning (8.6/9). In the entirety of his life in baseball, he’s held right-handed batters to a triple slash line of .226/.301/.360, but has been slightly better in the strikeout department against lefties (9.07 K’s/9 IP compared to 8.23/9 IP vs. righties).
In an offseason where Brandon League (3 years, $21.5 million) and Jonathan Broxton (3 years, $21 million) received massive paydays as far as relievers are concerned, the minuscule $1.5 million Frasor stands to net is a bargain to the highest degree. It also sheds light on the shrewd, practical mentality the Rangers front office has been operating with. This deal might not be the sexiest signing in terms of name recognition or high-ceiling upside we’ve continuously been starving for, but there is something to be said for cost-effective business.
Along with Frasor, the Rangers now have the look of a bullpen that could be potentially dominant by June or July, which is when we figure to have the likes of Joakim Soria and Neftali Feliz added to the mix. Right now, the bullpen will feature some combination of LHP’s Michael Kirkman and Robbie Ross, RHP’s Tanner Scheppers and Wilmer Font, and closer Joe Nathan, with the final two spots up for grabs in Spring Training. By the time the summer kicks into gear, the Rangers could see a high-leverage mixture of Ross, Frasor, Scheppers, Soria and Feliz bridging the gap to the 9th inning for Joe Nathan.
All that remains on the 2012-’13 offseason wish list is another bat, perhaps Lance Berkman, and another starting pitcher, given the likelihood that Texas isn’t comfortable rolling with Martin Perez at the backend of its rotation.