Texas Rangers: Free Agent Derek Law Signed to Minor League Contract
By Kenneth Nash
The Texas Rangers have announced that they have agreed to a minor league deal including a Spring Training invite with right-handed reliever Derek Law.
The Texas Rangers organization announced Thursday that they have signed right-handed relief pitcher Derek Law to a minor league contract with an invitation to the Rangers’ Major League camp in Spring Training. The signing of Law was announced at the same time as the deal with INF Matt Duffy and adds another name to a growing list of relievers that will be competing for a role in the big league bullpen next season.
Law has four years of big league experience under his belt debuting with the San Francisco Giants in 2016 at 25 years old. His first year with the Giants was stellar posting a 2.13 ERA and a .964 WHIP in 61 relief appearances. Since that season though, Law has seen struggles on the mound posting a 5.06 ERA in 41 outings for San Fran in 2017 and a 7.43 ERA in 2018 through just seven appearances spending the majority of the season in the minors.
The 29-year old started to rebound some in 2019 when he joined the Toronto Blue Jays organization in April as part of the trade that sent Kevin Pillar to the West Coast. He made 58 appearances for the Blue Jays, all but four of which were relief outings. His 4.90 ERA was a marked improvement on the previous two seasons and in line with his 4.85 FIP. Law’s strikeout rate jumped to a career best 9.9 K/9 but his walk rate also spiked to a career worst 5.9 BB/9 contributing to his elevated 1.665 WHIP.
For the Rangers, the signing of Law is a low risk acquisition that gives them bullpen insurance, something most teams look to stockpile at this point in the offseason. His mid-90’s fastball should play well in short relief outings and it seems he could be trending in the right direction. At 29, he’s still at a young age for relievers who can get better through the years as their savvy on the mound improves. He’ll compete with the likes of Juan Nicasio, Jimmy Herget and Luis Garcia for middle relief innings for the Major League club during the 2020 season.