Hard to find too many players making decisions about where they’ll be in 2013 this early in the offseason, but right-hander Ryan Reid has done just that, signing a minor league contract with the Pittsburgh Pirates. Reid, 27, went 6-3 with a 3.52 ERA, a 9.0 K/9, a 3.2 BB/9, and a 0.9 HR/9 in 46 relief appearances and 79.1 IP between Double-A and Triple-A in the Rays organization in 2012. Reid throws a solid fastball that ranges from the 88-92 MPH range to go along with a good changeup and a solid slider, and likely left the Rays because he was never added to their 40-man roster even as he was pitching well. Reid will hope to make his big league debut with Pittsburgh at some point in 2013, and best of luck to him as he pursues that goal.
According to Dylan Hernandez and Mike DiGiovanna of the Los Angeles Times, the Rays have been among the teams that have talked to free agent outfielder Torii Hunter. They also report that Hunter wants a multi-year contract this offseason. Hunter turned 37 years old in July and even after a great 2012 is no sure bet to continue to perform at a high level. At the same time, Hunter’s age could put him in the Rays’ price range, making him not a top target but a possible Plan B for a 2-year contract at a relatively low annual value if the Rays don’t trade for Justin Upton (which we’ll talk about later today). The Rays will not be Hunter’s most ardent pursuers, but considering their need in the outfield, they need to turn over every stone and Hunter could be an option depending on how this offseason plays out for the Rays.
And finally, Hideki Matsui struggled mightily for the Rays in 2012, but Astros General Manager Jeff Lunhow told Daily Sports in Japan that the Astros have had some internal discussions in their organization about bringing over Matsui, most likely on a minor league contract. Matsui was a great player for years in Japan and with the Yankees and it would be a shame to have his disastrous stint with the Rays being the way his career ends. Hopefully he can have his last hurrah in the major leagues in 2012 whether in Houston or somewhere else.