MLB Winter Meetings rumors: Kintzler could be next free agent reliever off the board

If nothing else, the market for free-agent relievers has started to pick up within the past few days. Veteran righties Brandon Morrow (Cubs), Luke Gregerson (Cardinals) and Pat Neshek (Phillies) have all signed two-year contracts within the last 48 hours or so.

The next free-agent reliever to sign? It could be former Twins closer and Nationals setup man Brandon Kintzler. He is reportedly drawing interest from the Twins, Nationals, Cubs, Diamondbacks and Rangers.

The 33-year-old Kintzler bounced around for several years before finding success with Minnesota last season, when he took over as closer. From 2016-17, Kintzler threw 125 2/3 innings with a 3.08 ERA (142 ERA+) and a 1.19 WHIP. What he lacked in strikeouts (5.3 K/9) he made up for with ground balls (58.0 percent). The Twins traded Kintzler to the Nationals for prospects at this year's deadline.

The market for a non-elite reliever has been established at two years and $7 million to $10 million per year already this offseason, and that's what Kintzler is likely to receive. Considering he's banked only $5.9 million in his career to date, that sounds like a pretty excellent payday for the late bloomer. The reliever market is starting to move quick, and Kintzler may choose his next team soon.

CBS Sports Writer

Mike Axisa joined CBS Sports in 2013. He has been a member of the BBWAA since 2015 and has previously written about both fantasy baseball and real life baseball for MLBTradeRumors.com, FanGraphs.com, RotoAuthority.com,... Full Bio

Our Latest Stories