McFarland is viewed as an important left-handed component of the bullpen, particularly due to his ability to induce groundballs, Shayna Rubin of The Mercury News reports. "He's a ground ball guy. You look at those numbers, it's pretty significant, whether it's left or right," manager Bob Melvin said. "And when you're putting together a bullpen this season - and the three-batter minimum, it starts tomorrow - you're looking for lefties who can get right-handers out."
The offseason acquisition recorded an unsightly 6.00 ERA across six innings over six Cactus League appearances before spring training was suspended. Despite the elevated figure, McFarland's profile could make him a good fit if he's used selectively, with Melvin's comments implying the team has already developed a plan to do just that. The 30-year-old's reputation for keeping batted balls down is well-earned, as he's generated a groundball rate of at least 61.1 percent in three consecutive seasons. McFarland has had intermittent success throughout a major-league career that dates back to 2013, but Rubin notes the .313 expected batting average against him last season ranked in the bottom one percentile in the majors.
McFarland fired a perfect ninth inning in a Cactus League loss to the Royals on Tuesday, recording two strikeouts.
The veteran southpaw lowered his spring ERA to 6.00 with the encouraging effort, one that came on the heels of a couple of rough outings. Despite some struggles this spring, Martin Gallegos of MLB.com reports McFarland retains a strong chance of making the Opening Day roster due to the fact he'd serve as a second left-handed option out of the bullpen for manager Bob Melvin, and because the team believes his ground-ball tendencies will dovetail nicely with the pitcher-friendly dimensions of the Oakland Coliseum.
McFarland signed a one-year contract with the Athletics worth $1.8 million Monday, avoiding arbitration, Bob Nightengale of USA Today reports.
The 30-year-old was claimed off waivers by the Athletics in November after his option was declined by the Diamondbacks, so it isn't entirely surprising to see him sign a contract with Oakland and avoid arbitration. After posting a stellar 2.00 ERA with a 1.19 WHIP in 2018, McFarland regressed toward the mean with a 4.82 ERA and 1.63 WHIP last year.
McFarland was claimed off waivers by Oakland on Monday.
McFarland's $1.85 club option was declined by the Diamondbacks, but he evidently wasn't bound for free agency as originally expected. The Athletics will presumably pick up the option as part of the transaction.
McFarland's $1.85 million club option was declined by the Diamondbacks on Thursday, making him a free agent.
McFarland appeared in 51 games last season, posting a 4.82 ERA but only managing a 35:20 K:BB over 56 innings pitched. The 30-year-old would likely remain a middle reliever with another team, and his fantasy value is limited due to his low strikeout rate and lackluster ERA.
McFarland allowed three runs on four hits and one walk while striking out three over 2.1 innings in Tuesday's 9-0 loss to the Dodgers.
Three of the four hits McFarland allowed went for extra bases, and he surrendered three runs for a second straight appearance. Clean outings are not the norm for a long reliever like McFarland since he typically throws multiple innings, but he's particularly been hit hard by opponents in recent times. Over his last six outings, the left-hander has a 6.28 ERA with 21 hits allowed over 14.1 innings. Additionally, his .333 batting average against for the season is last on Arizona's staff.
McFarland (shoulder) was reinstated from the 10-day injured list Tuesday.
McFarland had been dealing with shoulder inflammation since early March. The lefty had a 2.00 ERA in 72 innings of relief for the Diamondbacks last season but hadn't recorded an ERA below 4.91 in any of the three previous seasons. Jon Duplantier was optioned to Triple-A Reno in a corresponding move.
McFarland (shoulder) is scheduled to throw 50 pitches over 2-to-3 innings Monday for Triple-A Reno, Richard Morin of the Arizona Republic reports.
This will be McFarland's fourth outing while on rehab. Manager Torey Lovullo said he wasn't sure whether the left-hander will need another rehab outing after Monday's appearance. McFarland has allowed two runs (one earned) on three hits and one walk while striking out seven over four innings with the Aces.
McFarland (shoulder) threw a scoreless inning for Triple-A Reno on Thursday, Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic reports.
This was the first game of McFarland's rehabilitation assignment. He had been scheduled to pitch for the Aces on Wednesday, but the game was postponed. Arizona manager Torey Lovullo said the left-hander will pitch again Sunday.
McFarland (shoulder) will begin a minor-league rehab assignment at Triple-A Reno on Wednesday, Steve Gilbert of MLB.com reports.
McFarland has been battling left shoulder inflammation since early March but appears to be nearing his return to the majors. The 29-year-old will likely need a handful of appearances with Reno after missing most of spring training but could still rejoin the Diamondback by the end of April.
McFarland (shoulder) threw an 18-pitch simulated game Saturday, Jack Magruder of The Sports Xchange reports.
McFarland has been making steady progress in his return from shoulder inflammation. His next step is expected to be a rehab assignment.
McFarland (shoulder) is scheduled to pitch in an extended spring training game Wednesday, Richard Morin of the Arizona Republic reports.
This will be McFarland's first game action after a few successful bullpen sessions. He'll throw one inning and about 15-20 pitches.
McFarland (shoulder) threw 20 pitches to hitters Saturday, Steve Gilbert of MLB.com reports.
The Diamondbacks estimate McFarland is still a couple of weeks away from returning.
McFarland (shoulder) is scheduled to face hitters Saturday, Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic reports.
McFarland, who tossed a fourth bullpen session Tuesday, will check off another box in his rehab Saturday. The next step will be pitching in a game environment.
McFarland (shoulder) threw a bullpen session Friday, Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic reports.
This was the third such session McFarland has thrown since being shut down early in spring training with shoulder inflammation. The left-hander will likely face hitters in a simulated environment before pitching in game action.
McFarland (shoulder) was placed on the 10-day injured list Thursday.
McFarland recently resumed mound work but was always expected to open the season on the shelf. Look for his return date to come into focus as he progresses in his throwing program. McFarland figures to fill a low-leverage relief role once healthy.
McFarland (shoulder) will throw off a mound Saturday for the first time since he was shut down three weeks ago, Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic reports.
McFarland is expected to start the season on the injured list before returning as a low-leverage reliever when needed.
McFarland (shoulder) is expected to resume his throwing program Monday, Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic reports.
McFarland was shut down last week due to inflammation in his right shoulder. The left-hander was a part of the bullpen last season, posting a 2.00 ERA and 1.19 WHIP in 72 innings over 47 appearances.
McFarland will stop throwing for about five or six days due to left shoulder inflammation, Steve Gilbert of MLB.com reports.
Manager Torey Lovullo downplayed the injury, but McFarland will nonetheless step away for a few days. The 29-year-old had a 2.00 ERA, 1.19 WHIP and 42:22 K:BB across 72 innings as a reliever for the Diamondbacks last season.
McFarland signed a one-year contract with the Diamondbacks on Wednesday.
McFarland was headed for an arbitration hearing but the two sides were instead able to reach an agreement, which also includes a team option for the 2020 season. The 29-year-old rebounded in 2018 with a 2.00 ERA, 1.19 WHIP and 42:22 K:BB over 72 innings for Arizona.
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