The first signing of the day was left-handed reliever Tony Sipp. Sipp got a deal that was worth $1.75 million for just one year; he was someone to target for multiple reasons. First off, he is a left-handed reliever, something that the team could really use in the bullpen. The Bucs are short on lefties at this point and Sipp is a veteran with a solid track record. He could also be used as a lefty relief rental at the trade deadline if the team decides to sell. Teams are always looking for relief help that time of year.
Last year Sipp pitched in 36 games for the Washington Nationals. He had an ERA of 4.71 but continued to shut down left-handed hitters. In 2019, lefties only batted .255 against Sipp and slugged under .400 and getting on-base under .300. For $1.75 million, Sipp could be a very sneaky lefty specialist.
The other signing was a move that is a bit of a precursor to another move. There has been plenty of interest in outfielder Gregory Polanco, to the point where a deal seemed likely. While I acquired Adam Haseley to replace Marte, losing Polanco would open up another vacancy. I extended a contract offer to power-hitting corner outfielder Kole Calhoun. Calhoun took a two-year deal worth $13.5 million, or $6.75 million per year.
Calhoun is a 32-year-old left-handed hitting outfielder who has played his whole career for the Los Angeles Angels. The Angels declined Calhoun’s option so he was eligible to be signed. Now he did only bat .233 last season, but his value lies in his power. The outfielder belted a career-best 32 home runs along with a career-best .467 slugging. With that lefty power swing, he would fit really well at PNC Park.