Texas keeps solid (affordable) bullpen arm

I'd consider re-signing Jason Frasor to a one-year deal at $1.75 million plus incentives a surprise, if only in the sense that I thought the price would be higher. I think the Texas Rangers got a bargain (if Frasor hits his incentives, it means he's productive and healthy and that's certainly not a bad thing).

Frasor, 36, gives this club an important veteran in late relief from a bullpen that was one of the best in the big leagues last year. The Rangers had a 2.89 ERA, second-best in the league behind the Kansas City Royals. Frasor was a key component in the sixth or seventh inning to help get the game to Tanner Scheppers and Joe Nathan.

Frasor rebounded from an unsteady April and May to become a solid, reliable relief piece for manager Ron Washington, pitching coach Mike Maddux and bullpen coach Andy Hawkins. Frasor had a 2.06 ERA in the final four months of the season and opponents hit just .187 against him. He allowed just one home run in that span and had a 1.06 WHIP.

In those final four months, Frasor also held left-handed hitters to a .163 average and in the last 22 at-bats lefties had against him, they managed just one hit.

By the way, for those wondering about cost: Mike Adams was coming off a season with the Rangers in which he had a 3.47 ERA in 61 games (52 1/3 innings) with 45 strikeouts and 17 walks. He earned a two-year deal worth $12 million from the Phillies. In fairness, Adams was the club's primary eighth-inning setup man with Texas, and Frasor was not. But Frasor's season-long numbers in 2013 are pretty similar to what Adams had in 2012 before departing (2.57 ERA, 61 games, 49 innings, 48 strikeouts and 20 walks). Frasor certainly fits into the budget a lot better.

The Rangers wanted Frasor's important right arm in the bullpen in 2014, so they got the deal done now.