At the trading deadline this past season, the Cardinals dealt Malik Collymore to the Milwaukee Brewers in exchange for Jonathan Broxton. The burly right-hander was obtained to give manager Mike Matheny more options he trusted late in games. According to Tom Ackerman, sports director of KMOX, the Cardinals flagship stations, the Cardinals are bringing Broxton back on a two-year deal.
Jonathan Broxton signs a two-year deal to return to the @Cardinals bullpen. No financial details just yet.— Tom Ackerman (@Ackerman1120) December 10, 2015
Jon Heyman fills us in on the particulars.
Broxton $7.5M, 2 yrs full no trade with cardinals— Jon Heyman (@JonHeymanCBS) December 10, 2015
Broxton appeared in 26 games for the Cardinals, pitching pretty well with a 2.66 ERA, 3.56 and more than a strikeout per inning. At the end of the season, the Cardinals had an option on Broxton that would have paid him $9 million next season. The team opted instead to buy him out for $2 million with money they received from the Brewers in the trade.
Relievers have done very well thus far this offseason. Darren O'Day got $31 million, Joakim Soria got $25 million, Tony Sipp got $18 million, and even former Cardinals pitcher Jason Motte received $10 million over two years from the Colorado Rockies. Broxton comes in even lower than Motte. The 31-year-old had his best seasons with the Dodgers many years ago, but has pitched decently well with the Royals, Reds, and Brewers before joining the Cardinals last season.
The Cardinals were known to be searching for bullpen help, and according to Derrick Goold, the team might not be done.
The Cardinals went in to last season with Jordan Walden setting up for closer Trevor Rosenthal. Walden was injured early on and it is not yet clear what his status will be for next season. Kevin Siegrist pitched very well in the setup role, and Seth Maness also contributed, but the bullpen after Rosenthal, Siegrist, and Maness lacked experience. Sam Tuivailala could get a chance at a bigger role next season. Tyler Lyons is out of options and could snag a spot in the bullpen if he does not win a rotation role. The Cardinals recently selected Matt Bowman from the New York Mets in the Rule 5 draft earlier today so he will have a spot in the bullpen or he will be offered back to New York if he does not make the major league roster.
With much anticipation right now over the potential signing of Jason Heyward, this move is nothing to get too worked up about. Broxton has been serviceable as a reliever and will likely do a solid job for the Cardinals. Feel free to return to freaking out about whether the Cardinals will sign Jason Heyward.