In an ongoing series, we'll take a look at possible free-agent and trade targets for the Texas Rangers this summer.
Target: Jason Grilli, RHP
2015 stats: 3-3, 2.76 ERA, 1.13 WHIP, 32 2/3 innings, 23 saves, 42 strikeouts, 10 walks, 11.6 K/9 innings
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The 38-year-old veteran has history here — both with the Rangers (30 games in 2009) and with Rangers skipper Jeff Banister from his successful stint in Pittsburgh from 2011 through half of 2014. Now, he's signed to a two-year deal with a third-year option with the Atlanta Braves at roughly $4 million per year and he's having some nice success with the Braves.
This season, he's already racked up 23 saves and is pitching well since being brought in to replace the departed Craig Kimbrel in the ninth inning for the Braves. Grilli could slide right into the closer's role or even the eighth-inning setup role and make the bullpen instantly stronger as well as add a veteran presence to a really young back end of the bullpen. He had 33 saves in 2013 for the Pirates and made his lone all-star appearance, so you know Banister is comfortable with him.
The age is a slight concern, but it worked out pretty well with Joe Nathan a few years ago.