Jerry Lai / USA TODAY Sports

Market For Joe Blanton Heating Up; Los Angeles Dodgers Could Re-Sign Him

Joe Blanton may be the next reliever that goes off the board.

The relief market has been booming since the beginning of the offseason with big names like Aroldis Chapman, Kenley Jansen and Mark Melancon signing record shattering deals already. While those three are off the board, there is still a glut of relievers on the market including Neftali Feliz and Greg Holland.

One name, however is starting to see his market pick up, according to Jerry Crasnick of ESPN. Right-handed pitcher Joe Blanton, a former starter who saw a career renaissance after converting to a reliever, has been drawing a large amount of interest. Cited as a possibility is a return to the Dodgers, per Crasnick.

Other teams potentially searching for veteran bullpen help are the Reds — who have yet to sign a major league free agent this offseason — along with the Brewers, Padres, Blue Jays, Pirates and Nationals. Blanton could command a two-year contract, despite his age, as he just turned 36 a few weeks ago. Regardless, he stands to earn an increase on his meager $4 million 2016 salary.

The big man posted a strong 2.48 ERA over 80 innings pitched, held up by a strong 3.33 FIP. This marks his second consecutive strong season. I would anticipate a contract in the $6-8 million range based on the market. 

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