Both Craig Kimbrel and Dallas Keuchel finally have found new homes spending months off the field.
After rejecting their qualifying offers, both pitchers were tied to draft pick compensation until earlier this week. Kimbrel since has signed a three-year, $43 million deal with the Chicago Cubs, while Keuchel has inked a one-year deal with the Atlanta Braves.
Braves third baseman Josh Donaldson told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution’s Gabriel Burns “it’s completely embarrassing for Major League Baseball” to have had the two pitchers on the market so long.
“It’s one of those things where you don’t understand it, but it’s working out for our best interest right now,” he said. “To have it working out for our interest (is good), but we shouldn’t have had this opportunity. It should’ve been done a lot earlier for (Keuchel). He’s had a great career. He’s special. A lot of postseason experience. To be able to add him is going to make us better.”
If draft-pick compensation was the issue behind signing either pitcher, the 2015 American League MVP doesn’t like that one bit.
“If that’s the case … then, yeah, it’s ridiculous,” he said. “The guy won a Cy Young. He’s been healthy. There’s no reason why he shouldn’t have been signed already.”
Kimbrel and Keuchel will have some cobwebs to shake off after going months without facing a single batter.