Report: Orioles contact relievers Hader, Kimbrel, Chapman, Hicks
The Baltimore Orioles have reached out to free-agent relievers Josh Hader, Craig Kimbrel, Aroldis Chapman, and Jordan Hicks in the team's quest to find a high-leverage arm, according to Jon Heyman of the New York Post.
Baltimore will be without All-Star closer Felix Bautista, who won the Mariano Rivera Award as the American League Reliever of the Year, for the 2024 campaign after the right-hander underwent Tommy John surgery in late September.
The 29-year-old Hader could be too expensive for the Orioles, notes Heyman.
Hader, a Maryland native, is the best reliever available on the open market. The five-time All-Star posted a 1.28 ERA with 13.6 K/9 and 33 saves over 61 games with the San Diego Padres last season.
Meanwhile, the 27-year-old Hicks authored a 3.29 ERA with 81 strikeouts across 65 2/3 innings split between the Toronto Blue Jays and St. Louis Cardinals in 2023.
Kimbrel, 35, amassed a 3.26 ERA, 1.04 WHIP, and 12.3 K/9 over 71 appearances en route to a ninth All-Star nod during his 14th season while pitching for the Philadelphia Phillies.
Lastly, Chapman had a strong bounce-back campaign in 2023 after the worst season of his career with the New York Yankees in 2022. The 35-year-old recorded a combined 3.09 ERA with 103 strikeouts over 58 1/3 innings with the Kansas City Royals and World Series champion Texas Rangers.