The market for free agent starting pitcher Roy Oswalt has picked up in a big way recently, and it appears that the situation is nearing a conclusion. It was reported last night that the Cardinals were closing in a on deal for Oswalt while the Red Sox and Astros were also still in the mix.
Jim Duquette of MLB Network got the rumors started last night, tweeting that the sources were saying the Cardinals and Oswalt were closing in on a deal. Duquette added that the Red Sox and Astros were “still in the mix” for the veteran.
Michael Silverman of the Boston Herald later came out on Twitter confirming Duquette’s report, adding that Oswalt’s contract may not be finalized for another “day or two”.
Finally, Gordon Edes of ESPNBoston.com reported in the early hours of Saturday morning that, according to sources, Oswalt is indeed heading to the Cardinals. Edes has since back-tracked a bit, calling a deal “close” but “not yet 100 percent”.
If Oswalt is indeed heading to St. Louis, he’d be joining Chris Carpenter, Adam Wainwright, Jaime Garcia, Kyle Lohse and Jake Westbrook. Wainwright missed all of 2011 after undergoing Tommy John surgery and Westbrook wasn’t especially productive last year other than his ability to provide the Cardinals with innings.
The Red Sox have been significantly tied to Oswalt over the past month, but it was certainly surprising to hear the Astros thrown into the mix. Houston has been fairly quiet this offseason but may believe Oswalt’s current asking price warrants an attempt at a reunion in 2012.
You can check out all of the available free agents by position below.