Saturday, February 28, 2009

Royals Closing In On Cruz?

The Royals and Juan Cruz are reportedly closing in on a deal, ESPN.com's Buster Olney is reporting. The Royals will lose their second round pick to the Diamondbacks, as well as a sandwich pick between the first and second round. Cruz would be a huge addition to the Royals bullpen, along with Kyle Farnsworth, who signed a two year deal this offseason with the Royals. 

With the additions of Mike Jacobs and Coco Crisp, the Royals have a lineup that finally has shape. With a leadoff hitter, four guys with the potential to hit 20 or more homeruns, and a solid up the middle tandem in Aviles and Callaspo, the Royals could make a serious run at the playoffs.

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Cubs Sign Koskie

The Cubs and Corey Koskie have agreed to a minor league deal with an invitation to Spring Training. Although Koskie is playing for Team Canada and will leave Cubs camp next week for the tournament, he is expected to compete for a bench role. Koskie is a career .275 hitter with a 124 career homeruns in nine major league seasons. Recently, Koskie has been dealing with post concussion syndrome, but he has been given the go ahead to continue playing. 

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Cordero Looking For Job

Free agent closer Chad Cordero threw in front of several clubs yesterday, including the Twins, Marlins, Royals, Brewers, Rangers, and Nationals, among others. Cordero is a great pitcher but battled injuries last season, pitching in just six games. Cordero is 20-14 with a 2.78 ERA with 128 career saves in six seasons with the Expos and Nationals. 

Rebuffed by reliever Juan Cruz, the Twins could make an aggressive play for Cordero. Cordero would give the Twins a solid late inning reliever.

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Martinez Still Drawing Interest

Free agent starter Pedro Martinez is hoping his performance during the WBC will land him a job with a major league club. The Pirates, Indians, and Dodgers all expressed interest in Martinez throughout the course of the offseason, but never made him an offer. Martinez was 5-6 with a 5.61 ERA in 20 games last season, and hasn't had a double-digit win season since 2005. At this point, it is tough to rule out anyone. Pirates pitching coach Joe Kerrigan worked with the Red Sox from 1997-2001, during Martinez's first couple years with the team. He also worked in New York with the Yankees, so he is probably very familiar with Martinez. 

Martinez played for the Dodgers in 1992-1993, but the Dodgers might not have money to spend once they sign Manny Ramirez, assuming they get that deal done. 

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Friday, February 27, 2009

Manny Ramirez Update

The Ramirez camp submitted a new offer to the Dodgers: a two year deal worth 55 million dollars, and no deferred money. "I told Ned that we stand by our proposal," Boras told MLB.com. "As far as we're concerned, there's no deadline. We're still talking." The Dodgers would like to add Ramirez sooner rather than later, so he can prepare with his teammates for the start of his first full season with the Dodgers.

The Giants are the only team that have expressed serious interest in Ramirez. With his price not showing any signs of coming down, I doubt any surprise teams will enter the race.

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

2009 Cincinnati Reds Projection

C Ramon Hernandez
.266 AVG, 16 HR, 74 RBI
1B Joey Votto
.303 AVG, 31 HR, 96 RBI
2B Brandon Phillips
.264 AVG, 22 HR, 80 RBI
3B Edwin Encarnacion
.277 AVG, 25 HR, 78 RBI
SS Alex Gonzalez
.253 AVG, 7 HR, 35 RBI
LF Chris Dickerson
.269 AVG, 18 HR, 59 RBI
CF Wily Taveras
.279 AVG, 2 HR, 29 RBI
RF Jay Bruce
.288 AVG, 26 HR, 103 RBI

SS Jeff Keppinger
.274 AVG, 4 HR, 44 RBI

SP Aaron Harang
10-12 W-L, 4.20 ERA, 162 K
SP Edinson Volquez
13-8 W-L, 4.12 ERA, 193 K
SP Bronson Arroyo
11-11 W-L, 4.49 ERA, 154 K
SP Johnny Cueto
8-11 W-L, 4.64 ERA, 151 K
SP Micah Owings
6-7 W-L, 4.55 ERA, 88 K

SP Homer Bailey
4-6 W-L, 4.72 ERA, 83 K

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Phillies Release Eaton

The Phillies have released pitcher Adam Eaton, MLB.com is reporting. Eaton, who signed a three year deal worth 24.5 million dollars prior to the 2007 season, will make 8.5 million dollars this season. The Phillies decided to release Eaton because he was not a serious candidate for the fifth starter spot, not to mention his struggles at the Triple-A level. "Based on where we are with our pitching staff and the fact that we feel comfortable with our depth, we wanted to give Adam every opportunity to pitch with another club, rather than wait until later in the spring when it gets more difficult," Senior Vice President & General Manager Ruben Amaro Jr. said in a statement.

Eaton is 68-83 with a 4.80 ERA in 197 games. He was 4-8 with a 5.80 ERA in 19 games last season with the Phillies.

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Manny Rejects Dodgers' Offer

Free agent outfielder Manny Ramirez has rejected the Dodgers' latest offer. The Dodgers said a two year deal worth 45 million dollars, with the second year at his option, would be as far as they would go. Ramirez and has team must think the Dodgers will ultimately give him what he is looking for, a three to four year deal worth 25 million dollars annually. 

Ramirez became the face of the franchise upon joining the club in 2008, not to mention improving the games of several players around him. There are no other suitable outfielders on the market, and they do not want to see him sign with the Giants, a much improved team in the same division. 

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Mientkiewicz Signs With Dodgers

The Dodgers and Doug Mientkiewicz have agreed to a minor league deal with an invitation to big league camp. Mientkiewicz is a .271 career hitter with 66 career homeruns. His best year came in 2001 with the Twins when he hit .306 with 15 HR in 151 games. For now, he will compete for bench role on the Dodgers bench. 

In 2008, Mientkiewicz hit .277 with 2 HR in 125 games for the Pirates.

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Twins End Talks With Cruz

The Twins have ended contract talks with free agent reliever Juan Cruz. Cruz rejected the Twins' first offer, and sources don't expect the Twins to reengage Cruz. Cruz posted a 2.61 ERA with 71 strikeouts in 51.2 innings. The Twins have an interest in free agent closer Chad Cordero, but the Marlins and a half dozen other teams are interested in him as well. 

Cruz now has two options. He can either sign at a reduced price with the Diamondbacks and play out the season or he can hold out till after the draft and sign with any team we wants.

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Dodgers Make Manny Offer

The Dodgers have offered Manny Ramirez a one year deal worth 25 million dollars, with a player option worth 20 million dollars for 2010. The deal also reportedly has a clause that if Ramirez is injured during the first season, the second year is guaranteed. Ramirez is expected to sign with the Dodgers, who are expecting his decision early tomorrow morning. 

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Nationals Like LaCava

John Perotto of Baseball Prospectus is reporting that the Nationals are strongly considering firing General Manager Jim Bowden and hiring Blue Jays assistant GM Tony LaCava. Bowden is reportedly being investigated by the FBI for involvement in the skimming bonuses off contracts. LaCava definitly has a GM job in his future, having been interviewed twice in the past year and a half. He may be inclined to joining the Nationals in the event that the Blue Jays clean house and fire J.P. Ricciardi; however, he could replace Ricciardi in the event that he is let go. 

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Joe Borowski Retires

The Cleveland Plain Dealer is reporting that closer Joe Borowski has decided to retire. "I guess 38, 87 and 88 wasn't looking good in people's eyes," said the former Indians closer. Borowski was 22-34 in his career with a 4.18 career ERA. Borowski's best year came in 2003 with the Cubs when he went 2-2 with a 2.63 ERA and 33 saves. "With all the people who are still free agents out there, I see what's going on. Finally, I said that's it. I said I can't complain about any part of my career. I'm shutting it down. It was like the weight of the world came off my shoulders."

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Blog Archives (Pre-July 20th, 2008)

After the blog was hacked, it was very hard to recover all the posts. If you are looking for a particular post, or feel like exploring some old baseball news, feel free to explore!


This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Blogroll

Hey Bloggers! If you are interested in exchanging links and appearing on this list shown at the top of the page, send me an email at mlbrumors@gmail.com.


This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Nationals Could Fire Bowden

The Washington Post is reporting that several members of the Nationals ownership group would like to cut ties with GM Jim Bowden after the latest developments in the federal investigation surrounding him and other Nationals executives. Bowden has denied any wrong doing, but the skimming of the signing bonuses and scouting practices have been documented. The investigation encompasses the entire Nationals front office, putting principal owner Ted Lerner in an interesting spot. 

Mike Rizzo, who is an Assistant GM, could easily fill in as an interim GM for the start of the season, but it is still unclear who was involved in the wrong doing. The Nationals have a good group of young players, so if they get off to a good start Bowden might stay with the team. 

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Pirates Pursuing Ohman?

The Pirates are still in talks with free agent lefty Will Ohman, according to the Pittsburgh Post Gazette. Ohman, who went 4-1 with a 3.68 ERA in 83 games for the Braves last season. What makes him particularly valuable is that he held lefties to a .200 average, and had a 2.89 ERA on the road. Ohman doesn't get many strikeouts, but he had a 1.24 WHIP and had just 22 walks. He makes for a good middle reliever who can bridge the gap between the middle and late innings for the Pirates. 

The Pirates already have four lefties fighting for spots - Grabow, Burnett, Dumatrait, and Rule 5 pick Donnie Veal - so Ohman might not necessarily make sense. 

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Monday, February 23, 2009

2009 Cleveland Indians Projection

DH Travis Hafner
.272 AVG, 23 HR, 75 RBI
C Victor Martinez
.296 AVG, 17 HR, 83 RBI
1B Ryan Garko
.269 AVG, 16 HR, 72 RBI
2B Asdrubal Cabrera
.284 AVG, 8 HR, 63 RBI
3B Mark DeRosa
.280 AVG, 14 HR, 78 RBI
SS Jhonny Peralta
.272 AVG, 21 HR, 80 RBI
LF Ben Francisco
.255 AVG, 12 HR, 48 RBI
CF Grady Sizemore
.282 AVG, 32 HR, 89 RBI
RF Shin-Soo Choo
.286 AVG, 13 HR, 69 RBI

SP Cliff Lee
15-7 W-L, 3.76 ERA, 148 K
SP Fausto Carmona
8-10 W-L, 4.39 ERA, 101 K
SP Carl Pavano
7-6 W-L, 4.55 ERA, 54 K
SP Anthony Reyes
11-8 W-L, 3.89 ERA, 138 K
SP Aaron Laffey
10-10 W-L, 4.62 ERA, 88 K

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Phillies Likely To Add Lefty

The Phillies will likely add one of the three top remaining lefty relievers: Will Ohman, Joe Beimel, or Dennys Reyes. With J.C. Romero out for the first 50 games of the season, the Phillies would like to have a late inning lefty, along with Scott Eyre, to give the bullpen some rest early on in the season. Ohman pitched for the Braves last season, so he is fairly familiar with the division, but is holding out for 2-3 million dollars. Sources with knowledge of negotiations have informed me that offers for Ohman are around the 1 million dollar range. 

Reyes is drawing interest from the Athletics and Padres, but no serious progress was made over the weekend. As for Beimel, he backed out of negotiations with the Rockies and the Tigers added Brandon Lyon, so he may be out of luck. The Phillies have just 29 pitchers in camp this year, but may want to bring in a few more because Spring Training is longer this year and teams have less players with the WBC going on. 

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Padres Dealing Top Prospect?

The San Diego Union-Tribune is reporting that the Padres may attempt to deal first baseman Kyle Blanks. Blanks, who is 6-feet-6-inches, hit .325 in Double-A last season with 20 HR and a .404 OBP. He is starting to find his power and could really be a threat in the major leagues as early as 2010. However, the Padres already have an All-Star first baseman in Adrian Gonzalez, and Blanks doesn't play any other positions. 

If Blanks gets off to a hot start at Triple-A, the Padres could look to move him for a pitching prospect.

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Mulder to Athletics?

Free agent left hander Mark Mulder will throw a bullpen session to interested teams in the next week, according to the San Francisco Chronicle. The Athletics, Mulder's former team, will be in attendance and sources say they are interested in bringing him in. Mulder has consulted experts over the last two years and says he is arm angle is as good as ever. He may be a risky investment, but he could put up decent numbers for a team in need of an experienced big leaguer.

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Braves Sign Anderson

The Braves and Garrett Anderson have come to terms on a one year deal worth 2.5 million dollars. Anderson, who hit .293 with 15 HR in 145 games for the Angels last season, holds a .296 career batting average. Anderson is expected to platoon in left field with Matt Diaz, but he gives the Braves a contact hitter who seems to come through in clutch situations. "Last season, he hit .338 in 130-at bats with runners in scoring position, including a .356 with two outs. In the late innings or close games, he hit .371 with a .441 OBP in 89 at-bats. " 

The Braves have always had the reputation of having a very close knit clubhouse. Adding someone with as much experience as Anderson can only help their younger players develop. 

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Indians Sign Czech Catcher

The Indians signed 16-year old catcher Martin Cervenka to a non-drafted minor league contract. The Indians discovered the Czech catcher while evaluating players at Major League Baseball European Academy in Italy. Cervenka will continue to play with his club team in Prague until he is nineteen, spending summers at Academy's in Australia. However, the Indians like his raw tools and hope that this long term project will ultimately help the Indians and open a floodgate to more European players coming to the MLB.

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

A's Interested In Garciaparra?

Buster Olney is reporting that that Athletics are showing interest in free agent infielder Nomar Garciaparra. Garciaparra hit .264 with 8 HR in 55 games for the Dodgers last season, but hit .283 in 2007 (121 games). Garciaparra would help balance their lineup, considering he hit .339 against lefties last season.

Oakland still has interest in Orlando Cabrera, but will only make a move if he is willing to accept a deal worth 3-3.5 million dollars. 

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Rangers Sign Benson

The Rangers and Kris Benson have agreed to a minor league deal with an invitation to big league camp. The Rangers view Benson as a possible bottom of the rotation starter, but he has a lot to prove if he wants that spot. The Rangers have been doing adding a lot of minor league free agents, like Casey Daigle, Jason Jennings, Doug Mathis, and top prospects Neftali Feliz and Derek Holland. While it doesn't look like any of these guys will have serious impacts on the Rangers 2009 campaign, they will give some of the Rangers' regular pitchers more time off to prepare for the regular season. 

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Twins Eye Cruz

MLB.com is reporting that the Twins have made a contract offer to Juan Cruz and may try to work out a sign-and-trade with the Diamondbacks. "Obviously, it's tricky," Arizona general manager Josh Byrnes said Monday. "[Another team] would have to work out a deal with someone else and then we would have to get back in player value something that we feel is close to the respective picks." The Twins may land one of the top relievers in the game. He brings experience, a good work ethic, and excellent numbers to the Twins, who could use Cruz to fill in for the rehabbing Pat Neshek. 

Last season, Cruz went 4-0 with a 2.61 ERA and 71 strikeouts, in just 51.2 innings of work. 

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Twins Sign Crede

The Twins and Joe Crede have come to terms on a one year deal worth 2.5 million dollars. Although several Twins players have voiced their support for a Brian Buscher-Brendan Harris platoon at third, Crede gives the Twins a dangerous righty in the middle of their lineup. Crede hit .248 with 17 HR in 97 games for the White Sox last season, but hit 30 homeruns in 2006. However, he is a .219 hitter in 49 career games at the Metrodome. 

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Manny Ramirez Update

Free agent outfielder Manny Ramirez is still standing pat on his demands for a multiyear deal. Ramirez has said that he has offers on the table, but it is becoming more apparent that he tends to exaggerate. The Dodgers keep telling the media that their final offer is a one year deal worth 25 million dollars. Some sources believe that if Manny Ramirez doesn't act soon, the Dodgers will look to platoon Juan Pierre with someone like Josh Willingham, an outfielder in the Nationals crowded lineup.

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Orlando Hudson Update

FOXSports.com is reporting that the Dodgers are leading in the Orlando Hudson sweepstakes. Hudson, who hit .305 with 8 HR in 107 games last season, would cost the Dodgers a first round draft pick. However, the Dodgers will receive a pick between the first and second rounds, as well as the Braves' second round pick for losing Derek Lowe. Hudson would give the Dodgers a solid up the middle tandem, as well as a speed at the top of the order. 

The Royals, Cardinals, and White Sox have all expressed interest in Hudson. 

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

2009 Chicago Cubs Projection

C Geovanny Soto
.289 AVG, 26 HR, 92 RBI
1B Derrek Lee
.294 AVG, 21 HR, 81 RBI
2B Mike Fontenot
.283 AVG, 8 HR, 43 RBI
3B Aramis Ramirez
.292 AVG, 30 HR, 104 RBI
SS Ryan Theriot
.303 AVG, 2 HR, 47 RBI
LF Alfonso Soriano
.274 AVG, 33 HR, 78 RBI
CF Kosuke Fukudome
.277 AVG, 11 HR, 63 RBI
RF Milton Bradley
.287 AVG, 19 HR, 68 RBI

CF Reed Johnson
.278 AVG, 7 HR, 43 RBI
2B Aaron Miles
.286 AVG, 3 HR, 31 RBI

SP Carlos Zambrano
12-9 W-L, 3.62 ERA, 148 K
SP Ted Lilly
15-8 W-L, 3.86 ERA, 174 K
SP Ryan Dempster
13-10 W-L, 3.68 ERA, 156 K
SP Rich Harden
10-5 W-L, 2.93 ERA, 148 K
SP Sean Marshall
8-5 W-L, 4.24 ERA, 69 K

SP Aaron Heilman
6-4 W-L, 3.65 ERA, 62 K 

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Ken Griffey Jr. Update

The Ken Griffey Jr. race is starting to come to a close, with the Braves and Mariners as his two suitors. Mark Bowman of MLB.com reports that Griffey is sensitive about offending the Mariners while David O'Brien believes Griffey will choose the Braves after talking with Chipper Jones, who is currently working on his own extension. Griffey hit .249 with 18 HR in 143 games for the Reds and White Sox last season, but hit .274 with 6 HR after the All-Star Game.

Atlanta has a big African American population, something that could factor into Griffey's decision. Griffey approached Major League Baseball in 2007 about wearing the number 42 on Jackie Robinson Day. He also worked with young African Americans to get them more involved in the game. Griffey played in Seattle for 11 seasons and has been linked to the Mariners for a season and a half. He is expected to make a decision in the next day or two. 

UPDATE:Ken Griffey Jr. agrees to terms with the Seattle Mariners. 

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Orioles Close In On Roberts

The Orioles and Brian Roberts are closing in on a four year extension worth 40 million dollars. Roberts will make 8 million dollars next season, with the new deal kicking in through 2013. Roberts is a career .284 hitter, but has averaged 42 stolen bases over the past three seasons. Roberts has been the subject of trade talks for the past two seasons, drawing interest from the Indians, White Sox, and Cubs, among others.  

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Rays Signed Kennedy

The Tampa Tribune is reporting that the Rays have signed Adam Kennedy to a minor league deal with an invitation to Spring Training. The Cardinals are on the hook for Kennedy's 2009 salary, so it costs the Rays nothing to bring him in. He probably won't make the Opening Day roster, but a spot could open up for him during the season if he plays well.

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Dodgers Sign Ethier

The Dodgers and Andre Ethier have agreed to a one year deal worth 3.1 million dollars, avoiding arbitration. Ethier hit .305 with 20 HR in 141 games for the Dodgers last season, and received a great boost from the Manny Ramirez acquisition. He hit .335 with 9 HR after the All-Star Game, which included a .462 average in September.

Marlins Extend Gonzalez: The Marlins and Fredi Gonzalez have agreed to a two year extension. He's played a key part in the teams development following Jack McKean's departure.

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Reds Sign Encarnacion

The Reds and Edwin Encarnacion have agreed to a two year deal worth 7.6 million dollars. The deal came just hours before their arbitration hearing, something teams really would prefer to avoid. Encarnacion hit just .251 last season with 26 HR and 68 RBIs, but hit .289 with 16 HR in 2007. 

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Pirates Sign McClouth

The Pirates and outfielder Nate McLouth have agreed to a three year extension worth 15.75 million dollars. "We agreed to the deal because we believe in Nate and we're going to feel as strongly four years from now as we do today," general manager Neal Huntington said. "He can go out and relax and play and we can build around him." McLouth hit .276 last season with 26 homeruns in 152 games for the Pirates last season, and also played in the All-Star Game. 

Hopefully the Pirates can sign Paul Maholm to a long term deal, something they have worked hard to complete all offseason. 

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Brewers Sign Gagne

The Brewers and Eric Gagne have agreed to a minor league deal with an invitation to Spring Training. Gagne signed a one year deal with the Brewers last year for 10 million dollars, but he finished with a 5.44 ERA in 50 appearances. The Brewers added Trevor Hoffman and Jorge Julio to fill the pen, but bringing back Gagne in a middle relief role could really be effective. 

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Braves Close In On Glavine

The Braves are closing in on a deal for free agent pitcher Tom Glavine. Glavine has pitched for the Braves since 1987, and has 305 career wins. Losing him to another team on top of John Smoltz's departure would not have looked very good for the Braves. Glavine went 2-4 with a 5.54 ERA in 13 games for the Braves last season, and should be ready to go for Opening Day. While Glavine has lost some command, being the fifth starter gives the Braves an advantage because Glavine is far more experienced than any other fifth starter. 

Did you know?: In 1987, Glavine pitched in 9 games for the Braves going 2-4 with a 5.54 ERA. This season, in 13 games, he went 2-4 with a 5.54 ERA. The game total adds up to 22, which happens to be how many seasons Glavine has been with the Braves. 

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Brewers Eying Cordero?

Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel is reporting that the Brewers will send a scout to closer Chad Cordero's next throwing session. The Brewers still have interest in him, hoping they could potential turn him into their future closer. In 305 career appearances, Cordero has a 2.78 ERA with 128 saves. 

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Mailbag: A-Rod, AL Central, Lincecum

Q: I really wasn't that surprised to hear A-Rod did steroids. I watched him in Seattle and after he left for Texas, he blew up. Do you think the journalists will ever vote him in to the HOF?

Rob M. - Seattle, Washington. 

ELI: I think a lot depends on how the fans treat A-Rod and how accommodating A-Rod is to the reporters. If he is willing to answer all the questions and have a successful season, he could be on his way. After following what just transpired, including his first interview with Katie Couric, I would not vote him in.

Q: The AL Central is a very competitive division. I feel like this year, every team has a chance to win. Who do you think is going to win the division?

John R. - St. Louis, Missouri

ELI: Yes, the AL Central is going to be a very competitive division. However, I don't really see any teams being well above .500. If Francisco Liriano can stay healthy, the Twins could be a force in the Central. But at this point, my money is on the Indians.

Q: I read the other day that the Giants do not have any plans to sign Tim Linecum just yet. Does this mean that they may look to trade him for a power hitter or maybe a bunch of prospects?

Charlie F. - San Francisco, California

ELI: I don't think it means the Giants will trade him, but rather waiting to see how he does in 2009. He is just 24 years old and the Giants have him under their control until 2013. Lincecum would likely command 15-17 million dollars if he repeats his numbers in 2009, something the Giants might not be able to afford just yet. 

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Odalis Perez Holdout Situation

ESPN's Enrique Rojas is reporting that Odalis Perez has sent his agent to back to the Nationals to renegotiate his deal. "I thought it best I prefer to sit in my house if the Nationals do not show more appreciation for my work. Appreciate my work means to increase the value of the contract and guarantee it. I will not accept any minor league contracts with no safeguards. I instructed my agent to report my position to the Nationals." Perez went 7-12 with a 4.34 ERA in 30 starts last season, but had a FIP (Fielding Independent Pitching) of 4.62.*

It will be interesting to see if any teams make a move for Perez, considering he hasn't had a winning record in five seasons. 

*Fielding Independent Pitching: A way to measure all of those things for which a pitcher is specifically responsible. FIP helps you understand how well a pitcher pitched, regardless of how well his fielders fielded. 

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

MLB To Amend Type A Free Agent Rules

According to Ken Rosenthal, Major League Baseball, the players union, the Diamondbacks, and Juan Cruz's agents are discussing a way to do a sign-and-trade, despite that conflicting with the collective bargaining agreement. Once a free agent is signed, they cannot be traded until June 15 without the players consent. This could happen for the remaining free agents as well, but we are a week or so away from seeing anything happen. 

A sign-and-trade works out great for the Diamondbacks, who will sign him for a low price and likely receive a good prospect or two in return. A team like the Cardinals, who are low on cash, are back in play now that it could only cost a prospect or two. 

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Hudson Expected To Sign Soon?

According to Buster Olney, free agent second baseman Orlando Hudson is close to making a decision about where he will sign. The deal will likely be a one year deal, loaded with incentives. The Nationals have backed out of negotiations and the Royals are considered a long shot, leaving the Dodgers and maybe Mets as the two remaining options. However, signing Hudson means you will lose a first round draft pick, and the Dodgers probably don't want to surrender a pick to their division foe. 

While the White Sox have three potential second baseman, I wouldn't be surprised to see the White Sox make a final push. Kenny Williams likes to work under the radar, and Hudson could give the White Sox the offensive push they need at the top of the order, not to mention a solid up the middle tandem with shortstop Alexei Ramirez.

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

2009 White Sox Projection

DH Jim Thome
.252 AVG,  32 HR, 88 RBI
C A.J. Pierzynski
.274 AVG, 13 HR, 61 RBI
1B Paul Konerko
.267 AVG, 26 HR, 74 RBI
2B Chris Getz
.266 AVG, 5 HR, 47 RBI
3B Josh Fields
.246 AVG, 17 HR, 68 RBI
SS Alexei Ramirez
.289 AVG, 23 HR, 88 RBI
LF Carlos Quentin
.277 AVG, 28 HR, 109 RBI
CF Jerry Owens
.269 AVG, 3 HR, 38 RBI
RF Jermaine Dye
.274 AVG, 31 HR, 96 RBI

CF Brian Anderson
.248 AVG, 9 HR, 34 RBI

SP Mark Buehrle
12-12 W-L, 3.98 ERA, 128 K
SP John Danks
15-7 W-L, 3.49 ERA, 173 K
SP Gavin Floyd
10-12 W-L, 4.52 ERA, 153 K
SP Bartolo Colon
7-6 W-L, 4.43 ERA, 47 K
SP Clayton Richard
6-8 W-L, 4.84 ERA, 74 K

SP Jose Contreras
6-4 W-L, 4.64 ERA, 38 K

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Phillies Sign Cairo

The Phillies have signed Miguel Cairo to a minor league deal with an invitation to Spring Training. Cairo hit .249 last season with the Mariners, but can serve as a back up at nearly any position, having played all four infield positions left and right field last season. 

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Mariners, Fields Agree To Deal

The Mariners and first round draft pick Josh Fields have agreed to a deal, Jim Callis is reporting. Fields will receive 1.75 million dollars, after requesting 2 million dollars. The Mariners expect Fields to reach the majors quickly as a reliever. He combines a mid-nineties fastball with a hard curveball, which will likely be seen in Mariners big league camp next week.

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Braves Eye Griffey

ESPN.com is reporting that the Braves are making a late play for Ken Griffey Jr. and have already started discussing money with his agent. Griffey is the Braves' prime target, and the rumors that a Mariners deal is imminent were shot down by Griffey himself. Griffey would seemingly split time with Matt Diaz in left field, giving them more balance in the lineup.

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

2009 Atlanta Braves Projection

C Brian McCann
.308 AVG, 24 HR, 98 RBI
1B Casey Kotchman
.284 AVG, 15 HR, 72 RBI
2B Kelly Johnson
.281 AVG, 14 HR, 66 RBI
3B Chipper Jones
.326 AVG, 23 HR, 84 RBI
SS Yunel Escobar
.304 AVG, 11 HR, 63 RBI
LF Matt Diaz
.298 AVG, 8 HR, 44 RBI
CF Josh Anderson
.285 AVG, 3 HR, 36 RBI
RF Jeff Francoeur
.272 AVG, 18 HR, 87 HR

SP Derek Lowe
15-8 W-L, 3.56 ERA, 139 K
SP Javier Vazquez
13-9 W-L, 3.84 ERA, 189 K
SP Jair Jurrjens
12-8 W-L, 3.88 ERA, 128 K
SP Kenshin Kawakami
9-10 W-L, 4.06 ERA, 117 K
SP Tim Hudson
5-2 W-L, W-L, 3.38 ERA, 43 K

SP Jorge Campillo
10-8 W-L, 3.92 ERA, 111 K

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Royals Interested In Hudson?

The Royals are looking for room in their budget to sign second baseman Orlando Hudson, Buster Olney is reporting. Hudson has drawn interest from the Nationals and Dodgers, but his price has to come down considerably before any team will make a serious offer. With Bobby Abreu getting 5 million dollars for one year, Hudson is probably looking at 3-4 million dollars, plus incentives. 

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Mets Sign Hernandez

The New York Post is reporting that the Mets have signed Livan Hernandez to a minor league deal and invited him to Spring Training. Hernandez, who went 13-11 with a 6.05 ERA for the Twins and Rockies last season, will make at least one million dollars if he makes the team. Hernandez can be very valuable to a team because of his durability, but he will have to compete with Freddy Garcia, Jon Niese, and Tim Redding for the fifth spot. 

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Cardinals May Trade Schumaker?

With six outfielders seriously vying for a starting spot, Skip Schumaker may be the odd man out. Schumaker will take ground balls at second base, but he has never played there in his career. Not only that, but he is up against Brendan Ryan, Jarrett Hoffpauir, Brian Barden, and non-roster invitee Joe Thurston. La Russa had some words of encouragement for Schumaker, saying he could easily take the job if he continues to work hard. 

Best case scenario for the Cardinals is that Schumaker turns into a Aaron Miles like player in 2009. However, a team like the Giants or White Sox, who are in need of a versatile player, could make a play for him. If Schumaker can prove to teams that he can play second base, the Cardinals could move him. 

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Astros Eye Pudge?

The Astros are reportedly considering free agent catcher Ivan Rodriguez. Rodriguez hit .276 with 7 HR in 115 games for the Tigers and Yankees last season, but has a career .301 average. The Marlins are also interested in Rodriguez, but are standing pat on their price, hoping he will fall in to their hands.

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Mariners Close In On Griffey

ESPN.com is reporting that the Mariners are stepping up their pursuits for free agent outfielder Ken Griffey Jr. Griffey hit .249 with 18 HR last season in 149 games between the White Sox and Reds, and played his first 11 seasons with the Mariners. It will be a great reunion for longtime Mariners fans who saw Griffey hit the first of his 611 (and counting) homeruns. 

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

2009 Boston Red Sox Projection

DH David Ortiz
.284 AVG, 32 HR, 114 RBI
C Jason Varitek
.237 AVG, 12 HR, 52 RBI
1B Kevin Youkilis
.294 AVG, 24 HR, 94 RBI
2B Dustin Pedroia
.311 AVG, 14 HR, 76 RBI
3B Mike Lowell
.275 AVG, 16 HR, 77 RBI
SS Julio Lugo
.259 AVG, 7 HR, 44 RBI
LF Jason Bay
.277 AVG, 32 HR, 108 RBI
CF Jacoby Ellsbury
.302 AVG, 9 HR, 53 RBI
RF J.D. Drew
.269 AVG, 18 HR, 76 RBI

SP Josh Beckett
15-8 W-L, 3.73 ERA, 178 K
SP Jon Lester
13-7 W-L, 4.12 ERA, 128 K
SP Daisuke Matsuzaka
16-9 W-L, 3.56 ERA, 147 K
SP Tim Wakefield
10-13 W-L, 4.49 ERA, 114 K
SP Brad Penny
8-7 W-L, 3.84 ERA, 88 K

SP John Smoltz
9-5 W-L, 3.77 ERA, 114 K
SP Clay Buchholz
7-8 W-L, 4.56 ERA, 123 K
SP Michael Bowden
4-6 W-L, 4.79 ERA, 74 K

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

A's Closing In On Cabrera?

The Athletics are reportedly closing in on a one year deal with Orlando Cabrera, the SF Chronicle is reporting. Cabrera is looking for a deal close to Edgar Renteria's deal - which is 9 million dollars annually - but the A's are looking for something closer to 6-6.5 million dollars. Cabrera really doesn't have any other options, so it is likely they will come to terms on a deal before Spring Training. 

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Angels To Sign Abreu

The Angels and Bobby Abreu are closing in on a one year deal, the Los Angeles Times is reporting. The deal is expected to be done by Spring Training, meaning Abreu will be able to suit up as an Angel. Abreu drew interest from the Cubs, Mets, Braves, and Dodgers, with the Angels toying with the idea along the way. They jumped in late last week and were able to get a deal worked out quickly, a specialty of Angels GM Tony Reagins. 

Abreu is still athletic and should be able to contribute, but already have four other outfielders. Manager Mike Scoscia is very flexible and could move Rivera to play some first base with Kendry Morales. More importantly, Abreu gives the Angels a solid lefty bat in the lineup. 

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Nationals Sign Dunn

The Nationals and Adam Dunn have agreed to a two year deal worth 20 million dollars, FOXSports.com is reporting. Dunn, who has hit at least 40 HR in the last five seasons, will take a physical in the next week. This deal gives the Nationals a big bat, something they have desperately needed.

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Angels Waive Green, Abreu Coming?

The Angels have waived pitching prospect Nick Green, 24, who went 8-8 with a 5.32 ERA in 28 games at Triple-A. The move opens up a spot on the 40-man roster, possibly for an outfielder. ESPN.com's Jerry Crasnick is reporting that the Angels and Bobby Abreu are in serious discussions concerning a one year deal. Abreu could be the biggest steal this offseason, and the Angels jumped in at the perfect moment. 

Green doesn't project into being an ace any time soon, but he could make for a decent back end of the rotation starter in the NL. The Braves, Nationals, Cardinals, and Padres could all look to add the right hander.

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Quick Hits: Hudson, Beimel, Ohman, Cordero

Quick Hits:
  • Free Agent Orlando Hudson is still a free agent, but isn't close to signing anywhere. The Dodgers, Nationals, and Cubs have been mentioned as possible suitors, but the Cubs plan to use their remaining money towards pitching and the Nationals have already starting pursuing other options. The Cardinals, who released Adam Kennedy, would make sense for Hudson, but the Cardinals are not interested.
  • Free agent reliever Joe Beimel is not going to Colorado. Rockies GM Dan O'Dowd told reporters that they have "turned the page on Beimel." The Tigers remain interested in Beimel, who went 5-1 with a 2.02 ERA in 71 games last season. The Rockies could be making a play to bring his price down, hoping he is desperate for work when Spring Training opens for teams in the next couple of days.
  • Free agent lefty Will Ohman is drawing interest from the Tampa Bay Rays. The Mets and Phillies are still interested in Ohman, who is seeking a one or two year deal worth 2-4 million dollars annually.
  • The Royals are talking with free agent closer Chad Cordero. Cordero, who will be 27 in March, is still recovering from injury. The Royals aren't the only team interested. 10 other teams went to see Cordero throw, including the Mets and Angels.
This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Blue Jays Acquire Bush

The Blue Jays have acquired former number one draft pick Matt Bush from the Padres in exchange for a player to be named later. Bush was designated for assignment after an off the field incident at a local high school. Bush has yet to be charged with anything, but Bush's checkered past has given the Padres no options but to deal him. Bush is still recovering from Tommy John Surgery, but has the potential to be a solid pitcher.

The Padres will likely keep him in extended Spring Training before shipping off to the minors.

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

2009 Arizona Diamondbacks Projection

C Chris Snyder
.246 AVG, 16 HR, 56 RBI
1B Chad Tracy
.283 AVG, 13 HR, 49 RBI
2B Felipe Lopez
.273 AVG, 8 HR, 43 RBI
3B Mark Reynolds
.262 AVG, 24 HR, 87 RBI
SS Stephen Drew
.285 AVG, 17 HR, 66 RBI
LF Conor Jackson
.298 AVG, 15 HR, 73 RBI
CF Chris Young
.257 AVG, 27 HR, 78 RBI
RF Justin Upton
.269 AVG, 19 HR, 65 RBI

OF Eric Byrnes
.254 AVG, 15 HR, 52 RBI

SP Brandon Webb
16-10 W-L, 3.29 ERA, 176 K
SP Dan Haren
15-9 W-L, 3.46 ERA, 203 K
SP Doug Davis
8-12 W-L, 4.63 ERA, 119 K
SP Jon Garland
11-10 W-L, 4.52 ERA, 105 K
SP Max Scherzer
7-3 W-L, 3.78 ERA, 87 K

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Quick Hits: Kennedy, Aurilia, Looper, Ensberg

Quick Hits:
  • The Cardinals have released second baseman Adam Kennedy. The team that picks up Kennedy will have to pay him 400,000 dollars, with the Cardinals picking up the remainder of his 4 million dollar deal. Skip Schumaker will likely get a shot at second base, as well as Brendan Ryan and Jarrett Hoffpauir. As for teams that could pick him up, the Nationals are a possibility, as well as the Dodgers, if they do not sign Orlando Hudson.
  • The Giants and Rich Aurilia have come to terms on a minor league deal. Aurilia will be valuable off the bench, considering he hit .321 against lefties last season.
  • The Brewers are reportedly closing in on free agent Braden Looper, according to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. He will hopefully provide stability to the Brewers rotation, which loss its two top starters. In 12 games at Miller Park, Looper is 0-4 with a 7.01 ERA.
  • The Rays have signed Morgan Ensberg to a minor league deal with an invitation to Spring Training. He probably won't make the team out of Spring Training, but could be a midseason call up.
This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Rodriguez Admits Steroid Use

Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez admitted to using steriods from 2001-2003, according to FOXSports.com. "And I did take a banned substance and, you know, for that I'm very sorry and deeply regretful. And although it was the culture back then and Major League Baseball overall was very — I just feel that — you know, I'm just sorry. I'm sorry for that time. I'm sorry to fans. I'm sorry for my fans in Texas. It wasn't until then that I ever thought about substance of any kind, and since then I've proved to myself and to everyone that I don't need any of that." It will be interesting to see how Rodriguez is embraced by fans around baseball. He is 209 homeruns away from Barry Bonds' homerun record, and is just 33. If he were to hit 30 homeruns for the next seven seasons, he would have 763 homeruns.

Odds appear to be in Rodriguez's favor, who has averaged 41 homeruns over the past five seasons.

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

2009 Baltimore Orioles Projection

DH Luke Scott
.264 AVG, 24 HR, 72 RBI
C Gregg Zaun
.227 AVG, 5 HR, 34 RBI
1B Aubrey Huff
.282 AVG, 28 HR, 92 RBI
2B Brian Roberts
.285 AVG, 12 HR, 58 RBI
3B Melvin Mora
.268 AVG, 16 HR, 72 RBI
SS Cesar Iztuis
.264 AVG, 1 HR, 27 RBI
LF Felix Pie
.277 AVG, 14 HR, 56 RBI
CF Adam Jones
.275 AVG, 17 HR, 68 RBI
RF Nick Markakis
.309 AVG, 25 HR, 108 RBI

UT Ty Wigginton
.269 AVG, 21 HR, 60 RBI
C Matt Wieters
.306 AVG, 22 HR, 68 RBI

SP Jeremy Guthrie
11-10 W-L, 4.11 ERA, 115 K
SP Mark Hendrickson
6-8 W-L, 4.72 ERA, 62 K
SP Rich Hill
7-9 W-L, 4.58 ERA, 134 K
SP Koji Uehara
10-8 W-L, 4.30 ERA, 123 K
SP Chris Waters
6-11 W-L, 5.53 ERA, 63 K

SP Radhames Liz
4-9 W-L, 5.22 ERA, 82 K

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Quick Hits: Jones, Strasburg, Teahen, Olson, Free Agents

Quick Hits:
  • The Rangers and Andruw Jones have agreed to a minor league deal with an invitation to Spring Training. Jones will earn 500,000 if he makes the major league club. He is no guarantee to make the team, vying for spots against four other starters. 
  • Chico Harlan of the Washington Post has a good article out about Stephen Strasburg. Nationals GM Jim Bowden said he is "as good a pitcher we've seen in the draft in 10 or 15 years." He could be in the majors in 2010, if not the second half of this upcoming season. 
  • The Royals and Mark Teahen have agreed to a one year deal worth 3.57 million dollars, avoiding arbitration. 
  • The Nationals and Scott Olson have agreed to a one year deal worth 2.8 million dollars, avoiding arbitration. Could turn out to be a good deal for the Nats.
  • Phil Rogers of the Chicago Tribune suggests the White Sox vacant Spring Training camp in Tucson be turned into a free agent Spring Training complex, for those players who have not been signed. Sounds intriguing, but could be over-crowded. 
This story was approved by MLB Rumors.

Phillies Sign Howard

The Phillies and Ryan Howard have agreed to a three year deal worth 54 million dollars, avoiding arbitration. Howard, hit .251 with 48 HR and 146 RBI in 162 games last season, will earn 15 million dollars next season. "We're very pleased to have avoided the arbitration process, not just for this year, but also for the next two," general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. said. "Ryan is clearly one of the top power hitters and run producers in the major leagues and is a very important part of our championship club." Howard won't be a free agent until after the 2011 season, so this new deal simply buys out his arbitration years.

This story was approved by MLB Rumors.