- Righty Dustin McGowan and the Blue Jays have agreed on a contract extension, resulting in a 3yr/$4.1 million deal. The fragile pitcher celebrated with a trip to the DL for a foot injury that could keep him out until May. Ouch.
- The Brewers signed young catcher Jonathan Lucroy to a 5yr/$11 million extension. If Lucroy reaches Super 2 arbitration status – which is likely – the contract jumps to $13 million. It buys out his remaining non-arbitration year and all of his arbitration years.
- The Cubs and Red Sox finally, finally finished their dance of compensation, with Boston sending 19-year-old prospect Jair Bogaerts, brother of the organization’s top prospect, to Chicago. Of course, the drama continues, as (Not That) Chris Carpenter will require surgery to remove bone spurs, a condition that was apparently unknown before he was sent to Boston as compensation.
- The Rangers and Derek Holland reached an agreement on a 5yr/$28 million extension. The contract includes two option years, meaning Texas could lock up the starter until 2018. The lefty posted a 3.94 FIP last season.
- Outfielder Jason Bourgeois and catcher Humberto Quintero are headed from Houston to Kansas City, in exchange for a minor league pitcher and a PTBNL. The trade will infuse Houston with more young talent, and provide the Royals with a veteran backstop in the wake of Salvador Perez’ knee surgery.
- Dontrelle Willis is headed not to the Rockies, as I suggested last week, but to Baltimore on a minor league contract. Willis would make $700k in the big leagues, most likely as a lefty specialist in the ‘pen.
- Catcher Nick Hundley signed a 3yr/$9 million extension with the Padres, buying out his arbitration years. The deal includes an option for 2015 as well. The 28-year-old posted a respectable .288/.347/.477 line in 82 games last season.
- Currently being shopped: Giants middle infielders Ryan Theriot and Mike Fontenot; Orioles corner outfielder Mark Reynolds and relief pitcher Kevin Gregg.
- Free agent DH Vladimir Guerrero is determined to play this season, and will consider heading to Japan if he runs out of options stateside.
To keep up with transaction news in real-time, check out MLB Trade Rumors, their Twitter account, and their Free Agent Tracker. The regular season is bearing down on us, so we’ll see you back here next week!
- A year of retirement didn’t sit well with Andy Pettitte. He’s back, and he signed a minor-league contract potentially worth 2.5 million with the Yankees. The 39-year-old left on a relatively high note, posting a 3.28 ERA/3.85 FIP in 2010.
- The Royals locked up shortstop Alcides Escobar with a 4-year, $10.5 million deal. The contract includes options for 2016 and 2017, which could max it out at $21.75 million. Manager Ned Yost thinks Escobar is Gold Glove-caliber.
- The Pitcher Formerly Known As Fausto Carmona, aka Roberto Hernandez, restructured his contract with the Indians. He will be making significantly less than the $7 million originally agreed on; possibly less than $3 million. The restructuring also removed an option year. Hernandez is still on the restricted list.
- The Red Sox have agreed to sign 20-year-old Dominican righty Simon Mercedes. Mercedes has had identity issues in the past, presenting himself as younger and under a different name. He was banned for a year after signing with the Giants under false pretenses. The deal, once approved by MLB, will be worth $800k.
- After the injury to starter Salvador Perez, the Royals contacted Ivan Rodriguez to invite him to camp. The catcher has yet to accept, although he does hope to continue playing this season. Perez is expected to be out for at least three months.
- The Phillies released a struggling Dontrelle Willis several days ago, but the Rockies are looking for pitching and are thinking about picking the lefty up.
For more transaction news, such as there is these days, check out MLB Trade Rumors, their Twitter account, and their Free Agent Tracker. You should also stop by MLB’s Hot Stove blog. See you back here next week, to tide you over until real games start.
- Lefty reliever Glen Perkins signed an extension with the Twins, adding 3 years, $10.3 million, and an option for 2016 to his contract. Perkins had a strong 2011 in Minnesota, posting a 2.48 ERA/2.41 FIP.
- The Cubs officially announced their deal with Cuban lefty Gerardo Concepcion, a 5-year, $6 million Major League contract. Concepcion, 20, will report to a minor league team to start off the season.
- Chicago GM Jed Hoyer would not, on the other hand, comment on the status of negotiations with Concepcion’s fellow Cuban prospect Jorge Soler. Common wisdom suggests that the Cubs will land him, but the young slugger still has not been declared a free agent.
- The Nationals have been asking after Astros outfielder Jason Bourgeois, despite manager Davey Johnson’s insistence that he’s happy with his current outfield.
- Free agent lefty Mike Gonzalez has drawn interest from both the White Sox – although nothing is in the works – and the Rangers. He turned down a non-roster invite from Texas, and is holding out for a better option.
- Also from the link above, the White Sox are kicking the tires on lefty Arthur Rhodes, proving that if you’re lucky enough to be left-handed, you can play baseball literally forever (*cough*Jamie Moyer*cough*).
- Speak of the devil: Jamie Moyer is making a comeback bid with the Rockies, and hurled three scoreless on Sunday. Dude is 49. I wish him luck.
- The Giants and starter Matt Cain are getting closer on a contract extension. Cain would be a free agent at the end of the season if San Francisco isn’t able to lock him up.
- NOT close to an extension are Cole Hamels and the Phillies. Hamel’s agent met with Phillies brass last week, but Ken Rosenthal tweets that the sides aren’t close.
For more transaction news, such as there is these days, check out MLB Trade Rumors, their Twitter account, and their Free Agent Tracker. You should also stop by MLB’s Hot Stove blog. And when you’re not doing those things, go watch baseball, already! It’s what I’ll be doing.
Teams are starting to put the finishing touches on their rosters, settling hard-fought deals and adding depth. Except for Oakland. I have no idea what they’re going to do with a roster full of outfielders.
- The Red Sox and DH David Ortiz reached an eleventh-hour agreement, avoiding arbitration with a one-year, $14.575 million deal. The figure represents the midpoint between the two sides. Big Papi, just in case you weren’t clear on things, slashed .309/.398/.554 in 2011.
- In the wake of “Fausto Carmona” uncertainty, the Indians have signed Jon Garland to a minor-league deal, adding depth and options to their rotation. Garland is returning from a shoulder injury that sidelined him in 2011. When healthy, he’s an innings-eater with a career 4.68 FIP.
- In its apparent quest to amass every single free agent outfielder, Oakland inked a record 4-year, $36 million deal with Cuban defector Yoenis Cespedes. The Mystery Team has done well this off-season; no one even really considered the A’s to be in the running for Cespedes.
- Righty reliever Casey Janssen signed a 2-year, $5.9 million extension with the Blue Jays, dodging salary arbitration. Janssen has had a bit of a yo-yo career so far, but posted a 2.26 ERA/2.45 FIP over 55.2 innings last season.
UPDATE: The Oakland A’s have agreed to a 4-year, $36 million deal with Yoenis Cespedes according to pretty much everyone on the Internet, including MLB.
The Rangers locked down a few of their big postseason performers in this week’s Hot Stove wheelings and dealings.
- Veterans Hong-Chih Kuo and Shawn Camp, lefty and righty relievers respectively, signed with the Mariners. Kuo has a history of excellence when healthy, but has had a career plagued with DL trips. Camp is durable but no standout, with a career 4.16 FIP.
- NL Cy Young Award winner Clayton Kershaw avoided arbitration with the Dodgers, signing a 2yr/$19 million deal. The contract buys out Kershaw’s first two years of arbitration eligibility. Kershaw made just $500k last year, and was seeking $10 million in arbitration, while the Dodgers had offered $6.5 million.
- Scott Boras client and shortstop half of my current favorite double-play combo Elvis Andrus agreed to a 3yr/$14.4 million contract with the Rangers. The deal buys out all of Andrus’ arbitration years. Only 23, he slashed .279/.347/.361 in 2011 and showed very strong defensive value.
- The Diamondbacks avoided arbitration with lefty reliever Craig Breslow, agreeing to a one-year, $1.795 million deal. Breslow posted a 3.79 ERA/3.58 FIP with Oakland in 2011. The deal locks down the last of Arizona’s arbitration-eligible players for 2012.
- Ex-Cub Aramis Ramirez signed with the division rival Brewers for a 3yr/$36 million deal. With Prince Fielder likely to leave and Ryan Braun uncertain due to PED allegations, the third baseman’s .306/.361/.510 line becomes even more appealing.
- The Blue Jays traded a minor league pitcher for Phillies outfielder Ben Francisco, slated to earn around $1.5 million next year. Francisco, a right-handed hitter, adds depth to an already deep outfield for the Jays.
- Righty reliever Takashi Saito signed with the Diamondbacks for 1 year and $1.75 million. Despite a hamstring strain last season, Saito put up very good numbers with the Brewers: 2.03 ERA, 7.8 K/9, 3.0 BB/9.
- The Marlins signed veteran outfielder and ex-Giant Aaron Rowand, he of the .233/.274/.347 line. The Giants are paying all but the league minimum amount of the $12 million Rowand is owed in 2012, making him an extremely cheap pickup.
- The Marlins also traded righty reliever Burke Badenhop to the Rays for a minor-league catcher. Badenhop is expected to make around $1.1 million next year, and while his numbers aren’t overwhelming, his high ground-ball rate should play nice with Tampa Bay’s good defense.
- The Brewers shored up their bullpen and Pittsburgh gained some depth at the corner infield positions with a swap of Jose Veras and Casey McGehee. McGehee is coming off of a disappointing season, and was somewhat superfluous with the Ramirez signing. Veras is a reliable setup man with a 3.80 ERA and 27 holds, but joins an already very righty-heavy bullpen.
- Utility infielder Skip Schumaker will rejoin the Cardinals for a 2yr/$3 million deal. Schumaker can also play all three outfield positions, but with the non-tender of Ryan Theriot, looks to get more playing time at second base.
- The Phillies signed Dontrelle Willis to a 1yr/$850,000 contract; Willis is expected to pitch out of the bullpen. Starting for the Reds last year, Willis’ numbers were unimpressive, but he has always been effective against left-handed hitters.
- Kelly Shoppach, a.k.a. the #Shoppachalypse, has signed with the Red Sox for 1yr/$1.35 million. Shoppach is notable for his defense, throwing out 41% of attempted steals.
- Lefty starter Tsuyoshi Wada signed with the Orioles for 2yrs/$8.15 million after putting up outstanding numbers for the Fukuoka SoftBank Hawks in Japan. Wada favors control over velocity, and posted a 1.53 ERA last season.
- The Twins have signed veteran outfielder Josh Willingham to 3 years and $21 million with performance incentives. Willingham provides some much needed power, especially considering the departure of Michael Cuddyer. » Continue reading “Monday Trade Roundup: Relief Pitcher Week”
The rumors were thick in the air last week, and the biggest names have finally put pen to paper with some unexpected results. Let’s get to it.
- The Dodgers signed former Brewers utilityman Jerry Hairston, Jr. to 2yrs/$6 million. Hairston primarily plays infield, but can play more or less anywhere with consistent, if not overwhelming, offensive production.
- Reliever Matt Capps has re-signed with the Twins for $4.5 million in 2012, with an option for 2013. He had a strong 2010 after joining the Twins, but is coming off of a down year.
- Also signing with the Dodgers is starter Aaron Harang, who sealed a 2yr/$12 million deal with options for 2014. Harang is coming off of a bounceback year, but his peripherals suggest that the effects of Petco Park were not insignificant.
- The Twins traded starter Kevin Slowey to the Rockies for a minor-league pitcher. Slowey’s 2011 season was injury-plagued and not very pretty, and now he’s an extreme flyball pitcher in Coors Field. If this doesn’t make sense to you, it doesn’t to me either.
- The Blue Jays gave up a solid pitching prospect to acquire White Sox closer Sergio Santos. The righty has some control issues, but is a strikeout machine with genuinely good stuff. His contract contains multiple options, providing the Jays with a certain amount of security until as late as 2017.
- Imposing righty Jon Rauch signed with the Mets for one year and something in the vicinity of $3.5 million. Rauch’s numbers are not great, but he has racked up quite a few saves, which is apparently convincing enough for Mets brass.
- Joining Rauch in New York will be Toronto bullpen-mate Frank Francisco. Francisco’s 3.55 ERA is much more confidence-inspiring, garnering him a 2yr/$12 million deal.
- The Giants traded center fielder Andres Torres and righty Ramon Ramirez to the Mets for outfielder Angel Pagan. Pagan will provide a defensive counterbalance to Aubrey Huff and Melky Cabrera in San Francisco’s outfield. Ramirez, a sparkling setup man, will help bolster the Mets’ pen while Torres will fit right into Pagan’s role, provided his bat can bounce back from a down year.
- Nate McLouth returns to his Pittsburgh beginnings, signing a 1yr/$1.75 million contract with the Pirates, who originally drafted him. McLouth was productive in Pittsburgh, but after being traded to Atlanta in 2009, struggled mightily with the bat.
- The Padres acquired closer Huston Street from the Rockies for a minor-league pitcher. Street had a strong 2011, though his home run rate was elevated (which should see improvement in Petco Park). » Continue reading “Monday Trade Roundup: The Aftermath”
With the Winter Meetings starting today, this may be obsolete before it even goes up. If you want to follow the activity in real-time, I’d suggest the MLB Trade Rumors Twitter account, the Aerys MLB Twitter account, and the Twitter accounts (there’s a pattern here) of your favorite reliable network analysts who happen to be in Dallas. And of course, if anything exciting happens that you’d like to share, feel free to post it in the comments.
Alright, what happened last week? (Spoiler alert: the Marlins.)
- The Royals opted to shore up their bullpen with Jonathan Broxton, signing him to 1yr/$4 million plus incentives. The righty is coming off of arthroscopic elbow surgery and is expected to act as a setup man for Joakim Soria.
- In the “Theo Trio’s” first move since taking the throne, the Cubs have signed outfielder David DeJesus to 2yrs/$10 million, with an option for 2014. DeJesus is coming off of a weak 2011 where he hit .240/.323/.376, but the veteran’s career numbers are markedly better.
- Infielder Adam Kennedy has signed with the Dodgers for 1yr/$800k plus incentives. He is expected to primarily fill a utility role, and can play all infield positions except shortstop.
- Speaking of utility infielders, the Tigers have re-signed Ramon Santiago to 2yrs/$4 million. The club has been clear that they do not view Santiago as an everyday player.
- Veteran catcher Ramon Hernandez has signed with the Rockies, providing the Reds with a supplemental draft pick. The deal is for 2yrs/$6.5 million, and the Rox seem to hope a veteran presence behind the plate will provide stability for their young rotation.
- In a related move, Colorado sent catcher Chris Iannetta to Los Angeles for young righty Tyler Chatwood. The pitcher was ranked 5th in the Angels’ minor-league system. Iannetta has struggled recently, and hit .238/.370/.414 in 2011.
- More catchers: the Rangers sent Taylor Teagarden to Baltimore for a minor-league righty and a PTBNL. Teagarden, who has a career .220/.286/.417 line, will back up all-star starter Matt Wieters.
- Heath Bell, about whom there has been much speculation, has decided to sign with Miami, who are apparently on a quest to buy up all the best toys. Bell will make $27 million over 3 years, with an option for 2015; the 34-year-old has been one of the premier closers in baseball over the past few seasons.
- The Dodgers signed left-hander Chris Capuano to fill out their rotation, inking him to a 2yr/$10 million deal with incentives and an option for 2014. Capuano pitched better than his 4.55 ERA last season, his first full season as a starter since returning from two Tommy John surgeries.
- Former Nationals outfielder Laynce Nix will reportedly sign a 2-year deal with Philadelphia. The lefty slugger is a clear platoon player, but is genuinely effective against righties.
- The Fish finally landed the Big One, agreeing to terms with Jose Reyes on a 6yr/$106 million deal. Clearly, Miami is looking to get butts in brand-new seats. The acquisition of a high-profile shortstop does raise questions about Hanley Ramirez, who may move to third.
I’m not even going to TRY to pin down all the rumors flying around, with the Winter Meetings getting hot and heavy like they are. Check out MLB Trade Rumors, MLB’s own Hot Stove blog, and the MLB free agent tracker. I’ll see you here next week, to make sense of the madness.
It’s that time again! Let’s look at who has been moving where in MLB over the past week. It’s been fairly quiet in terms of actual moves, but the west coast has been busy, and the rumor mill has been heating up on some big-name free agents.
- Los Angeles extended MVP candidate Matt Kemp for 8 years and $160 million. The contract is one of the most expensive in MLB history, but with the Dodgers’ financial uncertainty and eventual sale, locking down their star center fielder was an understandable move.
- The Dodgers also reached an agreement with Mark Ellis, who will take over at second base. The deal is for 2 years and $8.75 million, with an option for 2014. Ellis is considered a solid defender, and LA needed help at second after a rough 2011 and with Jamey Carroll headed to Minnesota.
- The Padres are bringing Mark Kotsay back. The outfielder agreed to a 1-year, $1.25 million contract after his third career trip to the postseason with the Brewers in 2011.
- After losing Rod Barajas to the Pirates, the Dodgers signed catcher Matt Treanor, formerly of Kansas City, to a one-year, $1 million deal with an option for 2013. Treanor, while not an offensive force, is well-regarded defensively (something the Dodgers seem to be focusing on).
- The Tigers and catcher Gerald Laird, who won a World Series ring with the Cardinals in 2011, have agreed to a one-year, $1 million contract. The move frees up Victor Martinez to act as full-time DH.
- The Phillies have chosen to re-ink Brian Schneider as their backup catcher for one year and $800,000. Schneider’s bat is weak, but the Phils like the way he interacts with their staff, and particularly with up-and-comer Vance Worley.
- The Pirates declined their option on Ryan Doumit, who agreed to a one-year, $3 million contract with the Twins. The catcher will back up Joe Mauer, who has struggled lately with injuries.
- The Rockies traded utilityman Ty Wigginton, owed $4 million in 2012, to Philadelphia. Wigginton sports a .265/.325/.443 line over a 10-year career.