July 2009

Day In Review: 7/31/09

The non-waiver trade deadline has passed, and today absolutely did not disappoint those seeking lots of trade action. Several surprising moves occurred, and another Cy Young winner was moved, but it wasn't Roy Halladay…

Trades that happened:

  • If at first you don't succeed, try try again. The White Sox tried again, and this time they landed their ace, as Jake Peavy approved a trade to the South Side. The White Sox sent Aaron Poreda, Clayton Richard, Adam Russell and Dexter Carter to the Padres in exchange. Peavy's recovering from a torn tendon in his ankle, but will pitch again in 2009 most likely.
  • Another big name on the move, Victor Martinez went to the Red Sox in exchange for Justin Masterson, Bryan Price, and Nick Hagadone. This move made newly acquired Adam LaRoche expendable, and he was sent back to Atlanta for a second tour in exchange for Casey Kotchman.
  • The White Sox weren't the only AL Central team to strengthen their rotation; the Tigers landed Jarrod Washburn in exhcange for Luke French and Mauricio Robles. Does this put them over the top as the team to beat?
  • The AL Central was a flurry of action, as the Twins acquired veteran shortstop Orlando Cabrera in exchange for minor league shortstop Tyler Ladendorf. The Twins played the waiting game, and it paid off, as they wound up not dealing their #5 prospect, Danny Valencia, whom the A's reportedly originally asked for. The A's even sent $500K as well.
  • Yesterday, I said it looked like Scott Rolen would remain in Toronto. Shows what I know. He was acquired by the Reds for Edwin Encarnacion, Josh Roenicke, and Zach Stewart. The Jays are sending $4MM as well.
  • Colorado shored up its bullpen, adding Joe Beimel in exchange for minor leaguers Ryan Mattheus and Robinson Fabian.
  • We've heard Nick Johnson rumors for months now, and he finally was traded on the last day, within the division, to the Marlins. The Marlins sent Double-A lefty Aaron Thompson to the Nats in exchange. The Nats are paying the remainder of Johnson's salary.
  • Who said the Yankees would have a quiet deadline? They acquired Jerry Hairston Jr. in exchange for minor leaguer Chase Weems.
  • In a more minor move, the Blue Jays acquired Double-A pitcher Sean Smith from the Pirates for future considerations.
  • Finally, the Dodgers acquired Vinny Rottino from the Brewers, sending Claudio Vargas their way for a reunion with his former club.

Moves that didn't happen:

  • So many rumors, so few results. At long last, Roy Halladay is… a Toronto Blue Jay. The Jays were clearly not "wowed," as J.P. Ricciardi required. In the end, no team wanted to pay the multiple top prospects that were asked for.
  • A few new names were added to the Heath Bell mix, including the Twins, Dodgers, and Angels. However, when the smoke had cleared, Bell stayed in San Diego, right alongside fellow All-Star Adrian Gonzalez. The Padres elected not to move their two best players, both of whom are under control for several more years. According to Jayson Stark, Gonzalez's asking price was "astronomical." The Padres were asking for "three times as much" as the Jays were asking for Halladay. Yikes.
  • Several teams reportedly inquired on Mariners ace Felix Hernandez, but all of them came up short. The Red Sox, Tigers, and Rays all asked, and while Jack Zduriencik listened, he eventually rejected all offers. King Felix is staying put.
  • Several Royals drew interest, but in the end, Brian Bannister, Mark Teahen, and Willie Bloomquist all stayed put as well.
  • The Dodgers and Angels have both been after bullpen arms, and it looks like they'll take those interests into August. Neither team acquired an arm today, so they'll likely be scouring the waiver wires throughout August to add a piece or two.

What was the biggest surprise of the day? Who were the big winners and losers? And most importantly, what do you see on the horizon for August?

Remember, the non-waiver trade deadline passing doesn't mean there won't be more trades flying about in August. Last year, we saw some noteable August deals, including Adam Dunn going to the Diamondbacks. Many analysts have said that due to player salaries and economic situations, this year's non-waiver deadline means less than any before. So check back as MLBTR continues to cover all of the action across the baseball universe!

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Odds And Ends: Blue Jays, Twins, Marlins

More links to wrap up a busy July 31st…

  • J.P. Ricciardi tells ESPN.com's Peter Gammons that the Jays "may be able to contend" next year with Roy Halladay around. 
  • For all of their pitching injuries, the Jays have had remarkably healthy position players this year. Eight of their position players have appeared in 82 games or more.
  • Justin Morneau and Joe Mauer tell MLB.com's Kelly Thesier they're pleased the Twins' front office added Orlando Cabrera, but they're aware that their division rivals made moves, too.
  • Yahoo's Gordon Edes says the Pirates, Tigers and Red Sox are some of this trade deadline's winners. 
  • Juan C. Rodriguez of the Florida Sun-Sentinel gives the Marlins credit for finding a high-OBP hitter to slot into the lineup in Nick Johnson.
  • MLB.com's Joe Frisaro reported earlier this evening that the Marlins designated Andy Gonzalez for assignment. The 27-year-old utility man hadn't appeared in a game in almost two weeks and has spent most of his season in Triple A. 

Odds And Ends: Hudson, D’Backs, Expos, Jays

More links to look through for the evening, including a little history…

  • MLB.com's Mark Bowman reports that Tim Hudson was scratched from his rehab start tonight with a sore groin.
  • D'Backs GM Josh Byrnes told MLB.com that he expects a "pretty active" August around the league, trade-wise. It'll be interesting to see if Doug Davis and Jon Garland clear waivers; if they do, the D'Backs could be among the teams making trades.
  • MLB.com's Joe Frisaro says Nick Johnson was the last member of the Nationals to play for the Expos. 
  • Erik Manning of FanGraphs doesn't get the Scott Rolen deal from the Reds' perspective. Neither does Tyler Hissey.
  • You thought the Roy Halladay saga was over, but it's merely on hold. J.P. Ricciardi says he'd "have to listen" to offers for his ace after the season, according to Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports. Next time, the GM hopes the offers are "a little better."

Discussion: Winners And Losers

It's probably premature to evaluate the many trades we've seen in recent days, especially with so much uncertainty surrounding them. Jason Knapp, Josh Bell and Nick Hagadone are desirable prospects, but it will be years before we know how much value they'll bring their new franchises. Jake Peavy's a great pitcher, but his ankle's still healing.

Still, we know which teams seem better off now than they did a month ago. The Red Sox added Victor Martinez and held onto many of their top prospects; the Phillies got the ace they needed without giving up the prospects they wanted to keep and the Tigers added a top starter of their own. These three teams seem better off now than they did a month ago.

But what about the Indians, who traded marquee players for a bevy of minor leaguers? What about the Pirates, who traded a bevy of major leaguers for a wide-ranging group, including Tim Alderson? Or the White Sox, who gave up a lot and obtained a recovering Cy Young Award winner? Which of these teams are winners? Losers? In-between?

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Twins Acquire Orlando Cabrera

6:59pm: Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle reports that the A's will send a total of $500k to the Twins.

12:45pm: Via Twitter, La Velle E. Neal III of the Minneapolis Star-Tribune says the Twins are also getting cash in the deal.

12:08pm: Yahoo's Tim Brown said it was a done deal, with the Twins sending shortstop prospect Tyler Ladendorf to Oakland for Cabrera.

Cabrera, 34, is hitting .280/.318/.365 on the season in 448 plate appearances.  He has $1.75MM remaining on his contract, once you factor in a $250K bonus for being dealt.  Though he profiles as a Type A free agent after the season, Cabrera's agent wisely negotiated a clause disallowing his club to offer arbitration.  So, no draft picks for the team for the loss and no impediment to signing Cabrera from the player's point of view.

11:56am: Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle says Cabrera to the Twins is "very close."  Slusser says Valencia is not part of the deal.

11:41am: La Velle E. Neal III of the Minneapolis Star-Tribune doesn't see the Twins as close to a deal for Cabrera.  The A's apparently want third base prospect Danny Valencia.  Neal wonders whether the Twins might go after David Eckstein or Kennedy instead.

FRIDAY, 1:26am: ESPN.com's Buster Olney reports that the A's and Twins are making "steady progress" as they discuss a deal that would send Cabrera to Minnesota.

THURSDAY, 11:31pm: Ken Rosenthal and Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports report that the Twins are making progress in their attempt to acquire Cabrera. The teams continued talking today and expect discussions to resume tomorrow.

9:30am: Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle has a few hot stove notes on the A's this morning.

  • Despite interest, the A's do not intend to trade infielder Adam Kennedy.  They might even try to re-sign him for 2010 eventually.  The 33 year-old is hitting .296/.350/.434 in 327 plate appearances while playing second and third base.  Oakland acquired Kennedy back in May from the Rays.
  • Slusser debunks a Providence Journal report from Daniel Barbarisi that the Red Sox turned down a trade for Orlando CabreraNick Cafardo of the Boston Globe agrees with Slusser, saying Cabrera "is not keen on returning to Boston."
  • We do know that the Twins have talked to the A's about O-Cab.  Bob Elliott of the Toronto Sun says the Twins are "still chasing" Marco Scutaro as well.

Failed Deadline Blockbusters

Today was hectic, but imagine how much wilder it would have been if these two deals had gone through:

  • Via Twitter, Jon Heyman of SI.com reports that the Padres almost dealt Heath Bell and Adrian Gonzalez to the Dodgers for James Loney, Russell Martin, Blake DeWittJames McDonald and Ivan Dejesus. Wow.
  • Danny Knobler of CBS Sports confirms that the division rivals considered a blockbuster deal involving those players.
  • Knobler also says the Rangers and Angels both pursued Heath Bell aggressively this afternoon. The Angels and Padres were discussing Jose Arredondo, Sean O'Sullivan and Sean Rodriguez
  • Brewers GM Doug Melvin says his team was involved in a "big one that didn't happen," according to Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.
  • The Crew also had interest in Jarrod Washburn and Brian Bannister.
  • Melvin says everyone asked the Brewers for Mat Gamel and Alcides Escobar. Since the Brewers didn't want to deal either prospect and don't have the young pitching to offer rival teams, they had limited options.

Deadline Roundup: Cabrera, Astros, Nats

More links as we sift through all the trades and slowly realize that there are actual games to be played, too:

Reds Acquire Scott Rolen For Edwin Encarnacion

6:09pm: Blair also hears that the Jays will send about $4MM to the Reds.

4:50pm: Richard Griffin of the Toronto Star reports that the Jays will pay all of Rolen's 2009 salary, nearly $4MM. Ken Rosenthal and Jon Paul Morosi report that an undisclosed amount of cash is changing hands. 

4:26pm: The Jays will pay some of the $4MM Rolen makes between now and the end of the season, according to Jeff Blair of the Globe and Mail.

4:25pm: MLB.com's Jordan Bastian reports that Jays GM J.P. Ricciardi says Rolen asked to be traded for "personal reasons."

3:14pm: Rolen approved the deal, according to Joel Sherman of the New York Post (on Twitter).  ESPN's Keith Law says Yonder Alonso is not in the deal. Instead, it'll be Encarnacion, Josh Roenicke, and Zach Stewart heading to Toronto according to John Fay of the Cincinnati Enquirer.

2:56pm: FOX Sports says the Blue Jays will get Edwin Encarnacion and a minor leaguer.  Rolen is expected to approve the deal.  It's a massive upgrade for the Reds defensively.

2:40pm: The Reds acquired third baseman Scott Rolen, according to SI's Jon Heyman (via Twitter).  The next step is Rolen approving the trade.  He's owed $4MM this year and another $11MM in 2010.  The slick-gloved 34 year-old has bounced back to hit .320/.370/.476 in 373 plate appearances this year.

Roy Halladay Not Traded

5:38pm: Tigers GM Dave Dombrowski says his team was not involved with Halladay, according to MLB.com's Jason Beck.

5:10pm: The Blue Jays and Rangers were talking last night when they found that Halladay wouldn't approve a deal to the Rangers, according to MLB.com's T.R. Sullivan. The sides weren't close to a deal when they found out.

The Jays, like other teams the Rangers spoke with, coveted Derek Holland, Neftali Feliz, Justin Smoak and Pedro Borbon. Holland's now in the majors and the other three rank on Jonathan Mayo's updated list of top prospects.

4:20pm: Jeff Blair of the Globe and Mail reports that Ricciardi was "never moved by a club" to trade Halladay, though two or three teams were serious about acquiring him and ten inquired. 

3:25pm: Halladay has not been traded, according to Sherman on Twitter.  So many wasted words.

10:12am: Joel Sherman of the New York Post has a slew of comments from Ricciardi about a Halladay trade today being highly unlikely.  Ricciardi admitted he'd listen again in the offseason, but says keeping Doc today signifies an attempt to contend in 2010.

Meanwhile, MLB.com's Jason Beck reports via Twitter that the Tigers never got to the point of exchanging names on Halladay.  Instead, they've reportedly acquired Jarrod Washburn.

10:01am: MLB.com's T.R. Sullivan says the Rangers' talks for Halladay "appear to have broken off" and are "somewhere between dead and on life-support."  Seems like the Rangers are unwilling to trade pitcher Derek Holland, especially after last night's gem.

9:53am: Yahoo's Tim Brown says the Red Sox will "engage Ricciardi early" today on Doc before going after Adrian Gonzalez or Victor Martinez.  However, when quizzed by Brown earlier this morning about the Halladay talks, Ricciardi replied, "Nothing going."

8:34am: One way or another, pitcher Roy Halladay can get some peace of mind about six hours from now when the trade deadline passes.  Until then, it's rumor-mania.  Yesterday night, things seemed to heat up with the Rangers, but Blue Jays GM J.P. Ricciardi labeled trade talks "dead" in a general sense.  Earlier in the day the Red Sox and Dodgers were considered the frontrunners.

This morning, SI's Jon Heyman tells us the Rangers "may have come the closest" to acquiring Halladay.  Even more so than the Phillies?  Heyman says the Rangers talks hit "a snag or two late Thursday," decreasing the chances for a trade.

Deadline Roundup: Mets, Washburn, Nats, Rays

Two Cy Young Award winners were traded this deadline and neither one of them was Roy Halladay. It's been a wild few days. Here's a recap of the action and here are some more details and reactions: