MONDAY, 5:26pm: According to MLB.com's Jordan Bastian, Blue Jays manager J.P. Ricciardi has just called a pre-game press conference. Bastian wonders if it'll involve news on the Rios situation. Stay tuned.
SUNDAY, 5:01pm: Ken Rosenthal says that Jays have to let Rios go, regardless of what kind of return – if any – they receive. Freeing up $58.7MM over the next several years is too valuable of an opportunity. As Rosenthal points out, $12MM this offseason (Rios' approximate average salary) could have bought Bobby Abreu, Orlando Hudson, Russell Branyan, and Adam Everett, while leaving $800K to spare.
6:52pm: Mark Gonzales of The Chicago Tribune spoke to White Sox GM Kenny Williams, who abided by league rules stating he can't comment about specific players placed on waivers. He did offer up this, though:
"I’m not confirming or denying any interest or any claims or any thing, but if these things get out on a daily basis, boy, it’s going to be a heck of an August around here in terms of how many players you claim and how many you don’t claim. It will make your head spin if you follow each report. A lot of players getting claimed every day. Why is this a big deal?"
1:50pm: According to ESPN.com's Buster Olney, we should know by "early Tuesday afternoon" where Rios is headed.
SATURDAY, 1:34pm: MLB.com's Jordan Bastian asked Rios about the waiver claim before Saturday's tilt with the Orioles. It sounds like everyone is still in the dark. "I can't do anything," said the outfielder. "If I get traded, I get traded. I'm going to have to go wherever I get traded to, but I don't know. At this point I'm thinking that I'm staying here."
For what it's worth, Rios is 2-for-5 with two home runs and four RBI since the waiver claim was reported.
FRIDAY, 10:02pm: Olney is now reporting that the White Sox "are most likely the team awarded claim on Rios, but the Blue Jays have not confirmed it." The Sox face a mutual option on right fielder Jermaine Dye after the season, and could also consider using Rios in center field if they acquire him.
8:44pm: Geoff Baker of The Seattle Times reports that the Mariners did not put the claim in on Rios.
7:58pm: John Fay of The Cincinnati Enquirer reports that "someone high in the front office" confirms that the Reds did not claim Rios.
6:16pm: Henry Schulman of The SF Chronicle says that vice president of baseball operations Bobby Evans "hinted strongly" that the Giants are not the team that claimed Rios.
4:41pm: Rob Bradford of WEEI.com reports that the Red Sox didn't claim Rios, either.
4:39pm: Joel Sherman of the New York Post hears from a high-ranking Mets official that the Mets did not claim Rios. J.P. Ricciardi didn't get into specifics with MLB.com's Jordan Bastian and just said it's normal to place players on waivers.
2:52pm: ESPN.com's Buster Olney hears that Alex Rios has been claimed on waivers by an unknown team. The Blue Jays now have three choices:
- They can let the claiming team have Rios and the $60MM-plus remaining on his contract.
- They can pull him back from waivers and keep him.
- They can work out a deal with the claiming team.
One executive calls this an "incredible opportunity" for the Blue Jays to shed payroll.