August 2011

Outrighted To The Minors: Ballard, Atkins

Here are the latest players to get outrighted to the minor leagues…

  • The Orioles announced that they outrighted left-hander Mike Ballard to Double-A and outrighted right-hander Mitch Atkins to Triple-A. They also announced that they optioned left-hander Mark Hendrickson to Triple-A.

Minor Moves: Joey Gathright

Let's keep track of today's minor moves right here…

  • The Red Sox purchased the contract of Joey Gathright from the Yuma Scorpions, according to the North American Baseball League. Gathright, who last appeared in the Major Leagues in 2009, has a .263/.327/.303 line in parts of six MLB seasons. The speedy 30-year-old has 80 stolen bases (109) attempts to his name.

Rangers Designate Tim Wood For Assignment

The Rangers designated Tim Wood for assignment, according to Anthony Andro of FoxSportsSouthwest.com (on Twitter). They placed Wilmer Font on the 60-day disabled list in a related move.

The Rangers acquired Wood from the Pirates earlier in the month, after the Pirates designated him for assignment. The Rangers sent Wood to the minors after acquiring him and he struggled through four appearances for Triple-A Round Rock, allowing nine hits, five earned runs and three walks in 4 2/3 innings, striking out a pair.

Wood has appeared in 57 games with the Marlins and Pirates in parts of three big league seasons, posting a 4.50 ERA, 4.3 K/9 and 5.1 BB/9. The Marlins selected the right-hander in the 44th round of the 2002 draft.



Rangers Acquire Matt Treanor

Matt Treanor is heading back to Texas. The Royals announced that they have sent the catcher to the Rangers, the team with which he started the season, for cash considerations. Treanor joins catchers Mike Napoli and Yorvit Torrealba on Texas' roster.

Treanor missed the last 29 games after suffering a concussion at the end of July. He has been rehabbing at Double-A for the last seven games. Bob Dutton of the Kansas City Star and MLB.com's T.R. Sullivan first reported on the deal, which brings Kansas City's 40-man roster to 39.

Treanor, 35, has a .226/.351/.306 line in 230 plate appearances this year and he has thrown out 26% of attempted base stealers from behind the plate. Given his career marks (.227/.318/.310, 26% caught stealing) that's probably pretty close to what the Rangers anticipated when they signed him to a one-year, $850K deal in December. Though Treanor doesn't project as a ranked free agent, he's not far from Type B status, so Texas may have the chance to obtain a pick for the backstop if they're prepared to offer him arbitration.


Rangers Acquire Mike Gonzalez

The Orioles announced that they sent left-handed reliever Mike Gonzalez to the Rangers for a player to be named later. Jeff Zrebiec of the Baltimore Sun, who first reported the deal, says Baltimore will likely obtain a pitcher in the deal (Twitter links). 

Gonzalez joins a pitching staff that currently features three southpaws in the rotation, but just one – Darren Oliver – in the 'pen. He'll also be reunited with former Orioles teammate Koji Uehara, who joined the Rangers at last month's non-waiver trade deadline.

Gonzalez signed a two-year, $12MM deal with the Orioles after the 2009 season, but pitched just 24 2/3 innings last season. He has been healthier this year and has a 4.27 ERA with 8.9 K/9, 3.5 BB/9 and a 40.0% ground ball rate in 46 1/3 total innings. His numbers against left-handers are strong this year: 26K/4BB, 2.30 xFIP, 50.8% ground ball rate in 24 1/3 innings.

The 33-year-old earns $6MM this season, about $920K of which remains on his deal. The move is strictly about 2011, as Gonzalez hits free agency after the season and doesn't project as a ranked free agent.


Blue Jays Designate Brian Tallet For Assignment

Brian Tallet's return to Toronto couldn't have gone much worse. The left-hander, who suited up for the Blue Jays from 2006-10, returned to Toronto's roster this summer, only to spend time on the disabled list then give up the game tying and winning runs in his only appearance for the Jays.

Less than 24 hours after serving up a walk-off win for the Orioles, Tallet is off of the roster. The Blue Jays announced that they have designated him for assignment to create roster space for Carlos Villanueva, who is returning to the active roster from a stint on the disabled list with a right forearm strain.

In 13 1/3 innings for the Cardinals and Blue Jays this year, Tallet has a 9.45 ERA with 6.8 K/9 and 4.7 BB/9. He was effective against left-handed hitters in 2010, but missed time this year with a broken left hand and then a right intercostal strain. Trever Miller, another former Blue Jay who returned to Toronto in the Colby Rasmus deal, suffered the same fate as Tallet, getting designated earlier in the month.


Players Claimed And Pulled Back

A player who is claimed on waivers can be pulled back by his original team, and it happens regularly.  It could be that the two sides just couldn't reach a deal, or it might be that the original team never intended to trade the player.  Technically a player can be placed on waivers a second time, but it's rare because in that case he cannot be pulled back.  Reportedly, at least 16 players have been claimed and pulled back this month: 

Many players were placed on waivers and were not traded, including John Danks, Gavin Floyd, Paul Konerko, Matt Thornton, Brett Myers, Clint Barmes, and Craig Breslow.  It's safe to assume several of these players were claimed and then pulled back.  Additionally, at least 23 players have cleared waivers and can be traded to any team.


Padres Claim Hermida; Designate Phillips

The Padres claimed outfielder Jeremy Hermida off waivers from the Reds and designated catcher Kyle Phillips for assignment, tweets MLB.com's Corey Brock.

Hermida, a 27-year-old former top Marlins prospect, is hitting .319/.400/.524 in 450 Triple-A plate appearances this year.  He definitely seems worth a look.  Hermida will join the Padres Friday and, as Alden Gonzalez notes, will be reunited with another former Marlins prospect in Cameron Maybin.

Phillips, also 27, is struggling in his third Triple-A stint.  The Padres had acquired him from Toronto in a June 2010 trade.

The claim drops the Reds' 40-man roster count to 39, a spot which could be taken by top catching prospect Devin Mesoraco in September.


Giants Designate Aaron Rowand For Assignment

Aaron Rowand's Giants tenure has come to a close.  The team designated the outfielder for assignment today, reports Andrew Baggarly of the San Jose Mercury News.  The Giants cleaned house, also designating Miguel Tejada this morning.  GM Brian Sabean says he'll try to trade both players.

Rowand, 34, hit .233/.274/.347 in 351 plate appearances this year, playing center and left field.  GM Brian Sabean signed Rowand to a five-year, $60MM deal in December of 2007.  Cutting him now means eating $1.8MM in salary this year and $12MM for 2012.  The 2007-08 offseason was chock full of bad contracts, including Alex Rodriguez, Carlos Silva, Francisco Cordero, Andruw Jones, Jose Guillen, Luis Castillo, Scott Linebrink, Kaz Matsui, Geoff Jenkins, and David Riske.

Rowand was signed following a strong 2007 season for the Phillies (6.0 WAR), but he ended up hitting .253/.310/.394 in 509 games over four seasons for the Giants.  His defense, at least, was generally graded as a positive by UZR.


Giants Designate Miguel Tejada For Assignment

The Giants designated infielder Miguel Tejada for assignment, reports Andrew Baggarly of the San Jose Mercury News.

Tejada, 37, posted the worst offensive season of his career with a .239/.270/.326 line in 343 plate appearances.  He split his time between shortstop and third base.

The Giants signed Tejada to a one-year, $6.5MM deal in December to be their starting shortstop after losing Juan Uribe to the Dodgers and missing out on other targets.  From the beginning, that felt like a hefty price for a stopgap.  The Giants are eating $1MM in salary by cutting Tejada now, for a total of $14.8MM given Aaron Rowand's dismissal.