Tonight is the deadline to enter your picks in MLBTR's Free Agent contest, so be sure to get them in for your chance to win your share of the prizes. Let's take a look back at the past seven days:
- Frank McCourt agreed to sell the Dodgers, and will seek approval from the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for an auction of the team. Earlier in the week we heard that Mark Cuban has interest in buying the team and could make a bid.
- The Yankees retained C.C. Sabathia before he even hit the open market by adding on an extra year at $25MM and a vesting option with a $5MM buyout. Here's some reactions to the signing.
- The Indians acquired Derek Lowe from the Braves in exchange for minor leaguer Chris Jones. The Braves are on the hook for $10MM of Lowe's salary, but managed to successfully save $5MM by shipping the veteran righty to Cleveland.
- Jim Thome is returning to the Phillies on a one-year deal worth $1.25MM.
- On Monday morning, Tony La Russa announced his retirement after 33 seasons as a manager. La Russa captured three World Championships in his career and won Manager of the Year four times.
- The Nationals announced on Monday that they've exercised manager Davey Johnson's option for 2012.
- The Giants and Javier Lopez have agreed to a two-year, $8.5MM contract and shortly thereafter exercised Jeremy Affeldt's $5MM club option for 2012.
- The Dodgers retained Juan Rivera by locking him up to a one-year deal worth $4.5MM.
- The Cubs exercised their $16MM option on Aramis Ramirez, but the slugging third baseman exercised a contractual right to void the option and forfeit his $2MM buyout. Ramirez, a projected Type B free agent, will explore the free agent market following a season in which he belted 26 homers and posted a .306/.361/.510 triple slash line.
- The Nationals also retained a player when they guaranteed Chien-Ming Wang $4MM on an incentive-laden one-year deal for the 2012 season.
- The Diamondbacks signed John McDonald to a two-year, $3MM deal and also inked Henry Blanco to a one-year deal worth $1.2MM. In addition to the on-field decisions, the club also extended both GM Kevin Towers and manager Kirk Gibson.
- The Brewers declined the $17.5MM option on Francisco Rodriguez and the $6MM option on Yuniesky Betancourt. The pair will receive buyouts of $3.5MM and $2MM, respectively.
- The Mets are prepared to offer Jose Reyes a four-year deal worth $60-$70MM, but their hope of retaining their superstar shortstop is dwindling.
- The Braves are open to moving both Jair Jurrjens and Martin Prado, but a potential deal in which Atlanta tried to acquire Wil Myers and Lorenzo Cain from the Royals fell through.
- The Giants are open to trading Jonathan Sanchez, who should draw some interest given his high strikeout totals and the relative weakness of the free agent market.
- The Cardinals declined their options for Octavio Dotel and Rafael Furcal.
- The Red Sox exercised their $6MM option on Marco Scutaro for the 2012 season.
- C.J. Wilson said there is a "great" chance that he stays with the Rangers. The Yankees will also be in contact with Wilson.
- Roy Oswalt is in search of a multiyear deal, and the Nationals will be players for his services.
- The Marlins will make the starting rotation their top priority this offseason.
- The Phillies are said to be in "serious pursuit" of Michael Cuddyer, which could be bad news for the Twins and his many other suitors.
- The Diamondbacks exercised their sides of the mutual options for Henry Blanco and Willie Bloomquist, while declining their team options for Zach Duke and Aaron Hill. However, Bloomquist has declined his side of the mutual option and would like to work out a longer deal.
- The Blue Jays announced that they exercised their 2012 option for Edwin Encarnacion and declined their option for Jon Rauch.
- The Royals announced that they exercised their 2012 option for closer Joakim Soria. Soria will earn a $6MM salary, rather than a $750K buyout.
- The Reds exercised Brandon Phillips' 2012 option and declined their option for Francisco Cordero. The Reds will pay Cordero a $1MM buyout instead of a $12MM salary and they'll pay Phillips a $12MM salary instead of a $1MM buyout.
- The Padres announced they've declined their options on Aaron Harang, Brad Hawpe, and Chad Qualls. Only Harang was slightly in question as he had a $5MM mutual option with a $500K buyout.
- The Rays exercised Kyle Farnsworth's 2012 option while declining Kelly Shoppach's. Meanwhile, they exercised James Shields' $7.5MM option. Shields would not have been eligible for free agency if the Rays had declined the option. Instead, Tampa Bay would have gone to arbitration with Shields and he would have obtained a salary in excess of $7.5MM.
- Mariners reliever David Aardsma cleared waivers and elected free agency.
- The White Sox exercised their $3.75MM club option on reliever Jason Frasor.
- The Indians exercised their club option on Fausto Carmona and declined their option on Grady Sizemore. Carmona would have earned more than the $7MM option price as an arbitration eligible player, and the Indians made the expected choice to retain him.
- The Pirates announced they've declined club options on Paul Maholm, Chris Snyder, Ryan Doumit, and Ronny Cedeno. Cedeno was the one unknown of the bunch.
- The Rockies declined their 2012 option on righty Aaron Cook.
- The Rangers exercised their 2012 option for Yoshinori Tateyama and the right-hander will earn a $1MM salary in 2012.
- The Athletics will listen to offers on anyone except for Jemile Weeks. The speedy second baseman hit .303/.340/.421 and stole 22 bases in his solid but under-the-radar rookie season.
- The Yankees declined their 2012 option on righty Andrew Brackman.
- MLBTR obtained the official Elias Rankings for this upcoming offseason.
Diamondbacks To Sign Oliver Perez Nationals Sign Mike Gonzalez Rick Ankiel To Retire Rangers Sign Joe Saunders Indians Acquire Justin Sellers, Designate David Cooper Guillermo Mota Retires Braves To Sign Yenier Bello Athletics Acquire Jake Elmore Carl Pavano Retires Yankees Extend Brett Gardner Yankees Agree To Terms With Andrew Bailey Giants Sign Tyler Colvin Orioles Sign Nelson Cruz Red Sox Sign Chris Capuano Braves Extend Andrelton Simmons Reds Extend Homer Bailey Braves Extend Frank Wren, Fredi Gonzalez Orioles Sign Ubaldo Jimenez Dempster Won't Pitch In 2014 Braves Extend Craig Kimbrel
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Quick Hits: Perez, Pineda, Mariners, Ramirez, A's Minor Moves: Wil Ledezma Diamondbacks To Sign Oliver Perez Ervin Santana Seeks To Sign One-Year Deal Before Opening Day NL Central Notes: Carpenter, Neshek, Phillips, Cubs Diamondbacks, Oliver Perez Nearing Multi-Year Deal Rangers Sign Joe Saunders Padres Claim Alex Castellanos Luke Hochevar To Undergo Tommy John Surgery Royals Release Brad Penny Ervin Santana's Representation Currently Unsettled AL Central Notes: Masterson, De Aza, Santana, Tigers NL West Notes: Jobe, Maybin, Headley, Betancourt 2013-14 Article XX(B) Free Agents Out Of Options Players: NL West
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