AL East Notes: Valentine, Wilson, Howell, Johnson

Here are some notes from the AL East on the day the Red Sox officially introduced their new manager…

  • The Red Sox and manager Bobby Valentine agreed on a two-year deal, according to Jon Heyman of SI.com (on Twitter).  The Red Sox hold team options on Valentine for 2014 and 2015, tweets WEEI.com's Alex Speier.
  • Valentine reached out to David Cone about becoming the new Red Sox pitching coach, reports Jack Curry of the YES Network (Twitter link).  Cone isn't expected to take the job but was "flattered."
  • The Yankees turned down a request by C.J. Wilson's agent for a visit to Yankee Stadium, reports ESPN New York's Andrew Marchand.  That's not a good sign for Wilson's chances of signing with the Bombers, which Marchand believes are "less than five percent."
  • Erik Hahmann of the DRaysBay blog looks at the situation between the Rays and lefty J.P. Howell.  MLBTR's Tim Dierkes listed Howell as one of this winter's non-tender candidates.
  • The Blue Jays are still open to bringing back Kelly Johnson next year, tweets Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports.
  • Also from Morosi, he thinks the Blue Jays could — and should — sign free agent first baseman Prince Fielder.
  • Eric Chavez definitely wants to play in 2012 and a number of teams have strong interest in him, according to Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle (Twitter links). Some West Coast teams are interested in Chavez and the Yankees appear to be in the mix as well.
  • The Rays have some interest in Cuban center fielder Yoenis Cespedes, but probably can’t afford him, according to Marc Topkin of the St. Petersburg Times (on Twitter).
  • The Orioles hired former Phillies GM Lee Thomas as a special assistant, according to Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports (Twitter link). Danny Knobler of CBSSports.com first mentioned the possibility (on Twitter). It's worth noting that Scott Proefrock and Joe Jordan of the Phillies are former Orioles front office employees.

MLBTR's Mark Polishuk also contributed to this post


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72 Comments on "AL East Notes: Valentine, Wilson, Howell, Johnson"


Rangers4Life
3 years 9 months ago

I’m so going to enjoy watching Valentine battle it out with the Boston media.

tycobb
3 years 9 months ago

I think Prince should sign with the Jays too !!! Man I should write for Fox.

joeybw
3 years 9 months ago

Yeah he would be an awesome pick up for the OF, then move to Joyce to DH. One issue of us not having half the money it would take to get him signed. We scouted him just like I’m sure we scouted Darvish but neither will be signed.

LA
3 years 9 months ago

Rogers is Billion dollar company, why not just spend 160 million for Prince, 40 million of Cespedes and 100 million for Darvish. Pocket change for them.

But, Blue Jays have AA and is not that stupid to dish out over 280 million on three players.

3 years 9 months ago

That’s 300 million if you could do math..

3 years 9 months ago

Well to be fair 300 is over 280… if you could read

LA
3 years 9 months ago

Damn, haha I can’t count. Need to go back to grade 3 math class…

flickadave
3 years 9 months ago

You could have just blamed it on the exchange rate… 

mike292929
3 years 9 months ago

Pretty sure I read somewhere Prince won’t play for a team his father has played for. Correct me if I’m wrong.

johnsilver
3 years 9 months ago

Maybe his dad ate up those teams entire food budget when he was there?

3 years 9 months ago

Lee Thomas as a special assistant (Orioles)… now that is kicking it old school!

Brad426
3 years 9 months ago

I think the Jays are hoping Votto will be there 1B when his contract is up and don’t want to block him with a lengthy contract to Prince.

Edit: Which Morosi addresses in his article… I KNOW I should read these before I comment, but sometimes I just can’t. Let he who is without premature comment-ation cast the first stone.

Christopher David
3 years 9 months ago

That would be the move, and I suppose waiting 2 more seasons isn’t excruciatingly long. Bautista is already 31 though. I feel like if they’re going to maximize his value by adding a serious 1B bat, now is kind of the time.

Phillies_Aces35
3 years 9 months ago

You can’t bank on signing another team’s player though (to reply to the poster above you)… look at the Yankees and Cliff Lee for example.

While I don’t doubt the Blue Jays would love to have Votto, or any team for that matter, a lot of things can happen in two years that could prevent the Blue Jays from signing Votto: he could sign an extension, he could get hurt, he could get traded, etc.

________

I agree with you, if they’re going to make a move it’s gotta be now to maximize their opportunity with Jose Bautista. Either trade for Votto now or sign Fielder.

0bsessions
3 years 9 months ago

I think AA is probably waiting it out. Being a Boras client, Fielder will take ages to sign and if I know it, so does AA. If I’m AA, I keep my nose in it as long as I can while hoping for a resolution on the second WC situation. If they add a second Wild Card for 2012, Fielder and an adequate closer is pretty much enough for the Jays to compete for a playoff spot this coming season.

Christopher David
3 years 9 months ago

I didn’t realize the Jays had that much room in payroll. Even if $50mm is a liberal estimate, the most Fielder could cost is what? $25mm a year?

I actually hope that happens. I don’t think it will, but I’d love to see the Jays just blow everyone’s minds.

Adil
3 years 9 months ago

the jays cannot sustain a 120-130 mil payroll. the can go play with the big boys for a season or 2 with the hope that baseball fever returns; but if not the current baseball fanbase can support a team in the 80-100 mil range.

so the jays have to make a sound decision, any mistep with a big salary can hamper the team for years; they dont have the luxary of hiding a mistake.

3 years 9 months ago

i love when people sound so definitive when they have no clue

Christopher David
3 years 9 months ago

Yeah, Morosi had something in the article to that effect. Essentially, they can make A big move, but they aren’t going to make it unless it is the 100% absolute right move.

So on that note, and with Fielder being as plump as a Thanksgiving turkey, I can’t imagine the Jays will invest long-term in someone whose body is incredibly likely to give out within a few years.

HerbertAnchovy
3 years 9 months ago

You don’t know what your talking about. The Blue Jays have immense TV ratings. You forget that their market is all of Canada.

Adil
3 years 9 months ago

I know that, thats why i said they can sustain a payroll of close to 100 mil; anything above that they will need an attendance boost.

cyberboo
3 years 9 months ago

I take it that the posters here are teenagers or early twenties.  The Blue Jays drew four million fans year after year for a reason.  You have 25,000 loyal fans that attend whether the team wins or loses.  You then have the 18,000 fans that are bandwagoners.  They only come if it is the hip thing to do.  If the Jays make a few moves this year, they will have a real shot at eliminating both New York and Boston.   The team has a strong following from British Columbia to the Maritimes, as Canada’s team, not a team representing a city, which is the case for most teams. 

If they include Fielder and Johnson, the Jays suddenly have a murderer’s row of hitters that can hit 30 plus homers every season.  Nine guys could hit 30 – 50 every year. The only exception is Escobar and he averages 10 – 14 a year.  That lineup could break the 300 home runs barrier, puts a lot of runs on the board and instead of winning 12 – 15 games a year, the starters are then shooting at 18 – 20 wins a season through blowouts.  Add in a proven closer and the AL east will have a new sherriff in town.  That is why there is so much excitement now north of the border from coast-to-coast.

notsureifsrs
3 years 9 months ago

wow

Lunchbox45
3 years 9 months ago

lol

you know your franchise is starting to turn the corner when you get pink hats

0bsessions
3 years 9 months ago

I thought I’d be clever and GIS “orioles pink hat,” but got nothing (A few Sox pink hats showed up, though, FML) to show for it. You win this round.

YanksFanSince78
3 years 9 months ago

Ummmm….

1b?….Fielder….of course.
2b?….Hill…….hmmmm…Hill…hit 6 last year…could rebound.
SS……Escobar…..no.
3b……Lawrie….??????…a bit premature….TBD
RF……Bautista…of course
CF……Rasmus…14 in 500+….23 last year….???…possibly
LF…….Thames or Snider….possibly…TBD at best.
DH?….Lind….ok check.

Murders row? 

cyberboo
3 years 9 months ago

You don’t follow baseball much do you.  Hill plays for Arizona. lol.  You must be a Yankee fan and live inside your own little universe.  lol. 

BenchedMark
3 years 9 months ago

you should stop writing on this site. you are embarrassing jays fans.

please.

MB923
3 years 9 months ago

And you must live in Canada ayy? I remember you thought CC has horrible numbers when the Yankees don’t score runs for him, and then you made up some stats saying he has 25 losses as a Yankee when they score under 3 runs for him, yet you fail to realize that he has 23 losses in his Yankee career.

johnsilver
3 years 9 months ago

” the Jays suddenly have a murderer’s row of hitters that can hit 30 plus homers every season.”

Welcome to the late 70’s Red Sox and did them little good. Gotta still work on another piece or 2 in the rotation there and would think Farrell might be targeting that 1st?

baseballdude
3 years 9 months ago

I still think fielder will sign with the mariners

3 years 9 months ago

I can’t decide if, as a Sox fan, I’d like it if Prince signed with the Jays. On one hand, we’d have to take the Jays seriously which would increase my stress level infinitely during the season. On the other hand, the AL East would become even more insane. It’s going to be entertaining with that extra playoff spot now… (At least coming from my perspective… maybe not so much for a mariners fan or something haha)

Rabbitov
3 years 9 months ago

Especially with the Orioles getting Teagarden. 

Karkat
3 years 9 months ago

I don’t think I can handle another viable team in the division. Thank god for the Orioles, at least.

3 years 9 months ago

I’m hoping Fielder would take 5yr 140mill. Most would say not worth it but I rather have him on a 5yr deal then 7+ range.

Blue Jays Lineup:

1- Escobar SS
2- Rasmus CF
3- Bautista RF
4- Fielder 1b
5- Lind DH
6- Lawrie 3b
7- K.Johnson 2b
8- E.Thames LF
9- JP C

3 years 9 months ago

Not enough years but if i was AA id do 5 years in a heartbeat

Lunchbox45
3 years 9 months ago

8. E Thames LF

8. T. Snider LF

fixed that for you

notsureifsrs
3 years 9 months ago

doesn’t matter, both project to hit 30-50 HRs

Ian_Smell
3 years 9 months ago

A week.

YanksFanSince78
3 years 9 months ago

at least.

Andy Mc
3 years 9 months ago

Both have 30 HR pop.

EarlyMorningBoxscore
3 years 9 months ago

Just watched the Valentine press conference if anything he seemed genuinely excited to be the Sox new manager. 

Onetimeaccount
3 years 9 months ago

A manager who is new to a team that is almost guaranteed a WC play-in game to get into the post season and he’s excited?

Jacob Viets
3 years 9 months ago

The Blue Jays and Prince Fielder. I like it. As long as they can get some bullpen help they could be contenders. However I still think Prince should sign back with Milwaukee for 6 years and $140,000,000. Also, the Rays can’t sign someone because they’re too expensive…shocking.

3 years 9 months ago

lol why were CJ and his agent the ones requesting a visit anyway? 

3 years 9 months ago

$$$

LA
3 years 9 months ago

Good Luck Redsox Nation.

Hodor
3 years 9 months ago

Good god, I hope the Rays don’t resign JP Howell.  He blew so many important games last year and was just terrible.  I was at game 3 of the playoffs against Texas and watched the entire stadium groan when he was brought in against Josh Hamilton and then boo him off the field when he gave up what ended up being the game winning RBIs.  The Rays could sign any high school varsity pitcher and it would be an improvement over JP Howell.

dc21892
3 years 9 months ago

Can’t wait to see the staff Bobby V puts together.

Guest
3 years 9 months ago

Ha Ha. CJ Wilson. Told you so and the almost 25% of the voting pole that Wilson would sign with Yankees. Exactly as I said it then and as it is now. Less than a 5% chance. Goes to show how much people really know the Yankees these days and just how much better they are operating than times of the past. 

NYPOTENCE
3 years 9 months ago

I guess the Yanks will be going with some internal options. To tell you the truth unless they can grab Lincecum, Kershaw, or Felix I think it’s the right move. Noesi has tremendously improved his arsenal and is drawing raves down in the Dominican. You throw Nova out there with CC and the Chief and I think the Yankees will be ready to go.

Guest
3 years 9 months ago

Strangely, Noesi has been throwing like Felix (joking, kinda) in winter ball. Not sure what that’s about. 

Slopeboy
3 years 9 months ago

David Cone a Red Sox pitching coach, Ha! The guy has yet to even coach Little Leaguers. Can you see him telling Beckett to speed up his delivery or what type of pitch selection he should use?

He wouldn’t leave the YES network anyway. Much less for the Red Sox. It’s an easy gig, not much travel and the studio is close to home, when he’s not doing roadgames. He left the YES network after her retired to return to play for the Red Sox and old man Steinbrenner got really PO’d at him. It made him a persona non grata for a time, and it took a while for him to return to the good graces of the organization. That’s another reason he was ‘flattered’ by Valentines offer but declined.