Morosi On Blue Jays, First Base, Starters, Cespedes

The baseball world figures to remain relatively quietly until after the New Year, but as Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports writes, there is still a lot of work to be done before the season begins. Let's round up Morosi's rumors…

  • The Blue Jays are saying they will not give a hitter a contract of more than five guaranteed years, though they'll likely have to violate that policy if they want to sign Prince Fielder.
  • The Brewers, Cubs, Nationals, Indians, Mariners, Orioles, Rangers, Rays, and Pirates are all considering non-Fielder upgrades at first base. Carlos Pena, Casey Kotchman, and Derrek Lee remain unsigned, among others.
  • Some within the game believe that Joakim Soria and Carlos Marmol could be had at the right price. The Cubbies are said to be planning a "complete and total rebuild."
  • Both Kyle Lohse and Jake Westbrook remain available, and the Rangers may be willing to trade Matt Harrison for a more established starter.
  • Most believe Yoenis Cespedes will sign for more than the $30.25MM Aroldis Chapman received because as a position player, he carried less risk. A larger number of interested teams and the new collective bargaining agreement will also help his cause.


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111 Comments on "Morosi On Blue Jays, First Base, Starters, Cespedes"


Pawapuro
3 years 7 months ago

Harrison for Westbrook? Very nice!

Rangersfan32
3 years 7 months ago

Yeah I highly doubt Texas would EVER make Harrison available for freakin Westbrook. No thanks. I’ll take the guy who’s younger who also had the MUCH better season last year. And whoever reported that rumor should really check their sources cause nobody, other than maybe Atlanta, values their young pitchers more than Texas.

bighiggy
3 years 7 months ago

but what if the cards threw in a future second baseman in zach cox, ate 4 mil of westbrooks contract and added maybe adron chambers, then could harrison be had?

KeithLawSucksInStl
3 years 7 months ago

Um, no.

bighiggy
3 years 6 months ago

why not, you think bad deal for them or us?

Buford14
3 years 6 months ago

Cox is a 3rd Baseman

bighiggy
3 years 6 months ago

actually the scouts say cox will not play third cause he doesnt have the arm or range, they say he is probably destined for second base!

3 years 7 months ago

J-P Morosi shouldn’t be allowed to write about the Blue Jays.

cyberboo
3 years 7 months ago

I agree.  Teams offer Prince what they feel he is worth.  He has the option of taking it or sitting at home in 2011.  Teams didn’t cave into Barry Bonds and they won’t cave into anyone else.  Fielder is unreasonable with his demands and teams don’t want another Barry Zito, Carl Crawford situation, where an albatross contract cripples their team for years.  Those contracts didn’t exist a mere twenty years ago, but fans wouldn’t know that, because they grew up during the reckless, insanity years of Hicks and Steinbrenner.  Those two destroyed the whole salary structure of a league where 3 year contracts were excessive. 

Fans don’t care about risk factors due to aging, because they don’t care.  It isn’t money out of their own pockets and someone else is forced to pay. Just look at the Giants now.  They are looking at losing either Cain or Lincecum, players that actually perform, because Zito hasn’t done anything in years, yet he is still owed 48M in the next two years. Thank Zito and his long term deal for taking championships from the fans, because they couldn’t address their offense due to it with someone that actually hits.  Toronto fans still remember the Wells, Rios fiasco and that is why they refuse to repeat their mistakes.

Guest
3 years 7 months ago

and don’t forget Angelos in the albert belle years

3 years 7 months ago

If the Rangers trade Harrison they would not trade him for a worse pitcher.

Rabbitov
3 years 7 months ago

Orioles, always looking for a bargain.  Typical. 

Leonard Washington
3 years 7 months ago

I know everybody is all worried about Prince breaking down because of his weight but I don’t buy that. Seriously. The guy is still very young and a seven year deal would not even be that risky of an investment given his track record, especially if he signs in the AL and DH’s in the later parts. If the Jays don’t go above five they are crazy and will undoubtedly lose out. Because the market for Prince isn’t amazing but its still gonna get him over five years I guarantee.

Mattsui
3 years 7 months ago

Albert Belle spent his whole career in the AL and look how early his career ended. Then again, look at Frank Thomas’ longevity. But, I also remember the Mets’ horrid Mo Vaughn experience. It’s really anyone’s guess when it comes to the big black dudes in the game.

Leonard Washington
3 years 7 months ago

Thats all fine and good but that doesn’t scream anymore risk than your typical high priced free agent. Any player could just stink spontaneously like Andruw Jones or any other player so while there is clear risk I dont see it as anymore than any other than other elite hitters risk.

3 years 7 months ago

Harrison for Westbrook and Lohse = amazing!!!

Ferrariman
3 years 7 months ago

please baby Jesus let Westbrook get traded.

FreshMintt
3 years 7 months ago

Ha Lohse and Westbrook will remain available because nobody is dumb enough to trade for them, although Lohse actually had a decent year last year.

3 years 7 months ago

Westbrook is a nice number five. If he can stay healthy, he can eat innings. That’s all a number five is really for anyway. Lohse could be a great pickup for a few teams. He’s a very underrated pitcher.

nictonjr
3 years 7 months ago

Lohse is pitching for his next contract.  He’s been average to horrible everywhere but StL.  He’s not waiving his NTC.  

jephdood
3 years 7 months ago

Why would the M’s be looking for lower-level guys at first base when they have Smoak and Carp already?

DickHarden
3 years 7 months ago

It’s a ruse to get Fielder to sign.

M’s FO: “You don’t like our offer? Fine, we’ll go after Kotchman. He hit for a better average than you last year, he can actually play 1B, AND he doesn’t want a ten-year contract.”

It won’t work. Fielder will be a Ranger in two weeks.

Shikikazu
3 years 7 months ago

The Rangers/Blue Jays/Orioles etc can have Fielder well see how he does in 4 or so years after giving him a fat contract.

The Mariners should just focus on drafting/developing offensive prospects or trade for one rather than signing Fielder and crippling the team.

nictonjr
3 years 7 months ago

The Mariners refuse to trade Felix.  I’d guess Pineda is their next best chip.  I

Paul_Zuvella
3 years 7 months ago

Prince will be hitting bombs well into his 30s…the guy is 27 for god’s sake and is a premium hitter. He’s worth a 6/7 yr commitment and any team that gets him will not be poorer for it (aside from money of course). The Mariners would be smart to go after him hard…but I doubt that they have the resources to do so.

vilifyingforce
3 years 7 months ago

Worth 6/7 sure. He wants 10 though.

Bob George
3 years 7 months ago

MLBTR needs to stop referring to the Cubs as the “Cubbies.” That’s not the team’s name, and it makes no sense as a nickname either because it’s longer than “Cubs.” Nobody refers to the Pirates as the Buccaneers, their nickname is the Bucs. The Mariners are the M’s, etc.

YanksFanSince78
3 years 7 months ago

I can feel your passion about this issue. How long has it been bothering you? If more than 5 seconds then you probably wasted too much time.

BlueCatuli
3 years 7 months ago

Cubbies Cubbies Cubbies Cubbies Cubbies Cubbies Cubbies Cubbies Cubbies Cubbies Cubbies Cubbies

KeithLawSucksInStl
3 years 7 months ago

If you’re asking for the MLB to take the Cubs seriously, take a look at the last 100+ years.

Bruce Thoele
3 years 7 months ago

i say trade lohse for harrison and resign e-jax and try to keep westbrook because he is a good person for the club house he is definitely a great teammate

mickblue66
3 years 7 months ago

Yes trade one bad contract on it’s last year for a brand new bad contract for Jackson???????? Jackson isn’t even an upgrade over Loshe and both are extremely streaky so it’s not like Jackson is even more consistent, that deal would make zero sense if that’s what they planned to do with the money.

And why do people think players are worth millions just to be a “good teammate”. I’m a great teammate, pay me 9.5mil this year like Westbrook and I’ll be the happiest guy in the clubhouse

YanksFanSince78
3 years 7 months ago

Wow…really? Compare Lohse over the last 3 years vs EJax and I think you’ll see different. Not saying the Cards SHOULD sign him but the numbers say he’s better than Lohse.

Bruce Thoele
3 years 7 months ago

thank you

mickblue66
3 years 6 months ago

Well actually when Loshe has been healthy his numbers are better than Ejax and just like Loshe, Ejax is incredibly inconsistent. 

Bruce Thoele
3 years 7 months ago

first of all get your facts straight he is getting paid 6 mil this year not 8.5 and second of all you act like having good teammates are unimportant well let me tell you one thing without good teammates who are you gonna have to step up and be a leader

mickblue66
3 years 6 months ago

Seriously???? Look if you’re going to call someone out at least be right so you don’t look like even more of a fool. Where in the world did you come up with 6mil??????? He is getting 8.5mil plus a 1mil buyout….which totals…..drum roll…..9.5mil NOT 6

Rangersfan32
3 years 7 months ago

Good luck getting Harrison for Westbrook. Harrison is way younger and better. I wouldn’t take 5 Westbrooks for Harrison right now

YanksFanSince78
3 years 7 months ago

I wonder why the Jays have a policy against giving hitters a 5 year contract? I completely understand that policy towards pitchers. I completely understand that policy towards a free agent of a certain age. By why that policy towards a hitter? 

johnsmith4
3 years 7 months ago

They are willing to give five years.  But, it is their “practice” to not go beyond five years unless they are team options.  It is a practice put in place by AA.  Why?  The last two contracts longer than five years were Vernon Wells and Alex Rios.  In short, AA considers contracts longer than five years to be too risky.

YanksFanSince78
3 years 7 months ago

Sorry, I worded it incorrectly. I mean why are they against giving up a contract greater than 5 years to a hitter.

YanksFanSince78
3 years 7 months ago

Giving up a 6 year contact to a hitter isn’t the risky part. Giving to the likes of Wells and Rios is the problem. Wells was an inconsistent hitter with 2/5 years with an OBP above .330. Rios was an extension gone bad, which happens, but at no time did Rios establish himself as a hitter worthy of a multu-year contract that would pay him $12 mil per for 4 seasons. 

Saying that 5 year contracts are a bad idea means nothing if you don’t consider WHO was giving out those deals (JP) and WHO he gave them too.

That’s like Cashman saying he won’t sign Felix Hernandez (if he were a FA) to a contract greater than 4 years because the 5 year deal he gave to AJ Burnett didn’t work out right.

Lunchbox45
3 years 7 months ago

This was an old policy, left over from the glory days..

unfortunately.. times and baseball have changed. You arent going to get a top name free agent position player for less than 5 years, unless they are past their prime .

The very idea that, the jays are willing to spend only when the fans come back is moronic in itself.. put a better product on the field, fans will come back.

vilifyingforce
3 years 7 months ago

I think the Jays will spend when AA thinks the time is right to spend. Still way too many question marks to start gunning for top-tier guys (as much as I would like to see Darvish/Fielder on the Jays).

Lunchbox45
3 years 7 months ago

oh you mean like how he was gunning for Beltran??

He wants to compete, he knows the team is close, he just doesn’t have a budget to get it done..

Probably because rogers will end up selling the jays. The cheaper the payroll is the more attractive it will be to bidders.

vilifyingforce
3 years 7 months ago

How do you know he was gunning for Beltran? It’s all rumours. If you have concrete evidence that AA offered money to Beltran I’d like to see it. I’ve never seen a GM operate under such a complete iron curtain, there is zero information that gets out.

Lunchbox45
3 years 7 months ago

just because a team doesn’t leak anything doesn’t mean things dont get out..

agents are usually the ones doing the leaking anyways.. There was plenty of reports that the Jays were in on Beltran. And judging how he just signed a 2 year deal, I doubt it was his agent trying to raise his stock.

There is no logicial reason not to sign fielder. The only reason is money and cheapness.

vilifyingforce
3 years 7 months ago

Signing Prince Fielder to a ten year is not logical.

Lunchbox45
3 years 7 months ago

prince isn’t getting 10 years

he will probably end up getting 7..

So what are you going to say then?

vilifyingforce
3 years 7 months ago

Pending the dollars isn’t insane I’ll say we missed out on an excellent player, but, I’ll keep my faith in AA for now. You’re still speculating though; were you expecting Pujols to get ten years?

Lunchbox45
3 years 7 months ago

 yes I was. but Pujols is a 2 way player, fielder is a 1 way player

johnsmith4
3 years 7 months ago

In my opinion, AA will have an exception to the rule or prove it to simply be a guideline when they encounter the right player and the team is in the right situation.

Agree with your qualifications to your statements. Hopefully I didn’t put any words in your mouth.

I think Jays will be in the right situation when they catch up to Rays. It
might happen this season. Red Sox will be in an interesting situation when they make contract extension decisions for Youklis and Ellsbury if the team is near its budget limit. Both players have two years remaining on their contract.

NexttoIgnore
3 years 7 months ago

Both JP Richardi then Kenny Williams felt the value was right on Rios. He looks like a great baseball talent with irritating inconsistency. Not the contract nor the consistency to build a World Series run on. Hit ‘Next!’ and replace with Jose Bautista and move onto the next position Repeat with Rasmus over VW. Repeat at 3rd with Lawrie. Looking back at the past 3 years you wouldn’t have thought AA actually worked for JP. 

Runtime
3 years 6 months ago

Ah Rios. That man was done in this town once he refused to sign an autograph for a young boy.

jedicouncil
3 years 7 months ago

ever heard of vernon wells

melonis_rex
3 years 7 months ago

Vernon Wells was a decent deal for the Jays. Look at how heavily backloaded that contract was. In hindsight, the Jays got a pretty good deal and Wells in his prime. The Angels get to pay him $20MM+ a season now, which is hilarious.

Of course, Tony Reagins is not a GM anymore, so that strategy is moot.

Andrew Rock
3 years 7 months ago

Just take Westbrook’s contract, give us a 30 year old Low A pitcher, I don’t care. Oswalt is out there and could more than replicate Westbrook’s numbers for similar money.

hallwagner
3 years 7 months ago

i will lmao if fielder isn’t signed by opening day

BlueCatuli
3 years 7 months ago

That won’t happen.

gwells
3 years 7 months ago

sorry, there’s no reason the nats would be looking at *any* non-fielder 1Bs. none of those guys listed are anywhere near as good as morse would be, and none as good as laroche if he is healthy. i don’t see any reason they would consider signing any 1B that wasn’t fielder. that must makes no sense at all.

AaronSomers
3 years 7 months ago

Agreed. Plus, once LaRoche leaves at the end of the 2012 season, first base can be filled with Morse and Chris Marrero – who will presumably be healthy by then. The organization isn’t in need of a long term solution right now, considering the in-house options.

HalfSt
3 years 7 months ago

I agree as well. LaRoche is as good as the other choices, as long as he is healthy. Marrero, unfortunately, is not. If the Nats don’t get Fielder (and I hope they do), then I hope they go hard at Cespedes. Morse can take first the year after if Cespedes pans out.

+1/2St.

Brewcrew00
3 years 7 months ago

Randy Wolf for Harrison

Snoochies8
3 years 7 months ago

…at least it’s a better proposal than a bunch of jays prospects for tulowitzki, but harrison has more value at the moment than randy wolf

bobbybaseball
3 years 7 months ago

Of course Marmol is available and it has nothing to do with rebuilding. He was awful in 2011 and there is no way I would put him at closer next year. But his salary will now start to get expensive.

Mattsui
3 years 7 months ago

Why would the Nationals (LaRoche, Morse) or Mariners (Smoak, Carp) be interested in “non-Fielder options” at first base? Especially when those options only include the likes of Pena, Lee and Kotchman. I can’t imagine that they’d really be in the running, it seems overwhelmingly pointless. I would love to see Pena end up back with the Rangers, who drafted him, or the Pirates, to continue his NL escapade.

BirdmanRob
3 years 7 months ago

Pena on the Orioles would be nice

Wrek305
3 years 7 months ago

D Lee should just retire he had one good year the last 10 yrs. He’s done. He was the main reason for the Pirates downfall the day they got him they lost 10 straight games plus he was a downgrade to Lyle Overbay too.

BlueCatuli
3 years 7 months ago

Where do you come up with this stuff?

Wrek305
3 years 7 months ago

Well let’s see, see the simple fact that the Pirates lost 10 straight games from the day they got him.