AL West Notes: Athletics, Hamilton, Napoli

The Athletics see themselves as sellers rather than contenders, Danny Knobler of CBSSports.com reported earlier today. Meanwhile, the Rangers continue monitoring Cole Hamels and Zack Greinke in anticipation of possible trades, according to Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports. Here's the latest from the AL West…

  • Athletics owner Lew Wolff told Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle that he doesn't intend to move the team anywhere but San Jose (Twitter links). "We have no interest in leaving our two-team market. Our only focus is on San Jose," he said. "We are not leaving the Bay Area and that's the end of it."
  • Josh Hamilton said he’d love to stay in Texas, but noted that contract talks are on hold, Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com tweets. Hamilton’s on track to hit free agency this coming offseason, when he’ll be positioned for a lucrative multiyear contract.
  • Mike Napoli, who’s also in the last year of his contract with the Rangers, said he would love to stay in Texas as well, Heyman tweets. “If something doesn't get worked out it's my time to be a free agent," Napoli said.
  • Mariners ace Felix Hernandez told Heyman he'd love to stay in Seattle (Twitter link). The Mariners have Hernandez under contract through 2014.


64 Responses to AL West Notes: Athletics, Hamilton, Napoli Leave a Reply

  1. Very few players will openly say that they want to leave.

  2. johnsilver 3 years ago

    Why are the A’s always sellers? Charlie “O” was hammered unmercifully for dismantling 1 team and given grief from fellow owners and fans, yet successive owners have never caught flak from the other owners, or fans for dismantling the A’s wonder teams of the late 80’s, nor selling off every piece they have developed since.

    Just why is that A’s fans? Have Oakland fans just resigned themselves to becoming a farm system for the rest of the game after O’Finley was forced into selling off/losing some of the greatest talents in the game a few decades back for the same very reasons they can’t afford them now?

    • Marquelle So Crazy 3 years ago

      The A’s can’t afford to keep anybody with their current stadium situation.  So if they’re going to lose their players anyway, they might as well get something in return via trade.  

      • johnsilver 3 years ago

         Yeah, I know that. It was a question more than anything was asking.. O’Finley got raked over the coals for selling off his star players, but no other A’s owner has since for doing the exact same thing.

        • I agree with what your saying, and to be honest im surprised MLB has not stepped in and either 1) bought the team from the current owner or 2) put a minimum salary cap.

          1) MLB should just outright take over the team because the owner is not keeping his players around and is not being aggressive in the free agent market to return the team back to competition.

          2) they have a Max Salary cap limit and penalize teams for going over it….why not make the minimum at around 50 or 60 million? this would make teams alittle more competitive and not your every year cellar dwellars. and if the owners of the teams cant afford that much then it is time for them to sell the team.

          • johnsilver 3 years ago

             There probably has been talks about adding one in the various CBA’s, but if you are the owners, (small market) you want one dirt cheap and imagine what the agents are pressing the union to settle for.. Can’t see them settling for anything near 60m. More like an escalating scale that would possibly *start* at 60m and work it’s way up to 100m.

            Look at it like this, from the minds of how all unions perceive things in general.. They see a top scale of 189m.. Doesn’t matter if it is logical or not that only a handful of teams can afford that massive amount.. They would want a minimum *probably* (and this is a guess) that would eventually settle in the 100-110m range after the escalators take effect and over a certain number of years. That is why there is no minimum.

            MLBPA would absolutely LOVE to see one implemented and on THEIR terms.

          • LazerTown 3 years ago

            Fine, but they first need to hurry up and help the A’s get their stadium situation resolved.  It is hurting all of baseball for the a’s to be in a bad stadium, in a city that isn’t supporting them, and thus they aren’t competing.

          • I thought the commish had already settled it for them? or was going to. maybe Oakland should just pack up and move to another city away from northern cali. move em to indiana lol. they have been wanting a baseball team for along time. they seem to get alot of fans at the indianapolis indians games. lol

          • melonis_rex 3 years ago

            Selig and MLB haven’t settled it yet.

            Selig appointed a blue ribbon committee… three years ago. Nothing has really come out of that yet.

          • LazerTown 3 years ago

            If they can get to san jose they are better than indy.  (Indy would put them in 2nd smallest market in all of mlb)  Santa Clara county has as many people as the entire indy metro, and the san jose metro is slightly larger.  But they would also figure to still draw fans from the east side of the bay (Oakland).  San Jose is also a MUCH wealthier area than Oakland or Indy.

      • Robert5286 3 years ago

        Isn’t it about time for the A’s to stop giving players away? If they had kept Gio Gonzalez,they might be in the thick of things. Sorry,but Tommy Milone is no Gio.  Memo to Lou Ford: There is no such thing as a small market. Any city or area will come out and support a winner.

        • BitLocker 3 years ago

           Tell that to the Rays.

        • Marquelle So Crazy 3 years ago

          A team with less money needs a larger core of young talent than say, the Yankees though.  The A’s will need to field roughly 15 cost controlled, young guys ever season.  

          My point being, if the A’s only have 5-7 talented cheap guys, they aren’t going to be able to afford to fill in that many gaps with above average MLBers

        •  Make sure to tell Lou Ford to relay that message to Lew Wolff

        • Tell that to the rays, and even with the nationals having the best record in the NL they still hardly sell out.

        • Milone has just a 3.57 ERA, and he wasn’t all the A’s got.  Derek Norris, Brad Peacock, and AJ Cole are all some of the A’s biggest prospects.  I think the A’s won this deal big time

          • Iconoclast17 3 years ago

            Maybe. Milone is pretty good, but the others are unproven. Peacock is having a terrible year at AAA Sacrament, just awful. Norris got called-up and Cole is in the low minors.

            Meanwhile, the trade that most A’s fans disliked—Andrew Bailey and Ryan Sweeney for Josh Reddick, Miles Head and Alcantaro is the real win. Reddick has more homers in 1/2 a season than Ryan Sweeney will hit in his entire career. 

            That trade with Phoenix is looking pretty good, too.;) 

      • Iconoclast17 3 years ago

        Trouble is, the A’s rarely get anybody in these mid-season deals. They got 4 cast-offs from the Cubs for Harden and none of them are in the majors today. Same with Joe Blanton and Matt Holiday.

        They might as well keep guys like Balfour, Crisp, McCarthy and Colon unless they are offered REAL talent.

    • Crucisnh 3 years ago

      If you’re not going to fill up your ballpark on a regular basis at least when your team makes a decent run at respectability and thus help your team have a competitive level of revenues, you’d better get used to becoming the “farm system for the rest of MLB”.  For example, I don’t know how the Rays are going to stay competitive long term if they can’t start drawing better.

      • johnsilver 3 years ago

         Rays had their “system” crushed by the new CBA. I went over it a bit in another thread half hour or so and even posted a chart.

        TB had one of (if not THE) best scouting and drafting infrastructures in the game and now it is of almost no use. They no longer can go down and take rounds 5-20 picks and throw huge amounts at them to sign, something Oakland never did.

        I will make another 2 team (A’s-TB here from just that topic I made earlier.

        TB and Oakland amounts allotted for 2012 vs what they spent in 2011 in the draft for talent.

        2012 allotted:
        TB: 3,871m
        A’s: 8,469m

        2011 what each spent:
        TB: 11,309m
        A’s:  2,612m

        If you are going to be a small market team? Have to spend in the draft to compete and TB was a MASTER at it. Oakland didn’t before with no slotting and now they have nearly 4x the amount.. question is.. Will they all of a sudden try to compete now? They are years behind the infrastructures of a Jays, Boston, TB, KC in that area.

        • J.j. Miller 3 years ago

          lol one thing you didnt mention about 2011 draft

          rays- first 3 rounds- 13 draft picks
          A’s- 1st 3 rounds- 2 picks

          • LazerTown 3 years ago

            Out of the Rays Rotation: Cobbs, Hellickson, Shields, Moore, (Davis used to be starter too) were all acquired in the 3rd round or later.  Only David Price did they  get in the first round. 

            The rays have built from the later rounds, and have supplemented with the first round.  To think that they are dependent upon the first round is nuts, as long as they can continue to keep their picks, and trade away some players for better pieces.

        • melonis_rex 3 years ago

          and the A’s threw 36MM at a completely unproven Cespedes last offseason, and a 19MM bid to win the posting fee bidding for Iwakuma (who wanted a massive contract and actually ended up losing money big time) the previous offseason.

          Yes, the a’s 2011 draft was unimpressive though and that’s really bad.

          But the huge CBA difference in slot money had a LOT to do with the modified type A/B system and losing multiple Type A/B FA last offseason. They’re not going to have that big a cap budget under the CBA ever again.

          • Iconoclast17 3 years ago

            They didn’t pay a penny of that $19 million Rex, as they didn’t sign Iwakuma. Cespedes, Reddick, Moss and a few others do something that the previous walk trollers like Barton never could or refused to do—HIT!

            Beane made three huge, helpful trades to restock the farm system and you complain about the 2011 draft?

        • Crucisnh 3 years ago

          Silver, I have no argument with your analysis. My point was that small market teams that even have good farm systems have a hard time competing year in and year out because that model can be very hit or miss, because of the uncertain nature of being able to produce a constant stream of young stars. And when you don’t have the revenues to at least hold onto some of those young veteran stars your system produced to create a modicum of stability, you’re thrown back on the uncertain ability of your team to produce a constant stream of talent to replace the young veteran stars that eventually leave for free agency.

          • maybe the A’s should have hired Theo Epstein. if one guy who can turn a team around is him. just get rid of him after 4 or 5 years or he will diminish the farm system like he did with boston.  but no doubt he is a good GM and smart one at that.

    • melonis_rex 3 years ago

      everyone hit the stadium point; also worth noting:

      1- the A’s can develop pitchers very well, but they’re horrendous at
      developing hitters. Constantly turning over their pitching staff to
      bring in both hitting talent and payroll flexibility to sign guys like
      Yoenis Cespedes fits that strategy. look at the a’s lineup. there are above average major league hitters in it, and they all came from outside the organization.

      2- a bunch of hitting prospects the a’s had failed to develop or took
      huge steps back. aaron cunningham, travis buck, chris carter, josh
      donaldson, grant green, michael taylor, daric barton, adrian cardenas.
      this is a huge player development problem and it set the team back
      significantly. lots of people are to blame for this and i am not an expert.

      the a’s tried to contend in 2009, and made a disaster trade in the process. they tried to contend with cahill/gio/bailey in tow 2009-2011, made offers to several significant free agents (Scutaro, Furcal, and Beltre come to mind), traded for ddj and willingham and it didn’t happen.

      The 2012 team is also significantly deeper than any team I’ve seen since 2006. they’re at 500 in spite of having 3 starters on the DL, multiple guys pitch themselves out of the rotation, cespedes missing major time to the DL, and their starting 3B out for the season.

      • johnsilver 3 years ago

        And Beane is still a magician. if it were not for him being so adept at making deals? They would be in a world of hurt.

        Don’t want to sound like am slamming this organization here and have the hard core A’s fans like Snoochies upset, cause am not. It is a sickening situation and when read that the A’s in this post were going to go into “sell mode” it just ticked me off…

        Yeah Rex, Oakland has been good at developing pitchers ince like time began. LOL something that goes together with A’s and Athletics.

        Beane, the last few seasons has acted with his post season approach to have changed up his philosophy and not gone into full rebuild mode, but a half hearted approach of buy a couple of FA and sell some of his top talent and only reason can think of is he is trying to buy time for that who-knows-how-long-it-will-take stadium in San Jose. Fans just don’t really show up and it’s like he has to go one way or the other. Rebuild in total, or try to compete. Oakland isn’t that far back from the 2nd WC spot.

        • melonis_rex 3 years ago

          i’m also incredibly skeptical of knobler’s report, considering that a local beat writer (I can’t remember who) said a few days ago that ownership was willing to bump payroll to make a push this year. the a’s beat reporters as a whole are really good.

          also: Colon, the A’s biggest “seller” trade candidate, is about to be pushed out of the A’s rotation once one of McCarthy/Anderson come back after the ASB. He’s arguably their 5th best starter right now (using current performance only) and he’ll slip further when McCarthy/Anderson return or if Straily warrants an MLB callup. Balfour also has major regression-candidate peripherals.

          •  I disagree about colon… the guy has been solid, middle rotation kind of guy

          • Not being pushed out of the rotation due to poor performance, but pushed out via trade due to his solid performance. That is the only way Straily will get a look prior to Sept. call ups. We just have too many good young pitchers. 

          • LazerTown 3 years ago

            May make sense for the A’s to trade McCarthy.

          • melonis_rex 3 years ago

            I agree, although I can’t see McCarthy coming back from injury soon enough to build any real trade value.

          • I think the A’s will be “sellers”, but not be in “selling the farm” type mode. They can add by subtraction. Subtracting Coco will give Cespedes everyday playing time in CF. Subtracting Colon will keep Griffin in the rotation. Subtracting Gomes will secure more playing time for Smith in LF and Carter/Moss at DH. Subtracting Balfour could allow another live arm in Sac. to come into the pen. Not to mention the return(s) we could get for those trades. Maybe a bundle could net us a better 3B or SS.  

  3. vtadave 3 years ago

    Just once I’d like to see an impending free agent say: “To be honest, I’m going where the money is. If that happens to be with the , great, I won’t have to pack. If that’s somewhere else, that’s fine too, as I can hire people to pack my stuff”.

    • You say you’d be happy for them to say that, but you know how crucified they would be for saying that.

      • vtadave 3 years ago

        Yeah I know..just would be fun to see the fallout.

    •  You won’t hear that from Felix he is very loyal to Seattle and i expect him to sign an extension next season he always said he wants to play his whole career and judging by his actions i can believe him. You don’t hear this out of Cole Hamels all you hear about is the $ and playing on the West Coast.

  4. not_brooks 3 years ago

    Boy, I’m sure glad old Bud appointed a “committee” to figure out what to do with the A’s. Things should start to move along a little faster in the decision process now.

    Wait. What? The “committee” was appointed three and a half years ago?

    Oh, crap…

    • lol give me a year and ill figure out what to do with the A’s. Sell them to someone who likes to win and will spend money to win and keep his prospects around.

      • melonis_rex 3 years ago

        try again. the a’s weren’t drawing much when they were winning 90+ games. a simple payroll boost really isn’t going to boost attendance.

  5. Hahaha look at that Felix staying true to his word like i have been saying. Again he signed the last contract in the final year of his deal what makes you think he won’t do it again? He actually stayed true to his word.

    • sooner or later he will get tired of losing year in and year out. he will want to win a championship before he retires. the mariners are like the A’s. their the farm teams for the rest of MLB.

    • notsureifsrs 3 years ago

      “he signed the last contract in the final year of his deal”

      no he didn’t. why are you all so bad at this

      •  Yes he did which is why he was being shopped until he signed his extension in 2011. Not Sure If Serious.

        • notsureifsrs 3 years ago

          he signed his extension in january of 2010, two full seasons before free agency

          how does it feel to be so wrong

          •  My bad it was 2010 but i know it was his final year because he was about to be traded to Boston for 4 prospects before he signed it.

          • notsureifsrs 3 years ago

            this is amazing

  6. gw9999 3 years ago

    Too bad Mike Napoli isn’t playing this year like he wants an endless line of bidders throwing big money at him!  Obviously there is no telling at what $s and years the negotiations with Texas got hung up in the off-season, but there’s a good chance he’ll fall short of that if his bat doesn’t wake up in the second half.

  7. Dylan 3 years ago

    Mariners are in a perfect spot with Felix. They can keep him for the next two years, see how their top pitching prospects do in AAA/MLB and then either trade him for a bunch of top prospects or extend him. It’s win-win for them. Well played, Jack, well played.

  8. mrsjohnmiltonrocks 3 years ago

    I hope Felix stays with the Mariners his entire career.  I am sick to death of everyone thinking that he MUST go because the Mariners are not competitive.  Do they still have to field a team?  Do they still need someone to pitch their games?  Do they need to hang on to a player that actually brings fans to the park?

    I get that they could stock their team by trading him.  Is that going to guarantee they will turn into winners?  No, it’s not.  The Mariners still need someone to pitch their games and as long as their rotation is going to be cycling in young, developing pitchers it’s a nice to have a youngish, reliable, veteran to anchor that staff.

    Plus, he’s going to shatter every pitching record ever for the Mariners.  What is wrong with the Mariners and their fans wanting that?  Again, trading Felix guarantees them nothing.  If they do trade him, I’d be willing to bet that they will be spending the next several years looking for someone just like Felix to anchor their staff.  Those guys a hard to come by.  They have one and I think they should try to keep him.

  9. MadmanTX 3 years ago

    From where? Houston? San Diego? Toronto? NY & Boston won’t sign Hamilton to such a contract. Detroit blew their wad with Fielder. The Angels did that with Pujols. That leaves teams with money, but aren’t really contenders. Does Hamilton want money or a chance to win each season?

  10. I can’t see anyone giving him 8. I think the bidding tops out at 7 years, which is almost as ridiculous.

  11. Stuart Brown 3 years ago

    The Dodgers could go after him to play LF.

  12. Casor_Greener 3 years ago

    I could see the Orioles shock the world at 5-6 years

  13. I Can see the reds, nationals (if they dont get upton or bourn in FA) and rizzo has already been quoted in saying money will not be an issue in aquiring a OF with a big bat. the Nats is who my money is on. Werth looked like he was turning it around this year before he got hurt, and with him harper and Hamilton in the OF would push them to the top to be world series contenders although they look like they could be favorites to win the NL this year anyway. the only thing i can see keeping hamilton from being a national is his age. but who knows maybe htey will want him for his world series experience.

  14. Robb Logan 3 years ago

    The Doyers with new owners are probable suitors and would give up the $$$$ to add a bat at this point. Also some small market teams may make a little noise this offseason seeing the success of the Pirates and O’s. He will get his $$$$ and it will be an absurd amount by a team.

  15. Robert Gaito 3 years ago

    Pretty Sure L.A. has over 200mm locked up in the outfield already.

  16. notsureifsrs 3 years ago

    “Most potential FA’s will say they DO want to leave”

    first of all, this almost never happens. go ahead and try to make a list. it won’t take long

    second, felix isn’t a potential free agent. players in his position always say what he is currently saying

    maybe he does intend to stay. that’s possible. but by itself the fact that he says he would like to means next to nothing

  17. lol they originally cut off talks with Hamilton because of his “relapse”. Good job, good effort, though.

  18. ahhhh yes i forgot about san diego and new ownership lol. i can see them making some noise. wouldnt be surprised if their sleepers in FA and go out and get BOTH hamels and greinke and try to lure hamilton to san diego also. because isnt the new soon to be owner a billionaire?

  19. ???? Yep you can.

  20. Yea, I could see the Nats trying to go after Hamilton. I think the Braves would too, but I’ve been told by Braves fans that they wouldn’t. I’m not sure why not though.
    I want the Rangers to re-sign him, but at the end of the day, one guy doesn’t make a team. I’m a Rangers fan, not a Hamilton fan.

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