July 2012

Red Sox To Acquire Craig Breslow

Craig Breslow - Arizona (PW)

The Red Sox will acquire left-handed reliever Craig Breslow from the Diamondbacks, Jack Magruder of FOXSportsArizona.com reports (Twitter links). The Red Sox will send Matt Albers and Scott Podsednik to Arizona to complete the trade. 

Boston had been seeking left-handed relief. The Angels were also looking at Breslow, according to Magruder. Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe first reported that the Red Sox might acquire Breslow.

Breslow has a 2.70 ERA with 8.7 K/9 and 2.7 BB/9 in 43 1/3 innings this year. The 31-year-old earns $1.8MM and will go to arbitration again this coming offseason. He's on track to reach free agency following the 2013 season.

Podsednik, 36, posted a .387/.409/.484 batting line in 70 plate appearances this year, but missed substantial time with a groin injury. He earns $750K at the MLB level and will become a free agent after the season.

Albers has a 2.29 ERA with 5.7 K/9 and 3.4 BB/9 in 39 1/3 innings so far in 2012. He is earning $1.08MM this year and will remain under team control as an arbitration eligible player through 2013.

Photo courtesy of US Presswire.


Cardinals Acquire Edward Mujica

The Cardinals acquired reliever Edward Mujica from the Marlins for third baseman Zack Cox, tweets Peter Gammons of MLB Network.

Uspw_6245314

Mujica, 28, has a 4.38 ERA, 6.0 K/9, 2.1 BB/9, 1.38 HR/9, and 50.4% groundball rate in 39 innings for the Marlins this year.  Mujica is owed $568K for the remainder of the season and will be arbitration eligible for the third and final time after the season.  Mujica was part of the deal that sent Cameron Maybin to the Padres in November 2010.

Cox, 23, was the Cardinals' first-round pick in 2010.  He's hitting .254/.294/.421 in 316 Triple-A plate appearances.  Baseball America ranked Cox fourth among Cardinals prospects prior to the season, and was still willing to call him a "potential No. 3 hitter" at the time.  It's a nice pickup for Mujica, even if Cox's star has fallen.   

Photo courtesy of Steve Mitchell/US Presswire.


NL Central Notes: Sutton, Soriano, Cubs

The latest from the NL Central, as the Reds, Pirates and Cardinals look to improve their rosters for the season's final two months…

  • The Pirates announced that they designated outfielder Drew Sutton for assignment to create roster space for Daniel McCutchen. Travis Snider has joined the team in Chicago, the Pirates announced. Sutton, 29, posted a .243/.278/.419 batting line in 79 plate appearances with the Pirates, who claimed him from the Rays last month.
  • The Pirates are focused on adding bench and bullpen help after trading for Travis Snider, Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com reports (on Twitter). 
  • Alfonso Soriano has provided the Cubs with a list of teams to which he would accept a trade, Bob Nightengale of USA Today reports (on Twitter). The Giants aren’t on it. Soriano was interested in waiving his no-trade clause to join the Dodgers, Ken Davidoff of the New York Post reports (on Twitter). However, the Shane Victorino trade likely reduces Los Angeles' interest in Soriano.
  • The Cubs did well to acquire Arodys Vizcaino and Jaye Chapman for Reed Johnson and Paul Maholm, ESPN.com's Keith Law writes. Atlanta will be better in 2012 as a result of the trade, but the Cubs did well to obtain Vizcaino, a top pitching prospect when healthy, in Law's estimation.


Red Sox Seek Lefty Relief; Rangers Out On Beckett

The latest on the Red Sox, with less than two hours remaining for Ben Cherington to make a deal…

  • The Red Sox are in the market for a left-handed reliever, according to Sean McAdam of CSNNE.com (on Twitter McAdam credits Peter Gammons for first reporting the news). Adding a lefty reliever would allow the Red Sox to move Franklin Morales back to the rotation, McAdam writes. Here are some southpaw relievers for Cherington to consider.
  • The Red Sox and Rangers definitely won't revisit the possibility of a Josh Beckett trade, Rob Bradford of WEEI.com reports. The sides could re-engage next month if the right-hander clears waivers.

Matt Garza Rumors: Tuesday

The trade deadline is roughly eight hours away, and we learned yesterday that the Cubs are talking Matt Garza with multiple clubs despite a fluid buildup in the righty's triceps that will keep him from pitching until after the deadline passes.  The 28-year-old is under team control for 2013, a season for which he will earn approximately $12.1MM, according to MLBTR contributor Matt Swartz.  The Cubs moved Paul Maholm, Reed Johnson, and Geovany Soto on Monday; here's the latest on Garza.


Rangers, Twins Discussing Jared Burton

The Rangers and Twins are discussing a possible trade involving right-handed reliever Jared Burton, Yahoo's Tim Brown reports (on Twitter). The Rangers are known to be considering additions to their bullpen. 

Burton, 31, has a 2.40 ERA with 7.8 K/9 and 2.2 BB/9 in 41 1/3 innings for the Twins this year. He's earning a salary of $750K and will go to arbitration this coming offseason before hitting free agency after 2013.


Giants Acquire Hunter Pence

The Giants have to have bolstered their lineup with an All-Star caliber outfielder for the second consecutive summer.  They acquired right fielder Hunter Pence from the Phillies for right fielder Nate Schierholtz, minor league reliever Seth Rosin and, minor league catcher/first baseman Tommy Joseph the Phillies announced.

Hunter Pence - Phillies (PW)

Pence, 29, is hitting .271/.336/.447 in 440 plate appearances for the Phillies this year.  He's under team control for 2013, though his salary could exceed $14MM.  He'll boost a Giants lineup that ranks 11th in the NL with four runs scored per game.  GM Brian Sabean snagged one of the best bats on the trade market last summer as well with Carlos Beltran, but Pence is more than a rental.  

Pence joined the Phillies one year ago in a trade with the Astros, but amidst a disappointing season GM Ruben Amaro Jr. is cleaning house.  Less than an hour ago, the Dodgers acquired another member of the Phillies' outfield in Shane Victorino. Los Angeles also acquired Hanley Ramirez and Brandon League, creating pressure for their NL West rivals.

Schierholtz, 28, appears to have requested a trade after seeing his playing time diminish. T he left-handed hitter has a .257/.327/.429 batting line in 196 plate appearances this year and a .270/.319/.412 line in his six-year career.  He's earning $1.3MM this year and can be retained through 2014 via the arbitration process.

Rosin, a 23-year-old right-hander, stand 6'6".  He has a 4.31 ERA with 10.9 K/9 and 2.9 BB/9 in 56 1/3 innings at Class A so far this year.  The 2010 fourth round pick has struck out three times as many batters as he has walked in the minor leagues.

Joseph, 21, is hitting .260/.313/.391 in 335 Double-A plate appearances this year.  Baseball America wrote before the season that the 2009 second-rounder should be able to stay at catcher.

Jon Heyman first reported the trade today.  Two days ago, Dennis O'Donnell of KPIX was first to report that the Giants had a deal in place for Pence involving Joseph.  Todd Zolecki first reported that Rosin was in the trade.  Danny Knobler confirmed Joseph's role in the trade.


Yankees Close To Acquiring McGehee For Qualls

The Yankees were on the verge of acquiring third baseman Casey McGehee from the Pirates for reliever Chad Qualls as the deadline approached, tweets Joel Sherman of the New York Post, who is working to confirm the deal.


Latest On Orioles, Joe Blanton

31-year-old innings eater Joe Blanton has about $3MM left on his contract, and the Orioles are his most interested suitor.  The latest: 

  • The Phillies are coming off the $3MM demands, tweets Connolly, and Blanton to the Orioles is picking up steam again.
  • The Orioles would have to take on $3MM to acquire Blanton, and they aren't comfortable with that amount, so they're considering other options, Dan Connolly of the Baltimore Sun reports (all Twitter links).  The Mariners want a lot in return for Jason Vargas, Connolly writes.  Joe Saunders and Bud Norris are alternatives, but it's not clear whether they're fits for Baltimore.  The Orioles don't want to give up much in a trade for starting pitching, Connolly writes.
  • The Orioles tried to get Paul Maholm from the Cubs, Ghiroli reports.  She confirms the team's interest in Saunders and Vargas.  The Orioles are looking on the relief market as well, Ghiroli reports.
  • The Orioles are turning their attention back toward other starters, tweets MLB.com's Britt Ghiroli.
  • The Orioles were sent medicals on Blanton as well as two Phillies minor leaguers, tweets Roch Kubatko of MASNSports.com.
  • Money continues to be a stumbling block on a Blanton deal, tweets MLB.com's Todd Zolecki.  The chances of the deal dying have increased since yesterday.

AL East Notes: Red Sox, Teixeira, Blue Jays

The Blue Jays traded two outfielders for two relievers in a pair of late-night trades Monday, while the Orioles continued engaging the Phillies on Joe Blanton. Here’s the latest from the AL East as today’s 3pm CDT trade deadline draws closer…

  • Though some fans and analysts insist it's time for the Red Sox to trade Josh Beckett, he's not the negative clubhouse presence Manny Ramirez was, Alex Speier of WEEI.com writes. The Red Sox don't feel compelled to move Beckett, who's still well-respected by many teammates and club officials. Speier breaks down the reasons for and against a Beckett trade in detail at WEEI.com. It doesn't sound as though the Red Sox will move him today.
  • The Red Sox are on the lookout for an outfielder who bats from the right side, Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe reports (on Twitter). Scott Hairston and Alfonso Soriano are among the potentially available outfielders who bat right-handed.
  • The Red Sox aren't involved on Matt Garza, Nick Cafardo reports (on Twitter).
  • Mark Teixeira's left wrist injury shouldn't affect the Yankees' trade plans, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports (on Twitter). The Yankees continue looking for a third baseman who plays strong defense.
  • Brad Lincoln probably can't start for the Blue Jays, but he can be a strong setup man and won't be worse than a right-handed specialist, ESPN.com's Keith Law writes. Travis Snider, the player Toronto gave up to acquire Lincoln, still has flaws, but could become an everyday outfielder with power. Law doesn't anticipate either Eric Thames or Steve Delabar will have a major impact on his new team. Within the Insider-only piece, Law also breaks down the Chris Johnson and Francisco Liriano trades.