Rosenthal’s Latest: Upton, Rays, Youkilis, Dodgers

Here's the latest from Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports

  • The Rangers continue to insist that they will not trade either Elvis Andrus or Jurickson Profar for Justin Upton, which could allow the Rays to emerge as the front-runner. They could offer the Diamondbacks James Shields or Jeremy Hellickson in addition to shortstop prospect Hak-Ju Lee.
  • The White Sox and Phillies are interested in Kevin Youkilis, and the Dodgers are considering him as well. Rosenthal says other clubs are concerned whenever Los Angeles is reportedly in on a player given their financial might.
  • The Orioles and Nationals are still engaged in a dispute over money received from MASN — both clubs own the network, but Baltimore's stake is nearly 90% — though Nats GM Mike Rizzo said that will not limit the club's ability to spend.
  • Angels GM Jerry Dipoto is not concerned about finding a pure closer. He intends to add the best bullpen arms he can and let things figure themselves out.
  • A rival executive told Rosenthal that he expects Dan Haren to sign with the Padres. Haren is a West Coast guy and Padres GM Josh Byrnes originally acquired him from the Athletics while running the Diamondbacks a few years ago.
  • “Like him. Don’t love him," said a Red Sox official when asked about Adam LaRoche. Boston is reportedly pursuing the first baseman.
  • Joakim Soria and Ryan Madson will not be ready to pitch at the start of the season. Both right-handers are coming off Tommy John surgery.

45 Responses to Rosenthal’s Latest: Upton, Rays, Youkilis, Dodgers Leave a Reply

  1. comegys 3 years ago

    Confusing article; DiPoto traded for Carlos Marmol last week but it did not go through because the Cubs pulled out now all of a sudden DiPoto is not looking for a pure closer

    • MLB_in_the_Know 3 years ago

      Marmol is no longer a “pure closer”.

      • UrsaMajor 3 years ago

        ??? What is he, a DH?
        He had an excellent 2nd half after they made him use his fastball to set up his slider.

  2. Beersy 3 years ago

    As long as his medicals come back alright, get Haren signed already Padres. Even with his injuries he put up a decent season last year. If the Padres can just hold things together the first two months of the season they will be getting back both Luebke and Grandal, which are two very good additions.

  3. rjc 3 years ago

    As much as I love me some Big Game James, I wouldn’t mind seeing a deal for Upton for Shields and Lee. Zobrist is playing a solid SS and we need to bring back Kep for second base. Losing Shields would free up some cash and give us a chance to find a decent first base or DH. Would love to see us sign Adam LaRoche, but I think he would cost too much.

    • Sky14 3 years ago

      I think it would have to be Hellickson in the deal instead of Shields for the Dbacks to agree to trade Upton.

      • mmiller54 3 years ago

        agreed… the financial room added (and years of control) on Hellickson would make him a tantalizing option for the Dbacks (especially since he still has a ton of potential).

  4. mmiller54 3 years ago

    As a Dbacks fan, Upton should go if Hellickson and Lee are offered (especially if we can also get our good left handed reliever in the deal too).

    • James Attwood 3 years ago

      Chances are KT will be looking for Shields more than Hellickson, though Hellickson is attractive because of the years of control left. Shields however, plugs in at the very top of a currently thin rotation in terms of solid, bonafide starters if he is in AZ. Also, Hellickson is a Boras client, and the Dbacks have a very poor relationship with Boras.
      Either pitcher is intriguing though, and the addition of HJL is the part that really makes things interesting. I wouldn’t be surprised if the Dbacks tossed in a mid-level prospect to sweeten the deal a bit to make it happen.

      • mmiller54 3 years ago

        I would love to have Shields, as long as it is not a brief 2 year stay in Arizona. If the Dbacks could sign him through 2016 or 2017, I would be more happy with Shields than Hellickson. What are your thoughts about HJL… looking at his minor league numbers, he looks like Elvis Andrus (not quite as good but close)?

        • James Attwood 3 years ago

          HJL is going to be a defensive wizard that likely hits lead-off for someone if he can just figure out how to be a bit more selective at the plate. He doesn’t have poor plate discipline, but he doesn’t take enough pitches yet to be a great lead-off guy. There are some that project he could be a bottom of the order speedster instead of a lead-off man. Either way, he needs to bulk up a bit. His nimbleness and frame both indicate he’ll keep his range at SS, but his arm (though good) could be stronger, and he’s a slap hitter, that with strength, could be a gaps hitter instead.

    • James Attwood 3 years ago

      It’s unlikely that a reliever would also be added to the package. Shields and HJL probably gets it done all by itself. Hellickson and HJL might be a bit trickier. Hellickson has more years of controlability, but doesn’t plug in as high into the rotation as Shields and is a Boras client. I think if Hellickson is the one traded, then the two teams might add in some “supplemental pieces” to make things work out a bit smoother.

  5. Jason Sanspree 3 years ago

    Tommy Hanson and Tyler Pastornicky for Upton!

  6. faceforest 3 years ago

    Considering how the Rays always seem to struggle with middle infielders, the future of the franchise is not worth 3 years from Upton. I’d do a straight trade, Upton and Hellickson, but including one of the Rays top prospects? Nope. Next.

    • James Attwood 3 years ago

      Hellickson alone doesn’t meet the Dbacks asking price for Upton. HJL would actually be the centerpiece of the deal.

  7. Trequartista 3 years ago

    Please no. Justin Upton’s scary home/away splits isn’t going to play well for pitcher friendly park. I’m not even sure if he can be more productive in terms of WAR than his brother if playing at same ballpark. And that 3/38m contract.. There will be better suitors than Rays.

  8. harrigang 3 years ago

    How long is Upton under contract?

  9. Jason Nereim 3 years ago

    If Rays give up Shields/Hellickson and HJL, I think they need to get something else from the Dbacks. Someone already mentioned needing a lefty reliever, so maybe one of Alex Torres or Caesar Ramos (Former roommate of Longoria and Tulo in college) is added to the deal and Rays get Bauer in the deal as well.

    Shields/Hellickson, HJL, and Ramos/Torres for Upton and Bauer

    • Mr_Anderson1017 3 years ago

      i’m just gonna jump in and throw Price in that deal too. that should make it work.

      • Jason Nereim 3 years ago

        Good one…

        Dave Cameron of ESPN/fangraphs already speculated that Bauer could become part of a potential deal. HJL has slightly more value than Bauer and Shields/Hellickson and Ramos/Torres for Upton is close.

    • James Attwood 3 years ago

      If it takes Bauer to make a deal happen, then chances are no deal gets done. The Dbacks put as much, if not more, worth into Bauer than they do Upton. A package sending away their future perennial all-star OF along with a future Lincecum would have to be monstrous, the kind of deal that redefines teams for the next 5-10 years. The Rays aren’t in the habit of making deals that gut their system like that.

  10. Regarding Youk to Dodgers rumors:

    Ladies and gentleman, your Los Angeles Red Sox!

    remember when the used to have Nomar, Bill Mueller and Derek Lowe, too?

  11. chicothekid 3 years ago

    I’ll be shocked if the Rays trade premium stuff for questionable talent. I don’t see them trading HJL, but especially not for Upton. I can definitely see them moving Shields, and I could see them moving him for Upton, but I don’t see them including extras in the package, so I don’t see a deal being done there. Taking on players who are already making lots of money isn’t their style, and taking on players that make lots of money with questionable productivity is even less so.

    I could be wrong, but I think the Rays are smarter than this. If they are trading Shields, I think there is a better deal out there than overpaying for suspect goods from Arizona.

  12. Hak-Ju Lee has completely fallen off of prospect lists. Another Jose Iglesias but with less spectacular defense.

    • johnsilver 3 years ago

      The only people that ever rated Lee in the same category of prospect was Rays people and a couple of sports writers.

      Lee never had the glove of iglesias, nor came with the billing of having the next Aparacio style defense either and neither were ever billed as anything more than bottom of the order hitters (at best) in the MLB.

      • Jason Nereim 3 years ago

        You have no idea what you are talking about.

        HJL remains a top prospect and a future leadoff hitter. Great speed, plate discipline, and bat handling abilities along with elite defense are attributes he possesses. No one expects him to hit for much power but can still be a very good gap hitter. Started off very slow in his first taste of AA this year but turned things around in the second half and has had a good AFL campaign.

        • johnsilver 3 years ago

          When he hits above A ball? *maybe*. Until then? Not much and Lee is 22YO, same as iglesias, but not the defense and Iglesias hit at AA.

          Lee has speed over Iglesias, nothing else until Lee hits against competition.


          Plate discipline? he has a 4% MiLB BB rate.

          • Jason Nereim 3 years ago

            No offense but are you looking at the right player?

            HJL bb% at every level: 10.2, 8.9, 9.3, 9.6, 9.6, 10.3 and a career k% under 20%.

            HJL just turned 22 a couple days ago. 22 year old in AAA is young.

            Hitting .260 in AA with good peripheral is what I would call “hitting” especially considering he started off really slow but then hit near .300 the rest of the season.

            Again, HJL has always been rated as amazing defensively.

          • johnsilver 3 years ago

            Ur BB% is correct.. Not even going to mention the category was looking at it was so bone headed and can’t believe did that.. Think 1st time ever did even was so astonished when went back and looked :-(

            Lee had 2 and a half seasons of A ball to get ready for AA, he really should have been ready to “step up” per see after getting a look at AA the end of 2011 and all of last season playing at that level. Don’t be surprised if his status as a prospect (in the eyes of the various rags) does not take a hit some as a result of his showing there, even tho as a 21YO am reasonably sure he was one of the youngest players in the league, recall Iglesias was the youngest in the EL during his time there and one of the youngest (top 5) at Pawtucket (AAA) last year.

          • Jason Nereim 3 years ago

            I think your grasping at straws here…

            HJL was signed as an IFA at the age of 17 and moved up one level every year. There are 3 levels of A ball but I’m not surprised you didn’t emphasize that. Again at 22 in AAA next season, HJL will be young for his competition.

            Iglesias was signed as an IFA at the age of 20 and was more advanced in terms of development, hence moving through the minor leagues much quicker.

            The defense is comparable but HJL is better offensively in every facet. Better hitter, better plate discipline, better runner.

          • buddaley 3 years ago

            You are exaggerating a bit. Lee played all of 2012 as a 21 year old (born in November) while Iglesias turned 22 in January, 2012. They are now both 22, but in baseball terms, Lee is a year younger.

            I am not sure what stat you are using for Lee’s BB rate. Over the course of his minor league career, according to BB-Ref, Lee has walked in 9.4% of his plate appearances. Last year, he walked in 9.5% of PAs.

            The analysts I have read continue to place Lee in their top 100. Sickels in particular is optimistic about his prospect status as noted in an article this October. In July, 2012, Baseball America had him as their #47 prospect. At the beginning of 2012, Baseball Prospectus listed him at #65. It is possible he will drop down some, but his AA performance should keep him within the top 100 on most lists.

      • Jason Nereim 3 years ago

        BTW just named #3 prospect in rays organization by BA a week ago

        • johnsilver 3 years ago

          *nobody* Rates prospects by how they are in organizations. Boston’s 3rd for instance? JBJ (Jackie Bradley Jr) that depends on who each team has at the top.

          BTW.. Just did notice BA has/had Lee still ranked at 47th when checked on JBJ (32nd) and am curious to see who the top 100 are going to be when they are announced and where people fall/who is new and who falls out. There are surprises every new list.

          • Jason Nereim 3 years ago

            There are no top 100 lists yet to reference so hence a top 10 organizational ranking. Even so #3 in a talented top 10 system carries weight.

  13. Z.... 3 years ago

    if I’m the Rangers, I’m not trading Andrus or Profar either. I dont care
    if I have to find a way to move Kinsler or move Kinsler to the OF.
    However, this is Juston Upton we are talking about. I dont know. I think
    I would have to bite on that one. Upton is controllable for a year
    longer than Andrus and is a franchise player who just turned 25. This is
    one of very few spots I would give up one of those shorstops. I still
    wouldnt trade Upton at all if I’m the Diamondbacks

  14. ssjchaseutley 3 years ago

    I dunno how I’d feel about Youkilis playing 3rd for Phils….this guy will be quasi-expensive and isn’t exactly the healthiest person on the planet. Although….he does have excellent defense….but it’s better at 1st than 3rd.

    We’ll see I suppose.

  15. embehr 3 years ago

    Shields has two more very friendly option years on his contract so he is basically under contract for 3 more years, not 1

  16. embehr 3 years ago

    I was wrong, its only one more option year instead of two but that is still an extra year of James Shields. 2013 is worth $9 MM and 2014 is worth $12 MM

  17. Jason Nereim 3 years ago

    Bauer was a top 5 before this season but I don’t think he will be this next season. Major control issues, conditioning issues and coachability issues.

  18. Jason Nereim 3 years ago

    I don’t see how he doesn’t drop. His FIP on the minors was almost a run higher and had a bb% over 10. He pitches up in the zone too much and gives up too many flyballs. He is too stubborn to change anything and has said he wants to give up only fly balls. Still a big talent, but I still think stock has taken small hit.

  19. Jason Nereim 3 years ago

    link to

    Basically it calculates a pitchers projected era based on the factors he can control like strike outs, walks, groundball percentage and homers. It normalizes to an era scale so you can see how lucky or unlucky a pitcher may be.

    link to

    That is Bauer’s fangraph page. You can see some of the basic sabermetric elements on there.

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