AL Notes: Almanzar, Athletics, Blue Jays

After a busy transactional day yesterday, here are some American League notes that we did not quite get to:

  • The Orioles are trying to decide what to do with Rule 5 pick Michael Almanzar, who looks to be unlikely to make the club's Opening Day roster. One possibility is a trade of the rights to the former Red Sox third base prospect, tweets Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe. But that scenario could be complicated by the fact that Almanzar is dealing with a knee problem that will require an MRI, as's Adam Berry reports. Of course, if Almanzar were to require a DL trip to start the year, it would offer Baltimore some added time to sort things out. Manager Buck Showalter said the team would not use the injury as pretext, however, emphasizing that Almanzar would only go to the DL if the injury required it.
  • The Athletics raised some eyebrows by spending significant cash on relievers this offseason, taking on the salaries of Jim Johnson ($10MM) and Luke Gregerson ($5.065MM) while committing $7MM to Eric O'Flaherty over two years. For the notoriously tight-fisted, analytical ballclub, this spending pattern led to an obvious question: what edge had GM Billy Beane found this time? As Yahoo's Jeff Passan reports, the explanation may be fairly simple. With limited payroll to add to a ready-to-win roster, the club simply got the best "bang for its buck (Beane's words) while avoiding long-term commitments. Of course, as Passan notes, the team also knows that allowing Johnson to rack up the saves will result in arbitration savings on in-house relievers like Ryan Cook and Sean Doolittle.
  • With just days remaining until the deadline to settle on an Opening Day roster, the Blue Jays still have several roster battles taking place. As Ben Nicholson-Smith of writes, there still seems to be plenty of wiggle room in the final composition of the Toronto club. The rotation has two spots in play given J.A. Happ's struggles, the middle infield mix could be impacted by the recent injury to Jose Reyes, the backup catching situation is still not finalized, and the fourth outfielding spot is suddenly open to a last-minute competition between Moises Sierra and the newly-added Matt Tuiasosopo. Of course, as Nicholson-Smith notes, options will play a big role in the final determinations and no MLB roster is static throughout the season.

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6 Comments on "AL Notes: Almanzar, Athletics, Blue Jays"

1 year 5 months ago

Regarding Daniels’ Comments: Wow… I don’t think I’ve ever read a still employed GM offer such a candid and stark assessment of one of his moves. Good for him for being so honest.

1 year 5 months ago

He’s made plenty of good moves and no one can knock him for a trade right now, that we won’t even know if it’s truly terrible for another 2-3 seasons. CJ Edwards was the gem of the trade, and it depends on how he develops.

1 year 5 months ago

It’s not like he could say otherwise.
It will be interesting to see what Daniels does now without Nolan Ryan around to offer counsel.
Daniels very much seems like a guy who prefers Yes men to those who speak their minds.

1 year 5 months ago

Almanzar isn’t a real prospect any longer. I don’t understand why Boston would refuse to take an equal type organizational filler type guy back in return. Almanzar just has too many holes in his game still after 5y of organized ball and has shown little enthusiasm to improve at any of them yet.

Spit Ball
1 year 5 months ago

I’d rather have Almanzar back unless the Orioles want to give up something semi promising. He has not been great by any means but their still is potential their. He did have 16 homers and 50 extra base hits last year at AA. I watched him sparingly at Portland last year and he does make hard contact. His plate discipline could be worse. He still has a chance (however small) to be a power bat and that’s one thing the Sox lack a bit.