Central Links: Dirks, Cubs, Morton, Meyer, Reds

Tigers outfielder Andy Dirks suffered yet another setback in his return from back surgery i a rehab game on Sunday, according to James Schmel of MLive.com. Dirks sustained the second hamstring injury of his rehab assignment, and while the results of a Tuesday MRI have yet to be disclosed, it’s looking unlikely that he will play for the Tigers at all this season, writes Schmel. There are just 13 games remaining in the minor league regular season, and Dirks may not have enough time to rehab and prepare himself to suit up for the reigning AL Central champs this year.

Here’s more from baseball’s Central divisions…

  • Much has been made of the Cubs‘ plan to pursue top-of-the-rotation arms this offseason, but GM Jed Hoyer said to Gordon Wittenmyer of the Chicago Sun-Times this weekend that a veteran position player is a priority as well. “…[T]here’s a lot of positions on the field that we want to dedicate to the guys that are here or to young players,” said Hoyer. “But I do think it’s important to have some veteran guys with good approaches that these guys can lean on… … It’s certainly something we want to find.”
  • Pirates right-hander Charlie Morton was originally placed on the disabled list for a hip issue, but he has now been diagnosed with a sports hernia, he told reporters, including Rob Biertempfel of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review (Twitter link). Morton will try to return in 2014, but that doesn’t appear to be a certainty, and even if he does, offseason surgery remains a possibility.
  • Twins top prospect Alex Meyer is right where he should be in regard to the team’s projected innings limit, GM Terry Ryan tells Mike Berardino of the St. Paul Pioneer Press. Ryan will watch Meyer’s final home start of the year next week but is not ready to concretely say that the flamethrower will receive a September call-up. The Twins would need to add Meyer to the 40-man roster to do so, but as Berardino notes, that would happen following the season in order to protect him from the Rule 5 Draft anyway. Meyer ranked on the midseason Top 50 prospect lists of ESPN’s Keith Law, Baseball America, Baseball Prospectus and MLB.com, placing as high as 12th overall (on B-Pro’s list).
  • Following the Reds‘ recent four-game losing streak — each of which featured the bullpen blowing a lead — John Fay of the Cincinnati Enquirer opines that it’s time to shift the focus to 2015. Fay examines the club’s chances of contending and writes that they won’t be big players on the free agent market, as is typically the M.O. of owner Bob Castellini. Fay also notes that the Reds debated moving a starting pitcher at the non-waiver trade deadline, but Castellini wouldn’t sign off on a sale. Fay feels that a starter, such as Johnny Cueto or Mat Latos, could become trade bait in the offseason with the Reds in need of a bat.


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19 Comments on "Central Links: Dirks, Cubs, Morton, Meyer, Reds"


Guest
1 year 8 days ago

The Reds already were players on the 2015 market. They signed Bailey to that unnecessary extension.

1 year 8 days ago

The Reds could have money to spend if they didn’t lock up all their own players for more than they’re worth. Typically with extensions, there’s some sort of discount involved.

Ken Roucka
1 year 8 days ago

I get the feeling the Cubs will target Russell Martin. Welington Castillo has not developed like they thought he might.

godzillacub
1 year 8 days ago

True, but I think rather than signing a primary catcher like Martin they go for a catcher that can split time with Castillo (as I wouldn’t give up on him just yet, he did put up 3.3 WAR performance last year).

Someone like Kurt Suzuki makes more sense to me.

godzillacub
1 year 8 days ago

Whoops. Wishful thinking there, I suppose. I guess I’d keep the point without using Suzuki’s name, then.

Ken Roucka
1 year 6 days ago

I don’t know that I agree with the Cubs having greater needs on the mound rather than behind the plate.

The Cubs starters have been more than good even since the trade with OAK and the bullpen is solid. Not that they can’t improve both and I certainly hope and think they will be aggressive in the FA for Lester et al.

It’s the offense that has been hurting the Cubs the most during the rebuild.

As Wittenmyer’s article states, “a veteran every-day player to help ease the pressure and transition of all the young guys expected to be on the 2015 roster.”

With 1B, 2B & SS locked up (and possibly CF with Alcantara) and the expected arrival of Bryant at 3B and Soler in RF by early next year. LF and C are the most likely areas of upgrade.
The FO has spoken highly of Coghlin/Ruggiano so much they rebuffed trade requests for them because of their performance and years of control left. I could see a LF platoon with them next year.
That leaves catcher and that position offers instant leadership cred especially for a veteran player of the quality of Martin.

Bary Tone
1 year 8 days ago

Suzuki signed an extension with the Twins.

You’ve got your pick of Martin, Laird, Buck, Doumit, Ross, Soto, or AJ

Castillo is very underrated defensively and he seems like he can call a game well.

Mysterious Two Hole Steve
1 year 8 days ago

What would it take…to get Stanton away from the Marlins, if the Cubs came calling?

Bary Tone
1 year 8 days ago

I would start with Baez or Russell, then probably add either Soler or Almora, and then seal the deal with something like CJ Edwards.

Bary Tone
1 year 8 days ago

But who knows, this is the organization that gave up Miguel Cabrera (and Dontrelle Willis) for Cameron Maybin and Andrew Miller (and a handful of other players who never really panned out)

JacksTigers
1 year 8 days ago

Hindsight is 20/20. Maybin and Miller were both ranked in the top 10 of all prospects at the time.

ray1
1 year 8 days ago

Would like to see the Cubs acquire proven, productive players this off-season.

JoeBear97
1 year 7 days ago

The Reds in need of a bat? That’s an understatement, they don’t have anyone even close to .300 batting average. We don’t know what we have with Votto, not sure if Bruce will bounce back from a terrible year, and will Phillips be healthy? No, I’m afraid we need a lot more than a bat. We need for all of our starters to be healthy, a better bullpen, and an all-star caliber player in left field to have a shot.