Aaron Poreda Rumors

Rangers Likely To Sell Contracts Of Poreda, Mikolas To Japanese Team

The Rangers will likely clear some space on their crowded 40-man roster by selling the rights of left-hander Aaron Poreda and right-hander Miles Mikolas to the Yomiuri Giants of Nippon Professional Baseball, reports Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News.

While many clubs have trimmed the total players on their 40-man roster down into the mid-30s by outrighting players, the Rangers still have a full 40-man roster. Grant notes that this type of deal typically brings back about $150-200K for the selling team, so there’s a bit of financial benefit as well. On the players’ side of the transaction, Japanese teams will often pay seven-figure salary to this type of player, making the move a potential win for all parties involved.

The 28-year-old Poreda, a former top prospect with the White Sox that went to the Padres in the original Jake Peavy trade, has bounced around the league since seeing his stock fade. He made his first appearance in the Majors since 2009 with the Rangers this past season, struggling to a 5.91 ERA in 21 1/3 innings, though his 21-to-7 K/BB ratio was encouraging.

Control problems have plagued Poreda in the minors, as he’s averaged more than eight walks per nine innings in 157 1/3 Triple-A innings after displaying far better control at previous levels. However, he seemed to rein that problem in this year, and he also averaged 95.4 mph with his fastball in the Majors this season in an admittedly small sample. Grant notes that he even touched 100 mph with his fastball at one point.

Mikolas, 26, pitched 57 1/3 innings for Texas this season but had struggles of his own, posting a 6.44 ERA with 38 strikeouts against 18 walks. He has a rather strong track record in Triple-A, however, where he’s compiled a 3.23 ERA with 6.8 K/9 and 2.0 BB/9 in 125 1/3 innings in parts of three seasons.

Minor Moves: Nakajima, Jimenez, Lotzkar, Poreda

Here are today's minor moves from around the league…

  • The Athletics have re-signed shortstop Hiroyuki Nakajima, Baseball America's Matt Eddy reports.  Nakajima hit .283/.331/.367 in 384 PA for Triple-A Sacramento this season, his first in North America after signing a two-year, $6.5MM deal with the A's last winter.  Nakajima was outrighted off Oakland's 40-man roster last August.
  • Left-hander Cesar Jimenez has elected to become a free agent, as reported by the International League's transactions page.  Jimenez was outrighted off the Phillies' 40-man roster to Triple-A last week.  The southpaw posted a 3.71 ERA, 11 strikeouts and 10 walks over 17 relief innings for Philadelphia in 2013.
  • The Rangers signed right-hander Kyle Lotzkar and lefty Aaron Poreda to minor league deals, according to the latest minor league transactions report from Baseball America's Matt Eddy (which contains many more minor transactions). Lotzkar, 23, was released by the Reds in September. A former supplemental-round pick, Lotzkar was said by Baseball America to have some of the best stuff in the Reds' organization, but he's battled through Tommy John surgery and a stress fracture in his elbow in recent years. Though his 8.05 ERA in the minors this season was alarming, he whiffed 41 batters in 38 innings and has a career 10.5 K/9.
  • Poreda, 27, didn't pitch in affiliated ball this season. Formerly BA's No. 63 overall prospect and a White Sox first-rounder, Poreda has a 3.53 ERA with 8.1 K/9 and 5.2 BB/9 in 454 career minor league innings. He reached the Majors in 2009 with both the Sox and Padres, as he was part of the haul San Diego received for Jake Peavy. BA wrote multiple times that he's "built for durability," but his lack of a true plus secondary pitch has led to many struggles.
  • As shown in MLBTR's DFA Tracker, there are currently four players residing in DFA limbo: Pedro Beato of the Red Sox, Peter Moylan of the Dodgers and Tommy Layne and Colt Hynes of the Padres.

Quick Hits: Giants, Cabrera, Rangers, Rondon, Tigers

Despite reports to the contrary, the Giants never discussed nor offered a deal to Melky Cabrera in the range of $75-85MM prior to the outfielder's 50 game suspension for performance enhancing drugs, according to Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com (on Twitter).  Cabrera was expected to be in line for a major pay day up until that point but a softened market led him to take a two-year, $16MM deal with the Blue Jays over the winter.  Here's more from around baseball..

  • Rangers GM Jon Daniels told reporters, including Ron Matejko of ESPNDallas.com, not to expect any additions between now and Opening Day.  "I would expect the 25 will come out of [the Rangers clubhouse]," said Daniels.  "I won't 100 percent rule out an outside acquisition, and we do our due diligence and make our calls, things can come about, but you have to be prepared to go in house."
  • Tigers manager Jim Leyland says that it is "possible" that rookie Bruce Rondon will open the season as part of a bullpen by committee, writes MLB.com's Jason Beck.  The Tigers have reportedly been looking to acquire a proven closer via trade in recent weeks but using Rondon with other relievers already in-house would be a less-costly middle ground.
  • The Pirates released former first-round pick Aaron Poreda, according to Matt Eddy of Baseball America (on Twitter).  Pittsburgh picked up the left-hander in last winter's Rule 5 draft but he made just three Double-A starts for the organization in 2012.

NL Central Notes: Cardinals, Luhnow, Pirates, Poreda

Wrapping up a few NL Central loose ends from the Winter Meetings:

  • GM John Mozeliak said Thursday that the Cardinals will "redeploy the resources" that had been allotted for Albert Pujols, writes MLB.com's Matthew Leach.
  • Jon Heyman of the MLB Network tweets that the Cardinals figure to non-tender Ryan Theriot, and names the Mets, Braves, Astros, Reds, Blue Jays, and Royals as teams who may have interest in the infielder.
  • New Astros GM Jeff Luhnow was introduced today and said he's "very optimistic" about taking the club in the right direction, as MLB.com's Brian McTaggart writes.
  • The Pirates' deal with Erik Bedard includes $500K in potential innings bonuses, tweets ESPN.com's Jerry Crasnick.
  • In the Triple-A portion of today's Rule 5 draft, the Pirates selected Aaron Poreda, tweets John Manuel of Baseball America. The former first-rounder was part of the trade that sent Jake Peavy from the Padres to the White Sox in 2009.

Outrighted: Poreda, Patterson, Dinkelman

Outrighted to Triple-A today:

  • The Padres announced that both Aaron Poreda and Eric Patterson have cleared waivers and accepted their assignments to Triple-A, reports MLB.com's Corey Brock (on Twitter). Patterson was designated for assignment last week, Poreda earlier this week.
  • The Twins outrighted second baseman/corner outfielder Brian Dinkelman to open a 40-man spot for Joe Mauer, according to the team.  The move also cleared room on the active roster for Mauer.

Padres Designate Aaron Poreda For Assignment

The Padres designated lefty Aaron Poreda for assignment to clear a spot on the 40-man roster for starter Anthony Bass, reports Sarah Trotto of The Arizona Daily Star.

Poreda, 24, had a 7.31 ERA, 9.6 K/9, 9.3 BB/9, and 0.3 HR/9 in 32 innings for the Padres' Triple-A club this year.  Most of the innings came in relief, a role he's been in for the majority of his Padres career.  The former first round pick was the key component in Kevin Towers' July 2009 deal that sent Jake Peavy to the White Sox, though Clayton Richard has emerged as the more valuable piece.  The Padres also received Adam Russell, who was later sent to the Rays in the Jason Bartlett trade.

Poreda was ranked tenth among Padres prospects prior to the 2010 season by Baseball America.  Even then there were concerns about his delivery and control, but he was still considered worthy of a late-inning bullpen future.  Since then Poreda has walked more than a batter per inning.

Jake Peavy Dealt To White Sox Again

4:45pm: Two White Sox officials tell USA Today's Bob Nightengale that the Sox will pay all of Peavy's contract. That means they'll pay him $56MM by the end of 2012 and maybe more afterwards.

4:12pm: Peavy's agent, Barry Axelrod, told Tom Krasovic that his client accepted the deal because there was no guarantee that the Cubs and Dodgers, Peavy's preferred teams, would have made a move for the righty in the offseason. Axelrod knows Peavy's contract no longer looks like a bargain, so he says he wasn't expecting a deal.

"Frankly I am flabbergasted that the White Sox would want to make this deal with him in his physical condition," Axelrod said.

3:35pm: USA Today's Bob Nightengale, via Twitter, says the White Sox confirmed they just got Peavy.  Brock agrees – Peavy approved the trade this time.  Peavy is owed $56MM through 2012, or $74MM through 2013 if the Sox exercise his option.

3:29pm: MLB.com's Corey Brock via Twitter: Aaron Poreda's in the deal.  Ed Price of AOL Fanhouse has righty Adam Russell in the trade as well.  Righty Dexter Carter and southpaw Clayton Richard are also going to San Diego, according to multiple reports.

3:22pm: Not sure what to make of this, but SI's Jon Heyman tweeted that Padres pitcher Jake Peavy was dealt to the White Sox again.  Heyman is not sure if Peavy OK'd it.  He says the Padres get minor leaguers.  Peavy is currently recovering from a torn ankle tendon.

Peavy’s Agent Discusses Vetoed White Sox Deal

Fred Mitchell of the Chicago Tribune talked to Jake Peavy's agent, Barry Axelrod, who said he and his client were taken by surprise when the White Sox offered to trade Clayton Richard, Aaron Poreda, and two unnamed pitchers for the ace. "Honestly, the White Sox had never come up, even as speculation or rumor," said Axelrod.

Axelrod outlined the difficulties teams will face when trying to deal for Peavy:

"I have always said that this is a hard deal to make because the team that seeks to acquire Jake Peavy is going to take on a significant financial responsibility in terms of his future contract. And also, according to the reports, they are going to have to give up some decent young players in exchange."

Axelrod also reiterated that Peavy strongly prefers to pitch for a National League team.

Peavy Explains Veto

8:40pm: Mark Gonzales of the Chicago Tribune has the reaction from White Sox GM Kenny Williams. "Anyone who follows our club knows we still have championship aspirations for this season," he said.

7:19pm: The Associated Press has a full recap of the short press conference. Peavy said he will answer more questions after his start against Carlos Zambrano and the Cubs Friday night.

7:07pm: Jake Peavy read a statement to reporters, confirming that he will not accept a trade to the White Sox. "San Diego is the place for us," Peavy said of him and his family. "We've made that decision for the time being."

The White Sox are not likely to be the last team to make an offer for Peavy, and he seems to be leaving the door open for a future trade.

To recap, the White Sox and the Padres agreed to a deal that would send Peavy to Chicago in exchange for four Sox pitchers, including prospects Clayton Richard and Aaron Poreda. But Peavy, whose conract includes a full no-trade clause through this season, nixed the deal. For a blow-by-blow account of how this deal came together and then fell apart, see our thread from earlier today.

Jake Peavy Will Not Accept Trade to White Sox

6:10pm: Ken Rosenthal argues that Peavy's decision to nix the deal was justified, saying,  "If I were Jake Peavy, I would not go to the White Sox."

Rosenthal thinks back to the offseason, when the Padres "blew two chances" to trade Peavy. "The Braves clearly offered a better package than the White Sox. The Cubs' deal might have turned out better, too." He writes tha the longer the Padres take to deal Peavy, the less they will get in return.

Rosenthal has doubts about the White Sox's ability to compete in the future, and he says that this may have been on Peavy's mind when he rejected the trade.

5:53pm: Jon Heyman writes that Peavy will speak to the media shortly after 6pm CST. He also mentions that the White Sox were asked by the Padres earlier in the day if they had "any ideas on how to persuade" Peavy to accept the deal.

5:41pm: Joe Cowley and Toni Ginnetti of the Chicago Sun-Times are reporting that sources close to Peavy say that he has notified the Padres that he will not accept a trade to the White Sox.  Peavy talked it over with his family and decided not to make the move.  Manager Ozzie Guillen admitted he was surprised the Sox were willing to take on the $60MM commitment.

5:25pm: Via Twitter, Jon Heyman reports that the White Sox will not try to convince Peavy to agree to the deal by committing to pick up the $22MM option in his contract for 2013. This is still in Peavy's hands.

1:27pm: Gonzales has more from Linebrink about his conversation with Peavy.  Linebrink didn't see the AL/NL thing as a big concern for Peavy.

Also, Diamond Leung passes along a Ned Colletti interview with Dan Patrick today.  The Dodgers GM spoke to Towers about a Peavy trade as recently as a month ago but the asking price was too high.  Meanwhile the Red Sox have not been involved, according to Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe.

12:47pm: Tom Krasovic of the San Diego Union-Tribune says Peavy will likely not be traded to the White Sox, presumably because he'll veto the deal if it reaches that point.  Krasovic notes that in addition to Poreda and Richard, Lance Broadway has been discussed.

Joe Cowley of the Chicago Sun-Times explains why the trade would make sense for the Sox and why it wouldn't.

12:21pm: Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports says beyond Poreda and Richard, the Padres would choose two players to be named later from a list of four.  Axelrod explained the situation to Rosenthal:

"Approval or disapproval is not necessarily black or white.  Depending on what is involved could make it more desirable or less desirable. There may be certain things he has to have as conditions. We're not near the point of talking about that, what he would want to see adjusted if he were to approve."

11:52am: ESPN's Jerry Crasnick talked to Axelrod, who gave the impression that Peavy is leaning against accepting the trade:

"If I had to make a bet on it, I would guess that Jake would say he's not ready to take that step today.  But he wouldn't necessarily preclude it at any time in the future."

Peavy maintains his strong preference for the NL.

11:31am: Brock talked to Peavy's agent Barry Axelrod.  Axelrod hasn't spoken to Peavy yet today, but was asked by the Padres "about Jake's feeling about the possibility of (playing for) the White Sox."

10:11am: ESPN's Peter Gammons says Beckham is not part of the deal.  CBS' Danny Knobler says it would be Poreda, Richard, and one or two others.  The others would also be pitchers, says Knobler.  Yahoo's Gordon Edes says the White Sox have agreed to send four pitching prospects including Poreda and Richard.

ESPN's Bruce Levine talked to White Sox pitcher and former Peavy teammate Scott Linebrink, who gave Peavy a 50-50 chance of accepting the deal.

9:39am: MLB.com's Corey Brock and Scott Merkin say Poreda and Clayton Richard are believed to be part of the deal.

9:19am: Jon Heyman says the White Sox and Padres have agreed to a Peavy trade, and await the pitcher's approval.  MLB.com's Corey Brock agrees.  Ken Williams, always operating under the radar.  Now we get to see just how much Peavy hates the AL.

Peavy is owed an additional $8.35MM this year, $15MM in '10, $16MM in '11, $17MM in '12, and a $4MM buyout for '13.  Total: $60.35MM guaranteed through 2012.  It is surprising to see the White Sox willing to take on such a commitment to a pitcher.

No idea if he's involved, but yes, the Sox could trade Gordon Beckham in this deal as a player to be named later.

9:09am: Via Gonzales on Twitter: "Waiting for approval from Peavy on SD trade, according to source."

6:51am: Tom Krasovic of the San Diego Union-Tribune is reporting that the Padres are in discussions to send Jake Peavy to the White Sox.

According to Padres personnel, Peavy met with Padres manager Bud Black late Wednesday night to discuss a trade overture from the Sox.

It is apparently a four-player offer, which would presumably gut Chicago's farm system.  Peavy would have to approve any trade and according to Krasovic Peavy is telling people that the trade is "something to think about."  However, Krasovic says Peavy "may have reservations about pitching for Ozzie Guillen." 

MLB.com's Corey Brock asked Peavy about the rumor.  He said, "I only know what you guys [media] know."  Brock expects the Padres would require a frontline pitcher like Aaron Poreda.  Scot Gregor of the Daily Herald makes the Poreda link as well, but finds Peavy's contract prohibitive.  Mark Gonzales of the Chicago Tribune says the Padres had a scout watching the White Sox last weekend in Toronto.  Meanwhile, SI's Jon Heyman says Peavy still prefers the West or Midwest and the NL.  Heyman likes the Cubs or Brewers.

Cork Gaines writes for RaysIndex.com and can be reached here Tim Dierkes also contributed to this post.