Aaron Laffey Rumors
On this date ten years ago, the Marlins were making a surprising wild card push and traded for one of the best available relievers, Rangers closer Ugueth Urbina. Double-A first baseman Adrian Gonzalez was part of the package going to Texas. The first overall pick by the Marlins three years prior, Gonzalez began the year at Triple-A following offseason wrist surgery, but had been demoted to Double-A in May. Said Marlins GM Larry Beinfest at the time, "In Adrian, we thought we were dealing in an area of strength, but we wanted to do something now." Beinfest was referring to first basemen Derrek Lee and Jason Stokes. The Marlins installed Urbina in a setup role and went on to win the World Series. John Hart was the man behind the Urbina signing and trade as Rangers GM.
Two years later, Hart stepped down to make way for the youngest GM in MLB history, 28-year-old Jon Daniels. Daniels later admitted to WEEI's Alex Speier his new front office "tried to step on the gas before we were ready," and with Mark Teixeira entrenched at first base, Gonzalez, Terrmel Sledge, and Chris Young were traded to the Padres for Adam Eaton and Akinori Otsuka. Today's minor moves, as we ponder the status of Urbina's comeback attempt...
- Jeremy Bonderman has refused an outright assignment from the Mariners and elected free agency, the team announced. He was designated for assignment on Monday. In 38 1/3 innings for Seattle this season, the 30-year-old posted a 4.93 ERA with more walks (17) than strikeouts (16). It was his first MLB action since 2010 and the only time he has pitched for a team other than the Tigers.
- The Brewers signed lefty Aaron Laffey, announced the team's player development department on Twitter early today. The 28-year-old signed a minor league deal with the Mets in December, was designated for assignment in April, claimed by the Blue Jays, designated days later, elected free agency, was signed by the Dodgers, and opted out of his deal with that club earlier this month. He made five big league appearances this year, and also tossed 61 Triple-A innings for the Dodgers, with much more success on the road than at Isotopes Park. There is no opt-out in the Brewers deal, MLBTR has learned.
- Five players currently reside in DFA limbo: Travis Ishikawa of the Yankees, Joe Gardner of the Rockies, Cole Gillespie of the Giants, Jeremy Bonderman of the Mariners, and Adam Rosales of the Athletics. The Mets asked for unconditional release waivers for Brandon Lyon on Tuesday.
Today's minor moves...
- The Padres have purchased left-hander Clay Zavada from the independent league Gary SouthShore RailCats, according to MLB.com's Corey Brock (on Twitter). Zavada had a 1.65 ERA in 16 1/3 innings for the RailCats. The former Diamondback was known more for his mustache than his pitching in 2009, but he posted a 3.35 ERA with 9.2 K/9 and 4.2 BB/9 in 51 innings for the D-Backs that year. Brock tweets that Zavada will report to Double-A.
- Luis Cruz has refused an outright assignment to Triple-A and elected free agency, according to Dylan Hernandez of the L.A. Times (Twitter links). Cruz, who was designated for assignment last week, cleared waivers and can sign with any team. He hit just .127/.175/.169 in 128 plate appearances for the Dodgers this season -- a far cry from the solid .297/.322/.431 line he posted in 296 plate appearances last season.
- The Nationals announced that they have outrighted right-hander Cole Kimball off the 40-man roster (Twitter link). The 27-year-old has appeared in just four minor league innings for the Nats this season and hasn't pitched with the big league club since 2011.
- Aaron Laffey has opted out of his minor league deal with the Dodgers, according to Chris Cotillo of MLB Daily Dish (on Twitter). MLBTR's Tim Dierkes has confirmed the move. Laffey, 28, has a 5.61 ERA with 4.3 K/9 and 3.2 BB/9 in 61 innings for Triple-A Albuquerque this season. He also allowed 10 runs in 12 2/3 innings between the Mets and Blue Jays at the MLB level.
- Righty David Pauley was released by the Diamondbacks' Triple-A club on Saturday, according to the Pacific Coast League transactions page. Pauley had joined them on a minor league deal on June 10th, but the 30-year-old struggled in four relief appearances. Pauley was originally drafted by the Padres in '01, three picks before the Red Sox took Kevin Youkilis. Pauley was later a minor piece in Dave Dombrowski's July 2011 heist of the Mariners, in which the Tigers acquired Doug Fister.
- Six players are currently in DFA limbo: Francisley Bueno of the Royals, Eric Hinske of the Diamondbacks, Alex Liddi of the Mariners, Clayton Mortensen of the Red Sox, Travis Ishikawa of the Orioles and Jeff Francoeur of the Royals.
We'll keep track of today's minor moves here.
- The Reds acquired infielder/outfielder Mark Teahen from the Diamondbacks for cash or a player to be named later, according to the D'Backs. Teahen, 31, was hitting .209/.321/.254 in 81 Triple-A plate appearances after struggling offensively in the Washington organization at that level last year. He was drafted in the first round by the A's in 2002 and spent five seasons with the Royals, hitting 18 home runs in '06.
- The Dodgers have signed pitcher Aaron Laffey to a minor-league deal, Chris Cotillo of CLNS Radio reports. MLBTR's Tim Dierkes has confirmed the signing. Laffey has been designated for assignment by the Mets and Blue Jays so far this season, and he elected free agency yesterday instead of accepting an outright assignment from the Jays. Laffey has appeared in five big-league games so far this year.
- Rangers minor-leaguer Randy Wells has retired, FOX Sports Southwest's Anthony Andro reports (on Twitter). Wells, 30, finished sixth in NL Rookie of the Year balloting in 2009, when he was with the Cubs. He appeared in 98 big-league games, mostly with Chicago, posting a 4.08 ERA, 5.9 K/9 and 3.1 BB/9. He made five starts in 2013 for the Rangers' Triple-A affiliate in Round Rock.
- The Mariners have signed outfielder Corey Patterson to a minor-league deal, MLB.com's Greg Johns reports (on Twitter). Patterson will report to extended spring training. Patterson, 33, hit .251/.285/.410 for the Brewers' Triple-A team in Nashville in 2012. He has played for the Cubs, Orioles, Reds, Nationals, Brewers, Blue Jays and Cardinals.
Southpaw Aaron Laffey has elected free agency in lieu of an outright assignment from the Blue Jays, according to a team press release. The 28-year-old has been designated for assignment by the Mets and Jays this month, appearing in five big league games.
Laffey, whose 487 career innings rank 37th among those born in Maryland, tossed 100 2/3 Major League innings for Toronto last year while making 16 starts. He joins a free agent market for starting pitchers that also includes Dallas Braden, Dustin Moseley, Jamie Moyer, Roy Oswalt, Carl Pavano, Randy Wolf, and Carlos Zambrano.
Laffey is the latest waiver wire pickup to make a brief cameo with Toronto this season. The southpaw was designated for assignment by the Mets on Sunday, picked up by the Jays on Tuesday and received a spot start tonight for the club against the Yankees in place of the injured Josh Johnson. Laffey didn't fare well against the Yankees, allowing two runs on two hits and five walks over just 2 2/3 innings. His short outing may have sealed his fate, as the Jays are in need of a fresh arm to help their overworked bullpen.
Laffey, 28, now has a 6.75 ERA in 12 2/3 IP with the Jays and Mets this season. He posted a 4.56 ERA over 100 2/3 innings with Toronto in 2012 and has also pitched for the Yankees, Mariners and Indians over his seven-year Major League career.
The waiver claim kings have struck again. The Blue Jays announced today they've claimed lefty Aaron Laffey off waivers from the Mets, transferring shortstop Jose Reyes to the 60-day DL. Laffey had been designated for assignment by the Mets on Sunday.
Laffey tossed 100 2/3 big league innings for the 2012 Jays, but lose his 40-man roster spot in October and later joined the Mets on a minor league deal. The 28-year-old made four appearances for the Mets this year.
The Blue Jays have been the most active team on the waiver wire, as recently pointed out by our own Steve Adams. MLBTR's Charlie Wilmoth recently asked if excessive adds and drops this season should lead baseball to reevaluate the way that the waiver system works.
The Mets have designated Aaron Laffey for assignment, according to Marc Carig of Newsday (on Twitter). The left-hander saw less than an inning of work against the Nationals last night as he allowed a walk and a double to set up a three-run homer from Adam LaRoche.
Laffey, 28, signed a minor league deal with the Mets in December. The veteran pitched to a 4.56 ERA with 4.3 K/9 and 3.3 BB/9 in 16 starts and six relief appearances for the Blue Jays last season. He also made eleven starts for Triple-A Las Vegas, posting a 4.52 ERA with 5.4 K/9 and 2.8 BB/9.
The Mets announced that they have signed left-hander Aaron Laffey to a minor league contract with an invite to major league spring training. The Kohm/Pasti client elected free agency from the Blue Jays in October.
Laffey, 27, pitched to a 4.56 ERA with 4.3 K/9 and 3.3 BB/9 in 16 starts and six relief appearances for Toronto last season. The veteran also made eleven starts for Triple-A Las Vegas, posting a 4.52 ERA with 5.4 K/9 and 2.8 BB/9. Laffey signed a split contract with the Blue Jays right around this time last year that paid him $800K for making the big league roster.
Congratulations to Miguel Cabrera, who was named the Sporting News MLB Player of the Year. Here are some more links from around MLB on an off day for Cabrera's Tigers and the NL Champion Giants...
- The Twins will decline Scott Baker's $9.25MM option for 2013, but he remains a "high priority" for the team, Darren Wolfson of 1500ESPN reports. Baker's agent has been speaking regularly with the Twins and the sides could agree to an incentive-laden one or two-year deal.
- The Twins haven't yet called to inquire about minor league free agent Aaron Laffey, according to Wolfson.
- Teams are standing by to see if the Angels make Torii Hunter a one-year qualifying offer, Bob Nightengale of USA Today reports (Twitter link). If the Angels make Hunter a qualifying offer and he declines, other teams will have to surrender a draft pick to sign the outfielder. Otherwise, he'll be coveted as a free agent. Alden Gonzalez of MLB.com suggested today that the Angels won't extend Hunter a qualifying offer (Twitter link).
- Dodgers GM Ned Colletti said he will probably think about a long-term contract for Clayton Kershaw this coming offseason, Dylan Hernandez of the LA Times reports (on Twitter). The left-hander's under contract for 2013 and under team control as an arbitration eligible player through 2014.
- The Nationals and Adam LaRoche have made “some progress” toward a new contract, the first baseman told Adam Kilgore of the Washington Post. There’s nothing definitive at this stage, but the sides have started to establish parameters for a possible new deal.
Right-hander Jesse Litsch has elected free agency instead of accepting an outright assignment to the minor leagues, the Blue Jays announced. The team reinstated Litsch from the 60-day disabled list today at which point he elected free agency.
Left-hander Aaron Laffey and right-handers Shawn Hill, Bobby Korecky and Scott Richmond also elected free agency, Matt Eddy of Baseball America reports (on Twitter). The Blue Jays had outrighted Hill, Korecky and Laffey last week.
Litsch missed the entire 2012 season due to injuries. He experienced a "career threatening" shoulder infection early in the year and underwent biceps surgery in June. The 27-year-old pitched 75 innings in 2011, posting a 4.44 ERA with 7.9 K/9 and 3.4 BB/9. In five MLB seasons he has a 4.16 ERA with 5.2 K/9 and 2.6 BB/9. Litsch earned $975K in 2012 and would have been under team control through 2013.