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Adam LaRoche Rumors
Earlier today, the Phillies acquired outfielder Ben Revere from the Twins in exchange for starting pitcher Vance Worley and pitching prospect Trevor May. Here’s a look at some of the reaction and fallout from the deal plus more out of the NL East..
- Michael Young is thought to be weighing his professional life versus his personal life as he decides whether to waive his no-trade clause and join the Phillies, tweets Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com. Young’s family lives in Texas but he would have the opportunity to start at third base for the Phillies.
- One baseball source believes that no MLB team will give Adam LaRoche anything beyond a two-year deal, tweets Bill Ladson of MLB.com. The Nationals are optimistic that they’ll retain the first baseman.
- If the Nationals are able to re-sign LaRoche, the source believes that they will trade Michael Morse for prospects, Ladson tweets. The source adds that the Rays would be the best choice in trade discussions as they are loaded with pitching prospects.
- The Phillies are are expected to pursue a veteran starter to fill the hole vacated by Worley in the rotation and have already been calling around, Todd Zolecki of MLB.com tweets.
- Given the price that Denard Span went for, the price the Phillies paid for Revere is shocking, writes Dave Cameron of Fangraphs. Cameron argues that the Phillies have robbed Peter to pay Paul by filling their centerfield vacancy by creating a hole in their rotation.
- Keith Law of ESPN.com (Insider sub. req’d) also sees the deal as an overpay for the Phillies and expresses optimism that May can get back on the right track in Minnesota.
7:10pm: Multiple Nats officials are telling Adam Kilgore of the Washington Post (Twitter link) that the team has an informal Christmas deadline to resolve LaRoche's situation. The Nats remain optimistic he'll sign, though Jim Bowden tweets that the team has resolved not to go past two years.
6:49pm: The Nationals have been telling people they hope to get LaRoche signed by week's end, tweets ESPN's Jayson Stark, but they still don't want to guarantee more than two years.
4:36pm: The Nationals remain confident they'll re-sign first baseman Adam LaRoche, tweets Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports. He says that might lead to the Nationals sending Mike Morse to the Mariners, who have "big interest" in getting him back.
We heard yesterday that the Nationals are holding firm at a two-year offer with no option for LaRoche. LaRoche remains on Baltimore's radar, reports Dan Connolly of the Baltimore Sun, who also have interest in Morse.
The Mets are shopping R.A. Dickey, the Nats agreed to sign Dan Haren, the Phillies are in on Michael Bourn, the Marlins are telling teams they won't trade Ricky Nolasco, and the Braves are exploring their left field options. Here are even more NL East notes:
- The Nationals are at two years for Adam LaRoche, and a third-year vesting option figures to be enough to get a deal done, says Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports (via Twitter). According to Adam Kilgore of the Washington Post, Nationals GM Mike Rizzo talked to LaRoche's agent last night. Rizzo is optimistic, but the team is staying at two years and not including an option.
- In speaking to reporters today, Nats manager Davey Johnson conveyed his desire to have LaRoche back in the middle of Washington's lineup: "Adam LaRoche is going to come back. If I have to go to Kansas and take all his cattle to Florida, I will" (Twitter link via Dan Kolko of MASNSports.com).
- Mets GM Sandy Alderson spoke to Scott Hairston's agent today, and believes the Mets may leave Nashville with an outfielder. Whether that player is Hairston or someone else, Alderson will be "careful" about giving out a multiyear deal (Twitter links via ESPNNewYork.com's Adam Rubin).
- There has been virtually no trade discussion about Jon Niese in Nashville, with the Dickey talks at the forefront for the Mets, says Alderson (Twitter link via Andy McCullough of the Star-Ledger).
Orioles general manager Dan Duquette spoke to reporters in Nashville tonight about Baltimore's plans for the week. Here are a few of the highlights from Duquette, along with other Orioles-related items (all links go to Twitter)….
- The Orioles like Adam LaRoche, but to say the team is in serious negotiations for him is inaccurate, says Steve Melewski of MASNSports.com. The two sides haven't been in contact at the Winter Meetings, according to Duqette.
- Duquette left the door open for the Orioles to look at top-tier free agents like Josh Hamilton or Zack Greinke, but suggested that the team's focus is elsewhere, according to Melewski.
- Duquette has met with four teams and three agents today, according to Roch Kubatko of MASNSports.com. None of those agents represented the Orioles' own free agents, says Kubatko.
- Baltimore is expecting arbitration to cost the team about $22MM this season, says Britt Ghiroli of MLB.com. Our estimate is closer to $28MM, so it'll be interesting to see where we may have missed.
- The O's are interested in Gavin Floyd, according to Kubatko, though he cautions that this is far from the first time he's heard that over the years.
With Mike Napoli headed to Boston, one suitor was removed for the equation for Adam LaRoche. While that should improve the Nationals' leverage a little, there are still a handful of teams in the mix for the slugging first baseman. Here's the latest on LaRoche, with new updates added to the top throughout the day:
- The Rangers are not involved on LaRoche, tweets Danny Knobler of CBS Sports.
- Despite an earlier report that the Orioles are in "hard" on LaRoche, MLB.com's Britt Ghiroli hears the team's interest is minimal at best, as they're instead focused on trades.
- The Nationals believe the Rangers are the biggest threat to sign LaRoche, according to Danny Knobler of CBSSports.com (via Twitter).
- The Orioles are in "hard" on LaRoche, ESPN.com's Jayson Stark hears from an executive from one interested team (Twitter link).
- Mark Zuckerman of CSNWashington.com had written earlier today that the Orioles, like the Nationals, didn't seem willing to go up to three years for LaRoche at this point.
- After Napoli didn't get a fourth year from the Red Sox, Jim Bowden of ESPN and SiriusXM expects LaRoche to have to settle for a two-year deal (Twitter link).
- Adam Kilgore of the Washington Post tweeted this morning that the Rangers and Mariners seemed to be the Nats' top competitors for LaRoche.
An ex-Ranger is heading to the AL East, as Mike Napoli and the Red Sox agreed to a three-year contract earlier today. However, there's still plenty of activity going on out west, so let's round up a few items from the AL West….
- The Mariners and Rangers sound like the two biggest suitors besides the Nationals for Adam LaRoche, says Adam Kilgore of the Washington Post (Twitter link).
- As the Angels eye Sean Burnett, they continue to have interest in other relief options, according to MLB.com's Alden Gonzalez (via Twitter). Mike Adams remains a possibility, and the team also checked in on Joakim Soria, though he wants to close.
- The Mariners remain open to signing a defensive catcher, tweets Greg Johns of MLB.com.
- The Mariners had "no idea" that the Red Sox were closing in on an agreement with Napoli, GM Jack Zduriencik tells Rob Bradford of WEEI.com.
Agreeing to sign Mike Napoli doesn't take the Red Sox out of the running for Nick Swisher, according to Jon Heyman of CBS Sports, who says (via Twitter) that the Sox remain in talks with Swisher. Cody Ross and Shane Victorino also remain on Boston's radar, though the team is likely out of the running for Adam LaRoche, tweets ESPN.com's Jayson Stark.
The Red Sox were said on Friday to be one of a number of clubs that has spoken to Swisher's representatives. However, both Swisher and the Red Sox are considering their options, tweets Scott Miller of CBS Sports. Scott Lauber of the Boston Herald adds (via Twitter) that Boston's pursuit of Swisher had been moving slowly, though that could change now that the team has locked up Napoli.
Buster Olney of ESPN.com (Twitter link) believes the market for Swisher could become much clearer once Josh Hamilton signs. If Hamilton leaves Texas, Swisher could be a good fit with the Rangers, says Olney.
MLBTR is providing 24-hour coverage of the Winter Meetings for the fourth straight year. I'll once again be handling overnight duties for the following four nights to keep track of late-breaking and crack-of-dawn news and rumors. Here's the latest from around the league…
- There is a "growing sense" that the Nationals and Adam LaRoche will get a new contract worked out, writes Peter Abraham of the Boston Globe. That transaction would make Michael Morse expendable, which would explain reports that the Nats and Rays are discussing Morse in a trade.
- The Marlins figure to be observers at this year's Winter Meetings, writes Clark Spencer of the Miami Herald. The team is likely to pursue bullpen options and bench depth.
- The Giants are still interested in Shane Victorino as a fallback option in the event that they are unable to re-sign Angel Pagan, tweets John Shea of the San Francisco Chronicle.
- Giants general manager Brian Sabean told Shea that the team isn't in on any "high-ticket items" (Twitter link). As Shea notes, that should rule out Michael Bourn. I wonder if Sabean is also including Nick Swisher, who has been linked to the Giants, in that description.
- Delmon Young might wait until January to sign, tweets Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports. Young is recovering from ankle surgery and wants to be healthy in his auditions for new teams.
- Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel reports that Brewers general manager Doug Melvin isn't inclined to go beyond two years in deals for free agent pitchers (Twitter link).
- John Lannan will be a popular name among teams in need of starting pitching depth, and the Twins are expected to kick the tires, according to Phil Mackey of 1500 ESPN (on Twitter). The Nationals non-tendered the 28-year-old southpaw on Friday.
- Adam LaRoche met with General Manager Mike Rizzo and had an open discussion about where each side stands, writes Adam Kilgore of the Washington Post. “To be honest, it’s a years thing now,” LaRoche said. “I think they’re really wanting to stick to two years. I’m trying to talk them into lengthening that. To be honest, probably just one year. I’m not looking for four or five. I understand I’m 33 years old. The first baseman requested the meeting to make sure that nothing got lost in translation between the front office and his representation at SFX.
- Don’t be surprised if second baseman Danny Espinosa is the subject of trade discussions at the winter meetings, writes Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports. The 25-year-old is likely to draw interest from teams who need a middle infielder and the Nats could use Steve Lombardozzi to replace Espinosa at second in the short-term. Top prospect Anthony Rendon eventually could take the reins at the position if he does not replace Ryan Zimmerman at third.
- Rizzo gave his rationale about the thought process in this week's non-tender decisions, Kilgore writes. The club non-tendered left-hander John Lannan, catcher Jesus Flores, and reliever Tom Gorzelanny.
The Nationals avoided the busy free agent center field market by acquiring Denard Span from the Twins today in exchange for highly-touted pitching prospect Alex Meyer. Here is some of the early buzz about the trade and how it affects the Nationals, Twins and several other teams around the league…
- The trade seems to leave Adam LaRoche without a spot in the Nationals' lineup, meaning the first baseman could go elsewhere as a free agent. In a conference call with reporters (including Mark Zuckerman of Nats Insider), Washington GM Mike Rizzo said the trade "gives us some options" with player moves and noted that the team is still talking to LaRoche. Rizzo said teams have called about Michael Morse, so the Nats could potentially re-sign LaRoche and deal Morse instead.
- While a Morse trade is a possibility, some executives feel the Span deal will lead to LaRoche signing with the Red Sox, tweets ESPN's Jayson Stark.
- Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports looks at how the trade impacts LaRoche, Michael Bourn, Josh Hamilton and the Phillies.
- The trade was "a huge win" for the Nationals, opines Fangraphs' Dave Cameron, who thinks Minnesota could've gotten more than Meyer in exchange for an affordable center fielder. "The Twins got a real talent back in return for Span, but it’s a talent with too many question marks to be the piece they’re getting back in return for a three win player under team control at a fraction of his market price," Cameron writes.
- Conversely, ESPN's Keith Law (Insider subscription required) likes the trade for the Twins. The club sorely needs young pitching and Meyer's potential is worth "an average regular in center whose value will fluctuate with his BABIP," as Law describes Span. Law also notes that this deal should help the Rockies get more in a trade for Dexter Fowler, as Fowler is younger and has more power than Span.