Adrian Beltre Rumors

Olney’s Latest: Garza, Angels, Delgado, Yankees

In today's blog post at ESPN (Insider req'd), Buster Olney solicited the opinions of various talent evaluators about yesterday's Matt Garza trade. The general consensus is that the Cubs made the move with the idea of contending in 2011 while the Rays made the move geared towards reloading for the future, somewhat acknowledging that the upcoming season "will be very difficult."

Here are the rest of Olney's rumors…

  • Two sources tell Buster that the Angels' final offer to Adrian Beltre was $77MM guaranteed, or $3MM less than the guarantee he got from Texas.
  • Carlos Delgado wants to come back, but it'll be very tough to do so when the free agent market features plenty of healthier DH-types.
  • The Yankees are seeking a capable back-of-the-rotation innings-eater, but there are very few pitchers that fit that description available. 

Details On Beltre’s Other Offers, Vesting Option

Adrian Beltre turned down offers from the A's and Angels before signing with the Rangers. It turns out that one of those offers was larger than initially thought. According to Mychael Urban of CSNBayArea.com, the A's offered the third baseman a six-year, $76MM deal, not a $64MM deal as we'd heard before. Peter Gammons first reported that the A's had offered $76MM (Twitter link). The Rangers outbid both of their AL West rivals, as the Angels reportedly offered a $70MM deal.

The 2016 option in Beltre's contract is complex, as Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports explains. Beltre needs 600 plate apperances with the Rangers in 2015 or 1,200 plate appearances in 2014-15 for the $16MM option to vest in 2016. If the option vests and Beltre's on the disabled list at the end of the 2015 season and a mutually agreed upon doctor determines that he's unable to play at a normal level by the spring of 2016, the team can defer $12MM of the third baseman's 2016 salary at 1% interest (Twitter links).


AL West Notes: Beltre, Rangers, A’s, Guerrero

Needless to say, the Adrian Beltre signing is the biggest news of the day in the AL West.  Here are some other items from the division with the longest World Series title drought (albeit only since 2002) in baseball…

  • There isn't any deferred money in the five guaranteed years of Beltre's contract, reports Evan P. Grant of the Dallas Morning News.  (Twitter link)  Grant says the Rangers are "trying to do away with deferrals."
  • Beltre's signing could push the Rangers' payroll over the $100MM mark for the first time since 2003, reports MLB.com's T.R. Sullivan.  Team president Nolan Ryan says the team is not only prepared for the possibility, but says Beltre's deal won't affect plans to explore extensions with players like Josh Hamilton.
  • Mychael Urban of CSNBayArea.com thinks the Beltre signing "isn’t necessarily a loss for the jilted A’s" since the Rangers didn't solve their main need of pitching, and Beltre's production last year "represents a wash offensively" with the departed Vladimir Guerrero.  
  • Speaking of Guerrero, Angels manager Mike Scioscia discussed the veteran slugger with Jim Duqette and Kevin Kennedy of MLB Network Radio on Sirius XM.  (MLB.com's Lyle Spencer has a fuller recap of Scioscia's appearance.)  Scioscia said his team isn't looking for a long-term contract with Guerrero, but admitted that "he's definitely a guy that's very interesting to look at."  We've heard mixed reports about the Angels' interest in bringing Guerrero back to Anaheim, but with Texas out of the picture, the Halos probably won't have to offer more than a one-year deal to sign the possible Hall-of-Famer. 


Contract Details: Saito, Beltre, Capuano, Hudson

Here are some recent updates on contracts from around the majors:


The Significance Of The Adrian Beltre Deal

Beltre
Adrian Beltre agreed to a deal that guarantees him $80MM over five years. It's the biggest contract of Beltre's career and the fourth biggest free agent deal of the 2010-11 offseason.

The left side of the Rangers' infield should improve when Beltre joins defensive whiz Elvis Andrus. Since Andrus became a regular in 2009, he ranks seventh among MLB shortstops in UZR/150 and Beltre ranks second among MLB third baseman for that same time period. Beltre has had his highs ('04 and '10 stand out) and lows ('01, '05, '09) at the plate, but he has been an above average hitter and defender more often than not.

Beltre joins the defending American League champions on what will presumably be the last major contract of his career (he'll be at least 36 when the deal expires). For what it's worth, Beltre has a career .306/.336/.521 line in 229 plate appearances in Texas.

Here's what it means for the others involved:

Michael Young

  • This could be the end of Young's tenure in Texas, but he won't be easy to trade and he adds value as a utility player, so the Rangers may keep him. Young, who has already proven that he can adjust to big league position switches, may have to play shortstop for the first time since 2008 and second base for the first time since 2003.

Vladimir Guerrero

The Angels

  • The Angels could have used Carl Crawford and Beltre, yet they did not sign either player. While the A's and Rangers have made a number of acquisitions, the Angels have been relatively quiet, adding left-handers Scott Downs and Hisanori Takahashi.

The A's

The Red Sox

  • The Red Sox will obtain two top draft picks next year since they offered arbitration to Beltre, a Type A free agent, and he turned it down. One draft choice will be a supplementary first rounder and the other will come from the Rangers. It will be Texas' first rounder as long as the Rangers don't sign Rafael Soriano. If they do sign the closer, the Rays would get the Rangers' top pick and the Red Sox would get their second rounder.

Jose Bautista & Aramis Ramirez

  • Bautista and Ramirez are set to enter free agency after the season. They're far from perfect comps for Beltre – Bautista may end up playing right field next year – but this deal could play in their favor if they hit free agency after strong 2011 seasons at third base.

Scott Boras

  • Did anyone expect Jayson Werth to sign for $126MM and Beltre to sign a deal that could make him $96MM? Finding the right deal for Rafael Soriano is another major test for Boras, who has found unexpectedly big paydays for his clients so far this winter.

Photo courtesy of Icon SMI


Rangers To Sign Adrian Beltre

The Rangers have won the bidding for Adrian Beltre and agreed to terms with the third baseman on a deal that keeps him away from Texas' AL West rivals, the A's and Angels. The team has announced the agreement.

Beltre and the Rangers agreed to a five-year $80MM contract that includes a $16MM vesting option for a sixth year, ESPN.com's Buster Olney reports (on Twitter). The agreement includes a limited no-trade clause, according to Jon Heyman of SI.com (on Twitter). Agent Scott Boras represents Beltre.

Beltre led the American League in doubles last year and added 28 homers, hitting .321/.365/.553 in 641 plate appearances. He made the All-Star team, won his second career Silver Slugger and played standout defense. The defensive metric UZR/150 suggests that Beltre was significantly above average with the glove (12.7 UZR/150) for the eighth time in the past nine seasons. Beltre, 31, would be 37 in the final season of a six-year deal. 

Michael Young said this week that he'd be willing to move from third base if the Rangers sign Beltre. Young shifted from second base to shortstop when the Rangers traded Alex Rodriguez and from short to third when Elvis Andrus reached the majors, so position switches are nothing new for him. If the Rangers don't trade him, Young figures to appear in the lineup most days as a DH and utility player.

Young has no-trade protection, $48MM remaining on his contract and ten and five rights that take effect this May. The Rangers discussed a potential deal with the Rockies last month, but the team would have to overcome many obstacles to move Young.

Since the Red Sox offered Beltre arbitration, they will obtain two top draft picks next year. One will be a supplementary first rounder and the other will come from the Rangers. It will be Texas' first rounder as long as the Rangers don't sign Rafael Soriano. If they do sign the closer, the Rays would get the Rangers' top pick and the Red Sox would get their second rounder.

The Angels already missed out on Carl Crawford, so losing Beltre to a division rival is a considerable blow for a franchise that finished below .500 for the first time since 2003 last year. The A's, another one of Beltre's suitors, will once again face the longtime Mariner as a division rival.

This is the second long-term deal of Beltre's career. He signed a five-year, $64MM deal with the Mariners after the 2004 season. In five seasons in Seattle, Beltre hit 103 homers and posted a .266/.317/.442 line while playing stellar defense (that's 3.4 WAR per season, in case you're wondering).

Boras and Beltre accepted a $10MM offer from the Red Sox last offseason, though other clubs offered more guaranteed money. That decision positioned the third baseman for a considerably larger payday.

PioDeportes first reported the agreement over the weekend. Yahoo's Tim Brown reported that the sides were nearing a deal and that the sides had an agreement (Twitter links). Heyman reported that the Rangers were making progress on a deal in the $90-100MM range (Twitter links) and Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports and others also contributed to the story.


Rangers Notes: Pavano, Beltre, Young

A few Rangers-related tidbits..


Rangers, Beltre Close To Deal

7:35pm: Jeff Wilson of The Fort Worth Star-Telegram tweets that Beltre will be in the Dallas area tonight in preparation for a physical on Wednesday. MLB.com's Peter Gammons adds that the Athletics offered six years and $76MM at one point, making the Angels the third highest bidder in the division (Twitter link).

12:49pm: The deal is not done, but it could be worth as much as $96MM over six years, according to MLB.com's T.R. Sullivan. The contract would include a clause that would allow the Rangers to opt out of the sixth year if Beltre doesn't reach a threshold for plate appearances.

10:15am: The Rangers are close to a six-year deal with Adrian Beltre, according to Yahoo's Tim Brown (on Twitter). Jon Heyman of SI.com reports that the Rangers are making progress and that a deal would be in the $90-100MM range (Twitter links). Yahoo's Jeff Passan agrees that the value of the deal will approach $100MM. A source tells Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports that the deal would effectively be for five years with a vesting option for a sixth year. (Twitter link). Agent Scott Boras represents Beltre.

Beltre led the American League in doubles last year and added 28 homers, hitting .321/.365/.553 in 641 plate appearances. He made the All-Star team, won his second career Silver Slugger and played standout defense. The defensive metric UZR/150 suggests that Beltre was significantly above average with the glove (12.7 UZR/150) for the eighth time in the past nine seasons. Beltre, 31, would be 37 in the final season of a six-year deal. 

Michael Young said yesterday that he'd be willing to move from third base if the Rangers sign Beltre. Young shifted from second base to shortstop when the Rangers traded Alex Rodriguez and from short to third when Elvis Andrus reached the majors, so position switches are nothing new for him. If the Rangers don't trade him, Young figures to appear in the lineup most days as a DH and utility player.

Young has no-trade protection, $48MM remaining on his contract and ten and five rights that take effect this May. The Rangers discussed a potential deal with the Rockies last month, but the team would have to overcome many obstacles to move Young.

Since the Red Sox offered Beltre arbitration, they will obtain two top draft picks next year. One will be a supplementary first rounder and the other will come from the Rangers. It will be Texas' first rounder as long as the Rangers don't sign Rafael Soriano. If they do sign the closer, the Rays would get the Rangers' top pick and the Red Sox would get their second rounder.

The Angels already missed out on Carl Crawford, so losing Beltre to a division rival would be a considerable blow for a franchise that finished below .500 for the first time since 2003 last year. The A's, another one of Beltre's suitors, will once again face the longtime Mariner as a division rival.

This is the second long-term deal of Beltre's career. He signed a five-year, $64MM deal with the Mariners after the 2004 season. In five seasons in Seattle, Beltre hit 103 homers and posted a .266/.317/.442 line while playing stellar defense (that's 3.4 WAR per season, in case you're wondering).

Boras and Beltre accepted a $10MM offer from the Red Sox last offseason, though other clubs offered more guaranteed money. That decision positioned the third baseman for a considerably larger payday.

PioDeportes first reported the agreement over the weekend. 

The post was originally published on January 4th.


Rangers Notes: Beltre, Young, Pettitte

The Rangers have been busy today, finalizing deals with Brandon Webb and Arthur Rhodes and designating Clay Rapada and Max Ramirez for assignment in the process. Here are a few more notes on the defending American League champs, from MLB.com's T.R. Sullivan:

  • Team officials don't seem optimistic about signing Adrian Beltre. Click here for the latest on the free agent third baseman.
  • The Rangers have asked Michael Young what he thinks about switching positions again and he was not receptive to the idea. Troy Renck of the Denver Post hears that the Rockies aren't likely to discuss potential Young trades with the Rangers (Twitter link).
  • Earlier in the offseason, the Rangers were interested in Andy Pettitte, according to Sullivan. However, they heard that the lefty will either return to the Yankees or retire. ESPNNewYork reported today that the Yankees expect to hear from Pettitte soon. 

Adrian Beltre Rumors: Monday

Multiple reports suggested that the Rangers and Adrian Beltre were close to an agreement on a multiyear deal yesterday, but it turns out that "nothing is remotely imminent" between the team and the third baseman. Though MLB.com's T.R. Sullivan reported that the sides aren't nearing a deal, Jeff Wilson of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram says there "appears to be some hope" about a potential agreement. Here's the latest on the talks between Scott Boras and Beltre's suitors:

  • Rangers officials admitted to Sullivan that they like Beltre, but team president Nolan Ryan says the Texas infield remains unchanged. "As of right now, Michael Young is our third baseman," Ryan said. "We haven't done anything."
  • The Rangers' interest in Beltre is completely sincere, according to ESPN.com’s Buster Olney. The 31-year-old wanted to return to Boston, but the Red Sox didn’t care to meet Boras’ asking price, according to Olney.