Alex Gonzalez Rumors


2013 Vesting Options Update

With a little less than one-third of the season left to go, let's check in on the various vesting option situations from around the league...

  • Jason Bartlett, Padres -- $5.5MM option vests with 432 plate appearances. Bartlett came to the plate just 98 times before being placed on the disabled list with a knee injury. He won't return to the lineup anytime soon, so this option will not vest.
  • Kevin Gregg, Orioles -- $6MM option vests with 50 games finished. Gregg has finished just 12 of the team's 113 games, so this one is very unlikely even though it's still mathematically possible.
  • Brett Myers, White Sox -- $10MM option vests with 45 games finished or based on a points system. Myers has finished 33 games this season, and he has finished four of the ten games he's appeared in with Chicago despite not being the closer. This is one worth monitoring.

Chipper Jones has an option worth $9MM+ that will vest with 123 games played, but he's already rendered the option moot by announcing his plans to retire after the season. He recently said that he won't change his mind about retirement despite his strong play as well. Chipper has played in 71 of the Braves' first 112 games.

Alex Gonzalez has an option worth $4MM that will vest with 525 plate appearances, but he is expected to miss the rest of the season with a torn ACL. Gonzalez came to the plate just 89 times before the injury, so the Brewers do not have to worry about this one kicking in.



2013 Vesting Options Update

Let's check in on the players who have vesting options for the 2013 season...

  • Jason Bartlett, Padres - $5.5MM option vests with 432 plate appearances. Bartlett came to the plate just 98 times before being placed on the disabled list with a knee injury. There is no firm timetable for his return and it seems unlikely that the option will vest at this point.
  • Kevin Gregg, Orioles - $6MM option vests with 50 games finished. Gregg has finished just six of the team's 70 games and it seems likely that Baltimore will keep the option from vesting.
  • Brett Myers, Astros - $10MM option vests with 45 games finished or based on a points system. Myers has finished 23 of the club's 70 games and is a trade candidate. If he continues to close, the option seems likely to vest.

Chipper Jones has an option worth $9MM+ that will vest with 123 games played, but he's already rendered the option moot by announcing his plans to retire after the season. Chipper has played in 38 of the Braves' first 70 games.

Alex Gonzalez has an option worth $4MM that will vest with 525 plate appearances, but he is expected to miss the rest of the season with a torn ACL. Gonzalez came to the plate just 89 times before the injury, so the Brewers do not have to worry about this one kicking in.



Quick Hits: Gonzalez, Mota, Red Sox

Brewers shortstop Alex Gonzalez has torn his right ACL and is expected to miss the rest of the season, Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports (Twitter links). It's another setback for the Brewers, who have also lost Mat Gamel and Chris Narveson to season-ending injuries. Gonzalez's vesting option for 2013 is no longer in play, as Haudricourt notes. Here are today's links...



2013 Vesting Options Update

As the calendar gets ready to flip over to May, let's check in on the players who have vesting options for the 2013 season...

  • Jason Bartlett, Padres - $5.5MM option vests with 432 plate appearances. Bartlett currently has 61 PA and has come to the plate at least 432 times in each of the last five seasons.
  • Alex Gonzalez, Brewers - $4MM option vests with 525 PA. Gonzalez has 66 PA at the moment and has eclipsed 525 PA in both 2010 and 2011.
  • Kevin Gregg, Orioles - $6MM option vest with 50 games finished. Gregg has finished three games this season but is a release candidate given his poor performance (7.94 ERA).
  • Brett Myers, Astros - $10MM option vests based on unknown starting or relieving milestones.

Chipper Jones has an option worth $9MM+ that will vest with 123 games played, but he's already rendered the option moot by announcing his plans to retire after the season. Chipper has played in a dozen of the Braves' first 20 games.



2013 Vesting Options

Which players can lock in 2013 contract options based on their 2012 performance?  Let's take a look.

  • Jason Bartlett, Padres: $5.5MM option vests with 432 plate appearances.
  • Alex Gonzalez, Brewers: $4MM option vests with 525 plate appearances.
  • Chipper Jones, Braves: $9MM+ option vests with 123 games.
  • Kevin Gregg, Orioles: $6MM option vests with 50 games finished.
  • Brett Myers, Astros: $10MM option vests based on unknown starting or relieving milestones.



Brewers Sign Alex Gonzalez

TUESDAY, 7:23pm: Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports (on Twitter) that the deal is worth $4.25MM. A $4MM option for 2013 will vest with 525 plate appearances, a level Gonzalez has reached in each of the last two seasons.

MONDAY, 11:18am: The Brewers announced the signing of shortstop Alex Gonzalez today. Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports first tweeted news of the agreement last week, noting that it's a one-year deal with a vesting option for 2013.  Gonzalez will take over as Milwaukee's starting shortstop, a position occupied by Yuniesky Betancourt this year.  Gonzalez is represented by Eric Goldschmidt.  

Gonzalez, 34, hit .241/.270/.372 with 15 home runs in 593 plate appearances for the Braves in 2011.  UZR suggests Gonzalez was average defensively this year and above-average from 2006-10.  Gonzalez seems to represent an upgrade over Betancourt, but not by much.  In November, the Braves elected not to offer arbitration to Gonzalez, so they won't be receiving a supplemental draft pick for the loss.  The Cardinals and Giants had also been linked to Gonzalez.  

As our free agent tracker shows, the list of available shortstops includes Betancourt, Ronny Cedeno,Nick Punto, and Jimmy Rollins.  Most of the clubs that lost or need shortstops, such as the Giants, Braves, Rays, Mets, Phillies, and Astros, say they have acceptable internal candidates.  It doesn't seem like Rollins has much leverage to extract a big five-year deal out of the Phillies. 



Quick Hits: Bell, Reyes, D'Backs, Rox, Rollins

A handful of odds and ends as Friday night winds down ...

  • Joe Frisaro of MLB.com has the breakdown on Heath Bell's and Jose Reyes' respective contracts with the Marlins. Bell's 2015 club option for $9MM will vest if he finishes 55 games in 2014 or 100 games in 2013-14. Reyes will earn a $1MM bonus if he wins a World Series MVP.
  • D'Backs GM Kevin Towers told reporters, including Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic, that he's looking to fortify his bullpen and perhaps add another starting pitcher (Twitter link).
  • The Rockies are looking for a short-term answer at third base so as not to block the path of prospect Nolan Arenado, tweets Troy Renck of the Denver Post.
  • Phillies GM Ruben Amaro will meet with shortstop Jimmy Rollins' agent, Dan Lozano, on Saturday, tweets Jerry Crasnick of ESPN.com.
  • Brewers shortstop Alex Gonzalez told Spanish-language sports talk radio show Los Cronistas in Venezuela that he had offers from the Giants and the Mets but that he chose to sign with Milwaukee because he wanted to be a starter (Twitter links). Thanks to MLBTR's Nick Collias for the translation.



Brewers Notes: K-Rod, Shortstop, Saito

The Brewers are on the hook for a likely salary in excess of $11.5MM for reliever Francisco Rodriguez next year, after K-Rod accepted their arbitration offer.  The latest on the team after GM Doug Melvin met with reporters:

  • Melvin said he doesn't have to trade Rodriguez to clear payroll space, writes Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel.  The Brewers feel good about the back end of the bullpen now, and Melvin noted that Rodriguez's added cost should be considered less the $3MM he would have had to spend to sign two compensatory draft picks.  That estimate doesn't hold water if you assume the Brewers would have received, say, the Padres' second-round pick plus a supplemental choice.  Slot for two picks of that nature would probably total $1.25MM.
  • Asked about Aramis Ramirez, Melvin said, "Anybody that's still a free agent is a possibility."
  • Melvin hopes to zero in on a shortstop early next week.  Yuniesky Betancourt, Alex Gonzalez, and Rafael Furcal are the candidates, writes MLB.com's Adam McCalvy.
  • Melvin gave some parameters to Takashi Saito's agent Nez Balelo, which didn't change post K-Rod.  It's not an official offer, but Melvin expects Balelo to try to get more from another team.  Six to eight teams have shown interest in Saito, Balelo told WEEI's Alex Speier yesterday.



Brewers Looking For Bullpen, Infield Help

The Brewers stand to lose both Takashi Saito and Francisco Rodriguez to free agency this winter, and GM Doug Melvin told Tom Haudricourt of the Journal Sentinel that he plans to talk to agents and look for bullpen help at the Winter Meetings next week (all Twitter links). Furthermore, the club is also looking to add infield help, though the only player they are actively trying to sign right now is Jerry Hairston Jr.

Jimmy Rollins, Alex Gonzalez, Rafael Furcal, and 2011 Brewer Yuniesky Betancourt are among the shortstops the club has checked in on. Melvin said he plans to meet with Betancourt's agent next week. Last week we heard that Milwaukee has already offered Hairston a one-year deal, but several other teams are interested as well. Melvin also confirmed that he does not have any offers out to free agent relievers at the moment.



Brewers, Cardinals, Giants In Talks With Alex Gonzalez

5:18pm: The Brewers and Cardinals are also interested in Gonzalez, tweets Jon Heyman of Sports Illustrated.

4:48pm: The Giants are negotiating with free agent shortstop Alex Gonzalez, reports Fernando Gonzalez of ESPN Deportes (passed along via Jim Bowden's Twitter account).  The Giants had been rumored as candidates to sign such bigger-name free agent shortstops as Jose Reyes or Jimmy Rollins, but with relatively little payroll space to go around, the other school of thought was that prospect Brandon Crawford could get the starting shortstop job.

Like Crawford, Gonzalez brings strong defense (a career UZR/150 of 6.3, though it dipped to -0.4 last season) and not much of a bat (a .241/.270/.372 line for Atlanta last season).  San Francisco could use Gonzalez and Crawford in a righty-lefty platoon next season, plus Gonzalez could be a valuble mentor to the 24-year-old.

The Braves didn't offer arbitration to Gonzalez (a Type B free agent), so Atlanta wouldn't receive a compensation pick if Gonzalez signed elsewhere.  The Braves hadn't ruled out re-signing Gonzalez themselves to act as a veteran bridge to their own shortstop prospect, Tyler Pastornicky.









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