Alfredo Aceves Rumors
The Marlins have an Opening Day, on-field payroll of just $36.1MM, about $58MM less than in 2012, Juan Rodriguez of the Sun-Sentinel notes. That the Marlins' team is dramatically less expensive than it was at this point last year is hardly news, but it's still startling to see a list of the team's players and their salaries, as Rodriguez provides here. After Ricky Nolasco at $11.5MM, the next-highest-paid Marlin is Placido Polanco, who will make $2.75MM.
- "A few teams" were interested in trading for Alfredo Aceves of the Red Sox, Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe writes (on Twitter). But injuries to Franklin Morales and Craig Breslow, along with Daniel Bard's control problems, meant it wasn't possible for the Sox to deal Aceves.
- Red Sox pitcher Jon Lester isn't interested in discussing a contract extension during the season, writes Rob Bradford of WEEI. "If something did come up during the season I probably wouldn't listen," says Lester. "I don't want to deal with it. I think it's too much of a distraction." Lester will make $11.625MM in 2013, and the Red Sox have a $13MM option, with a $250K buyout, for Lester's services in 2014.
- The Blue Jays added plenty of talent this offseason, adding R.A. Dickey, Josh Johnson, Jose Reyes, Mark Buehrle and others, but bold offseasons don't necessarily lead to big results, Sean McAdam of CSNNE.com argues. McAdam points to the 2011 Red Sox (who did finish third, although they also won 90 games) and 2012 Marlins as examples of teams that have disappointed in the years following exciting offseasons.
Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch details the latest from Major League Baseball Players Association chief Michael Weiner on the union's views on drug testing. Weiner also discussed the qualifying offer system, expressing that he is "pleased that the number of players that carried compensation dropped way down, from in the thirties to nine," while noting that neither the league nor the union "expected that a player the caliber of Kyle Lohse would have the difficulty he's having," an issue which he "would like to find a way out of ... sooner rather than later, before 2016." Elsewhere around the league:
- Brennan Boesch detailed the series of events that led to him joining the Yankees yesterday, as Andy McCullough of The Star-Ledger reports. Boesch was told "earlier this week" that he would be released by the Tigers despite still having multiple minor league options, which the outfielder viewed as "a favor" despite being surprised at the news. When Boesch learned from agent Scott Boras of the Yankees' interest, he instructed Boras to just "get it done" because New York was his top choice.
- The Mets, unlike their New York neighbors, "weren't enthused" about Boesch because they saw him "as another Lucas Duda" and feel comfortable with their in-house options, tweets Jon Heyman. Meanwhile, the club may need to fill in for star third-baseman David Wright to start the season, and Michael Baron of MetsBlog breaks down the internal options.
- Left-handed reliever Franklin Morales is out indefinitely as he deals with a bulging disk in his back, which potentially opens a spot in the Red Sox bullpen for Clayton Mortensen, writes Scott Lauber of the Boston Herald. Morales' injury situation also makes it is less likely that Boston will deal Alfredo Aceves, Lauber explains, because "manager John Farrell has identified Aceves [as] the primary long man in the Red Sox' bullpen and their best option to provide a spot start in the event of injuries in the rotation."
- As the Angels look over the market for available backstops, they are joined by the Phillies, Pirates, and Rays in looking for "experienced catching," tweets Peter Gammons of MLB Network.
Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com feels that the Red Sox should part ways with the volatile Alfredo Aceves, but it doesn't seem like such a move is in the cards. General Manager Ben Cherington told Heyman via text not to expect to see Aceves cut while another person connected to the club said that he can't see it happening. The Red Sox's bullpen is shorthanded at the moment with Franklin Morales and Craig Breslow sidelined, so now would not be a great time to drop Aceves. Here's more from around baseball..
- All signs point to Twins prospect Aaron Hicks making the leap from Double-A to win the club's center field job, Heyman writes. Recently, Ben Nicholson-Smith looked at service time considerations for Hicks and other top prospects in baseball.
- Tigers manager Jim Leyland has success with a bullpen by committee in the past and it could work again for him in 2013, writes Tracy Ringolsby of MLB.com. Detroit has inquired on closing options from other teams in recent weeks but they could instead use rookie Bruce Rondon and other relievers already in-house to close out games.
- Chipper Jones joked that former teammate David Ross should start a rumor that he was coming back to baseball to sign with the Red Sox, but the catcher wanted no part of it, writes John Tomase of the Boston Herald. Ross asked Jones if he's staying retired and the future Hall of Famer said "I ain't going nowhere."
Alfredo Aceves has irked his bosses in Boston, but shipping him to another team wouldn’t necessarily be easy for the Red Sox. One general manager told Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com that Aceves has next to no trade value. "Not if you know him," the GM said (Twitter link). Here are more links from around MLB...
- Lynn Henning of the Detroit News explains how the Tigers nearly failed to sign prospect Nick Castellanos after they drafted him in the summer of 2010.
- MLB.com’s Anthony Castrovince looks around the AL Central to see if any of the re-tooled teams can challenge the Tigers in 2013.
- In a video clip on MLB.com, White Sox GM Rick Hahn discusses the organization’s approach to remaining competitive while undergoing cycles of team building. Hahn highlighted the importance of monitoring the strengths and weaknesses of division opponents while remaining realistic about one’s own organization.
- Turning to the team’s present situation, Hahn opined that Chicago is poised to compete in 2013 and discussed the team’s handling of young starter Chris Sale.
- Yahoo Sports’ Jeff Passan questions and analyzes Brian Cashman’s claims that the Yankees are committed to and successful at developing homegrown starting pitching. The piece details each team’s success at developing pitching in recent years.
Jeff Todd contributed to this post.
- Alex Speier of WEEI.com runs down a list of the team's options with Alfredo Aceves, who recently garnered some negative attention for himself by lobbing pitches to batters in live batting practice rather than actually pitching (ESPNBoston's Joe McDonald has the details). The Red Sox could trade Aceves, waive him, option him to Triple-A, or cut him for a fraction of his salary depending on the date at which they would theoretically release him.
- When ESPN's Buster Olney asked one GM about Aceves, he responded by asking, "Why haven't they cut him yet?" Other GMs think Aceves has some trade value (Twitter link).
- The Boston Herald's Scott Lauber interviewed Mike Napoli's agent and friend, Brian Grieper, about the emotional roller coaster that Napoli went through upon learning that he had avascular necrosis (AVN) in both of his hips. Grieper and Napoli were concerned about Napoli's long-term health, first and foremost, writes Lauber. A recent MRI showed Napoli's condition hasn't worsened. He'll have another MRI in three months and will be on medication for the next two years to monitor the condition.
- Rubby De La Rosa has one of the best arms in the organization, writes Mike Newman of Fangraphs, which makes Boston's offseason acquisitions a bit surprising. The team added Ryan Dempster, Joel Hanrahan and Koji Uehara, which effectively blocks De La Rosa from having a clear path to the Major League roster. De La Rosa was one of the key pieces in last summer's blockbuster with the Dodgers.
Dozens of players will agree to terms with their respective teams today and avoid arbitration. We'll have detailed posts on the top earners around MLB, and we'll track more modest agreements -- those worth less than $4MM -- right here. MLBTR's Arbitration Tracker will have all of the details.
Teams had until 12pm CDT today to exchange filing numbers with their arbitration eligible players. Generally speaking the deadline creates lots of discussion and leads to early deals. Plus, for ‘file and trial’ teams this marks the final chance for negotiations in advance of a hearing. Here are the latest agreements from around MLB...
- The Padres announced that they have avoided arbitration with Edinson Volquez. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
- The Red Sox announced that they avoided arbitration with Andrew Bailey ($4.1MM), Daniel Bard ($1.8625MM), Andrew Miller ($1.475MM), and Franklin Morales ($1.4875MM). Terms courtesy of WEEI.com's Rob Bradford.
- The Mets and Bobby Parnell avoided arb with a $1.7MM deal, Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com reports (on Twitter).
- The Red Sox avoided arbitration with Alfredo Aceves, agreeing to a deal worth $2.65MM plus incentives, according to O'Connell Sports Management, Aceves' agency (on Twitter via Jon Heyman).
- The Cubs avoided arbitration with James Russell and Jeff Samardzija, Jesse Rogers of ESPNChicago.com reports (on Twitter). Samardzija obtains $2.64MM while Russell gets $1.075MM, Bruce Levine of ESPNChicago.com reports (on Twitter).
- The Diamondbacks announced that they avoided arbitration with Chris Johnson ($2.2875MM). The team also avoided arbitration with Brad Ziegler ($3.15MM), agreeing to a one-year deal, ESPN.com's Jayson Stark reports (on Twitter). Terms courtesy of Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic (on Twitter).
- The Nationals announced that they agreed to terms with Tyler Clippard, avoiding arbitration (via Amanda Comak on Twitter). The Nationals avoided arbitration with Ian Desmond, agreeing to a one-year, $3.8MM deal, Amanda Comak of the Washington Times reports (on Twitter). The Nationals also avoided arb with Roger Bernadina according to the outfielder's agent, James Wagner of the Washington Post reports (on Twitter). The Nationals and Ross Detwiler agreed to a one-year, $2.3375MM contract, according to CAA (via Twitter).
- Brennan Boesch and Phil Coke avoided arbitration, agreeing to one-year deals with the Tigers, Jason Beck of MLB.com reports (on Twitter). Boesch will earn $2.3MM while Coke will earn $1.85MM. The Tigers also avoided arbitration with Alex Avila, agreeing to a one-year, $2.95MM deal, Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com reports (all Twitter links). Austin Jackson agreed to a deal worth $3.5MM for 2013, Heyman reports. Doug Fister obtained a one-year, $4MM deal from Detroit, Heyman reports.
- The Dodgers and A.J. Ellis avoided arbitration, agreeing to a one-year, $2MM deal, Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com reports (on Twitter). Ronald Belisario agreed to a one-year, $1.45MM deal, MLB.com's Ken Gurnick reports (on Twitter).
- The Mariners announced that they avoided arbitration with Kendrys Morales and Brendan Ryan on one-year agreements for 2013. Morales will obtain $5.25MM plus performance bonuses, Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com reports (on Twitter). Ryan obtained $3.25MM, Heyman reports (on Twitter).
- The Rockies avoided arb with Tyler Colvin, agreeing to a one-year deal, the team announced (on Twitter). Colvin will earn $2.275MM, Troy Renck of the Denver Post writes (on Twitter).
- The Braves avoided arbitration with Cristhian Martinez, agreeing to a one-year deal, MLB.com's Mark Bowman reports (on Twitter). The Braves avoided arb with Kris Medlen, David O'Brien of the Atlanta Journal Constitution reports (on Twitter). Medlen will earn $2.6MM in 2013. They also avoided arb with Jason Heyward, agreeing to a one-year, $3.65MM deal, Bowman reports (onTwitter). The Braves agreed with another young player, avoiding arb with Jonny Venters, O'Brien reports (on Twitter). It's a $1.625MM deal. Earlier today the Braves agreed to a one-year deal with Eric O'Flaherty, avoiding arbitration, Bowman reported (on Twitter). He'll earn $4.32MM plus awards bonuses, Bowman adds.
- The Athletics announced they avoided arb with Jerry Blevins and Brandon Moss, agreeing to one-year deals for 2013.
- The Cardinals avoided arb with Mitchell Boggs and Edward Mujica, B.J. Rains of FOX Sports MidWest reports (on Twitter).
- The Indians announced that they avoided arb with Matt Albers and Justin Masterson. Albers will earn $1.75MM in 2013, MLB.com's Jordan Bastian reports (on Twitter). Masterson will earn $5.6875MM according to Bastian (on Twitter). The Indians and Joe Smith avoided arbitration with a one-year, $3.15MM deal, Bastian reported earlier today (on Twitter). The Indians also avoided arbitration with Lou Marson, Bastian reports (Twitter links). The catcher will earn $1MM on a one-year deal in 2013.
- The Astros avoided arb with Wesley Wright, agreeing to a one-year deal, MLB.com's Brian McTaggart reports (on Twitter). Wright will earn $1.025MM, according to Heyman (on Twitter). Earlier today the Astros and Bud Norris avoided arb with a one-year, $3MM deal, McTaggart reports (on Twitter). The Astros and Jed Lowrie avoided arbitration with a one-year, $2.4MM deal with awards bonuses, according to his representatives at CAA Baseball (on Twitter).
- The White Sox announced that they avoided arbitration with Alejandro De Aza, agreeing to a $2.075MM deal for 2013. The White Sox also avoided arb with Gordon Beckham, agreeing to a one-year deal worth $2.925MM for 2013, MLBTR has learned.
- The Orioles announced that they avoided arb with Chris Davis and Brian Matusz (Twitter link). Matusz gets a base salary of $1.6MM while Davis gets $3.3MM, Dan Connolly of the Baltimore Sun reports (Twitter links). The Orioles also avoided arbitration with Troy Patton. The sides agreed to a one-year, $815K deal, his agency, CAA Sports, announced on Twitter.
- The Brewers avoided arb with right-hander Marco Estrada and reliever Burke Badenhop, Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports (Twitter links). Estrada will earn $1.955MM while Badenhop will earn $1.55MM, Haudricourt reports.
- The Rays avoided arbitration with Matthew Joyce and Ryan Roberts, Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports (on Twitter). Joyce will earn $2.45MM and Roberts will earn $2.95MM plus incentives, the Rays announced. The Rays also avoided arbitration with Sam Fuld, agreeing to a one-year, $725K deal, Topkin reported (on Twitter). Earlier today the Rays avoided arbitration with Jeff Niemann. The sides agreed to a one-year, $3MM deal, Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com reports (on Twitter).
- The Royals announced that they avoided arbitration with Luke Hochevar, agreeing to a one-year deal for 2013. Hochevar will earn $4.56MM plus performance bonuses, Pete Grathoff of the Kansas City Star reports (on Twitter).
- The Yankees avoided arb with Boone Logan, agreeing to a one-year, $3.15MM deal (via CAA Sports on Twitter).
- The Padres avoided arb with John Baker, agreeing to a $930K deal (via CAA Sports on Twitter).
- The Twins and Brian Duensing avoided arb with a $1.3MM deal for 2013 (via CAA Sports on Twitter).
- The Marlins avoided arbitration with Ryan Webb, agreeing to a $975K deal, Clark Spencer of the Miami Herald reports (on Twitter).
- The Blue Jays announced that they avoided arbitration with Emilio Bonifacio by agreeing to a one-year, $2.6MM deal. The Blue Jays also announced that they avoided arbitration with J.A. Happ, agreeing to a one-year, $3.7MM deal for 2013.
- The Angels and Tommy Hanson avoided arbitration with a one-year, $3.725MM deal, Jeff Fletcher of the Orange County Register reports.
- The Giants avoided arb with Gregor Blanco, agreeing to a one-year, $1.35MM deal, Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com reports (on Twitter).
- The Phillies announced that they avoided arbitration with Antonio Bastardo with a $1.4MM contract for 2013.
- Gaby Sanchez and the Pirates have reached agreement on a one-year, $1.75MM deal plus bonuses to avoid arbitration, according to the Beverly Hills Sports Council (on Twitter).
News out of the American League East..
- The Red Sox would possibly give up Franklin Morales or Alfredo Aceves in a deal for Pirates closer Joel Hanrahan, according to Nick Cafardo of The Boston Globe. The Pirates, however, may be thinking more along the lines of Felix Doubront, which would be a deal-breaker, according to a major league source. Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com first reported Boston's interest in Hanrahan.
- The Red Sox had some inquiries on Jarrod Saltalamacchia, but it appears that they may go to spring training with three catchers, plus Mike Napoli, if that deal gets done, Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com tweets. Boston also has free agent pickup David Ross and Ryan Lavarnway slotted in at the catcher position.
- The Rangers' signing of A.J. Pierzynski could shake the catching market loose and spark trade interest in Saltalamacchia for the Red Sox, tweets Brian MacPherson of The Providence Journal. Pierzynski and Texas agreed to a one-year deal earlier this evening.
- The Yankees did not make an offer to Pierzynski, according to Heyman (via Twitter). The Bombers' plan at present is to go with a combination of Francisco Cervelli, Chris Stewart, and Austin Romine behind the plate. The Yanks were known to have interest in Pierzynski but were said to be wary of his defense.
Here's the latest news from Fenway...
- The Red Sox are talking to Adam LaRoche, reports Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com. With the Sox reluctant to go beyond a three-year contract for Mike Napoli, LaRoche could be the team's fallback plan. A three-year deal would top the Nationals' best offer to the free agent first baseman, as the Nats "have been fairly steadfast" in not offering LaRoche more than two years. The Rangers have also been linked to both LaRoche and Napoli this offseason.
- Also from Heyman's piece, he notes that the Red Sox have "checked in" on Alex Gonzalez and Stephen Drew, though Jose Iglesias will get first priority at shortstop.
- Jacoby Ellsbury's name hasn't been mentioned in trade talks, team president Larry Lucchino said during an appearance on WEEI's Dennis & Callahan radio show today (partial transcript from WEEI.com's Kirk Minihane). Lucchino also said that while the Sox haven't closed the door on any free agents, "what we have ruled out is the kind of long-term, gigantic commitment to players if at all possible....We are more concerned about years than we are dollars."
- From that same radio appearance (courtesy of The Boston Herald's Scott Lauber), Lucchino said the team is still interested in re-signing Cody Ross. Though Boston recently signed Jonny Gomes, Lucchino said the team wants to build "deep depth" after last year's injury-plagued season.
- The Red Sox will tender Alfredo Aceves a new contract before tomorrow's non-tender deadline, reports Scott Lauber of the Boston Herald. The pitching-needy Sox value Aceves' versatility as a starter and reliever too much to let him go for nothing, despite Aceves' disciplinary issues in 2012. Lauber thinks Aceves could still possibly be a trade candidate.
After 25 years as a General Manager and president of the Twins, Cubs, and Orioles, Andy MacPhail stepped away from baseball last season to take care of his ailing father. Now, MacPhail tells Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe that he wants to return to baseball in some capacity. The executive was often viewed as a future commissioner and it would make sense for him to get involved with the league office. He also won't rule out working as a GM again, but he has yet do discuss that with any team and most clubs already have their front office leadership in place. Here's more from Cafardo..
- The Twins have already inquired on Rays pitcher James Shields. Tampa Bay will field plenty of other calls on Shields in the coming weeks but whether they pull the trigger to obtain offense remains to be seen. The Dodgers say they're not shopping Andre Ethier, but it may make sense to use him to get Shields if they have their eye on Josh Hamilton. The problem there is that the Rays may not be able to carry Ethier's contract.
- The Angels are shopping Vernon Wells in an effort to clear some of the $42MM still owed to him. The Halos have tried to start talks with the Red Sox and would like to get John Lackey back, but the Sox are curious to see what Lackey looks like after Tommy John surgery.
- There was speculation that the Red Sox were trying to include Alfredo Aceves in a deal for Dan Haren. The Red Sox love Aceves' arm and stuff, but could do without the high maintenance. Aceves is very much available, but they won’t give him away for nothing. The pitcher can fill different roles, but he still prefers to start.
- The Dodgers would love to reunite with free agent Hiroki Kuroda. The hurler could have more suitors than any other pitcher this winter if the Yankees don't tie him up quickly.
- Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia is taking a wait-and-see approach on his agents, the Levinson brothers. A few clients have already jumped ship but Pedroia noted that they have been good to him and his family.
- The Red Sox would like to re-sign Vicente Padilla, but he is on the radar of a few teams, including the Angels, who are desperately looking to retool their bullpen. Padilla ran out of gas late in the year but turned in a decent year in total.
The Red Sox lost their 82nd game of the season last night, clinching the franchise's first losing season since 1997. Needless to say, the Sox will be busy this offseason to ensure they get back over the .500 mark and beyond in 2013. Here's the latest out of Fenway Park...
- The Red Sox are looking to add an experienced front office executive to assist GM Ben Cherington, reports Gordon Edes of ESPN Boston. Blue Jays assistant GM Tony LaCava has been rumored in connection with this role, though since the Jays would only allow LaCava (or any employee) to interview with another team if he was being offered a promotion.
- Larry Lucchino was non-committal about Alfredo Aceves' future with the team in an interview on WEEI's Dennis & Callahan show. (WEEI.com's Alex Speier provides the partial recap.) Aceves has had some disciplinary issues in Boston and the decision about his role in 2013 "will be made next spring by whatever team he is with," said Lucchino. "Maybe he’s with us. We’ll see. Maybe he’s elsewhere. It’s a little early to answer that question. We have so far [put up with his activities].” Aceves is arbitration-eligible for the second time this offseason.
- Lucchino also discussed several other Red Sox players, including pending free agent Cody Ross, who the team "loves" and would like to bring back. Lucchino said the club is "at the beginning stages of that process.” Earlier today, Ross said his top priority for free agency would be to sign with a contending team.
- James Loney tells Peter Abraham of the Boston Globe that he would be interested in returning to Boston if the Sox make him a contract offer this winter. Loney is set to hit free agency and could prefer to sign with an AL team if he has a choice, as the first baseman says he prefers playing under American League rules.
- The Sox should move quickly to find a new manager, writes Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe, arguing that the team can't afford another long managerial search or protracted negotiations with the Blue Jays over John Farrell. "The easiest choice" would be to hire bench coach Tim Bogar, who is a management favorite and has already interviewed for the Astros' job.