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Alfredo Simon Rumors
The Reds had yet to place any of their starting pitchers on waivers as of Saturday morning, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports in his weekly “Full Count” video. As Rosenthal notes, their waiver status may be a moot point, as each would likely be claimed and subsequently pulled back. More highlights regarding the Reds and the rest of the league below…
- The real drama surrounding the Reds‘ rotation could come this offseason, as Johnny Cueto, Mat Latos, Mike Leake and Alfredo Simon will all be entering their final year of team control. The Reds will have to decide which, if any, they want to sign to a long-term deal, and Rosenthal notes that they will likely trade “at least” one. Latos is perhaps the likeliest candidate to be dealt, according to Rosenthal, who notes that both Latos and Cueto would command more than Homer Bailey‘s six-year, $105MM contract.
- Rusney Castillo‘s six-year, $72.5MM contract with the Red Sox might not stand as the largest deal for a Cuban free agent very long. Yasmani Tomas is expected to be cleared as a free agent this offseason, and his huge raw power will be highly appealing, even if he is limited to left field, defensively speaking. As Rosenthal points out, Tomas is four years younger than Castillo and is against a crop of weak free agent bats. One executive that spoke with Rosenthal said the only flaw he sees in Castillo is his propensity to swing and miss.
- Rosenthal points back to a report of his prior to the trade deadline in which he had learned that the Nationals were looking for a young shortstop on the trade market. He’s now learned that Didi Gregorius of the Diamondbacks was one of their targets. Washington had planned on playing Gregorius at second base in the near-term and moving him back over to shortstop if Ian Desmond could not be retained. Of course, the club still wants to extend Desmond, who is a free agent following the 2015 season.
Reds right-hander Alfredo Simon has changed agencies and is now represented by MVP Sports Group, according to Mark Sheldon of MLB.com (Twitter links). Simon, who had previously been with the Wasserman Media Group, interviewed four or five agents before deciding on MVP’s Dan Lozano, according to Sheldon.
The 33-year-old Simon, who is in the midst of his most successful season as a Major Leaguer, will be eligible for arbitration for the third and final time this offseason before being eligible for free agency the following winter. Simon wasn’t expected to be a long-term rotation piece this season, but injuries to Mat Latos and the struggles of Tony Cingrani opened a door, and he’s capitalized on the opportunity with 143 innings of 3.08 ERA ball to go along with 5.7 K/9, 2.5 BB/9 and a 48.5 percent ground-ball rate. Needless to say, he will be due a sizable raise on his relatively modest $1.5MM salary in his final trip through arbitration.
By joining MVP Sports Group, Simon will be enlisting the services of an agency that represents some of the game’s most notable players, including Albert Pujols, Joey Votto, Carlos Beltran, Manny Machado and Jimmy Rollins. For more info on 2,000+ Major League and Minor League players, check out MLBTR’s Agency Database. If you see any errors or omissions, please let us know via email: email@example.com.
We'll keep track of today's smaller deals to avoid arbitration in this post. Click here for background on the upcoming arbitration schedule and how MLBTR is covering it. You can also check in on our Arbitration Tracker and look at MLBTR contributor Matt Swartz's arbitration projections.
Today's noon CT deadline to exchange arb figures has passed, but negotiations to avoid an arbitration hearing can continue into February. The Braves are the only strict "file and trial" team that did not agree to terms with all of its arb-eligible players, meaning they could be headed for several hearings. The Nats and Indians have also shown a willingness to go to a trial and still have some players unsigned. On to today's contract agreements…
- After exchanging numbers, the Mets and pitcher Dillon Gee have agreed to settle at the midpoint of $3.625MM, tweets Adam Rubin of ESPNNewYork.com. Swartz projected Gee to earn $3.4MM.
- The Cubs have avoided arbitration with reliever Pedro Strop, president Theo Epstein told Mark Gonzales of the Chicago Tribune (Twitter link). He will earn $1.325MM next year, according to a tweet from Gordon Wittenmyer of the Chicago Sun-Times. It is not immediately apparent whether the deal was reached before the sides exchanged terms.
- The Angels have reached agreement on a $3.8MM deal with reliever Ernesto Frieri, reports Alden Gonzalez of MLB.com (on Twitter).
- Mike Minor has agreed to terms on a $3.85MM deal with the Braves to avoid arbitration, reports Mark Bowman of MLB.com (Twitter links). The deal came before figures were exchanged, Bowman notes.
- Chris Cotillo of MLB Daily Dish reports that the D-Backs and lefty Joe Thatcher have avoided arb with a one-year, $2.375MM deal (Twitter link).
- Nicholson-Smith tweets that the Angels and Fernando Salas reached an agreement to avoid arbitration. Salas is the first Halos player to avoid arb. Mike DiGiovanna of the L.A. Times tweets that Salas will earn $870K, which beats out his $700K projection.
- MLB.com's Jason Beck reports (via Twitter) that the Tigers and righty Al Alburquerque have reached agreement on a deal to avoid arb. The hard-throwing righty will earn $837.5K in 2014, tweets Beck.
- Sherman tweets that the Yankees and Ivan Nova avoided arbitration with a one-year, $3.3MM deal.
- The Pirates and Vin Mazzaro inked a one-year, $950K deal in lieu of an arbitration hearing, tweets Rob Biertempfel of the Pittsburgh Tribune.
- The Royals announced that they've avoided arbitration with infielder Emilio Bonifacio. Heyman tweets that Bonifacio will earn $3.5MM in 2014.
- Sherman reports that the Rays avoided arbitration with Jeremy Hellickson and Sean Rodriguez (Twitter link). Hellickson landed a $3.625MM payday with a $25K bonus if he hits 195 innings pitched. Rodriguez will get $1.475MM with a $25K bump for hitting 300 plate appearances.
- Roch Kubatko of MASNsports.com tweets that Brian Matusz avoided arb with the Orioles. Sherman adds that he'll earn $2.4MM in 2014.
- MLB.com's Brian McTaggart tweets that Jason Castro and the Astros have avoided arbitration. McTaggart adds in a second tweet that Jesus Guzman avoided arb as well. Heyman reports that Castro will be paid $2.45MM, while Sherman tweets that Guzman will make $1.3MM.
- The Indians tweeted that they've avoided arb with lefty Marc Rzepczynski, and MLB.com's Jordan Bastian tweets that he'll earn $1.375MM in 2014. Bastian adds that Scrabble will earn an additional $25K for appearing in 55 games and another $25K for 60 games.
- The Giants avoided arbitration with Yusmeiro Petit, according to MLBTR's Steve Adams (on Twitter). He'll earn $845K, according to Sportsnet's Ben Nicholson-Smith (via Twitter).
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The Reds have designated infielder Jason Donald for assignment and outrighted right-hander Jose Arredondo to Triple-A, tweets John Fay of the Cincinnati Enquirer. Donald and Arredondo were both out of options. The Reds now have ten days to either trade, release, or outright Donald to the minors. Arredondo has already cleared waivers, reports Fay (via Twitter).
Donald, acquired from the Indians in the Shin-Soo Choo trade, was beat out by non-roster invitee Cesar Izturis. Fay tweets the deciding factor was Izturis' ability to play shortstop and serve as a backup to starter Zack Cozart.
Arredondo, who is in the final year of a contract he signed in January 2012 and will still be arbitration eligible in 2014 and 2015 as a Super Two, lost out to Manny Parra and Alfredo Simon for a spot in the Reds bullpen.
We'll track the day's arbitration agreements under $3MM right here…
- The Reds announced that they've avoided arbitration with right-hander Alfredo Simon and outfielder Chris Heisey (Twitter link). Both players obtain one-year deals for 2013, which leaves the Reds with four unsigned arb eligible players: Homer Bailey, Shin-Soo Choo, Mat Latos and Mike Leake. As MLBTR's Arb Tracker shows, Heisey filed for $1.65MM with the Reds countering at $1.05MM. He obtained $1.325MM, MLB.com's Mark Sheldon tweets. The first time eligible super two player discussed a multiyear deal with the Reds earlier in the month. Meanwhile, Simon filed for $1.05MM and the Reds offered $750K.
Simon posted a 4.90 ERA with 6.5 K/9, 3.1 BB/9 and a 43% ground ball rate in 115 2/3 innings as a starter and reliever for the Orioles last year. He has a 44.7% ground ball rate and an average fastball velocity of 94.5 mph in four seasons with Baltimore.
Ryan Madson will miss the 2012 season and Nick Masset will open the season on the disabled list, so the Reds are short on relievers. Simon will join right-handers Jose Arredondo, Logan Ondrusek and Sam LeCure in manager Dusty Baker's bullpen.
SATURDAY: Simon told reporters (including MLB.com's Britt Ghiroli) that he expects to get claimed off waivers, but will elect free agency is he's not.
FRIDAY: The Orioles have waived right-hander Alfredo Simon, a source confirmed to Dan Connolly of The Baltimore Sun (via Twitter). Simon, 30, had a 4.90 ERA with 6.5 K/9 and 3.1 BB/9 in 16 starts and seven relief appearances last season.
One National League exec told Connolly (via Twitter) that it's hard to imagine Simon not getting claimed based on his ability, though consistency is a concern with him. Roch Kubatko of MASNsports.com tweets that the move will help to create room on the 40-man roster as the O's need space for Nick Johnson and Ronny Paulino.
Mike Axisa contributed to this post.
It's unclear how much the Orioles knew about the possibility that Chris Davis had shoulder problems when they acquired him late last month, Jeff Zrebiec of the Baltimore Sun writes. Davis hit the Orioles' 15-day DL not long after joining Baltimore in the deal that sent Koji Uehara to Texas. Here are some more notes on the O's from Zrebiec…
- Mike Gonzalez and Vladimir Guerrero haven’t drawn interest from contenders looking to fortify their rosters for the stretch run, Zrebiec hears. That could change later this month and if it does, it’s likely that Gonzalez and Guerrero would clear waivers.
- Keep track of which players have cleared with our list.
- Orioles officials appear to believe that if Alfredo Simon has a future in Baltimore, it’s in the bullpen. Simon has made some good starts this season, but with Jim Johnson likely headed to the rotation, Baltimore’s bullpen could use some reliable arms in 2012.
We’ve already checked in on the AL East and taken detailed looks at its two biggest spenders, the Yankees and Red Sox. Here are some new notes from around the division, with an emphasis on teams that could be sellers:
- Though the Rays have told teams they won't trade James Shields, they're willing to discuss Jeff Niemann and Wade Davis, according to Danny Knobler of CBSSports.com.
- Rays manager Joe Maddon tells Marc Topkin of the St. Petersburg Times that he has discussed dozens of trade scenarios with executive VP of baseball operations Andrew Friedman (Twitter link). None of the scenarios have involved Shields, who appears to be off of the market.
- Koji Uehara and Jeremy Guthrie are the names bouncing around MLBTR, but Dan Connolly of the Baltimore Sun reminds us that teams have also called about other Orioles, including Adam Jones, Jim Johnson and Alfredo Simon.
The Blue Jays announced today that they’re going to retire Roberto Alomar’s number 12 later this month. When the former second baseman gets enshrined in Cooperstown over the weekend, he’ll become the first inductee to wear a Blue Jays cap into the Hall. A week later, he’ll become the first Blue Jay to have his number retired. Here are links from around the American League East…
- The Red Sox are actively looking to improve their roster, according to Alex Speier of WEEI.com. Though Boston has made moves out of necessity in recent years, this summer is one of opportunity for Boston's front office, Speier writes. Left-handed relief remains one unsettled area for the first place club.
- The Orioles announced that they transferred second baseman Brian Roberts to the 60-day DL to create 40-man roster space for Alfredo Simon, who was reinstated from the restricted list.
- The Yankees are unwilling to trade a "big" prospect for a reliever, according to Jon Heyman of SI.com (on Twitter). They expect their bullpen will be fine and are searching for starters (though Ubaldo Jimenez remains a longshot).
- The Yankees have been suggesting to teams that they're happy with their bullpen, according to Danny Knobler of CBSSports.com.