Angel Guzman Rumors

NL West Notes: Dodgers, Guzman, Giants, Hamels

Happy birthday to Dodgers manager Don Mattingly (51) and Giants prospect Brandon Belt (24).  Here's the latest from the NL West…

  • Bud Selig says the league is still trying to learn some specifics about the sale of the Dodgers to Magic Johnson's ownership group, reports Mike James and Bill Shaikin of the Los Angeles Times.
  • Dodgers minor leaguer Angel Guzman has been issued a 50-game suspension following a positive test for a drug of abuse, according to an MLB press release.  This is Guzman's second violation of the league's drug policy.  Guzman last pitched in the majors in 2009 as a member of the Cubs, and he signed a minor league deal with L.A. in December.
  • Despite Guzman's suspension, Don Mattingly still sounded positive about the right-hander's future with the club, reports's Gene Duffy.
  • The Giants have no plans to make AT&T Park more hitter-friendly, reports Bruce Jenkins of the San Francisco Chronicle.  "It's an asymmetrical park with interesting dimensions, adding to the strategy and enjoyment of the game, and the overall opinion from fans has been positive," said Giants team president Larry Baer.  "It's kind of our signature. It's who we are."
  • Padres right-hander Dustin Moseley is getting a second opinion on his shoulder injury but told reporters (including Dan Hayes of the North County Times) that he expects to undergo season-ending surgery.
  • Cole Hamels criticized the Padres, his favorite team growing up, to local media (including Chris Jenkins of the San Diego Union-Tribune) for not doing more to field a consistent winner.  "It’s not the fans. They alienate their own fans by not keeping guys around, especially the guys they develop," Hamels said. "They won’t keep an Adrian Gonzalez or go get that big-name guy. That’s just hard on a fan.”
  • Hamels further expounded on the subject with Tom Krasovic of Inside The Padres, praising Petco Park.  "To see the Padres with such an unbelievable stadium, and to have it downtown, and to see what it's done to the city, and for them to not really want to put out a team that has to compete against the Dodgers, and the Giants, and Arizona — that's tough," Hamels told Krasovic. "I think if the organization wanted to compete, people would be here in a heartbeat — fans and players."

Dodgers Sign Bard, Ledezma, Castillo, Guzman, More

The Dodgers announced the signing of 15 non-roster players yesterday, reported's Ken Gurnick: catcher Josh Bard, lefty reliever Wil Ledezma, lefty reliever Alberto Castillo, righty reliever Angel Guzman, outfielder Cory Sullivan, righty reliever Fernando Nieve, righty reliever Jose Ascanio, righty Ryan Tucker, righty Will Savage, lefty Matt Chico, lefty Scott Rice, corner infielder Jeff Baisley, infielder Lance Zawadzki, and infielder Luis Cruz.

Bard, 33, had 86 plate appearances for the Mariners this year and another 250 in Triple-A.  His signing was first rumored last week at the Winter Meetings.  Ledezma, 30, briefly appeared in the Majors with Toronto this year.  He struck out 64 batters in 48 Triple-A innings as well.  Castillo, a 36-year-old Cuban, tossed 11 2/3 innings for the Diamondbacks and a strong 42 1/3 frames at Triple-A.  His near-deal was first reported last week.

Ascanio, 26, appeared briefly in the bigs with the Pirates this year and also whiffed 50 in 44 Triple-A innings.  He was part of the July '09 John Grabow-Tom Gorzelanny trade with the Cubs, but he had labrum surgery in October of that year.  Tucker, 25, is a former first-round pick of the Marlins who pitched five innings with the Rangers this year and 68 1/3 more in Triple-A.  Guzman, Sullivan, Nieve, Chico, Baisley, Zawadzki, and Cruz have also spent time in the Majors.  Guzman, notably, was a successful setup man for the Cubs in '09.

Cubs Outright, Re-Sign Angel Guzman

The Cubs outrighted Angel Guzman and re-signed the pitcher after he cleared waivers, a major league source told's Bruce Levine.  The two sides agreed to a minor league deal with an invitation to spring training.

The oft-injured right-hander underwent arthroscopic surgery to repair a career-threatening shoulder injury before the start of the season.  Guzman was expected to be the Cubs' right-handed setup man after his strong 2009 campaign.  The soon-to-be 29-year-old turned in a 2.95 ERA with 6.9 K/9 and 3.4 BB/9 in 55 games.

With Guzman back in the fold and Aramis Ramirez's 2011 option officially exercised, the club's 40-man roster stands at 37 players.

Latin Links: Ortiz, Tejada, Mora, Guzman

Spring draws in baseball writers from around the globe to Arizona and Florida, including plenty of beat writers from players' home countries who are eager for a full-page interview. Links are, you guessed it, in Spanish.

  • David Ortiz comes close to acknowledging that his career may end outside of Boston in an interview with Dionisio Soldevila at the Dominican daily Hoy. He disputes recent reports that he is unhappy the team hasn't preemptively picked up his option for 2011, as they did for Pedro Martinez in 2003, and predicts that the outcome will depend on his performance this season. "Boston will know when they want to approach me to talk about the contract, if they want it," Ortiz says. "I only think about playing baseball, and if I have a good season, they'll make me an offer, but if it's not them it will be another (team)." Terry Francona recently told ESPN Boston's Gordon Edes that other teams' personnel have commented to him that Ortiz looks great this spring.
  • Get used to the idea of Miguel Tejada at third. Tejada tells Soldevila that he, rather than the Orioles, made the choice, and he predicts the change will extend beyond his single-season contract. "I think it was time for me to move," Tejada explains. "I decided to change because I'm not the same age and I don't want it said that I don't have the same range." Tejada has been working with both Cal Ripken and Brooks Robinson during spring training to learn the fine art of the five-hole.
  • At the other end of the position-hopping spectrum, Melvin Mora tells Carlos Valmore Rodriguez at Lider en Deportes that he relishes Rockies manager Jim Tracy's plan to use him all over the infield and outfield, as it gives the 38-year-old "nostalgia for the excitement I used to feel when I arrived in the majors and did everything." Mora says he was in discussion with the Red Sox, Mets, Rangers, Mariners and Blue Jays during the winter but chose the Rockies because he saw there his best opportunity to return to the playoffs.
  • Angel Guzman tells Manuel Lira at Lider that his upcoming shoulder surgery won't spell the end of his career, but not having it would have. "Dr. Andrews told me, this is the same problem we had last year," Guzman says. "I had to stop in September after having rehabilitated for four-and-a-half months, so it made no sense to return to rehabilitation, and the only way to return to baseball is by doing the surgery."

Players To Avoid Arbitration: Tuesday

Noon ET today was the deadline for both the team and player to submit their salary figures for arbitration, however the two sides can come to an agreement at any point before the actual hearing. The hearings are scheduled for the first week of February.

We'll keep track of the players who avoid arbitration today by agreeing to deals here. Make sure you check back in for updates, and be sure to click the "Continue Reading" link to see today's full list of settlements.  Yesterday's list can be found here.

  • Kevin Baxter of the Los Angeles Times reports that the Angels avoided arbitration with Mike Napoli and Reggie Willits by signing the duo to one-year deals.  Napoli will earn $3.6MM in 2010 with a $100K bonus if he makes 120 starts.  Willits' contract is worth $625K. 
  • Zach Duke's one-year contract with Pittsburgh is worth $4.3MM with no performance bonuses, tweets Dejan Kovacevic of The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
  • The Padres and reliever Mike Adams have agreed to a contract, reports's Corey Brock (via Twitter).  Brock's follow-up tweet says Adams' deal is worth $1MM, virtually splitting the difference between San Diego's $875K offer and Adams' $1.2MM demands.
  • Joe Christensen of the Minneapolis Star Tribune tweets that the Twins have agreements in place with all eight of their arbitration eligible players.  In a follow-up tweet, Christensen reports that Francisco Liriano agreed to a one-year deal worth $1.6MM and Jesse Crain agreed to a one-year contract worth $2MM.
  • Marc Carig of the New Jersey Star-Ledger reports that the Mets avoided arbitration with reliever Sean Green (via Twitter).  The one-year deal was worth $975K, according to the New York Daily News' Anthony McCarron.
  • The Tigers avoided arb with Gerald Laird and Zach Miner as well according to James Jahnke of The Detroit Free Press.'s Jason Beck tweets the details on the one-year contracts: Laird will earn $3.95MM, Miner will earn $950K.
  • Christensen tweets that the Twins avoided arb with Brendan Harris, signing him to a two year deal worth $3.2MM with another $650K in possible incentives.
  • The Tigers and Bobby Seay avoided arbitration according to's Jason Beck (via Twitter), agreeing to a one year deal worth $2.475MM.
  • Thesier tweets that Matt Guerrier agreed to a one year deal worth $3.15MM with the Twins, avoiding arb.
  • Amalie Benjamin of The Boston Globe tweets that the Red Sox have avoided arbitration with Ramon Ramirez and Manny Delcarmen, with Delcarmen getting $905K plus incentives according to Joe McDonald of The Providence Journal. Boston avoided arb with Jonathan Papelbon as well.


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Players Tendered Contracts

Midnight ET is the non-tender deadline, so we'll keep track of all the players who are offered and/or agreed to contracts today in this post. Keep coming back throughout the day for updates.

Cubs Release Gaudin, Option Samardzija To AAA

Gordon Wittenmyer is reporting, via Twitter, that the Cubs have released Chad Gaudin and optioned Jeff Samardzija to AAA, giving the final two spots in their bullpen to Angel Guzman and Rule 5 pickup David Patton.

Gaudin, 26, came to the Cubs in the Rich Harden trade in 2008, but the league change was not kind to him. He posted a 6.26 ERA through 27.1 innings, though he did manage to fan 27 hitters as well. This Spring has been a disaster for Gaudin; he's allowed 19 ER through just 16.2 innings, while posting a 12:10 K:BB ratio and surrendering five long balls. The Rockies have shown some interest recently, though they chose to set their sights on Jason Hammel instead. Maybe not having to give anything up to acquire Gaudin will change their mind.

Cubs Trying To Sort Out Bullpen Arms

According to Paul Sullivan of the Chicago Tribune, Cubs GM Jim Hendry is working the phones in an attempt to sort out his bullpen situation.  Chad Gaudin, Angel Guzman, David Patton, and Jeff Samardzija are vying for two spots.  Samardzija can be sent to Triple A, but Patton is a Rule 5 pick and the other two are out of options.  Something has to give; a trade of Guzman or Gaudin seems likely.  Gaudin may be less desirable given his $2MM salary, but Troy E. Renck of the Denver Post figures he'll land on the Rockies' radar.  Bruce Miles of the Daily Herald weighs in here.

Odds & Ends: Smoltz, Cubs, Melky, Lima

Links for Monday…

Angel Guzman Out Of Options

The Cubs have a decision to make with one-time prospect Angel Guzman who is out of minor league options, according to Bruce Miles of the Daily Herald. Miles writes,

He’s unlikely at this point to make the team, and the Cubs risk losing him on waivers if they try to send him to the minor leagues at the end of camp. "Guzman’s had a tough spring, a tough spring," Lou [Pineilla] said. "No consistency."

Guzman has a 14.40 ERA this spring in the Cactus League.