Arizona Diamondbacks Rumors
- Peralta was asking interested teams for a five-year, $75MM deal, but accepted less from the Cardinals because he wanted to play in St. Louis, tweets Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com.
- MLBTR's Tim Dierkes tweets not many people predicted this kind of contract for Peralta and Stephen Drew should do better even though he's tied to draft pick compensation and is down a suitor.
- Keith Law of ESPN.com writes in an Insider Only post (subscription required) the move could work out in the short term, but Peralta isn't the type of player he would want to commit to for four years.
- The Cardinals explored trade talks with the Diamondbacks and Angels before settling on Peralta, tweets USA Today's Bob Nightengale.
- The Cardinals used their payroll flexibility to acquire Peralta and were going to have to overpay anyway to obtain a much-needed shortstop either financially in free agency or in prospects on the trade market, opines the St. Louis Post-Dispatch's Bernie Miklasz.
- Within the same article, Miklasz offers six reasons why the Cardinals preferred Peralta over Drew.
- The lack of draft pick compensation helped fueled Peralta's market, tweets Mark Feinsand of the New York Daily News. Feinsand, in a second tweet, isn't surprised Peralta was able to net such a lucrative deal despite being suspended 50 games for his involvement in the Biogenesis affair citing the two-year, $16MM pact the Blue Jays gave Melky Cabrera last offseason after his 50-game PED suspension in 2012.
- Diamondbacks reliever (and union representative) Brad Ziegler was critical of rewarding a player suspended for PED use with such a contract. "It pays to cheat...Thanks, owners, for encouraging PED use. People really don't understand how this works. We thought 50 games would be a deterrent. Obviously it's not. So we are working on it again." (Twitter links)
- Jim Bowden of ESPN and MLB Network Radio wonders if the Cardinals will play Peralta at third base, keep Matt Carpenter at second base, and trade Kolten Wong for a better overall shortstop (via Twitter).
- This type of free agent acquisition is not typical for the Cardinals, according to ESPN.com's Mark Simon.
- Steven Goldman of SBNation.com compares the Cardinals' signing of Peralta with the Yankees' signing of Brian McCann: a massive upgrade on the incumbent over the short term with a hazier outlook over the long run.
- On its face, Fangraphs' Eno Sarris sees this as a perfect signing for the Cardinals.
It's been a busy day in the coaching ranks. Here's the latest:
- The Mariners have fired pitching coach Carl Willis, reports Geoff Baker of the Seattle TImes. After being permitted to interview for other vacancies, but failing to land one, Willis says that Seattle GM Jack Zduriencik told him "it would be too awkward" to keep him on board. According to Baker, that statement was made in reference to the departure of manager Eric Wedge, who Willis was close with. The club also re-assigned bullpen coach Jaime Navarro to a minor league post.
- The Phillies hired Bob McClure as their new pitching coach yesterday, CSNPhilly.com's Jim Salisbury reported. The Phils would later confirm the signing themselves. McClure, 61, served as the Royals pitching coach from 2006-11 and filled the same role with the Red Sox in 2012. "Bob brings a wealth of experience to our staff," manager Ryne Sandberg said in a statement released by the team. "We talked to many good candidates and couldn’t be more pleased to add ‘Mac’ as our pitching coach."
- The Cubs announced that pitching coach Chris Bosio, bullpen coach Lester Strode, catching/strategy coach Mike Borzello and staff assistant Franklin Font will all return to the coaching staff in 2014.
- New to the Cubs staff will be bench coach Brandon Hyde, third base/infield coach Gary Jones, hitting coach Bill Mueller, assistant hitting coach Mike Brumley and quality assurance coach Jose Castro. Mueller, of course, played 11 seasons at the MLB level recently and won the 2003 AL batting title with the Red Sox.
- The Diamondbacks announced that Dave Duncan will serve as a special assistant to GM Kevin Towers and a Major League pitching consultant. The 68-year-old is best known for his recent work as the Cardinals pitching coach from 1996-2011. He will assist the big league coaching staff's work with pitchers and catchers during Spring Training, evaluate the team's farm system and assist in evaluating draft prospects.
- MLB.com's Alden Gonzalez reports (via Twitter) that the Angels have brough back 2013 hitting coach Jim Eppard as a roving hitting coordinator and hired Terry Francona's son, Nick, as their new coordinator of MLB intelligence. Francona will work closely with Rick Eckstein to prepare scouting plans for each series, Gonzalez adds.
Jeff Todd contributed to this post.
Here's a rundown of the latest minor moves from around the league...
- The Giants signed catcher Guillermo Quiroz and right-handers Caleb Clay and Mason Tobin to minor league deals, Baseball America's Matt Eddy reports (via Twitter). Quiroz appeared in 43 games for San Francisco last season and was designated for assignment in August.
- The Orioles announced the signings of five players, via the Norfolk Tides Twitter feed. Left-hander Nick Additon, right-handers Tim Alderson and Brock Huntzinger and outfielders Chih-Hsien Chiang and Kyeong Kang have all inked minor league deals.
- The Cardinals have signed catcher Ed Easley to a minor league deal with a Spring Training invite, the club announced. Easley was drafted 61st overall by the Diamondbacks in 2007 and has a .262/.338/.357 slash line over 2217 PA in Arizona's system. He enjoyed a big year at Triple-A in 2013, posting an .872 OPS in 328 PA.
- The Diamondbacks have signed left-hander Ryan Rowland-Smith to a minor league deal with an invitation to Spring Training, ESPN's Jerry Crasnick tweets. The Aussie spent his age-30 season with Boston's Triple-A affiliate in Pawtucket where he pitched to a masterful 1.55 ERA with 7.7 K/9 and 2.6 BB/9 in 52 1/3 innings of relief work. Rowland-Smith posted an outstanding 0.94 WHIP and held opposing lefties to a mere .192/.244/.274 batting line, though his .200/.268/.278 line from opposing righties is equally impressive. He hasn't appeared in the Majors since 2010, and all 362 2/3 of his big league innings have come in a Mariners uniform.
Here are today's minor moves, all via Matt Eddy of Baseball America (links to Twitter) unless otherwise noted ...
- Middle infielder Jeudy Valdez will join fellow former Padre Aaron Cunningham in moving to the Cubs organization, reports Chris Cotillo of MLBDailyDish.com. The 24-year-old, who has posted double-digit home runs and steals in each of the last four seasons, does not receive a Spring Training invite in the deal.
- The Marlins have signed shortstop Juan Diaz to a minor league deal. Eddy calls the 24-year-old a possible diamond in the rough.
- Righties Juan Gonzalez and Justin Souza have inked minor league pacts with the Dodgers. Gonzalez is a 23-year-old who just transitioned to the bullpen, where he put up a 2.14 ERA -- driven by a large drop in his career walk rates -- in 46 1/3 innings thrown for the Rockies' Double-A affiliate. Cotillo first reported the Gonzalez signing (via Twitter), nothing that he received a lot of interest. Souza, meanwhile, is a 27-year-old bullpen arm coming off of a 4.58 ERA over 55 innings pitched between the Double-A and Triple-A outposts of the Tigers.
- The Red Sox have reached minor league deals with lefty Tommy Layne and shortstop Mike McCoy. In his age-28 season, Layne put up a 4.50 ERA over 46 innings for the Pads' top affiliate in Tucson, but posted a 2.08 ERA in 8 2/3 big league innings (though he registered just 6.2 K/9 against 5.2 BB/9 in his 14 outings). McCoy has played in over a season's worth of MLB games, though spread over four years of brief apearances. His career triple-slash is .190/.273/.256 over 380 plate appearances.
- The Diamondbacks have signed minor league free agents Danny Dorn, an outfielder, and Mark Thomas, a backstop. Dorn is a 28-year-old fresh off a .258/.335/.460 campaign in 565 Triple-A plate appearances at Toledo. Thomas is known as a defensive whiz behind the dish, but hit just .151/.195/.274 in 202 plate appearances last year for the Rays' Double-A squad in his age-25 season.
- There are a host of new minor league deals out of Cincinnati, with the Reds inking lefty Lee Hyde, second baseman Rey Navarro, outfielder Mike Wilson, and catchers Rossmel Perez and Max Ramirez. Hyde, a 28-year-old former fourth-round pick, returns to the Cinci organization after a 1.98 ERA campaign in 54 2/3 innings spent mostly in Double-A. Navarro and Perez just played their age-23 seasons at Double-A. Wilson registered a sightly .300/.368/.472 slash in his age-thirty season at Triple-A in the Padres' organization. And Ramirez had a poor season at 28 years of age after putting up two straight better-than-.800 OPS years at the Triple-A level.
- Heading to the Rockies as minor league free agents are lefty Pedro Hernandez, righty Nate Striz, and second baseman Rafael Ynoa. Hernandez washed out of Minnesota after getting bombed in twelve big league starts, though he was much more effective in the minors and is still just 24. Striz just turned 25, but has only thrown three innings above the High-A level. At 26, Ynoa is coming off of a series of campaigns in which he's just topped the .700 OPS level at Double-A; the former Dodger farmhand gets on base at a solid clip, though, and has stolen a decent number of bags (though he's also been caught at a troubling rate).
- And staying with the Angels are righty Orangel Arenas, outfielder Julio Concepcion, and shorstop Jimmy Swift. Arenas made it to Triple-A for a brief stint last year at age 24 but was hit hard; Cotillo was the first to report the news of his signing (on Twitter). Concepcion has not moved past low-A ball and is 23 years old. And Swift, 25, was better at Triple-A (.303/.336/.422 in 118 plate appearances) than at Double-A (.259/.291/.367 in 324 plate appearances) in 2013.
The Diamondbacks have interest in trading for Cubs outfielder Nate Schierholtz, tweets Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports. Schierholtz, 30 in February, smacked 21 home runs in 503 plate appearances for the Cubs this year. In an article Sunday, Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic speculated on Schierholtz as a possible fit for the Diamondbacks, who were rumored to have an eye on Cubs righty Jeff Samardzija prior to the trade deadline.
With more than five years of big league service time, Schierholtz is arbitration eligible and under the Cubs' control for one more season. Matt Swartz has projected a $3.8MM salary for 2014, a $1.55MM raise on Schierholtz's 2013 base salary. The Cubs inked Schierholtz to a one-year deal in December of last year after he was non-tendered by the Phillies. They were able to offer him the most playing time of his career while making sure he faced left-handed pitching only 13% of the time. He responded with a .251/.301/.470 line as the Cubs' primary right fielder.
D'Backs GM Kevin Towers has talked about his desire to add a power-hitting corner outfielder. Gerardo Parra seems to have one of the team's outfield spots locked down, with Adam Eaton, A.J. Pollock, and Cody Ross also in the mix. Given Arizona's limited payroll flexibility, Schierholtz could hold extra appeal at less than $4MM.
Adam Rubin of ESPNNewYork.com hears the Mets aren't considering a reunion with Scott Kazmir. Earlier today, we heard that the Indians don't expect to hang on to the left-hander as he's likely to command a multi-year pact and they're not willing to go beyond one. Here's more from around baseball..
- Royals manager Ned Yost told Jim Bowden of SiriusXM (Twitter links) that his priorities are starting pitching and second base. Yost also indicated that Carlos Beltran, Brandon Phillips, and Ervin Santana have popped up in discussions.
- Indians GM Chris Antonetti is scheduled to talk to agent Dan Lozano about two of his clients, closers Fernando Rodney and Brian Wilson, according to Paul Hoynes of the Plain Dealer. Cleveland is looking into out-of-house closing options after parting ways with Chris Perez.
- Yankees GM Brian Cashman says he's looking to add "400 innings" to the rotation this winter, tweets Jon Paul Morosi of FOXSports.com.
- Diamondbacks GM Kevin Towers says he has scouted Masahiro Tanaka extensively and hopes to be in the mix for him, tweets ESPN.com's Jerry Crasnick.
- If Carlos Ruiz really has a two-year, $20MM offer on the table, then he probably shouldn't let it sit for too long, opines MLBTR's Tim Dierkes (on Twitter).
- Nationals assistant GM and VP of player personnel Roy Clark has the club to take a job with the Dodgers, according to Keith Law of ESPN.com (on Twitter).
We've already had one batch of NL West notes today on MLBTR, a collection of Giants notes and Tim Dierkes broke down Juan Uribe's free agent profile. Here is even more news from around the division...
- The Padres will likely discuss an extension with Chase Headley during the GM meetings, CBS Sports' Jon Heyman reports (Twitter link). As Heyman notes, there is "no evidence [the] sides have ever been close to" an agreement. Headley is set for free agency following the 2014 season and while his name has surfaced in trade talks, the current belief is that the Padres will keep him and hope he can return to form following a disappointing 2013 season.
- An informal poll of six scouts reveals clear preferences for Adam Eaton over A.J. Pollock and Chris Owings over Didi Gregorius, The Arizona Republic's Nick Piecoro writes. The Diamondbacks could deal one of their young center fielders or shortstops for help in other areas this offseason, though one scout notes that Arizona would be left with solid players no matter who they dealt.
- It's a little unusual that Clayton Kershaw hasn't signed a huge extension with the Dodgers yet, though ESPN Los Angeles' Mark Saxon notes that if Kershaw isn't comfortable signing for a decade or longer, that could be in the Dodgers' best long-term interest.
- It has been rumored that the Dodgers could trade from their surplus of outfielders this offseason but GM Ned Colletti told reporters (including MLB.com's Ken Gurnick) that they have a lot of question marks, health-wise. Colletti pointed to last season's pitching injuries as an example of how you can never have enough roster depth: "We went to Spring Training with eight starting pitchers and everybody said we needed to trade some of them. Pretty soon we didn't have enough. We'll see what happens. We have to have big league coverage."
- Also from Gurnick, the Dodgers have an interest in bringing back Juan Uribe on a short-term contract. MLBTR's Tim Dierkes predicts Uribe will find a two-year, $12MM deal in free agency but that even could be a bit long given that Hanley Ramirez might be moved to third if Alexander Guerrero works out best as a shortstop rather than as a second baseman.
- Ryan Vogelsong has received interest from multiple teams and there's no guarantee he'll re-sign with the Giants, MLB.com's Chris Haft writes. Haft also explores some other free agent options as part of the mailbag piece.
The Giants are fans of free agent catcher Brian McCann, but they won't move former MVP Buster Posey to a new position to make room for him, writes Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com. However, they could shift center fielder Angel Pagan to one of the corners and look into outside options like Jacoby Ellsbury. Meantime, their emphasis is on the rotation and they have already shown interest in Matt Garza, Ervin Santana, Ubaldo Jimenez, and many other free agent starters. Here's more out of the NL West..
- Right now, there's no evidence that the Rockies will consider trading stars Carlos Gonzalez or Troy Tulowitzki, one GM tells Heyman. That GM said he has been told Gonzalez is "definitely" not available and was left with the impression that Tulowitzki isn't being traded either. Rockies Executive Vice President/Chief Financial Officer & General Counsel Bill Geivett said of Tulowitzki today, "He's not going anywhere," tweets Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports. Geivett suggested the same of CarGo. Morosi adds that Geivett indicated he'd need to be overwhelmed to trade center fielder Dexter Fowler, but he did not explicitly rule that out.
- Along the same lines, Geivett shot down rumblings connecting Tulowitzki to the Cardinals, writes Troy Renck of the Denver Post. Geivett believes that with the right additions, the Rockies can put themselves in position to contend. "We like our core group of guys. We feel like we have a good crew to build around. I know some people disagree, but we don't feel that we are that far away," Geivett said. "We have to be healthy. We can't have our two main guys missing too much."
- Starting pitching and a power outfield bat are among the items on the Diamondbacks' wish list, writes Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic. General Manager Kevin Towers believes that he is poised to be active in trade talks with depth in the middle infield and center field.
Let's take a look at the latest from Fox Sports' Ken Rosenthal, who's out with a new column of rumors from around the majors:
- A trade of second baseman Ian Kinsler or shortstop Elvis Andrus increasingly looks "inevitable" given the Rangers' crowded infield. "Some team is going to get a good middle infielder from the Rangers. The only question is which one," Rosenthal writes. It's unlikely, however, that the club packages infielder Jurickson Profar with other young players in a deal for a star such as David Price or Giancarlo Stanton. Rosenthal's sources say the Rangers want to keep their farm system stocked.
- Matt Garza's elbow shouldn't scare off potential suitors. Though he missed much of 2012 with an elbow issue, officials with both the Cubs and Rangers tell Rosenthal that the righty wasn't treated for elbow issues at all in 2013.
- There's mutual interest in a new deal between Southern California native Jason Vargas and the Angels, but Rosenthal's sources say the team is already examining other options and could move on from the left-hander if negotiations drag. Vargas may ultimately have to leave money on the table if he wants to remain with the club.
- The Orioles are at least considering options for a backup catcher, as Matt Wieters managed just a .628 OPS against lefties last season. Rosenthal notes that the O's could seek to move Wieters and target a replacement such as Jarrod Saltalamacchia, as Wieters is unlikely to agree to an extension. However, trading him now would be selling low.
- Baltimore will also have to consider how they'll approach J.J. Hardy's impending free agency. Though Rosenthal writes that the Orioles' front office eventually aims to move Manny Machado to shortstop, it also views Hardy, who becomes a free agent after next season, as critical to the club.
- Executives from other teams are surprised at rumors that the Tigers are listening on Max Scherzer. Shipping Scherzer elsewhere and then losing Anibal Sanchez to an injury would be a major hit to the team's rotation.
- The Diamondbacks continue to wait for a reply from Dave Duncan on whether he will take their pitching coach job.
Here are today's minor league transactions from around baseball, with the latest moves at the top of the page...
- The Reds signed catcher Max Ramirez to a minor league deal with an invite to Cincinnati's Spring Training camp, FOX Sports' Ken Rosenthal reports (Twitter link). Ramirez has played for seven different organizations over a 10-year minor league career, including playing for the Royals' Triple-A club in 2012-13. The 29-year-old has 140 career Major League PA, with the Rangers in 2008 and 2010. This is the second catching move the Reds have made today after their acquisition of Brayan Pena.
- The Mets signed right-hander Joel Carreno to a minor league contract with an invite to their Major League Spring Training camp, the team announced (Twitter link). Carreno posted a 4.06 ERA, 7.2 K/9 and 1.67 K/BB rate over 37 2/3 relief innings with the Blue Jays in 2011-12 and had a very impressive 2.43 ERA, 12.2 K/9 and 3.75 K/BB rate in 66 2/3 IP split between Toronto's Double-A and Triple-A affiliates in 2013.
- The Mets signed utilityman Anthony Seratelli to a minor league deal that includes a Major League Spring Training invitation, ESPN New York's Adam Rubin reports. The 30-year-old switch-hitter has spent seven years in the Royals' farm system and posted a .286/.385/.452 slash line with 28 homers and 39 steals over 926 PA at the Triple-A level in 2012-13. At least 10 teams had "serious interest" in Seratelli, Rubin notes.
- The Diamondbacks signed outfielder Jordan Parraz to a minor league contract, Baseball America's Matt Eddy reports (Twitter link). A 10-year veteran of the minors, Parraz began 2013 with the Braves' Triple-A team before moving on to 74 games with the Twins' Double-A affiliate.