Arthur Rhodes Rumors
Reds GM Walt Jocketty told John Fay of the Cincinnati Enquirer that he doesn’t expect to sign a big name free agent this winter. Carl Crawford and Cliff Lee will likely be playing elsewhere next year, though the Reds will boost payroll in 2011.
“I’m always trying to do something, but [signing a top free agent] would be pretty tough,” Jocketty said.
The Reds have had preliminary talks with the agents for Miguel Cairo, Ramon Hernandez and Arthur Rhodes, but Jocketty says he hasn’t yet exchanged potential salaries. The Reds have not spoken to Bronson Arroyo about an extension since picking up his option last week and they are not currently discussing long-term deals with Joey Votto or Jay Bruce.
Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports wrote yesterday that he expected the Reds to complete a two-year extension with Arroyo this week. Jocketty has said he'd like to reach a deal before the 2011 season begins, but the potential contract may not become a priority until later this offseason.
Joe Strauss of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch talks free agency and trades in his latest column, suggesting that GM John Mozeliak will attempt to fill the Cardinals' holes with a mix of both approaches. Here are the other notes of interest from Strauss:
- No deal with Jake Westbrook is imminent, according to Mozeliak, but "sources familiar with talks" are optimistic about the negotiations. The two sides are currently discussing a two-year contract, perhaps with an option for a third year, Strauss says.
- The Cardinals are reluctant to sign Type A free agents and surrender high draft picks, which may prevent them from pursuing a player like Arthur Rhodes.
- With Jason LaRue retired and Matt Pagnozzi outrighted, the Cards will be in the market for a backup catcher. I don't think we can look at the backup from solely a catch-and-throw standpoint," Mozeliak said. "We need to consider offense, too."
- "Strong sentiment exists" to acquire a veteran third baseman as insurance for the oft-injured David Freese.
- Mozeliak sounds more likely to seek middle infield help through trades than free agency. According to Strauss, however, Orlando Hudson is a free agent who has received "internal support" as a second base target.
We heard yesterday that the Reds are likely to decline their half of the $4MM mutual option on Orlando Cabrera for 2011 and that the club has interest in retaining Jonny Gomes and Ramon Hernandez. Here’s more news on the 2010 NL Central Champs from John Fay of the Cincinnati Enquirer:
- Devin Mesoraco’s progress could impact the offers the Reds make to Hernandez. Mesoraco, a 22-year-old catcher, had an excellent season at the plate this year. The 2007 first rounder hit .302/.377/.587 at three minor league stops with 26 total homers. He’s now playing in the Arizona Fall League and figures to need more minor league seasoning given his lack of experience in the upper minors.
- The Reds have talked to Arthur Rhodes’ agent about bringing the lefty back in 2011. Rhodes told Fay he’d like to return and talks will resume next week, so there’s a chance the sides work something out before Rhodes hits the open market.
- The Reds expect Jay Bruce to qualify as a Super Two, but they haven’t heard official word yet. Bruce would likely earn a few million if he’s arbitration eligible this year and that commitment would likely affect the Reds’ ability to spend on other players.
- MLBTR's Tim Dierkes heard in June that the Super Two cutoff will be earlier than usual this year and that Bruce will be the Super Two with the fewest days of service time. With just two years and 125 days of service time, Bruce will have less big league experience than any Super Two in recent years.
Rhodes, 40, is coming off of a two-year, $4MM deal. The veteran turned in one of his best seasons to date, recording a 2.29 ERA with 8.2 K/9 and 2.9 BB/9 in a career-high 69 apperances. After earning his first career All-Star nod, the lefty told the Reds that he would "love to come back". Rhodes has yet to receive an indication from the Reds one way or another.
Gomes' future is also up in the air as Cincinnati holds a $1.75MM club option on his contract. While his service time dictates that he would be arbitration-eligible this winter, Gomes' deal calls for him to be released if his option is not exercised. The soon-to-be 30-year-old didn't re-up with the Reds until just before Spring Training last year and says that he's prepared for that scenario again this year. He earned $800K in 2010 as he hit .266/.327/.431 with 18 HRs in 148 games. The Reds have until two weeks after the World Series to decide on Gomes' option but like Rhodes, the outfielder has yet to hear anything from the club.
More links for the evening...
- The Red Sox will find out tomorrow if their claim on Rays righty Ramon A. Ramirez went through, according to Rob Bradford of WEEI.com. This isn't the same Ramon Ramirez that appeared in 70 games for Boston last year.
- Randy Johnson is still undecided about 2010, according to this AP report on ESPN.com.
- The Rangers discussed Arthur Rhodes with the Reds today, according to T.R. Sullivan of MLB.com. The Rangers are on the lookout for lefty relievers.
- The Rangers are considering Jason Kendall and Rod Barajas behind the plate, according to Sullivan. ESPN.com's Keith Law says this is a problem for the Rangers. He doesn't think much of any of the free agent catchers they're considering.
- Coco Crisp would be up for signing with the White Sox, according to Mark Gonzales of the Chicago Tribune.
- Talks between the Twins and Joe Crede are progressing slowly, according to MLB.com's Kelly Thesier.
- The Mariners are keeping in touch with Rich Harden's agents, according to Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports.
- The Nats were interested in Jose Valverde, but they felt his asking price was too high, according to MLB.com's Bill Ladson.
- Geoff Baker of the Seattle Times reports that Scott Boras will meet with Mariners GM Jack Zduriencik tonight. Adrian Beltre is one of Boras' clients, so they'll presumably discuss him.
- White Sox reliever Matt Thornton tells Joe Cowley of the Chicago Sun-Times that he's recruiting J.J. Putz. Thornton says he and Putz have a long-standing "bromance" that dates back to their Seattle days.
- ESPN.com's Keith Law says Justin Smoak and Neftali Feliz are too much to give up for Josh Johnson. Apparently, the Rangers offered the pair of top prospects up.
- Kevin Goldstein of Baseball Prospectus likes the Ivan Rodriguez signing for the Nats, partly because Pudge could help develop Stephen Strasburg.
- By the way, the deal is pending a physical, according to MLB.com's Bill Ladson.
- The Braves are interested in Xavier Nady, according to David O'Brien of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
- Jon Heyman of SI.com says the Mets may be more inclined to pay top dollar for John Lackey now that they've seen the asking prices of some lesser starters.
- The Cardinals won't be involved with Lackey, but they have interest in signing a lefty bench bat, according to MLB.com's Matthew Leach.
Nobody's been traded so far in August, but deals are sure to go through. ESPN.com's Jerry Crasnick considers some trade candidates:
- Doug Davis and Jon Garland
- Heath Bell - An unlikely trade candidate, since he's sure to be claimed, but he could be dealt even if he's claimed (to the NL team with the worst record among all claiming teams).
- Lyle Overbay - He makes $7MM next year, a deterrent for possible suitors.
- Justin Duchscherer - Some health concerns remain, as he hasn't pitched in the majors this year.
- Kevin Millar, Nomar Garciaparra and Jason Giambi - Veteran bats for the playoffs.
- Jamey Carroll - Mark Teahen's another utility type, but he's less likely to be dealt than Carroll.
- Carl Pavano - Just don't expect the Yankees to come calling.
- Arthur Rhodes and David Weathers
- Miguel Batista
- Russell Branyan won't clear waivers, but the Mariners could consider dealing six weeks of Branyan to the claiming team for a decent prospect.
- Like Duchscherer, Erik Bedard has to prove he's healthy before anyone will commit to him.
- Baker expects the Mariners to try to move Adrian Beltre. They won't want to offer him arbitration after the season and risk paying him $14MM or so next year, so now's their chance to get a return for Beltre. They would almost certainly have to pick up salary in the process.
FRIDAY, 11:30am: A deal between the Dodgers and Jays for Frasor is unlikely, according to Jon Paul Morosi and Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports.
THURSDAY, 5:13pm: Even after adding George Sherrill, the Dodgers are looking to add relievers, according to ESPN.com's Jayson Stark. They're interested in adding a right-handed setup man. Teams in conversation with the Dodgers say they have interest in Mark Lowe, David Weathers, Matt Capps, Arthur Rhodes and Jason Frasor.
Meanwhile, the Angels are prioritizing relievers over starters, Stark reports. One scout says the Angels are after "premium" relievers. They were considering Heath Bell today and inquired about Chad Qualls only to find that the D'Backs aren't likely to move him.
4:13pm: ESPN's Peter Gammons says the Reds "backed off a potential deal" for Rolen. The Reds are actually hoping to move some contracts, and will listen on Bronson Arroyo, David Weathers, Aaron Harang, and Arthur Rhodes. Plus there's the issue of the Jays not wanting to trade Rolen if they keep Halladay.
2:00pm: CBSSports' Danny Knobler says the Jays would get Edwin Encarnacion and others, if this does get done. The sticking point appears to be how much of Rolen's remaining $15MM the Jays would assume.
Meanwhile, Bastian (via Twitter) has a source saying all is quiet here.
1:39pm: A Ken Rosenthal/Jon Paul Morosi source says the Reds-Rolen talks are "going nowhere." The writers suggest a Halladay trade could help move things along.
12:34pm: No mention of Alonso from him, but Bob Elliott of the Toronto Sun tweets, "Looks like Rolen to Reds has a 'good chance' of getting done."
12:20pm: Joe McDonald of the Providence Journal says the Reds and Jays are talking about a Rolen-Yonder Alonso swap. Say what? Alonso, who signed on August 15th of last year, would have to be a player to be named later in the unlikely event he's dealt.
9:07am: The Blue Jays have many trade targets aside from Roy Halladay, so let's collect that information in one post.
Bob Elliott of the Toronto Sun says the Twins are still chasing shortstop Marco Scutaro, after Freddy Sanchez landed with the Giants. Elliott adds that the Reds "met last night to decide to come up with a package to land third baseman Scott Rolen."
John Fay of the Cincinnati Inquirer offers up his take on a rumor he heard recently, which would have the Reds sending Arthur Rhodes to Los Angeles in exchange for Juan Pierre:
It's safe to say that this one doesn't make a ton of sense, but where should the Reds turn in their quest for outfield help? Offer up some suggestions!
John Fay at the Cincinnati Enquirer chatted with Reds GM Walt Jocketty, who says that "nothing's changed" in the club's philosophy before the deadline:
"We’re still 5 1/2 games out. We’re still looking for ways to improve the club."
Jocketty also says, however, that he isn't looking for any "short-term" boosts to the team, which would rule out all impending free agents. He says the Reds have fielded some calls, but don't expect anything substantive until the deadline gets closer. Teams have reportedly expressed interest in veteran relievers like David Weathers and Arthur Rhodes, but one would have to imagine Jocketty wouldn't part with them unless he felt the Reds had fallen out of contention.
Hal McCoy at the Dayton Daily News also talked to Jocketty, who reiterates the position above. McCoy isn't convinced the Reds can climb back, however, and lists Aaron Harang, Bronson Arroyo, Edwin Encarnacion, Ramon Hernandez and Francisco Cordero as potentially attractive trade pieces should the team become sellers.
Fay notes that the Reds have dropped four of the first six games in their 10-game road trip, so it looks like the next week will determine the team's position at the deadline.