Author Archives: Tim Dierkes

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Dodgers Acquire Kevin Correia

SUNDAY: Darren Wolfson of 1500 ESPN reports (via Twitter) that Correia had already cleared revocable waivers, meaning Los Angeles passed on claiming him and the Twins were free to deal him to any team.

SATURDAY: The Dodgers acquired righty Kevin Correia from the Twins for a player to be named later or cash considerations, announced the teams.  The Dodgers officially placed Josh Beckett on the DL earlier today with a left hip injury, which is expected to sideline him for at least two weeks.  Dodgers GM Ned Colletti acquired Roberto Hernandez from the Phillies earlier this week in response to injuries to Beckett and swingman Paul Maholm.

MLB: San Diego Padres at Minnesota Twins

At the time, Colletti noted he was still trying to add another arm, and it appears that he got his man in Correia (a name that MLBTR’s Steve Adams suggested as a possibility following Colletti’s comments).  “Kevin gives us an additional option as a starter or long reliever.  He also supplies us with more veteran pitching depth for the stretch drive,” said Colletti in tonight’s press release.

Correia, 34 later this month, posted a 4.94 ERA, 4.2 K/9, 2.2 BB/9, 0.90 HR/9, and 41.5% groundball rate in 129 1/3 innings for Minnesota.  Those numbers include a disastrous April, but he’s posted a respectable, if unspectacular 4.31 ERA in 102 1/3 innings since.

The Twins signed Correia to a two-year, $10MM deal after the 2012 season, and he used his pitch-to-contact approach to generate a 4.18 ERA in 31 starts last year. The San Diego native spent the first eight seasons of his career pitching for the Giants and Padres.  He picked up an All-Star nod in 2011 as a member of the Pirates.

Minnesota has saved about $1.5MM by shipping Correia to the Dodgers.  Additionally, they’ve opened a spot for new acquisition Tommy Milone, who will start Monday night in Houston.  Twins GM Terry Ryan is looking beyond 2014, with his club mired in last place, and Milone will be one of two new faces in Minnesota’s rotation going forward, alongside rookie Trevor May.  Colletti and Ryan matched up on a minor trade last summer as well, with the Dodgers picking up backup catcher Drew Butera for minor leaguer Miguel Sulbaran (who has since been flipped to the Yankees for Eduardo Nunez).

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.


Yankees Acquire Martin Prado

The Yankees acquired infielder Martin Prado from the Diamondbacks, tweets Jack Curry of the YES Network.  The D’Backs will receive catching prospect Peter O’Brien and a player to be named later or cash considerations and are not contributing cash to the deal, tweets MLB.com’s Steve Gilbert.  The Yankees have now officially announced the deal.

MLB: Arizona Diamondbacks at Pittsburgh Pirates

Prado, 30, is hitting .270/.317/.370 in 436 plate appearances for Arizona this year while playing mostly third base.  He was a major piece of the January 2013 trade that brought Justin Upton to the Braves.  Shortly after the acquisition, Prado signed a four-year, $40MM extension with the D’Backs.  He has about $3.6MM remaining this year, and $11MM in each of the 2015 and ’16 seasons.

Minutes before this trade, the Yankees acquired Stephen Drew from the Red Sox for Kelly Johnson.  On July 22nd, the Yankees added third baseman Chase Headley.  Drew will play second base, according to Joel Sherman of the New York Post, while it’s not exactly clear how Prado will be employed.

O’Brien, 24, is hitting .267/.312/.593 with 33 home runs between High-A and Double-A in 413 plate appearances.  Baseball America ranked him 23rd among Yankees prospects prior to the season, praising his power but questioning his defense.



Cardinals Acquire Lackey; Kelly, Craig To Boston

In their second blockbuster trade of the day, the Red Sox sent veteran starting pitcher John Lackey to the Cardinals along with minor leaguer Corey Littrell and about $1.75MM in cash in exchange for young starter Joe Kelly and outfielder/first baseman Allen Craig.  The deal is now official.   The Red Sox continue to focus on players that can help them win in the near future, having traded Jon Lester and Jonny Gomes for Yoenis Cespedes earlier today.  The Cardinals further bolster their rotation, having acquired Justin Masterson from the Indians yesterday.

MLB: Boston Red Sox at New York Yankees

Lackey, 35, has a 3.60 ERA, 7.6 K/9, 2.1 BB/9, 0.98 HR/9, and 46.9% groundball rate in 137 1/3 innings this year. His 2014 numbers closely resemble his work last year, a resurgent season after his 2011 campaign culminated in Tommy John surgery and he missed all of 2012. A second round draft pick in 1999, Lackey spent the early part of his career as a front of the rotation workhorse for the Angels.

Lackey joins Adam Wainwright and Lance Lynn at the front of a St. Louis rotation that suffered several blows this year.  Jaime Garcia is out for the season after rib surgery this month, while Michael Wacha will return in September in the best case scenario as he recovers from a stress reaction in his pitching shoulder.  In addition, the Cards received unspectacular work from Shelby Miller and Joe Kelly.  Masterson is due back soon from a DL stint for knee inflammation, and hopes to put this year’s struggles behind him before reaching free agency.  The Cardinals are currently in third place and 2.5 games out in the NL Central, and one game out in the Wild Card.

The Cardinals also receive Littrell, a 22-year-old starter in High-A ball who was drafted in the fifth round last year out of the University of Kentucky.  He owns a 3.60 ERA, 8.2 K/9, 3.4 BB/9, and 0.72 HR/9 in 100 frames this year.  Littrell did not rank among the Cardinals’ top 30 prospects prior to the season in the eyes of Baseball America, though BA ranked the team’s farm system seventh overall.

Kelly, 26, posted a 4.37 ERA, 6.4 K/9, 2.6 BB/9, 0.77 HR/9, and 54.3% groundball rate in 35 innings for the Cardinals this year.  He won the team’s fifth starter job out of spring training, but injured his hamstring in mid-April and missed nearly three months.  Kelly will have two years and 116 days of Major League service after 2014, meaning he’ll likely miss Super Two status and won’t become arbitration eligible until after the 2015 season.  He’s under team control through 2018.  Kelly boasts an average fastball velocity near 95 miles per hour, a 3.25 career ERA, and 29 1/3 innings of postseason experience, but his peripheral stats don’t quite match up.

Craig, 30, has slumped to a .237/.291/.346 line in 398 plate appearances this year.  He hit .306/.358/.492 in 1,420 plate appearances prior to 2014, suggesting he could bounce back for Boston.  Craig signed a five-year, $31MM deal with the Cardinals in March 2013, of which about $26.4MM remains through 2017.  The deal also includes a club option for 2018.  Craig has appeared at first base and the outfield corners in his career, though he’s generally regarded as a below-average defensive outfielder.  The Red Sox have designated hitter David Ortiz potentially through 2017, though first baseman Mike Napoli and outfielders Yoenis Cespedes and Shane Victorino are signed only through 2015.

The 2011 Tommy John procedure plays a large role in Lackey’s trade value. When the Red Sox signed Lackey to a five-year free agent deal in December 2009, concerns over his elbow led to a clause creating a club option for the league-minimum salary for 2015, which was triggered with the Tommy John procedure. That means playing for little more than $500K next year after earning more than 30 times that much in each of the previous four seasons.  Lackey has told the Cardinals he plans to honor the club option, tweets Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports.

This season, Lackey has a bit over $5MM in salary remaining, plus a $500K assignment bonus for being dealt. He had been scheduled to start tomorrow in Boston as the Red Sox kick off a three-game set against the Yankees.

Gordon Edes of ESPNBoston.com first reported the Red Sox were close to trading Lackey to the Cardinals or Dodgers.  Jon Heyman of CBS Sports first identified the Cardinals.  Peter Gammons of MLB Network first named Joe Kelly and Allen Craig as part of the deal.  WEEI’s Alex Speier first named Corey Littrell as part of the deal, while Yahoo’s Jeff Passan was first to report the cash involved.  Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.


Brewers Acquire Gerardo Parra

The Brewers officially acquired two-time Gold Glove winner Gerardo Parra from the Diamondbacks today for minor leaguers Mitch Haniger and Anthony Banda.

MLB: Arizona Diamondbacks at Los Angeles Dodgers

Parra, 27, is hitting .259/.305/.362 in 440 plate appearances this year, playing mostly right field for Arizona.  Parra has typically posted stellar defensive metrics, though he’s been about average this year based on UZR and DRS.  He has about $1.6MM remaining on his contract this year, and is arbitration eligible for 2015.  A left-handed batter, Parra could enter something of a platoon with Khris Davis in left field.  Or, he may just spell Davis, Carlos Gomez, and Ryan Braun as an oft-used fourth outfielder.

Haniger, 23, is hitting .255/.316/.416 in 271 plate appearances at Double-A this year.  Baseball America rated Haniger the third-best prospect in the Brewers’ weak farm system prior to the season, calling him the team’s most advanced hitting prospect.  The Brewers drafted Haniger 38th overall in 2012 as a supplemental draft pick for the loss of Prince Fielder.  Banda, 20, is a southpaw starter with 83 2/3 innings at Low-A this year.  Baseball America ranked him 27th among Brewers prospects prior to the season, though they say the team viewed him as a potential mid-rotation starter.

ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick first reported the Brewers and D’Backs completed a trade involving Mitch Haniger.  John Gambadoro of KTAR first reported the Brewers acquired Parra.  Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic first reported the D’Backs acquired a second player.  Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.


Pirates Claim Angel Sanchez; Designate Wall

The Pirates claimed righty Angel Sanchez off waivers from the White Sox, tweets Bob Nightengale of USA Today.  Nightengale adds that the Bucs designated righty Josh Wall for assignment to open a spot on the 40-man roster for Sanchez.

The Rays claimed Sanchez off waivers from the Marlins in June, and then the White Sox claimed him earlier this month.  The 24-year-old has a 6.57 ERA, 5.5 K/9, 2.8 BB/9, and 0.71 HR/9 in 89 innings at Double-A and High-A this year.  Baseball America ranked him 16th among Marlins prospects prior to the season, noting a live 92-95 mile per hour fastball.  The Marlins had acquired him from the Dodgers last July as part of the Ricky Nolasco trade.

Wall, 27, was also sent to the Marlins in the Nolasco deal last summer.  He was claimed off waivers by the Angels in October, then claimed by the Pirates in May.  He has a 3.55 ERA, 9.0 K/9, and 3.8 BB/9 in 33 Triple-A relief innings this year.


Yankees Out On Marlon Byrd

36-year-old Phillies outfielder Marlon Byrd is hitting .270/.318/.477 with 20 home runs in 446 plate appearances, making him one of the better power hitters available in advance of this afternoon’s trade deadline.  Byrd has no-trade protection for the Royals, Mariners, Rays, and Blue Jays, plus about $2.6MM in salary remaining this year.  He’s owed $8MM for 2015, with another $8MM that could vest for 2016 based on plate appearances.  Furthermore, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports tweeted Monday that Byrd will only waive his no-trade clause for those four teams if his option is exercised.  The latest on Byrd:

Earlier Updates

  • The Phillies’ asking price for Byrd is extremely high, according to Jon Heyman of CBS Sports.  He says the Phillies gave the Mariners a list of three good prospects and suggested the Ms pick two of them.  That request, plus Byrd’s no-trade protection, “seemed to scuttle things” between the two clubs.  ESPN’s Jayson Stark tweeted yesterday that the Mariners were out on Byrd.  A source who spoke to Heyman says the Phillies believe what they’ve been offered so far for Byrd is “embarrassing.”
  • The Yankees, Pirates, and Giants are among the teams that have been previously linked to Byrd and have not been ruled out.

Cubs Moving Closer To Bonifacio Trade

TODAY, 12:04am: Also in on Bonifacio as of this morning were the Pirates, tweets Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports.

11:13am: There is plenty of action on Bonifacio, who is being pursued currently by the Orioles, Giants, and Mariners, tweets Jayson Stark of ESPN.com.

Bonifacio is a backup option for the Mariners, along with Chris Denorfia, tweets Bob Dutton of the Tacoma News Tribune. Seattle prefers to add Alex Rios or Ben Zobrist.

YESTERDAY, 8:12pm: It does not appear that the Giants are going to acquire Bonifacio, according to a tweet from Henry Schulman of the San Francisco Chronicle.

6:42pm: The Royals are not yet close to adding Bonifacio, tweets Andy McCullough of the Kansas City Star.

5:48pm: The O’s are not in on Bonifacio, tweets Dan Connolly of the Baltimore Sun, who hears that the versatile fielder could be returning to Kansas City. Needless to say, that would be an interesting turn of events: Bonifacio finished well last year with Kansas City, was tendered a contract, agreed to a salary to avoid arbitration, and was then released before the start of the season.

5:14pm: At present, the Giants, Orioles, and Reds are all in play for Bonifacio, reports Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com.

4:50pm: Bonifacio has been told to be prepared for a deal today, tweets Gordon Wittenmyer of the Chicago Sun-Times.

4:42pm: Bonifacio is indeed not in the lineup, with manager Rick Renteria saying it was “prudent” to hold him out, according to Rogers (Twitter link).

2:50pm: The Cubs are getting close to trading Bonifacio, tweets Jesse Rogers of ESPN Chicago. Levine tweets that Bonifacio is not in tonight’s lineup, which could obviously signal that a deal is nigh. Hank Schulman of the San Francisco Chronicle hears that the Giants have been scouting Bonifacio all week, but the asking price for the impending free agent is said to be high.

2:32pm: The Orioles are Giants are considering Cubs utility man Emilio Bonifacio as a trade option, tweets ESPN’s Buster Olney.  Bruce Levine of 670 The Score adds the Royals, Mariners, and Reds as three more potential suitors (All Twitter links).

Bonifacio, 29, is hitting .279/.318/.373 in 298 plate appearances for the Cubs.  The switch-hitter is raking against lefties in this year’s limited sample.  He’s mainly played center field and second base for the Cubs.  Bonifacio is eligible for free agency after the season.


Dodgers Trying Hard For Benoit

11:37am: The Dodgers are “fully in” on relief help and have the most interest in Benoit, tweets Sherman.

11:15am: The Dodgers are trying hard to acquire Padres reliever Joaquin Benoit, tweets Joel Sherman of the New York Post.  Yesterday, Jon Heyman of CBS Sports reported the Dodgers and Yankees were in on the 37-year-old reliever.

Benoit, who assumed the Padres’ closer role after Huston Street was traded to the Angels, has a 1.88 ERA, 10.7 K/9, 2.7 BB/9, 0.63 HR/9, and 38.1% groundball rate in 43 innings this year.  He’s owed about $2MM more this year, plus $8MM in 2015.  Benoit also has an $8MM club option for 2016 that becomes guaranteed with 55 games finished in 2015, which likely wouldn’t happen with the Dodgers given the presence of Kenley Jansen.


Cardinals Close To Deal For Lackey

11:35am: The Cardinals are getting Lackey, tweets Jon Heyman of CBS Sports.

11:26am: The Red Sox are close to trading John Lackey to the Cardinals or Dodgers, tweets Gordon Edes of ESPNBoston.com.