Barry Zito Rumors
- Richard Durrett of ESPN Dallas takes a look at what the Rangers could do with their roster once Ian Kinsler returns from the disabled list tomorrow.
- Reds' GM Walt Jocketty said that the team doesn't have a timetable for Aroldis Chapman's arrival in the Majors, says John Fay of The Cincinnati Enquirer.
- Dejan Kovacevic of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette wonders why the Pirates didn't retain Matt Capps in hopes that he'd rebuild value. Capps is generating attention as MLB's saves (and save opportunity) leader. The righty told Gordon Wittenmyer of the Chicago Sun-Times it was a pretty close competition between the Cubs and Nationals for his services, once he was non-tendered.
- Yahoo's Tim Brown profiles Shin-Soo Choo, who his agent Scott Boras feels "has a chance to be the best Pacific Rim player ever over the course of his career."
- SI's Ann Killion writes about Barry Zito's apparent redemption. Zito is rocking a 1.32 ERA, an improved groundball rate, and an unsustainable .203 batting average on balls in play through four starts. If Zito can continue to keep the walks down, he could have his best year as a Giant. Of course, he flashed a similar walk rate in July and August of last year.
- Matt Kemp's agent Dave Stewart discussed Ned Colletti's recent comments on ESPN's Mason & Ireland show, saying the public criticism "should never have happened."
- Geoff Baker of the Seattle Times notes that the Mariners made the right call in not signing Jarrod Washburn.
- Baseball Prospectus' Kevin Goldstein does a mock draft of the first ten picks this year.
- Mark Zuckerman talked to a high-ranking Nationals official who finds Goldstein's criticism of Bryce Harper's makeup "way overblown." Meanwhile, Byron Kerr of MASNSports.com spoke to Harper's college coach about those same makeup concerns.
We've already looked at the largest contracts by service time and position, so let's now dig up the largest contracts ever given out by each of the 30 teams. These are in terms of guaranteed money only, but some could end up being even larger because of incentives and option years.
- Angels: Torii Hunter, five years, $90MM
- Astros: Carlos Lee, six years, $100MM
- Athletics: Eric Chavez, six years, $66MM
- Blue Jays: Vernon Wells, seven years, $126MM
- Braves: Chipper Jones, six years, $90MM
- Brewers: Ryan Braun, eight years, $45MM
- Cardinals: Matt Holliday, seven years, $120MM
- Cubs: Alfonso Soriano, eight years, $136MM
- Diamondbacks: Randy Johnson, four years, $53.4MM
- Dodgers: Kevin Brown, seven years, $105MM
- Giants: Barry Zito, seven years, $126MM
- Indians: Travis Hafner, four years, $57MM
- Mariners: Ichiro Suzuki, five years, $90MM
- Marlins: Hanley Ramirez, six years, $70MM
- Mets: Johan Santana, six years, $137.5MM
- Nationals: Ryan Zimmerman, five years, $45MM
- Orioles: Miguel Tejada, six years, $72MM
- Padres: Jake Peavy, three years, $52MM
- Phillies: Chase Utley, seven years, $85MM
- Pirates: Jason Kendall, six years, $60MM
- Rangers: Alex Rodriguez, ten years, $252MM
- Rays: Wilson Alvarez, five years, $35MM
- Reds: Ken Griffey Jr., nine years, $116.5MM
- Red Sox: Manny Ramirez, eight years, $160MM
- Rockies: Todd Helton, nine years, $141.5MM
- Royals: Gil Meche & Mike Sweeney, both five years, $55MM
- Tigers: Miguel Cabrera, eight years, $152.3MM
- Twins: Joe Mauer, eight years, $184MM
- White Sox: Frank Thomas, seven years, $64.4MM
- Yankees: Alex Rodriguez, ten years, $275MM
Thanks to Cot's Baseball Contracts for the info.
We've already looked at the largest contracts by service time, so now let's break it down by position...
Joe Mauer: Eight years, $184MM
Mark Teixeira: Eight years, $180MM
Chase Utley: Seven years, $85MM
Alex Rodriguez: Ten years, $252MM
Alex Rodriguez: Ten years, $275MM
- If you want to count DH as a position, which I guess it technically is, then Travis Hafner's four year, $57MM deal would top the list.
- Joe Mauer's contract is more than three and a half times larger than Jorge Posada's four year, $52.4MM deal, the second largest among active catchers. Mike Piazza's seven year, $91MM deal is the second largest for a catcher all-time.
- A-Rod only spent three years of his $252MM at the shortstop position before sliding over to third. The next largest contract ever given to a shortstop belongs to his teammate, Derek Jeter, who signed a ten year, $189MM deal in 2001.
- The Twins are the only team besides the Yankees to employ two of the largest contracts at their respective positions.
- The Soriano, Wells, Zito, and Hampton deals are all ones ownership wish they could take back. Brown spent a lot of time on the disabled list, but he did post a 3.23 ERA in close to 1,100 innings during the life of his deal.
- The Utley and Rivera deals are ones the teams would happily do again, but the jury is still out on the rest.
Thanks to Cot's Baseball Contracts for the info.
Links for Sunday evening..
- A's assistant GM David Forst told Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle that the team did not sign Chad Gaudin as a result of Michael Wuertz's injury. Forst says that the team has been looking to add bullpen depth all spring, which was their reason for acquiring Edwar Ramirez and Jason Jennings.
- The Mets will likely wait until the last possible moment to outright pitcher Pat Misch with the hope of stowing him in Triple-A, writes Marty Noble of MLB.com.
- Andrew Baggarly of the Mercury News writes that it will be interesting to see where the Giants' rotation stands in 2012. San Francisco will have roughly $35MM committed to Matt Cain and Barry ZIto for that season with Tim Lincecum once again eligible for arbitration.
- Dave Cameron of U.S.S. Mariner (via Twitter) wants Seattle to land Manny Parra, though he can't imagine the Brewers parting with him. This morning, Ken Rosenthal and Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports reported that Parra could be an available option for the M's.
- Toronto GM Alex Anthopoulos released Joey Gathright because he didn't think it was fair to send him to the minors, writes Jordan Bastian of MLB.com.
- The Indians are expected to make their remaining roster decisions by Thursday, tweets Anthony Castrovince of MLB.com. The Tribe is looking to nail down their final starter, two bullpen spots, and utility players.
Some news items from around the majors on this Monday night...
- MLB.com's Bill Chastain profiles left-hander Carlos Hernandez, who hasn't pitched in the majors since 2004 and is trying to return with Tampa Bay.
- While it's very unlikely that Barry Zito will live up to his $126MM contract, Craig Calcaterra of NBCSports.com notes that the left-hander is still a solid starter.
- The Braves have no interest in teenage prospect Wagner Mateo, reports MLB.com's Mark Bowman. Mateo was originally signed by St. Louis last summer but the Cardinals voided the contract due to concerns over Mateo's eyesight.
- The signings of Jason Jennings and Brett Tomko shouldn't cause any concern about the health of other key pitchers on the Oakland staff, says Tom Singer of MLB.com.
- Philadelphia has become a prime destination for free agents and stars looking to be traded, writes MLB.com's Todd Zolecki. Back-to-back NL pennants and a World Series title will tend to do that.
- Chris Young struggled in his first season of a five-year, $28MM deal with Arizona and has yet to have a true breakout year after three seasons as a major league regular. John Sickels of MinorLeagueBall.com, however, thinks it's too early to write Young off.
- MLB.com's Bill Ladson answers fan questions on a variety of topics, including how prospect Chris Marrero (Washington's first-round pick in the 2006 June Amateur Draft) could be affected if the Nationals re-sign Adam Dunn.
- Speaking of mailbags, Baseball America's Jim Callis answers some fan questions about prospects and also looks ahead to the 2011 June Amateur Draft.
In today's blog post at ESPN.com, Buster Olney indicates that there is belief among general managers that the "financial restructuring that has been occurring across the landscape is about to hit the arbitration-level players like a tidal wave." He mentions underperforming, but well paid players like Garrett Atkins and Kelly Johnson are prime non-tender bait, especially since their clubs have replacements ready and it's unlikely they'll be able to trade them. Make sure you check out MLBTR's list of non-tender candidates.
Olney also talks about some bad contracts the Cubs could acquire in exchange for Milton Bradley, adding that this morning's Vernon Wells rumor "would be a stunner" if it happened. Some of the players he mentions as possible fits include Carlos Silva, Derek Lowe, Gary Matthews Jr. (who said he wants out of Anaheim), Barry Zito, Aaron Rowand, Oliver Perez, and Dontrelle Willis, among others. Any other ideas?
Some links to start the week off...
- Joel Sherman of the New York Post argues that the Yankees were smart to spend on elite free agents last offseason. Mark Teixeira and C.C. Sabathia have contributed to the Yankees' dominance this year.
- Johnny Damon repeated to Kristie Ackert of the New York Daily News that he wants to return to the Yankees next season.
- The Toronto Sun notes that Mike Hampton won't pitch again this year.
- Billy Wagner didn't expect his Red Sox debut to go as smoothly as it did, according to Julian Benbow of the Boston Globe.
- As Alex Speier of WEEI.com notes, Paul Byrd earns incentives for every start he makes with the Red Sox.
- Carl Steward of the San Jose Mercury News says Barry Zito and Edgar Renteria, whose contracts have often been criticized, have helped keep the Giants in the race.
Game time? It's time for some more links, me thinks:
- Anthony Castrovince at MLB.com pays tribute to Hall-of-Fame reporter Hal McCoy of the Dayton Daily News, who will soon be out of a job.
- Dick Kaegel at MLB.com says that the Royals are still negotiating with their top picks, despite reports they had come to terms with their second- and fourth-round selections.
- David Kaplan at ChicagoNow stakes the claim that Carlos Zambrano is the most overpaid player in baseball. Jorge Says No! says, well... no.
- Jame Moyer has been sent to the bullpen in favor of Pedro Martinez, and he isn't happy. The ageless Moyer claims he was assured by GM Ruben Amaro before he signed a two-year deal that this "type of situation would not happen," reports Andy Martino at the Philadelphia Inquirer.
- Henry Schulman at the San Francisco Chronicle asks fans if they'd let Barry Zito go on a waiver claim. Easy call, right? Schulman offers up some bullet points to consider before you answer.
Some links for the morning...
- Tim Kawakami of the San Jose Mercury News says the Giants have to think about releasing Barry Zito after the season because he's weighing them down.
- ESPN.com's Rob Neyer says the Giants can't afford to release Zito just yet.
- Tony Massarotti of the Boston Globe says the Red Sox could use another lefty specialist in the 'pen.
- Joe Starkey of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reports that the Pirates are confident Miguel Angel Sano is a 16 years old, like he says.
- Jamey Newberg updates us on the top 20 Rangers prospects at MLB.com. You have to think the Blue Jays are looking at a version of this list.
- Bruce Jenkins of the San Francisco Chronicle says no one will be watching Matt Holliday more closely than the Giants.
- Joel Sherman of the New York Post wonders if Pedro Martinez can have a David Cone-like late career renaissance in Philadelphia.
- And check out the final part of my discussion over at NESN.com for a look at the Yankees, Red Sox and Rays and an under-the-radar trade candidate.
A few links for your pre-second half entertainment:
- Dave Cameron at Fangraphs is counting down the 50 players with the most trade value. Today, he posted #30-#26.
- ESPN's Jayson Stark recaps the Pedro Martinez press conference, and
contends that the newest Phillie will start off on the DL because he
didn't want to sign a minor league contract.
- Anthony Rieber of Newsday.com argues that the Yankess are in a unique position to land Roy Halladay - if they are willing to eat the contract of Vernon Wells.
- In the latest in a series of short videos on college prospects, ESPN's Keith Law scouts Missouri RHP Nick Tepesch.
- And Tim Kawakami of the San Jose Mercury News argues that it is time for the Giants to attempt to trade Barry Zito or release him in the off-season.