Brett Tomko Rumors
A total of 22 players that finished the year in Triple-A elected free agency after the end of the regular season according to the transaction pages of the Pacific Coast and International Leagues. All but one of those 22 players (Matt Carson, formerly of the Rays) played in the big leagues this season. Here's the full list:
Dusty Brown (Pirates), Travis Buck (Indians), Armando Galarraga (D'Backs), Jay Gibbons (Dodgers), Edgar Gonzalez (Rockies), Steve Holm (Twins), Wil Ledezma (Blue Jays), Andy LaRoche (Athletics), Felipe Lopez (Brewers), Lastings Milledge (White Sox), Pat Misch (Mets), Pat Neshek (Padres), Mike O'Connor (Mets), Matt Palmer (Angels), Felix Pie (Orioles), Brad Snyder (Cubs), Brett Tomko (Rangers), Wyatt Toregas (Pirates), P.J. Walters (Blue Jays), Randy Williams (Red Sox), and Reggie Willits (Angels).
A few minor moves...
- Rob Delaney has cleared waivers after being designated for assignment by the Rays on Wednesday and has been outrighted to Triple-A Durham, reports Marc Topkin of the St. Petersburg Times (via Twitter).
- The Rangers outrighted Brett Tomko to Triple-A Round Rock and Tomko has accepted the assignment, reports Anthony Andro of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram (via Twitter). Andro also tweets that Tomko has an out clause in his contract for June 1, though Andro isn't sure if Tomko plans to exercise it. In the corresponding move, Texas called up Michael Kirkman.
- The Brewers have outrighted catcher Mike Rivera to Triple-A Nashville, reports MLB.com's Adam McCalvy. It is expected that Rivera will accept the assignment.
- Also from McCalvy, Brandon Boggs has accepted his assignment to Nashville after being outrighted by the Brewers two days ago. This is the third time Boggs has been outrighted by Milwaukee in the last three months. Rivera and Boggs were outrighted to create roster space for Josh Wilson and Nyjer Morgan.
- Brett Tomko can opt out of his contract with the Rangers on June 1st, according to Anthony Andro of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram (on Twitter). The clause presumably exists in case Tomko is still in the minors at that point.
- Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports argues that the Mariners should call the Yankees and see exactly how much they'd give up for Felix Hernandez. The reigning AL Cy Young Award winner is under contract through 2014 for a total of $68MM.
- Nate Robertson will undergo arthroscopic surgery on his left elbow and miss at least four weeks. As MLB.com's Greg Johns points out, that leaves Michael Pineda, Luke French and David Pauley as the primary candidates for the Mariners' fifth rotation spot.
- Johns reports that the Mariners turned a $1.7MM profit in the fiscal year ending on October 31st, 2010.
Let's take a look at some items related to the Junior Circuit..
- A rival executive described the Royals' young talent as "an embarrassment of riches" to Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports (via Twitter).
- Speaking of Kansas City, Jonah Keri of Fangraphs examines the one-year, $2.5MM deal given to Jeff Francoeur. Even though the deals given to Francoeur and fellow outfielder Melky Cabrera (one-year, $1.25MM) are puzzling for many reasons, Keri notes that the one-year deals don't block any of the club's prospects.
- The Red Sox are hopeful that Andrew Miller will resurrect his career after signing a minor league deal with the club this winter writes Brian MacPherson of The Providence Journal. According to Miller's agent, the lefty recieved big league offers from three other teams but preferred the BoSox.
- Two ex-Mariners, Endy Chavez and Brett Tomko, are looking to make it back to the majors with the Rangers, writes Kirby Arnold of The Daily Herald.
- Now in Texas, Mike Napoli says that he knew that the Angels would trade one of their talented catchers, writes T.R. Sullivan of MLB.com. The Halos had a glut at the position with Napoli, Jeff Mathis, Bobby Wilson, and Hank Conger waiting in the wings.
- White Sox veteran Omar Vizquel Is a reminder of what might have been for the M's, writes Tyler Kepner of the New York Times.
- The Pirates are likely still in search of two lefties out of the 'pen, writes Dejan Kovacevic of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
The Rangers have agreed to sign Brett Tomko to a minor league deal, a source tells Jon Paul Morosi of FOXSports.com (via Twitter). Tomko pitched just 62.2 innings last season in Oakland's farm system while rehabbing from a nerve problem in his pitching arm.
In 2009, Tomko posted a 3.77 ERA with 5.2 K/9 and 2.0 BB/9 in 57.1 innings for the Yankees and Athletics. The right-hander worked out of the bullpen for the Bombers but made six starts for the A's. Tomko, 37, owns a 3.77 ERA with 5.2 K/9 and 2.0 BB/9 for his career.
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.
Links to kick off the new month...
- The Mets "would have interest in Kiko Calero on a minor league deal," tweeted Ken Davidoff of Newsday yesterday. Calero is holding out for a big league contract, which seems reasonable.
- Scott Boras client Jacoby Ellsbury hasn't had any long-term contract discussions with the Red Sox, nor does he intend to, reports Joe Haggerty of CSNNE.com.
- The latest GM's Corner video from Jim Bowden of FOX Sports is fifteen minutes well-spent, with appearances by Billy Beane, Jack Zduriencik, Mike Rizzo, Logan White, and Lance Berkman. The video is all about scouting.
- Check out Rob Bradford's in-depth discussion with Josh Beckett for WEEI.
- Geoff Baker of the Seattle Times says the Mariners might have a nice find in hard-throwing lefty Mauricio Robles, who came from Detroit in last summer's Jarrod Washburn trade.
- Baker's colleague Larry Stone talked to Jason Bay, who said the Mariners expressed interest but never made a serious push for him.
- Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle notes that Brett Tomko and Jason Jennings will each earn $700K if they make the A's.
Jane Lee of MLB.com tweets that Jennings will report to the team's spring training camp, while Tomko will continue rehabbing an arm injury at Minor League camp. The San Francisco Chronicle's Susan Slusser adds, via Twitter, that the Twins made Tomko a similar offer, but that he felt more comfortable in Oakland. Slusser also tweets that Jennings was close to a deal with the Giants at one point, while Stiglich adds the Cardinals and Mets to the list of teams spoken to by Jennings in a separate tweet.
Tomko was extremely effective in six starts for the A's in 2009, winning four games with a 2.95 ERA. Jennings, meanwhile, acted as a setup man for the Rangers, posting a 4.13 ERA in 44 relief appearances.
- Tomko suffered a nerve injury on September 14th that caused his biceps to atrophy to the point of resembling lumpy gravy. The biceps is better now, but Tomko trying to pitch through forearm numbness. He hopes to be game-ready by the start of the season and spoke of a preference for the A's or Giants.
- Kennedy is talking to the Nationals and Indians, but continues to wait on Orlando Hudson's decision.
- Nomar is "widely expected" to retire. If he does, he'd bow out at age 36 with a career line of .313/.361/.521.
Infielder Adam Kennedy would like to remain with the Athletics in 2010, according to Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle. The interest is mutual; his agent has had "very positive" talks with the A's.
Kennedy, 34 in January, hit .289/.348/.410 in 586 plate appearances this year, playing second and third base. According to UZR/150, Kennedy's defense this year did not approach the performance from his heyday. The Cardinals released Kennedy in February, eating most of the $4MM owed to him. The Rays signed him to a minor league deal and traded him to Oakland for a player to be named later in May. The Rays later received Joe Dillon in that deal; he was designated for assignment in August but remained in the organization.
Slusser adds a few notes on other A's free agents:
The A's have not been in contact with free-agent infielder Nomar Garciaparra or starter Brett Tomko, though they plan to check in with Tomko as he recovers from a nerve problem in his right arm.