- Mariners Prospect Victor Sanchez Dies
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Carlos Silva Rumors
Free agent Carlos Silva has several offers and will likely accept one of them soon, according to Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports (on Twitter). The Cubs, who released Silva late last month, will owe him most of his $11.5MM salary and $2MM buyout for 2012 while the new club will cover the pro-rated MLB minimum for '11.
Ironically, the Cubs have had to place starters Andrew Cashner and Randy Wells on the disabled list since releasing Silva, who posted a 4.22 ERA in 21 starts last year. The Orioles are eyeing rotation depth and are one of the potential destinations for the 31-year-old right-hander.
The Red Sox announced the passing of longtime executive Lou Gorman, who built Boston's 1986 American League Championship team. Our condolences to Gorman's family and friends. Here are this evening's links…
- Giants GM Brian Sabean confirmed to Andrew Baggarly of The Mercury News that right-hander Marc Kroon has an out-clause in his contract that can be triggered on June 1st (Twitter link). The Japanese league vet will head to Triple-A after signing a minor league deal earlier this year.
- Patrick Newman of NPB Tracker passes along a report indicating that Romulo Sanchez has signed with the Rakuten Golden Eagles for $475K plus bonuses (Twitter links). The Yankees released Sanchez so he could purse a job in Japan last week.
- Maury Brown at The Biz of Baseball reports that 234 players (27.7%) on MLB rosters on Opening Day were born outside of the United States. The all-time record is 29.2% in 2005.
- Cubs chairmam Tom Ricketts told Paul Sullivan of The Chicago Tribune that he's okay with eating the $11.5MM left on Carlos Silva's deal in order to release the right-hander. "We knew it was a possibility that there might not be a spot for him, and that’s just the way it is," said Ricketts. "You’ve got to have the best team on the field, and that’s what counts."
- Baseball America's Matt Eddy rounded up all of last week's minor league transactions. See what familiar names were signed and released as teams finalize their minor league rosters.
- Dejan Kovacevic of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette challenges Pirates leaders to change the perception that the team is focused on profit, destined never to compete.
- Cork Gaines of Rays Index shows that the Rays' payroll dropped 41.7% from last year, all the way down to $41.9MM. The Rays committed $12.6MM to Wade Davis yesterday, an especially substantial investment for a team on such a limited budget.
- White Sox director of international scouting Jerry Krause is stepping down to join the Diamondbacks, according Mark Gonzales of the Chicago Tribune. The former Chicago Bulls GM will assist Arizana executive Jerry DiPoto.
- Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports says the Dodgers can overcome surrounding distractions to become a playoff team in 2011. In fact, he predicts an NL West title for the Dodgers.
- Orioles president of baseball operations Andy MacPhail told MLB.com's Brittany Ghiroli that there's no late trade in the offing this spring (Twitter link). Baltimore made late-spring trades in 2009 (Robert Andino) and '10 (Julio Lugo, Steve Lerud).
- Yankees catching prospect Jesus Montero failed this spring, writes Joel Sherman of the New York Post. The Yankees wanted him to become their backup catcher and to pretend now that they didn't plan on that is disingenuous, writes Sherman.
- Carlos Silva cleared waivers and is now a free agent, according to Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports (on Twitter).
Former Mariners GM Bill Bavasi signed Carlos Silva to a four-year, $48MM deal in December of 2007. Two years later, Jack Zduriencik sent Silva and $9MM to the Cubs for Milton Bradley in a bad contract swap. Yesterday, Silva was released by the Cubs with $13.5MM remaining on the contract. Silva, known as an innings eater at the time of the signing, has provided a 5.82 ERA over 296 2/3 frames over the last three years. Let's see what was being said at the time of the signing…
Tim Dierkes, MLB Trade Rumors
This is the new price of a big league innings eater. Silva may not be anything special, but he's shown the ability to eat American League innings. Those guys don't grow on trees.
Dave Cameron, U.S.S. Mariner
The strike throwing, no outpitch hurler is just a very easy skillset to find in a pitcher. Throwing a huge amount of money at Carlos Silva simply because he’s proven is a gigantic waste of resources.
This was actually written before the Mariners signed Silva, but it still sums up Cameron's evaluation of the deal.
Jeff Sullivan, Lookout Landing
There's no doubt in my mind that this is a financially irresponsible contract, and that you could get 90-100% of Silva's production going forward from someone else for a tiny fraction of the price. Of that I don't think there's any question. But overpaying is nothing new for this team, and at the end of the day, I would so much rather pay too much money than give away too much talent.
Note: this was Jeff coming to terms with the deal, after saying worse things about it previously.
Geoff Baker, Seattle Times
Did the M's truly overpay for Silva? We'll know the answer in a couple of years if he misses a season with a blown out elbow ligament. But if he stays healthy, the way Washburn and Batista have to this point, you get a slightly above-average pitcher for what should be a below-market rate.
Keith Law, ESPN
If we set the length of the contract aside for a moment, the signing of Carlos Silva makes some sense…The contract itself, however, is lunacy…While he's likely to be an immediate upgrade over the internal options Seattle had, the odds of him turning out to be a good investment over a four-year period — even before we consider the chance he suffers a major injury — are low, and if the Mariners' defense declines via a trade of Adam Jones or Adrian Beltre, Silva's performance will take a direct hit.
The three quotes I pulled out from Law's blog post are best read in context, if you have ESPN Insider. The entire post is a good read.
Silva ended up performing worse than any of us thought he would. Most writers agreed when he signed that he made the Mariners better, which never happened. Aside from missing the mark on Silva's ability to continue eating innings, I also failed to recognize that his contract was an outlier rather than the new standard for innings eaters. Three years later, innings eater types are only getting $4-8MM per year and one or two years.
Some links to browse through during your Sunday evening…
- Add the Rangers to the list of clubs that are not interested in recently released Carlos Silva, reports MLB.com's T.R. Sullivan (on Twitter). The Yankees and Cardinals are also out.
- The Angels can opt out of their stadium lease in 2016, but owner Arte Moreno told Mike DiGiovanna of The Los Angeles Times that the team has not begun exploring the possibility of building a new stadium. That process would have to start at least four years before the planned opening date.
- Indians manager Manny Acta told MLB.com's Jordan Bastian that there are likely to be roster moves made on Monday when the 25-man roster is finalized (Twitter link).
- Tom Krasovic spoke to several scouts about teams and players from all around the game.
- In regard to CBA talks, Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe writes that the "general consensus is that a hangup or even the slightest threat of a work stoppage would be shocking."
- Within the same piece, Cafardo says the Twins aren't as willing to deal Kevin Slowey as it may seem. One scout opined that the right-hander is "throwing too well for them to deal him."
- The Rockies continue to receive calls about their middle-infield depth, but the club isn't looking to move either Eric Young Jr. or Alfredo Amezaga, according to Troy Renck of the Denver Post.
- Dave Bush earned a spot in the Rangers' bullpen as a long man, tweets Jeff Wilson of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. Bush would have opted out of his contract today if he didn't make the team.
- The Red Sox' bullpen depth has drawn interest from other teams, a source tells Alex Speier of WEEI.com.
MLBTR's Luke Adams & Mike Axisa contributed to this post.
Let's take a look at what's happening around the NL Central on this fine Sunday afternoon…
- MLB.com's Brian McTaggart reports that the Astros tried to work out a trade for right-hander Lance Pendleton before the Rule 5 Draft pick was returned to the Yankees earlier today. The two sides just couldn't find a match.
- Pirates GM Neal Huntington told Rob Biertempfel of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review that Rule 5 pick Josh Rodriguez has made the team (Twitter link).
- Albert Pujols is at peace with his current contract situation and has no hard feelings toward the Cardinals after failing to work out an extension, writes Joe Strauss of the St. Louis Post Dispatch. Pujols said he still hopes something can be worked out following the season.
- Strauss also tweets that the Cardinals aren't interested in the recently released Carlos Silva.
- Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel tweets that Brewers infielder Luis Cruz cleared waivers and will be assigned to Triple-A.
- MLB.com's Brian McTaggart opines that the addition of Joe Inglett to the Astros means Jason Bourgeois will make the team and helps Tommy Manzella's chances to start at shortstop (Twitter link).
Here's the latest out of Queens and the Bronx on the final Sunday before regular season baseball gets underway….
- The Yankees have no plans to pursue the recently released Carlos Silva tweets Jack Curry of the YES Network. Pitching coach Larry Rothschild was Silva's pitching coach with the Cubs last season.
- Yankees manager Joe Girardi told Chad Jennings of The Journal News that Romulo Sanchez was scratched from today's road trip "for reasons I can’t give to you at this point." The right-hander is out of options and a long shot to make the team, and Girardi gave a look that indicated a trade was in the works acording to Jennings.
- Pedro Beato will make the Mets' Opening Day roster, tweets SI.com's Jon Heyman. The Mets selected Beato from the Orioles in the Rule 5 draft.
- In another tweet, Heyman says the Mets are searching for a second left-handed reliever, in part to match up with some of the lefty sluggers in the NL East.
- In a conversation with Steve Selby of the New York Post, David Wright says he's not concerned about the possibility of a Mets fire sale.
- Mark Feinsand of the New York Daily News argues that the Yankees took the "safe, easy" route in giving Freddy Garcia a rotation spot over Bartolo Colon.
- The Yankees hope Colon can occupy the swing-man role previously held by Alfredo Aceves, writes Feinsand.
A poor spring meant the 31-year-old failed to earn a spot in Chicago's rotation or bullpen. Although the Cubs looked for a trade partner, Silva's $11.5MM salary and his refusal to report to the minors reduced the team's leverage significantly.
Silva had some success for the Cubs last season, recording a 4.22 ERA in 21 starts. However, his spring performance, including a 10.90 ERA in 17 1/3 innings, more closely resembled his 2008 and 2009 campaigns, when he posted a 6.81 ERA in 183 2/3 IP for the Mariners. Even so, another team will likely take a chance on the righty, with the Cubs on the hook for his exorbitant price tag.
Earlier today, the Cubs notified Carlos Silva that they will look to trade him after anointing Andrew Cashner as the fifth starter. The club also asked the right-hander to consider a stint in the minors if GM Jim Hendry is unable to move him. Silva was less-than-thrilled with that decision, telling the press that there is "no chance" that he would report to the team's Iowa affiliate. The soon-to-be 32-year-old also had some harsh words for pitching coach Mark Riggins.
Silva has struggled this spring (for what it's worth) and is owed $11.5MM in 2011. Count SI's Jon Heyman (Twitter links) among those who think that the Cubs won't be able to unload Silva for anything of value. In fact, Heyman jokes that if Hendry can get a decent prospect and save 10% of the money owed to Silva in a deal, he should be given a five-year contract extension.
Even though Silva ultimately fizzled out in 2010, the hurler showed glimpses of his former self in the first half of the season. Neither the clubs nor his next club will have to pick up the entirety of his $11.5MM deal as the M's are on the hook for $5.5MM of that.
Are the Cubs completely handcuffed here or will they be able to find a worthwhile deal for the veteran?
Let's check out some items concerning the Central divisions..
- Astros GM Ed Wade told Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports (via Twitter) that the club will explore outside options with Clint Barmes sidelined for four-to-six weeks. Morosi notes that Houston has Angel Sanchez and Tommy Manzella in-house as well.
- The Indians' projected payroll for 2011 is roughly $48.5MM, writes Paul Hoynes of the Plain Dealer. This marks the third straight year that the payroll has declined and the lowest it has been since 2005. In that year, the Indians opened with a $41.5MM payroll.
- More from the Tribe as skipper Manny Acta said he'll likely meet with GM Chris Antonetti today to discuss remaining decisions that need to be made, Jordan Bastian of MLB.com tweets.
- The Royals cut four minor league players today, tweets Bob Dutton of the Kansas City Star. Right-handers Aaron Hartsock and Scott Kelley and infielders Justin Figueroa and Tom Zebroski were given their walking papers. Kansas City has already made a handful of minor league transactions this week.
- Rhett Bollinger of MLB.com (via Twitter) spoke to Twins manager Rod Gardenhire about Rule 5 pick Scott Diamond. The skipper said that he hasn't haven’t seen enough of him to really evaluate him, though he noted that he's not speaking for the organization. The 24-year-old left-hander was plucked from the Braves.
- Jon Heyman of SI (via Twitter) applauds the Cubs for telling Carlos Silva that they will look to trade him. Heyman suggests that the Mariners should do the same with Milton Bradley.