Carlos Gomez Rumors
Here's a few links on a gorgeous Saturday, at least around these parts...
- Acquiring Carlos Gomez allows the Brewers to wave goodbye to Mike Cameron, and Tom Haudricourt of The Journal Sentinel says they'll use the savings on pitching. "We're going to have to take our resources that we gave to Mike and distribute them to fill other needs for our ballclub," said GM Doug Melvin. "We've said pitching is our focus. We still have other needs, like any club. And the salaries of our other players go up, too."
- The return of Manny Ramirez allows the Dodgers to resume searching for a trade partner for Juan Pierre, according to Dylan Hernandez of The LA Times. Pierre still has two-years and $18.5MM remaining on his contract.
- In today's blog post, ESPN's Buster Olney says that Brandon Webb will be prime trade bait in the middle of next season if he makes it all the way back and the Diamondbacks aren't in contention.
- Jason A. Churchill of Prospect Insider takes a look at some offseason options for the Mariners.
- Meanwhile, former Mariner Kenji Johjima can provide some additional input on American pitchers the Hanshin Tigers may pursue, notes Patrick Newman of NPB Tracker. Patrick also passes along a report that lists some pitchers Hanshin is looking at, including two Mariners: Ryan Rowland-Smith and Chris Jakubauskas.
- Rowland-Smith is on Twitter, and was a little surprised by the news.
- Bob Dutton of The KC Star takes a look at the newest Royals, Chris Getz and Josh Fields.
- Maury Brown at The Biz of Baseball lists all 39 players who filed for free agency on Friday.
12:55pm: A bunch of Tweets from the Brewers' side: Brewers GM Doug Melvin said he won't pursue re-signing Cameron, and will look to the free agent market for starting pitching. Melvin contacted Mark Mulder's agent but hasn't heard back. Melvin even mentioned John Lackey's name. (Reporting: Haudricourt and MLB.com's Adam McCalvy).
12:04pm: I asked Hardy if he's closed the book on the service time issue, and he said yes. A grievance does not seem likely; Hardy admitted it'd be hard to prove.
Twins GM Bill Smith said on today's conference call that he talked to free agent Orlando Cabrera this morning and told him Hardy will be the team's shortstop. Smith implied that re-signing Joe Crede is a possibility, as he has talked to Scott Boras. Smith added that Delmon Young is a lock to be tendered a contract.
10:57am: The Twins acquired shortstop J.J. Hardy for center fielder Carlos Gomez, according to Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel.
While I expected the Brewers to snag a young pitcher for Hardy, I like the move for both sides. Center field was certainly a need for the Brewers with Mike Cameron eligible for free agency. Haudricourt notes that the money the Brewers saved on Cameron will probably go toward starting pitching. While Gomez hasn't had offensive success in his career, his stellar defense is unquestionable. He'll be eligible for arbitration this winter as a Super Two player, and is under team control through 2013.
Hardy is a huge addition for the Twins, who entered the offseason needing upgrades at shorstop, third base, and second base. Due to an August demotion by the Brewers, Hardy is under team control for 2010 and 2011 (Hardy says there are "no hard feelings.") He slumped offensively this year, but maintained his strong defense.
Reggie Jackson tells Jon Heyman of SI.com that Alex Rodriguez will have a big postseason. Jackson says as much every year, but A-Rod did hit well last night - maybe 2009 is his year. Here are the rest of Heyman's rumors:
- Like most Yankees people, Jackson is no fan of Carl Pavano.
- Carlos Gomez is hesitant to call the trade that sent him (and others) to Minnesota for Johan Santana fair. But, as Heyman points out, the Twins beat the Mets to the playoffs.
- The Mets will look at free agent first basemen this offseason, but don't expect them to sign Nick Johnson. GM Omar Minaya and the Mets are shying away from injury-prone players. I wonder if that applies to pitchers like Ben Sheets, Rich Harden and Erik Bedard.
UPDATE, 1-29-08 at 4:22: Ken Rosenthal says the 72-hour window to sign Santana is now open.
UPDATE, 1-29-08 at 3:15pm: Bob Nightengale of USA Today says an agreement to trade Santana to the Mets has been reached. They'll send Carlos Gomez, Philip Humber, Deolis Guerra, and Kevin Mulvey to the Twins. The Mets still have to work out a six or seven year extension for Santana, according to Nightengale. If this baby reaches its true conclusion we'll sit down and analyze.
UPDATE, 1-29-08 at 2:55pm: More from Olney. His sources say the Mets have the best offer, the Red Sox also made offers, and the Yanks are out. Santana apparently asked the Twins to make a decision, wrap this thing up. Wrap it up! Olney is not sure whether F-Mart is part of the Mets' offer.
UPDATE, 1-29-08 at 2:06pm: SI.com's Jon Heyman weighs in. He sees the Mets as the frontrunner, the Red Sox on the fringes, and the Yankees as nearly out of the running. The Mets are offering Gomez/Humber/Mulvey/Guerra but not Fernando Martinez. If they get Santana, the Mets will commit to only five years but with a high average annual value of $22-25MM.
UPDATE, 1-29-08 at 1:11pm: WFAN's Mike Francesa believes the Twins upped their offer to five years, $100MM for Santana, but he rejected it.
UPDATE, 1-29-08 at 9:42am: ESPN's Buster Olney says the Twins asked for each team's "last and best offers" on Monday. They could decide Santana's fate as early as today. Olney adds that the Yankees "appear to be not presently engaged whatsoever in the Santana talks." Olney used to be a Yankees beat writer, so he's bound to have a good line on this.
As for the Red Sox - Olney is hearing conflicting things about Jon Lester's availability. It's possible that Lester could only be had in a more limited package - he, Coco Crisp, and not much else.
FROM 1-29-08 at 8:02am:
Over at MetsBlog today, Matthew Cerrone does a nice job summing up the Johan Santana situation.
The New York Daily News indicates that the Mets are the one team pushing for Santana, but the Twins might use the Erik Bedard haul as a measuring stick. Joel Sherman sees it as a Mets-Red Sox battle. He notes that Carlos Gomez will skip the Caribbean Series not because of an impending trade but just to limit his games.
We could finally get some kind of resolution with Santana this week. Just to keep things interesting, check out Mark Healey's note about the Dodgers "creeping into the picture."
This Impacto Deportivo article is making the rounds tonight. Here it is in Google Translate. The article says that the Mets probably will not give to permission Carlos Gomez to play in the Caribbean Series. Gomez's family does not seem to expect it, at least. I am not sure if this has trade implications or even counts as abnormal.
If any native Spanish speakers are able to glean additional details from the article, please let us know in the comments!
UPDATE, 1-28-08 at 9:42am: LEN3 jumps on his blog to give a few more tidbits. He doesn't see the Twins adding a player or any kind of three-team scenario unfolding, based on talks with Twins officials.
FROM 1-28-08 at 9:09am:
I imagine there will be a daily thread for Johan Santana rumors. Here's the latest from LEN3.
- The Twins "may soon tell teams...to step up with their best offers." The Yankees, Red Sox, and Mets are all still in the mix.
- The officials Neal spoke to disputed Buster Olney's suggestion that Jon Lester was off the table.
- The Twins still want a big ol' package from the Mets that includes both Carlos Gomez and Fernando Martinez.
- Meanwhile, Sid Hartman at the same newspaper quotes the Twins' assistant GM as saying their four-year, $80MM offer remains on the table. Santana doesn't seem likely to relent that far, and a trade may be a phone call away.
Michael Silverman of the Boston Herald has some info on a Johan Santana possibility, and it isn't the usual rehashed stuff. He writes:
A package the Twins could receive will probably not include both of the Mets’ top outfield prospects, Carlos Gomez and Fernando Martinez. There are indications that Martinez would be in the deal, along with major league outfielder Ryan Church and at least two other prospects. Starter Mike Pelfrey could be part of the deal as well....
Would Martinez, Deolis Guerra, Kevin Mulvey, and Church get it done? Maybe not a fan-pleaser but you'd have guys who can contribute now and others that can develop into superstars. Would Michael Cuddyer still be a center field candidate if the Twins acquire Church?
- Neal says the Mets, Red Sox, and Yankees have all had recent discussions with the Twins about Santana. He says the Twins have "stepped up their efforts" to make a deal before Spring Training.
- Heyman believes the Mets have taken the lead. He thinks it would take five or more prospects, and submission by the Red Sox and Yankees.
- Heyman says the Twins may prefer Carlos Gomez over Fernando Martinez. That would be good for the Mets, who do not want to part with Martinez.
Joe Christensen of the Minneapolis Star-Tribune has a new article up focused on how the ultimate package for Johan Santana may not be fan-pleasing. That's because the Twins "seem most intrigued" with the Mets' offer, which doesn't include household names. They're proposing some combination of Carlos Gomez, Fernando Martinez, Deolis Guerra, Philip Humber, and Kevin Mulvey. Seems it would be one of the outfielders plus the three pitchers.
Christensen notes the Chuck Knoblauch and A.J. Pierzynski trades as examples of deals that were derided in Minnesota at the time but ended up favoring the Twins. However I do believe fans are better equipped to evaluate trades these days, the way prospects are followed. (An aside - I still think we all would've praised Brian Sabean at the time of the Pierzynski/Liriano/Bonser/Nathan deal.)
In other Johan news, Sid Hartman has some fresh Hank quotes if you're interested.
It's time for today's dose of Johan Santana rumors and info. It's funny - I sense that everyone is getting sick of this stuff and would prefer a fresh rumor about, say, Brad Wilkerson.
- Lisa Kennelly wrote this morning that the Mets appear to be sticking to their guns with an offer of Carlos Gomez or Fernando Martinez, Phil Humber, Kevin Mulvey, and Deolis Guerra. However, she says the Mets prefer Erik Bedard over Santana since he will not require a huge extension. The New York Times adds that the Mets "are not engaged in heavy discussions with the Twins."
- MetsBlog's Matthew Cerrone dives into the situation, summing up recent events and providing some insight from a roundtable that included Ken Rosenthal, Dan Graziano, and Jim Duquette.
- Michael Silverman, with some help from Baseball America, evaluates each reported package of prospects that has been offered for Santana.
- An end may be in sight - the Twins lose leverage if teams truly start to pull out, writes Joe Christensen.