Cesar Cabral Rumors

Orioles Claim Andy Wilkins, Designate Cesar Cabral

The Orioles have claimed first baseman Andy Wilkins off waivers from the Dodgers, the team announced.  Wilkins, who was designated for assignment by Los Angeles earlier this week, will be optioned to Triple-A Norfolk.  In a corresponding move, left-hander Cesar Cabral has been designated for assignment.

Wilkins has a .251/.315/.447 slash line over 497 plate appearances at Triple-A this season, split between the Dodgers’ and Blue Jays’ affiliates.  The move to Baltimore completes a busy few months for Wilkins, as he was also taken off waivers from the White Sox by the Jays back in March.  Wilkins made his MLB debut last season appearing in 17 games with Chicago but hasn’t since returned to the Show.

Cabral, 26, signed a minor league deal with the Orioles last winter and he has posted a 4.95 ERA, 9.7 K/9 and 2.29 K/BB rate over 40 relief innings at Triple-A.  He also had a two-game cup of coffee on Baltimore’s roster in June.

Cabral joins seven other players currently in DFA limbo, which you can follow via the MLB Trade Rumors DFA Tracker.

Orioles Activate Wieters, Release Everth Cabrera

JUNE 13: The Orioles have announced that they’ve released Cabrera, making him a free agent.

JUNE 5: In a flurry of roster moves that includes the activation of catcher Matt Wieters from the disabled list, the Orioles announced that infielder Everth Cabrera has been designated for assignment. Additionally, Steve Clevenger has been optioned to Triple-A along with right-hander Mike Wright. The team has also recalled infielder Rey Navarro from the minors and selected the contract of left-handed reliever Cesar Cabral.

The 28-year-old Cabrera was non-tendered by the Padres this offseason and spent much of the winter seeing his free agent stock weighed down by legal troubles pertaining to charges of resisting arrest after being pulled over by police for suspicion of driving under the influence. Eventually, once it was ruled that Cabrera would not serve any jail time, he signed a one-year, $2.4MM contract with Baltimore.

Cabrera has played both second base and shortstop for the Orioles this season, though most of his experience in the Majors is at short. He batted a mere .208/.250/.229 in 105 plate appearances, however, and his lack of time on base prevented him from taking advantage of his best tool — speed. Cabrera led the NL with 44 steals back in 2012 despite playing in just 115 games, and he swiped 37 bags in 95 games the following year before he was suspended 50 games for ties to the Biogenesis PED scandal. Cabrera stole just two bases while with the Orioles.

Overall, Cabrera is a .246/.315/.328 career hitter, though those numbers are dragged down a bit by the fact that he’s called Petco Park home for nearly his entire career. Park-adjusted metrics such as OPS+ and wRC+ rate him at 17 percent below the league average, which is still not good, but is more acceptable considering his position. (Shortstops, generally speaking, are below-average offensive performers.) Should he land on another team’s big league roster, Cabrera can be controlled for an additional season via arbitration. He entered the years with four years, 144 days of big league service but has already eclipsed the five-year mark with the service time he’s accrued in 2015.

Wieters will rejoin the Orioles’ roster just less than a year removed his 2014 Tommy John surgery, which was performed on June 16 last year. Baltimore hoped to have his bat in the lineup earlier this season, but his return from the surgery has been slow, as Wieters not only needed to build up strength and reestablish his swing mechanics but also needed to be able to confidently and strongly throw to second and third base.

The 29-year-old Wieters will be left with about four months’ worth of plate appearances to show that he is healthy and can be an above-average contributor both at the plate and behind it, as he’s nearing his first venture into the free agent market. A career .257/.320/.423 hitter, Wieters has not developed into the superstar catcher that many expected when he was selected with the fifth pick in the 2007 draft, but he has been a decidedly above-average performer at his position and was enjoying a strong season last year at the time of his injury. In 112 plate appearances in 2014, Wieters batted .308/.339/.500. Wieters inactivity prevented has prevented him from appearing on MLBTR’s Free Agent Power Rankings, but a strong start to his season could land him on the list in short order, as a switch-hitting catcher with power heading into his age-30 season certainly carries quite a bit of earning power.

Minor Moves: Hoffman, Colvin, Valaika, Wilson

The latest notable minor league signings, courtesy of Baseball America’s Matt Eddy except where noted.

  • The Red Sox have signed lefty Matt Hoffman, Chris Cotillo of MLB Daily Dish tweets. Hoffman, 26, pitched in the high minors in the Phillies and Twins organizations in 2014, posting a 3.75 ERA with 9.4 K/9 and 3.6 BB/9 in 48 innings of relief. He’d spent the previous six years in the Tigers organization, working his way up to Triple-A Toledo.
  • The Marlins signed 29-year-old outfielder Tyler Colvin.  In 2014, he posted a .223/.268/.381 slash line with two homers over 149 PA for the Giants.  Colvin elected free agency in October, allowing him to pursue opportunities elsewhere.  Over parts of six seasons at the big league level with the Cubs, Rockies, and Giants, Colvin has a career line of .239/.287/.446.
  • The Cubs re-signed second baseman Chris Valaika. The 29-year-old slashed .231/.282/.339 across 131 plate appearances for the Cubs last season, which is more or less consistent with his career .238/.282/.351 slash line over parts of four seasons. At Triple-A Iowa, Valaika hit .278/.344/.423 in 397 PAs.
  • The Tigers signed Josh Wilson to a minor league pact. The 33-year-old infielder hit .239/.271/.299 in 72 PAs for the Rangers in 2014, though he spent the bulk of the year in Triple-A Round Rock.
  • The Orioles signed left-hander Cesar Cabral. The 25-year-old pitched in four games for the Yankees last year allowing three runs, four hits, three hit batsmen, and a pair of walks in only one inning of work. Cabral spent the rest of the season splitting his time between Double-A and Triple-A posting a 6.28 ERA, 10.2 K/9, and 7.9 BB/9 in 32 relief appearances totalling 38 2/3 innings.

Minor Moves: Guzman, Abreu, Phelps

Here are the latest minor league transactions, with the newest moves at the top of the post.  All moves reported by Baseball America’s Matt Eddy unless cited otherwise.

  • Jesus Guzman elected free agency rather than accept a Triple-A assignment from the Astros, Union Radio’s Pascual Artiles reports (Twitter link).  Houston outrighted Guzman off its 40-man roster earlier this month.  Guzman was acquired from the Padres last December and hit .188/.272/.248 in 184 plate appearances in 2014.
  • Second baseman Tony Abreu has elected to become a free agent, leaving the Giants organization.  Abreu has been with the Giants for the last two seasons, appearing in three games with the team in 2014 and 53 in 2013.  Abreu has 615 PA to his name since debuting in the majors in 2007, posting a career .254/.283/.373 line for the Giants, Royals, Diamondbacks and Dodgers.
  • Second baseman Cord Phelps has elected free agency.  Phelps played for the Orioles in 2014, appearing in three Major League games and hitting .259/.361/.388 over 403 PA at Triple-A Norfolk.
  • The Dodgers re-signed left-hander Robert Carson.  The southpaw posted a 5.74 ERA over 62 2/3 IP in the minors with the Angels and Dodgers in 2014, getting released by L.A.’s red team in May and signing with L.A.’s blue team a week later.  Carson threw 33 innings for the Mets in 2012-13, posting a 6.82 ERA in his brief time in the Show.
  • Left-hander Pedro Hernandez has elected to become a free agent, leaving the Rockies.  Hernandez posted a 6.42 ERA in 88 1/3 IP for Triple-A Colorado Springs in 2014, and made one start for the Rockies in July.  The southpaw has a career 7.33 ERA over 66 1/3 IP with the Rockies, Twins and White Sox since 2012.
  • The Rockies released and then re-signed right-hander Simon Castro, according to the club’s official transactions page.  He first signed with Colorado in April but didn’t pitch at all in 2014 due to injury.  Castro was ranked as the game’s 58th-best prospect by Baseball America prior to the 2011 season while in the Padres farm system, and was dealt to the White Sox as part of the Carlos Quentin trade package in the 2011-12 offseason.  His Major League experience consists of 6 2/3 IP with Chicago in 2013.
  • Left-hander Cesar Cabral, most recently of the Yankees organization, has elected to become a free agent, Examiner.com’s Dan Pfeiffer reports (Twitter link).  Cabral appeared in four games for the Yankees in 2014, totaling one inning pitched and allowing three earned runs.  His Major League resume also includes 3 2/3 IP for New York in 2013.  The southpaw has a 4.01 ERA, 2.58 K/BB rate and 420 strikeouts over 422 1/3 career minor league innings.

Yankees Outright Cesar Cabral

Left-hander Cesar Cabral has cleared waivers and been outrighted to Triple-A by the Yankees, according to the team’s official transactions page. Cabral, who has been outrighted before, will have the option to refuse the assignment and elect free agency if he wishes.

The 25-year-old Cabral, who was designated for assignment on April 18, originally came to the Yankees back in 2011. The Royals selected him fifth in that year’s Rule 5 Draft and promptly traded him to New York for cash considerations. A stress fracture in his elbow caused him to miss most of the 2012 campaign and a good deal of 2013 as well, which is the reason that he has just 4 2/3 innings at the big league level. Within that small sample of Major League experience, Cabral has allowed four runs on seven hits and three walks with eight strikeouts. Most of the damage against him came in his final outing this year, in which he hit three batters without recording an out and was charged with three runs.

Cabral has a pretty solid minor league track record, having turned in a 3.77 ERA with 8.8 K/9 and 3.0 BB/9 in 384 career innings. However, just 10 1/3 of those innings have come at the Triple-A level, and the results (eight earned runs) haven’t matched up with his success at lower levels just yet.

Yankees Designate Cesar Cabral For Assignment

The Yankees designated reliever Cesar Cabral for assignment after tonight's game, reports Marly Rivera of ESPN Deportes (via Twitter). Cabral, 25, had a rough outing, giving up three earned runs and failing to record an out before he was ejected for hitting his third batter of the inning.

Cabral only has 4 2/3 innings of MLB experience over the last two seasons. Across the minors in 2013, he posted a 5.40 ERA in 36 2/3 innings. Prior to that, he had spent his career in the Red Sox organization. In his best season as a reliever, 2011, he worked to a 2.95 ERA in 55 innings at the High-A and Double-A level.

Minor Moves: Richardson, Cabral, Thomore

Here are Friday's minor moves from around the league…

  • The Angels have signed left-hander Dustin Richardson to a minor league deal, MLB Daily Dish's Chris Cotillo reports.  Richardson posted a 3.31 ERA over 16 1/3 relief innings (despite issuing 15 walks and 18 hits in that stretch) with the Red Sox in 2009-10.  He has spent the last two seasons with the independent Sugar Land Skeeters.  Richardson was suspended for 50 games for PED use in 2012 but his suspension has since been lifted due to compliance with MLB and his time away from affiliated baseball.
  • The Yankees have outrighted left-hander Cesar Cabral to Double-A, the team announced today (passed on by Mike Axisa of the River Ave Blues blog.)  Cabral was taken by the Royals from the Red Sox in the 2011 Rule 5 draft and then dealt to the Yankees, though he missed the entire 2012 season with an elbow injury.
  • The White Sox have acquired outfielder Carl Thomore from the Rockies in exchange for cash, according to Baseball America's Matt Eddy (on Twitter). Thomore was a second-round pick by the Rox as recently as 2011, but he's hit just .196/.308/.309 in 58 games in the Rookie-level Pioneer League. Thomore has recovered from a devastating leg injury suffered in high school (as chronicled by Brian Falzarano of MaxPreps.com two years ago) to make it to pro ball.
  • Five players currently reside in DFA limbo: John Baker and James Darnell of the Padres, Ramon Ramirez of the Giants, Ramon Hernandez of the Dodgers and Kelly Shoppach of the Mariners.

AL East Links: Swisher, Orioles, Ross, Cabral

Nine players received qualifying offers this winter, including five from the AL East: Nick Swisher, Hiroki Kuroda, Rafael Soriano, B.J. Upton, and David Ortiz. Here's the latest on the division…

2011 Rule 5 Draft Results

Rule 5 players must stay with their new big league club all year or be offered back to the old team. MLB.com has a full recap of both the Major League and minor league portions of the draft. The results of the Major League phase are listed below:

  1. Astros take Rhiner Cruz from Mets.
  2. Twins take Terry Doyle from White Sox.
  3. Mariners take Lucas Luetge from Brewers.
  4. Orioles take Ryan Flaherty from Cubs.
  5. Royals take Cesar Cabral from Red Sox; traded to Yankees for cash.
  6. Cubs take Lendy Castillo from Phillies.
  7. Padres
  8. Pirates take Gustavo Nunez from Tigers.
  9. Marlins
  10. Rockies
  11. Athletics
  12. Mets
  13. White Sox
  14. Reds
  15. Indians
  16. Nationals
  17. Blue Jays
  18. Dodgers
  19. Angels
  20. Giants
  21. Braves take Robert Fish from Angels.
  22. Cardinals take Erik Komatsu from Nationals.
  23. Red Sox take Marwin Gonzalez from Cubs, traded to Astros for Marco Duarte
  24. Rays
  25. Diamondbacks take Brett Lorin from Pirates.
  26. Tigers
  27. Brewers
  28. Rangers
  29. Yankees take Brad Meyers from Nationals.
  30. Phillies

Rays Return Cesar Cabral To Red Sox

The Rays returned Rule 5 pick Cesar Cabral to the Red Sox, tweets WEEI's Rob Bradford.  The lefty will report to minor league camp tomorrow.  The Rays claimed Cabral in the December draft, but he also had a brief stop with the Blue Jays this spring.

Cabral, 22, posted strong peripheral stats in 48 relief innings at High-A ball last year, but 60 hits allowed led to a 5.81 ERA.