Chris Bootcheck Rumors
Here's where we'll keep track of today's minor moves...
- The Brewers signed Seth McClung to a minor league deal, MLB.com's Adam McCalvy reports. The 30-year-old right-hander hasn't appeared in the Major Leagues since 2009, but he spent three seasons with the Brewers, posting a 4.32 ERA, 6.9 K/9 and 5.0 BB/9 in 92 appearances from 2007-09. McClung signed a minor league deal with the Rangers last offseason and they released him in July.
- The Tigers announced that they signed right-hander Chris Bootcheck to a minor league deal and invited him to Spring Training. Bootcheck, 33, signed a minor league deal with Tampa Bay last February and they granted him his release in July. He hasn't appeared in the Major Leagues since he suited up for the 2009 Pirates, but he owns a 6.54 ERA with 6.4 K/9 and 3.9 BB/9 in six MLB seasons.
- The Tigers also signed Niuman Romero to a minor league deal, MLB.com's Jason Beck reports. The 26-year-old has MLB experience with the Indians and Red Sox, but spent the 2011 season playing for four minor league clubs. He posted a .231/.294/.261 line in 273 total plate appearances.
Congratulations to Derek Jeter on career hit No. 3,000. Here are some Quick Hits for Saturday afternoon..
- ESPN's Buster Olney says that rumors are swirling about a managerial change for the White Sox, but a high-ranking source says a change is not being considered and Ozzie Guillen is safe (Twitter link). The ChiSox won today, but had lost four in a row and five of six before that.
- Alex Rodriguez may need knee surgery that could keep him out a month, and Joel Sherman of The New York Post hears that the Yankees will consider outside options to fill in at third base (Twitter link). Their first choice is to use in-house candidates Eduardo Nunez and Brandon Laird.
- MLB.com's Bill Ladson reports that Jim Riggleman has a job interview for an unknown position with the Giants next week. Riggleman resigned as Nationals manager last month.
- The Marlins are not close to signing first-round pick Jose Fernandez, writes Joe Capozzi of the Palm Beach Post. The 14th overall selection is seeking a deal close to $4MM while the Fish offered just $1.6MM.
- The Orioles are confident that they will be able to sign top pick pitcher Dylan Bundy, but they also expect that negotiations will go down to the mid-August deadline, writes Steve Melewski of MASNSports.com.
- The Cubs are likely to pass on requests for starting pitchers Ryan Dempster, Carlos Zambrano and Matt Garza, writes Gordon Wittenmyer of the Chicago Sun-Times.
- We learned yesterday that Brian Gordon is Korea-bound, and now there are rumblings that Chris Bootcheck is as well, tweets Patrick Newman of NPBTracker.com.
The Rays have granted right-hander Chris Bootcheck his release from Triple-A Durham, tweets Marc Topkin of the St. Petersburg Times. Topkin reported yesterday that Bootcheck was expected to exercise his July 1st opt-out.
Bootcheck, 32, signed a minor league deal with Tampa Bay in February. The right-hander hasn't appeared in the majors since 2009 when he was with the Pirates. In six major league seasons, the veteran owns a 6.54 ERA with 6.4 K/9 and 3.9 BB/9.
Friday afternoon linkage..
- Right-hander Chris Bootcheck is expected to use his July 1st opt-out and leave the Rays' Triple-A affiliate, tweets Marc Topkin of the St. Petersburg Times.
- Adam Rubin of ESPNNewYork.com (via Twitter) spoke to a scout in contact with the Mets who says that the club won't be looking to sell until the season plays out more. Of course, they may choose to not sell off their parts at all.
- It looks like we can cross off one potential suitor for Mike Cameron: Bill Ladson of MLB.com tweets that the Nationals aren't interested. The Nats, he tweets, are seeking a long-term solution in centerfield.
- Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports (via Twitter) hears that the rotation is still a top trade priority for the Tigers, but bullpen help is a consideration now as well.
- Bobby Bonilla, eat your heart out. Manny Ramirez starts earning his $2MM deferred money from the Red Sox today and every year on this date through 2026, tweets Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe.
Bootcheck, 32, last appeared in the Majors in 2009 with the Pirates, though the results weren't pretty. The right-hander allowed 18 earned runs in 14 2/3 innings while walking nine and whiffing 13 batters.
Bootcheck owns a 6.54 career ERA through 147 1/3 Major League innings with a 6.4 K/9 and a 3.9 BB/9. He's mostly a fastball/slider pitcher, with his heater averaging 92.2mph for his career (93.6 in his limited 2009 action).
A product of Auburn University, Bootcheck was drafted 20th overall by the Angels in 2000. He is represented by Scott Boras.
Links for Friday, as the free agent market officially opens...
- As Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports points out, the Angels' lack of interest in Matt Holliday bodes well for the Cardinals, but not for Scott Boras.
- Scott Boras tells FOX Sports that interest in Adrian Beltre and Mike Gonzalez is strong so far. The agent says he's fielded offers for eight players already.
- The Nippon Ham Fighters signed minor league free agent pitcher Buddy Carlyle, says NPB Tracker's Patrick Newman. Newman also says the Yokohama BayStars are working to sign Chris Bootcheck, Jose Castillo, and Terrmel Sledge.
- The Nats hired former Mariners manager John McLaren as a bench coach, according to Ed Price of AOL FanHouse.
- Yahoo's Jeff Passan ranks 131 free agents and provides capsules. We've also got SI's Jon Heyman and AOL FanHouse's Frankie Piliere with Top 50 lists.
- Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch breaks down the market for Mark DeRosa.
- ESPN's Buster Olney notes five arbitration-eligible players who could be traded, including Russell Martin and Kevin Correia.
- SI's Jon Heyman tweets that the Mariners and Tigers continue to discuss Edwin Jackson.
- Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel tweets a comment from Brewers GM Doug Melvin: the team will fill current needs before discussing a Prince Fielder extension.
- Garrett Atkins to Troy E. Renck of the Denver Post: "I know that I will be on another team next year."
- Joe Christensen of the Minneapolis Star-Tribune feels that free agents Carl Pavano, Jarrod Washburn, and Rich Harden are potential fits for the Twins.
- Christensen's colleague Sid Hartman wonders if catcher Mike Redmond "could wind up with a job in the [Twins] organization." However, Redmond told MLB.com's Kelly Thesier a month ago that he plans on playing in 2010.
- Paul Hagen's Phillies source shot down a story that Pat Gillick could be heading back to the Blue Jays.
- Maury Brown of The Biz of Baseball has a Winter Meetings primer.
- Chico Harlan is moving on from the Washington Post's Nationals beat, once a replacement is found.
Reliever and Scott Boras client Chris Bootcheck has elected free agency, according to a press release from the Pirates. Righties Denny Bautista and Craig Hansen were also outrighted, but apparently remain in the organization for now.
Bootcheck, 30, signed a minor league deal with the Pirates in December. The signing seemed to signify the Pirates could work with Boras after the Pedro Alvarez drama. Bootcheck picked up 20 saves in Triple A, posting very strong peripherals (11.6 K/9, 1.5 BB/9, one home run allowed in 42.6 innings). He did not fare well in his 14.6 big league innings, but did average 93.6 mph on his heater.