Chris Carter Rumors

West Coast Links: Dodgers, A’s, Frandsen, Padres

The Dodgers are off to an unlucky start this spring, with Casey Blake, Jon Garland, and Vicente Padilla expected to open the season on the disabled list. The bad news continued today; Dioner Navarro will head to the DL with a torn oblique, according to Tony Jackson of ESPNLosAngeles, while Tim Redding left today's game with back pain, writes's Ken Gurnick. More from the NL and AL West:

Rays Sign Hayhurst, Mayora, Olmedo

The Rays have signed right-hander Dirk Hayhurst and infielders Daniel Mayora and Ray Olmedo, the team announced. The Rays also made their deals with Chris Carter and Jonah Bayliss official.

Hayhurst, 29, posted a 3.75 ERA with 7.5 K/9 and 1.9 BB/9 in 57 2/3 innings for the Blue Jays' Triple-A affiliate in 2009 before missing the '10 campaign to recover from right shoulder surgery. He has big league experience with the Padres and Blue Jays and is the author of the bestselling book The Baseball Gospels.

Mayora, 25, hit .286/.352/.440 for the Rockies' Double-A affiliate last year. He has considerable minor league experience at second and short and has played third as well.

Olmedo has spent parts of five seasons in the majors with the Reds and Blue Jays. The 29-year-old was last spotted in a big league uniform three seasons ago, but he has continued playing at Triple-A since. Last year, Olmedo posted a .284/.330/.387 line for the Brewers' Triple-A affiliate.

Bayliss last pitched in the majors for the 2007 Pirates. The 30-year-old spent last season with the Astros' Triple-A affiliate, where he posted a 3.58 ERA with 8.4 K/9 and 2.9 BB/9 in 65 1/3 innings.

Carter, who arrived in New York in the 2009 Billy Wagner trade, has big league experience in left and right field. The left-handed hitter posted a .263/.317/.389 line in 180 plate appearances last year. The Mets shielded him from southpaws in 2010; all but 7 of his plate appearances came against right-handed pitching.

Rays Sign Chris Carter

The Rays signed Chris Carter to a minor league deal, according to Adam Rubin of The Mets non-tendered the 28-year-old in December after he appeared in a career-high 100 games in 2010. Rubin reports that Carter will earn $12K per month in the minors and $420K in the majors.

Carter, who arrived in New York in the 2009 Billy Wagner trade, has big league experience in left and right field. The left-handed hitter posted a .263/.317/.389 line in 180 plate appearances last year. The Mets shielded him from southpaws in 2010; all but 7 of his plate appearances came against right-handed pitching.

The Rays will be able to retain Carter long after 2011 if they deem him worthy of a roster spot going forward.

National League Non-Tenders

This post will list all the National League players non-tendered today, but the best place to track all 200+ arbitration eligible players is our new non-tender tracker.

This Date In Transaction History: Wagner, Bautista

A pair of interesting trades went down on August 25th in years past.  One year ago, the Red Sox acquired reliever Billy Wagner from the Mets for a pair of players to be named later (Chris Carter and Eddie Lora).  And two years ago today, the Blue Jays completed their earlier Jose Bautista trade by sending catcher Robinzon Diaz to the Pirates.

Last year Wagner was coming back from Tommy John surgery with the Mets; he'd tossed nine pro innings on the season before Boston made the deal.  The Red Sox picked up the remainder of Wagner's $10.5MM salary, so the Mets saved more than $2.2MM.  Wagner waived his no-trade clause, but only if the Red Sox agreed not to pick up his 2010 club option.  They did, however, offer arbitration to the Type A free agent.  The Sox drafted Kolbrin Vitek and Bryce Brentz with the #20 and 36 picks this year as compensation when Wagner signed with the Braves.  Wagner pitched well in 13.6 regular season innings for the Red Sox.  Beyond the cost savings with Wagner, the Mets have gotten some use out of Carter.

When the Jays acquired Bautista from the Pirates two years ago, it wasn't a deal of much consequence.  He wasn't particularly good that year, and was widely considered a non-tender candidate after the '08 and '09 seasons.  The Pirates seemingly were clearing third base for new acquisition Andy LaRoche.  This year, Bautista posted one of the most surprising 40 home run seasons in recent memory and could hit 50 by year's end.  There will be no non-tender rumors this winter.  Diaz seemed like a decent return for Bautista at the time, but the Pirates cut him loose in November of last year.  Former GM J.P. Ricciardi deserves credit; check out this passage from a CBC Sports article from September of 2008:

Following the Blue Jays' thrilling come-from-behind 8-7 win over Baltimore on Wednesday night, a fan phoned a Toronto sports radio station and criticized J.P. Ricciardi for dealing catching prospect Robinson Diaz to Pittsburgh.  The general manager, who was taking calls, defended the move, saying there were players in the team's minor-league system who had developed quicker than Diaz.  He also said infielder/outfielder Jose Bautista, the player Toronto received in the trade, would be a valuable part of the team in 2009 and 2010.

Odds & Ends: Hermida, Ransom, Chris Carter

12 years ago on this date, the Rangers sent Darren Oliver, Fernando Tatis, and Mark Little to the Cardinals for Royce Clayton and Todd Stottlemyre.  Tatis was amazing in '99, while Oliver was solid as a starting pitcher.  Clayton was pretty good for the Rangers, and Stottlemyre left as a free agent after the '98 season.  For their loss, the Rangers got a supplemental draft pick in '99 and took a kid named Colby Lewis.  Here in 2010, Lewis and Oliver are both Rangers again and make an excellent combo.  Links for Monday…

Mets Designate Frank Catalanotto For Assignment

The Mets designated Frank Catalanotto for assignment, according to Adam Rubin of (via Twitter). The Mets have called Chris Carter up to replace the 36-year-old utility man. Catalanotto hit .167/.200/.208 for the Mets in 25 plate appearances this year, almost exclusively off the bench. Catalanotto will have his career .296/.360/.456 line against righties to point to if the Mets release him.

Carter has just 26 big league plate appearances to his name, but he is hitting well at Triple A Buffalo. His .339/.395/.615 line was enough to impress the Mets front office. The 27-year-old's 132 minor league homers suggest he could provide the Mets with some power.

Mets, Red Sox Complete Billy Wagner Trade

The Mets and Red Sox completed the Billy Wagner trade today, according to Bart Hubbuch of the New York Post.  Hubbuch says the Mets acquired outfielder Chris Carter and first baseman Eddie Lora to finish the deal.  The Red Sox had to wait until the offseason to send Carter to the Mets because of a waiver claim made by the Yankees in August.

Wagner pitched well in his time with Boston, posting a 1.72 ERA, 26 strikeouts, and 8 walks in 15.6 innings.  He could also have an impact in the playoffs.  The Red Sox agreed to decline Wagner's $8MM option for 2010, but the pitcher expects the team to offer arbitration.  He told WEEI's Rob Bradford he'll probably turn it down, which would mean a new team will have to surrender a draft pick to sign him.

Chris Carter Designated For Assignment

The Boston Red Sox have designated Chris Carter for assignment, according to a press release. The 27-year-old outfielder played in 13 games for the Red Sox in 2008 and 2009, and was hitless in five plate appearances this season. The New York Yankees claimed him off waivers a month ago in an attempt to complicate Boston's roster moves, as Carter was thought to be the player to be named later in the deal that sent Billy Wagner to the Sox.

The Red Sox designated Carter for assignment to make room on their active roster for left-handed pitcher Dustin Richardson, who Boston selected in the fifth round of the 2006 draft.

Rosenthal’s Full Count Video: Penny, Harden, Lidge

Rumor machine Ken Rosenthal has a new Full Count Video up at Let's dive on in…

  • The outcome of this weekend's games could determine which team the recently released Brad Penny signs with. The Giants and Marlins are the two teams pursuing him the most, but the Giants are in a better position in the NL Wildcard standings.
  • The Yankees, Twins, and A's are also expressing interest in the righthander, but "what pitcher in his right mind would want to stay in the American League?"
  • The A's and Padres have even "floated the idea" of signing Penny beyond the rest of this season, but Penny's best bet might be to go to a team like the Giants and reestablish himself in a pennant race, then go back into the free agent pool this winter on a high note.
  • The Cubs are more open to dealing Rich Harden to the Twins than you might think. The Cubs could receive two high draft picks if they offer Harden arbitration after the season and he signs elsewhere, but that's a risky strategy. Given his injury history, the club might not want to take a $10MM or so hit if he accepts, even for only one year.
  • The bigger question with Harden may be how aggressive the Twins will be in trying to deal for him. Remember that stars Justin Morneau and Joe Nathan have said the team needs more to contend, with Morneau mentioning that the team needs to impress Joe Mauer since he's due to become a free agent after next season.
  • Yes, the Yankees were messing with the Red Sox when they claimed Chris Carter off waivers, but Boston's 40-man roster only has 38 players on it at the moment. Daisuke Matsuzaka will assume one of those spots when he comes off the 60-day DL, and the other is reserved for Paul Byrd.
  • People might need to relax when it comes to Brad Lidge's struggles. His recent blown save against the Pirates might be the result of overuse, as Lidge was pitching for the fourth straight day. He had done it twice before this season, but he entered game three of that stretch with a four-run lead. Manager Charlie Manuel may need to be more careful with how he uses his closer down the stretch.