Chris Heisey Rumors

Dodgers Designate Daniel Coulombe, Recall Chris Heisey

The Dodgers have designated lefty Daniel Coulombe for assignment, Dylan Hernandez of reports on Twitter. His roster spot will go to outfielder Chris Heisey, who was recalled from Triple-A.

Coulombe, 25, has appeared in ten games over the past two seasons for Los Angeles, working to a 6.39 ERA with 11 strikeouts and eight walks in 12 2/3 innings. The southpaw reliever has, however, been much better in the upper minors. This year, he’s thrown 41 1/3 frames of 3.27 ERA pitching with 8.9 K/9 against 5.2 BB/9. He had maintained double-digit strikeout-per-nine numbers over his previous three seasons in the minors.

As for Heisey, he’ll once again appear with the Dodgers after going up and down several times earlier in the year and spending some time with the Blue Jays. The 30-year-old has only 34 big league plate appearances on the year after spending the previous four seasons as a frequent part-timer with the Reds.

Dodgers Acquire Chris Heisey

The Dodgers have acquired outfielder Chris Heisey from the Blue Jays, Toronto has announced (via Ben Nicholson-Smith of, on Twitter). A player to be named later or cash will make up the return in the deal.

While we’re just hearing about the deal today, Heisey was actually acquired last night and will be post-season eligible, according to Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports (via Twitter). With rosters now expanded, he’ll join the just-acquired Justin Ruggiano in expanding the team’s right-handed outfield options while the organization waits out some injuries.

Heisey, of course, has spent much of the season with the Dodgers organization after being added in an offseason trade. But he mostly played at Triple-A, and lost his 40-man spot earlier this summer after struggling in limited and scattered big league opportunities.

Blue Jays To Sign Chris Heisey

The Blue Jays and outfielder Chris Heisey have agreed to a minor league contract, reports Shi Davidi of Sportsnet. The 30-year-old Sosnick, Cobbe & Karon client was recently released by the Dodgers. He’ll report to Triple-A Buffalo for the Blue Jays, where he’ll be assessed as a potential bench option for the Jays.

Heisey received just 34 plate appearances with the Dodgers in 2015 after coming over from the Reds in exchange for right-hander Matt Magill. Heisey spent the bulk of the season at the Triple-A level, where he batted .236/.355/.481 with 14 homers. Prior to his brief time with the Dodgers, Heisey spent parts of five seasons in Cincinnati, serving as a high quality part-time player for much of his tenure. He had a poor year in 2014, but from 2010-13, Heisey slashed .254/.308/.433. He was particularly impressive at the plate in an 18-homer 2011 campaign.

Though Heisey hits right-handed, he’s showed a reverse platoon split throughout his career. His power and K/BB numbers are virtually identical versus lefties and righties, though, so the reason for his poor production against left-handed pitching may simply be BABIP-related. Heisey has a .309 BABIP against right-handers in his career but just a .251 mark versus left-handers.

Dodgers Release Chris Heisey

The Dodgers announced that they’ve released outfielder Chris Heisey. The 30-year-old was designated for assignment on July 30 upon completion of the three-team, 13-player blockbuster between the Dodgers, Braves and Marlins.

The Dodgers acquired Heisey from the Reds this winter in exchange for right-hander Matt Magill. He came to L.A. with a relatively productive track record as a fourth outfielder with some pop, but Heisey received little playing time with the Dodgers due to their glut of outfield options. Heisey tallied just 34 plate appearances and batted .154/.353/.192 as a member of the Dodgers. He was more productive in the minors, slashing .236/.355/.481 with 14 homers in 63 games.

From 2010-14, Heisey appeared in 543 games for the Reds and batted .247/.299/.422 with 50 homers. He has experience at all three outfield positions and does have a strong 18-homer season campaign under his belt, though that came back in 2011. Despite a lack of recent productivity, I’d imagine Heisey will be able to find multiple minor league offers around the league.

Dodgers Designate Morse, Beachy, Heisey, Tsao For Assignment

The Dodgers announced that they’ve designated four players — Mike Morse, Brandon Beachy, Chris Heisey and Chin-hui Tsao — for assignment in order to clear 40-man roster spot for Alex Wood, Mat Latos, Luis Avilan, Jim Johnson and Jose Peraza. A fifth 40-man roster spot was freed up by placing Chris Hatcher on the 60-day DL. Peraza was optioned to Triple-A, and Bronson Arroyo, also acquired in today’s 13-player trade, was placed on the 60-day DL.

It’s rare — if not unprecedented — to see this large a roster departure in one fell swoop. But most of the pieces figure to have little problem clearing waivers. Morse’s sizable contract makes that an easy expectation, though Los Angeles could look to park him in the American League while saving some cash through a trade. Beachy, too, is owed enough ($2.75MM annual salary) that he’s likely to clear, though it’s unclear what Los Angeles will look to do with him. And the 34-year-old Tsao has struggled badly in his first action in the big leagues since 2007.

Heisey, though, could draw some interest. If nothing else, a team like the Brewers or Reds — both of whom could end up parting with multiple big league outfielders — might like the idea of plugging him into their outfield mix the rest of the way (and, possibly, for 2016). He is owed a fairly reasonable $2.16MM this year and can be controlled through arbitration next season — where he likely won’t command much of a raise after seeing scant time in the majors. The 30-year-old Heisey is capable of playing center and has a lifetime .246/.300/417 slash with a solid defensive reputation, making him a reasonably useful player.

Dodgers Designate Sergio Santos

The Dodgers have designated reliever Sergio Santos for assignment, the club announced. He’ll be replaced on the active roster by outfielder Chris Heisey, though more broadly the move is presumably related to the six-player trade expected to be announced soon — which will deliver new relief arms to L.A.

Santos, 31, came to Los Angeles on a minor league deal but quickly ascended to the MLB roster. Over 13 1/3 big league innings, he owns a 4.73 ERA with 10.1 K/9 versus 4.7 BB/9 and a 46.2% groundball rate. Santos seems likely to receive another chance at some point, with the Dodgers organization or otherwise, particularly as advanced metrics suggest his mediocre ERA has masked somewhat more promising actual performance levels.

Players Avoiding Arbitration: Thursday

As we approach tomorrow’s deadline for exchanging filing numbers, the volume of arb deals will increase. All arb agreements can be monitored using MLBTR’s 2015 Arbitration Tracker, but here are today’s smaller agreements, with all projections referring to those of MLBTR contributor Matt Swartz:

  • The Indians have avoided arbitration with third baseman Lonnie Chisenhall and agreed to a one-year, $2.25MM deal, CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman reports (Twitter link).  It’s a slight bump over Chisenhall’s projected $2.2MM salary.  Chisenhall hit .280/.343/.427 with 13 homers in 533 PA with the Tribe last season.
  • The Indians and left-hander Marc Rzepczynski have agreed to a one-year, $2.4MM contract to avoid arbitration, according to Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports (Twitter link).  Rzepczynski surpassed his projected salary with the contract, as he was pegged to earn $1.9MM next season.  The southpaw posted a 2.74 ERA, 2.42 K/BB rate and an even 46 strikeouts over 46 innings out of Cleveland’s bullpen last season.
  • The Nationals and catcher Jose Lobaton will avoid arbitration after agreeing to a deal, CSN Washington’s Mark Zuckerman reports.  Lobaton will earn $1.2MM, FOX Sports’ Jon Paul Morosi tweets, which exactly matches his projected 2015 salary.  Lobaton hit .234/.287/.304 over 230 PA in backup duty for the Nats last season.
  • The Athletics and outfielder Craig Gentry agreed to a one-year, $1.6MM deal to avoid arbitration, FOX Sports’ Jon Paul Morosi tweets.  Gentry was projected to earn $1.5MM.  After posting a .759 OPS over 556 PA in 2012-13, Gentry took a step back at the plate last season, slashing just .254/.319/.289 over 258 plate appearances but still providing tremendous defense (a +16 UZR/150).
  • The Nationals have avoided arbitration with second baseman Danny Espinosa, agreeing to a one-year, $1.8MM contract, James Wagner of the Washington Post reports.  This deal falls below Espinosa’s projected $2.3MM contract, though Espinosa hit .219/.283/.351 in 364 plate appearances for the Nats last season and managed only a .465 OPS in 167 PA in 2013.
  • The Indians agreed to a one-year, $2.337MM deal with right-hander Carlos Carrasco, according to Jon Heyman of CBS Sports (via Twitter).  This figure is a significant increase over the $1.4MM contract that was projected for Carrasco in his first arb-eligible year.  The righty enjoyed a breakout 2014 season, posting a 2.55 ERA, 9.4 K/9 and 4.83 K/BB rate over 134 innings with the Tribe.  Carrasco pitched mostly out of the bullpen but also delivered several quality starts down the stretch.
  • The Dodgers and outfielder Chris Heisey agreed to a one-year deal worth $2.16MM to avoid arbitration, CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman tweets.  This is slightly less than the $2.2MM Heisey was projected to earn.  Heisey is coming off a .222/.265/.378 slash line over 299 PA with the Reds last season and was dealt to L.A. last month.
  • The Angels inked catcher Drew Butera to a one-year, $987.5K deal to avoid arbitration, Jeff Fletcher of the Orange County Register reports.  Butera was projected to earn $900K next season.  The catcher posted a .555 OPS in 192 PA with the Dodgers last season and was dealt to the Halos last month.
  • The Nationals agreed to a one-year, $2.25MM contract with Craig Stammen, avoiding arbitration with the right-hander, CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman reports (via Twitter).  This figure slightly tops Stammen’s projected $2.1MM contract.  Stammen posted a 3.84 ERA, 6.9 K/9 and a 4.00 K/BB rate over 72 2/3 innings out of Washington’s bullpen last season.
  • The Cardinals agreed to a one-year, $1.65MM deal with outfielder Peter Bourjos to avoid arbitration, Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports.  Bourjos was projected to earn $1.6MM.  Bourjos displayed his usual top-shelf defense with the Cards last season but only hit .231/.294/.348 over 294 PA.


Dodgers Acquire Chris Heisey For Matt Magill

The Dodgers have officially agreed to acquire outfielder Chris Heisey from the Reds, Jerry Crasnick of reports on Twitter. Heisey, 29, is arb eligible and is projected by MLBTR/Matt Swartz to earn $2.2MM. Righty Matt Magill is coming back to the Reds for Heisey, Jon Heyman of reports on Twitter.

Needless to say, given the Dodgers’ glut of outfielding options, this is an interesting move. While it is too soon to speculate, adding Heisey could suggest something else may be in the works for president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman and GM Farhan Zaidi.

Soon to be 30, Heisey, has scuffled at the plate in each of the last two seasons with Cincinnati but has been looked upon fondly by defensive metrics. Despite below-average offensive production, his work in the outfield grass has made him a positive overall contributor. And Heisey does have some more promising campaigns at the plate in his history.

It should be noted that Heisey is at least capable of manning center, though he does not have many MLB innings at the spot. That no doubt appealed to a Los Angeles club that lacks a true center fielder at this point, with the exception of the young Joc Pederson — who, it should be noted, would be a platoon match with Heisey.

The 25-year-old Magill made six starts for the Dodgers in 2013, struggling mightily. And he had a rough go of it at Triple-A in 2014, posting a 5.21 ERA and messy ratio of 7.4 K/9 against 6.3 BB/9, even while spending much of his time in relief. But he has shown some ability to miss bats at times, and could be a useful swingman or middle relief piece for Cinci.

Players Avoiding Arbitration: Detwiler, Young, Snider

Click here for background on the upcoming arbitration schedule and how MLBTR is covering it. You can also check in on our Arbitration Tracker and look at MLBTR contributor Matt Swartz's arbitration projections. We'll use this post to keep tabs on players avoiding arbitration today:

  • The Nationals announced on Twitter that they have avoided arbitration with lefty Ross Detwiler. The New York Post's Joel Sherman reports (also on Twitter) that Detwiler received a $3MM salary and can earn an additional $50K for reaching 180 innings.
  • Sherman reports that the Mets and Eric Young Jr. have avoided arbitration by agreeing to a one-year deal worth $1.85MM (Twitter link). Young batted .251/.318/.329 in 418 plate appearances for the Mets in 2013 after he was acquired from the Rockies. He also swiped 38 bases in 45 tries, showing off his blazing speed.
  • Sherman tweets that the Pirates have avoided arbitration with Travis Snider by agreeing to a one-year, $1.2MM contract. The former Top 10 overall prospect batted just .215/.281/.333 in 285 plate appearances in 2013, though he's a solid defender and is still entering just his age-26 season.
  • Sherman also reports that Tim Collins agreed to a one-year, $1.3625MM contract with the Royals, thereby avoiding arbitration (Twitter link). Collins has a strong 3.51 ERA in 190 career innings with 9.7 K/9 in his first three seasons, but he's struggled with command, as evidenced by his 5.2 BB/9 in that time. His control has improved a bit over the past two seasons.
  • The Yankees and Francisco Cervelli have avoided arbitration by agreeing to a one-year deal worth $700K, per Jon Heyman of CBS Sports (on Twitter). Cervelli, who turns 28 in March, is a career .271/.343/.367 hitter in 623 plate appearances.


Reds Avoid Arbitration With Simon, Heisey

We'll track the day's arbitration agreements under $3MM right here…