Clay Buchholz Rumors
The Red Sox beat the Cardinals in Florida today even though they allowed seven runs. Here are the latest updates on the BoSox, with an emphasis on the team's pitching staff...
- The Red Sox announced that they agreed to terms with 15 pre-arbitration eligible players including Clay Buchholz and Daniel Bard. Buchholz was an extension candidate and he discussed a potential multiyear deal with the Red Sox, but they haven't agreed on one so far.
- Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports hears from a scout that Josh Beckett "looks like he's on [a] mission" and that his pitches are looking good (Twitter link).
- Tim Wakefield told Kirk Minihane of WEEI.com that he can't envision playing elsewhere. "Why would I? I've been here for so long, why would I go somewhere else?" Wakefield asked. He first suited up for the Red Sox in 1995.
The latest on the Red Sox, as John Lackey prepares for his second Spring Training start...
- Though Adrian Gonzalez and the Red Sox have not resumed contract talks since the weekend they traded for him, there is an understanding that a seven-year deal at around $22MM per year will get it done, writes ESPN's Buster Olney. Gonzalez has said a couple of times that there's no pre-set agreement in place, but his agent John Boggs and Sox president Larry Lucchino both expect a deal.
- Regarding a potential multiyear extension, Clay Buchholz told WEEI's Kirk Minihane, "I think we've talked a little bit about it but there's nothing." Buchholz likes the five-year, $30MM deals signed by Jon Lester, Yovani Gallardo, and Ricky Romero, but perhaps the Red Sox need to see more. Buchholz's numbers are comparable to those players, but for a team there is a lot that goes into the decision beyond the stats.
- Manager Terry Francona explained to ESPN's Gordon Edes that he's thinking about the long-term with lefty Andrew Miller (Twitter link). The Red Sox were able to get a unique contract approved for Miller with the aim of subverting the option system, with a $3MM club option that vests for 2012 if he's claimed by another team. On one hand, the Commissioner's Office allowed this clause at first pass. Still, I've spoken to a few execs who think the Red Sox won't get away with it if Miller is actually claimed.
- Red Sox players are meeting today with Players' Association executive director Michael Weiner as well as several special assistants. Jed Lowrie may have a lot to contribute; Scott Lauber of the Boston Herald says the shortstop recently finished up a political science degree from Stanford by writing a 17-page paper comparing the players' unions in MLB and the NFL.
When MLBTR's Ben Nicholson-Smith mentioned Clay Buchholz as an extension candidate last September, Ben noted that Buchholz's rotation mate Jon Lester was a close comparable. Buchholz himself apparently agrees with the comparison, as he told WEEI.com's Alex Speier that he would appreciate a multiyear deal akin to the five-year, $30MM pact that Lester signed with the Red Sox before the 2009 season, or the similar extensions signed by Ricky Romero in Toronto and Yovani Gallardo in Milwaukee.
“I think that would definitely be a base model for it — numbers-wise, security reasons, I think every player with less than three years of service time, that’s what they strive for,” said Buchholz. “I’m not saying I’m as good as Lester or I deserve what he got, but just from the other guys who signed their deal in the past year or so with the same service, I think that’s definitely a good starting point if there ever was one.”
The Sox haven't approached Buchholz about an extension this winter, and if the team waits until sometime during or after the 2011 season to explore a long-term deal, another strong season from Buchholz could make his extension more expensive than the deals signed by Lester, Gallardo or Romero. There's no question Boston can afford to extend the right-hander, but doing so sooner rather than later might save the team an extra $5-10MM on a contract. Buchholz will be arbitration-eligible for the first time after this season.
Some news about the various beasts of the eastern baseball world...
- Adam Jones doesn't believe the Orioles discussed a multi-year extension with his CAA representation before the two sides agreed to a 2011 contract, the outfielder tells MLB.com's Brittany Ghiroli.
- The Red Sox haven't discussed a long-term extension with Clay Buchholz this offseason, reports Brian MacPherson of the Providence Journal. Last September, MLBTR's Ben Nicholson-Smith explored what a Buchholz extension might cost Boston.
- Also from MacPherson, he points out that the Red Sox could wind up letting Jonathan Papelbon leave for nothing next winter. Papelbon would have to turn down an arbitration offer from Boston in order for the Sox to receive compensatory draft picks if he signed elsewhere as a free agent. However, by offering arbitration, the Red Sox would be making "a $14-$15MM gamble" that Papelbon wouldn't accept, since he's unlikely to find that much salary elsewhere.
- GM Mike Rizzo discussed several Nationals-related topics during a conference call with reporters today. Mark Zuckerman of the Nats Insider blog has a partial transcript.
- Alex Anthopoulos tells MLB.com's Gregor Chisholm his philosophy about not publicly disclosing whether or not the Jays are negotiating multi-year contracts, be they with Jose Bautista or any player.
- Brett Lawrie tells MinorLeagueBaseball.com's Robert Emrich that he has been working out at third base and believes he will play the position during Spring Training. When Toronto acquired Lawrie in the Shaun Marcum deal, there was speculation to whether Lawrie would stay at second base or be moved to third or even a corner outfield spot. The Jays are, obviously, set at second (at least in the short term) with Aaron Hill.
- In an interview with Jim Bowden of MLB Network Radio (Twitter link), Phillies assistant GM Scott Proefrock says his club does not have to deal Joe Blanton or Kyle Kendrick. Proefrock also said the Phillies will look within the organization for right-handed hitting help.
- The Orioles are lacking in Major League third base depth, writes Dan Connolly of the Baltimore Sun.
If the Red Sox want to extend Clay Buchholz this winter, there's one comparable pitcher they just won't be able to avoid. Whether they like it or not, Jon Lester's five-year $30MM extension will be a model of sorts for any extension discussions with Buchholz.
Both pitch in Fenway Park against the tough American League East and both authored no-hitters early on in their respective careers. As the table below shows, Buchholz's current career numbers are similar to the ones Lester had when he signed long-term:
Ricky Romero and Yovani Gallardo had comparable numbers at similar stages in their careers and both signed for about $30MM over five years. The Red Sox are no doubt aware of the similarities between Lester and Buchholz and surely realize that locking up Buchholz for five years will cost about $30MM. The team has also committed to Daisuke Matsuzaka, Josh Beckett and John Lackey, so they may be reluctant to commit tens of millions more to a starting pitcher.
But if the Red Sox are ready to invest, Buchholz seems interested in striking a deal. Back in May, he told Alex Speier of WEEI.com that he would "love" to sign with the Red Sox long-term. We should find out early in 2011 if Theo Epstein and the Red Sox front office want to commit to the right-hander and make a deal.
Sunday night linkage..
- The three newest members of the Dodgers are happy to be in Los Angeles, writes MLB.com's Ken Gurnick.
- The Rangers were the biggest winners at the deadline, writes Scott Miller of CBSSports.com.
- Yunesky Maya tells Jorge Ebro of El Nuevo Herald (Spanish link) that he has been training hard and "in about three weeks" the Nationals can save him a spot on the roster (translation courtesy of Nick Collias). Earlier today the Nats confirmed that they have inked the 28-year-old hurler to a four-year deal.
- Major league sources tell Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports that a three-way trade was discussed in which Mike Lowell could have landed with the Yankees. In the discussed deal, the Red Sox would have sent Lowell to the Rangers, who would then send the veteran to the Yankees.
- Daniel Barbarisi of The Providence Journal writes that despite his strong first half, Clay Buchholz still couldn't bring himself to relax at the deadline.
- The Giants haven't talked to Carlos Delgado's people since this winter, tweets Mychael Urban of CSNBayArea.com.
- MLB.com's James Hall writes that Indians manager Manny Acta is happy to have July 31st in the rear view mirror. Jake Westbrook, Kerry Wood, Austin Kearns, and Jhonny Peralta were all shipped out in advance of the deadline.
- The future of Mariners manager Don Wakamatsu is clearly in doubt, tweets Bob Nightengale of USA Today.
- Toronto GM Alex Anthopoulos had his eye on center fielder Anthony Gose for quite some time, writes Jordan Bastian of MLB.com. Anthopoulos finally got his man in exchange for first baseman Brett Wallace.
Ken Rosenthal has a new Full Count video up, so let's dive in...
- The Red Sox scouted Jarrod Saltalamacchia hard before acquiring him this afternoon, and they feel that he is throwing better and will benefit from a change of scenery. 18 months ago the cost for Salty was Clay Buchholz, so they feel he's worth the gamble considering the uncertain futures of Victor Martinez and Jason Varitek.
- The Braves didn't need either Kyle Farnsworth or Rick Ankiel, but picking up both improves their depth considerably. Ankiel will be the regular center fielder against righties, platooning with Melky Cabrera, while Farnsworth will help lessen the burden on Takashi Saito and Jonny Venters. The Braves are clearly going for it in Bobby Cox's final season.
- It seems odd that the Cardinals would trade Ryan Ludwick given their offensive inconsistency this year, but the team likes what Jon Jay has done and they'll save big when Ludwick goes to arbitration for the final time next season.
- Relative to its competition, no team did as poorly as the Mets at the deadline. They were outbid for Ramon Ramirez, and the Cubs wanted no part of a Luis Castillo and Oliver Perez for Carlos Zambrano swap. The Cubbies are hopeful that Big Z will come back and rebuild his value down the stretch.
Jon Lester told Alex Speier of WEEI.com that he hopes to sign an extension with the Red Sox at some point. The Red Sox already extended Lester once and control his rights through 2014, at which point the left-hander wants to re-sign in Boston.
“Hopefully I’ll stay here, and hopefully we’ll be able to do it,” Lester said. “That’s a couple years away, but it’s something I’ve always thought about, and hopefully it’s something we can get done at some point.”
Clay Buchholz said in May that he would like to sign long-term with the Red Sox, but he hasn’t approached the club about a deal, and the Red Sox haven’t brought the subject up either. Buchholz isn’t arbitration-eligible until after 2011 or free agent-eligible until after 2014, so he says he isn’t worried about his long-term future yet.
“I think time will take care of all that stuff,” said Buchholz. “I’m going to focus on playing.”
Some links for Monday, before Mike Leake tries to restore order for the Reds...
- Mychael Urban of CSNBayArea.com explains why he believes the Giants should acquire bullpen help.
- Dave Cameron of U.S.S. Mariner wonders (via Twitter) if the Mariners and Blue Jays could swap two recently-designated players: Ian Snell and Edwin Encarnacion.
- D'Backs GM Josh Byrnes told Jack Curry of the YES Network that he will need "very significant players" in return for some of his stars (Twitter link). Sounds like Dan Haren will be hard to obtain this summer.
- Mariano Rivera told Joel Sherman of the New York Post that he doesn't want to think about his contract (it expires after the season) but would consider signing a one-year deal like Andy Pettitte.
- Wilson Ramos is thought of as the kind of prospect that could help the Twins pry Cliff Lee from the Mariners. But as Joe Christensen of the Minneapolis Star-Tribune notes, the catcher will miss about a week with a strained oblique.
- Pat Andriola of FanGraphs names winners and losers from some 2008 deadline deals.
- Most expect the D'Backs to continue selling, but Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports notes (via Twitter) that no scouts made a special trip to see Edwin Jackson's most recent start.
- The Red Sox signed Jay Broughton from the independent league Calgary Vipers, according to Sean Myers of the Calgary Herald. The 23-year-old had enrolled in grad school, but he quit and Red Sox assistant GM Allard Baird took notice and signed him.
- Alex Speier of WEEI.com explains that the Dodgers, who lost to Clay Buchholz last night, nearly drafted the right-hander in the 2005 draft.
- R.J. Anderson of FanGraphs says the Braves could improve by adding an outfielder before the trade deadline. Few Braves fans would argue that GM Frank Wren shouldn't consider players like Luke Scott and David DeJesus if the price is right.
- MLB.com's Joe Frisaro says the Marlins need to solidify their bullpen if they're going to contend.
Jon Heyman has a new column up at SI.com, so let's dive on in...
- Cliff Lee and Roy Oswalt are the two big name pitchers available on the trade market, but their value is very different because of the money owed to them. "At the end of the day," says one AL exec, "I don't think Houston will be able to move the entire (Oswalt) contract and get premium players back."
- Another AL executive noted that Lee has proven that he can be successful in the American League and will fetch two draft picks at the end of the season.
- The Red Sox turned down a straight up Lee for Clay Buchholz offer last year.
- The Yankees are happy with their rotation at the moment, but they plan on putting in a call in the coming days just in case they are "pleasantly surprised" by Seattle's asking price. Oswalt, meanwhile, isn't even on their radar.
- Some wonder if the Dodgers are saving money for a big score, but GM Ned Colletti will be hard pressed to acquire either Lee or Oswalt without ownership approval.
- The Cardinals might not be willing to take on Oswalt's deal with Albert Pujols' free agency rapidly approaching.
- The Mets might not want to give up the prospects to acquire another frontline pitcher, though the Rangers would be able to work Lee's salary into the budget.
- Heyman also goes through and offers some opinion on other teams that could use one of the two aces, including the Reds, Phillies, and Angels.
- Kenny Williams would like to fire Ozzie Guillen according to one person close to the team, but owner Jerry Reinsdorf is too loyal to let it happen.
- A trade of Xavier Nady to open up the Cubs' outfield logjam seems likely.