Conor Jackson Rumors
MONDAY: Yahoo's Jeff Passan says the D'Backs and Jackson have been discussing a long-term deal for nearly eight months. Though they're struggling just to agree on his '09 salary, the D'Backs would like to buy out Jackson's three arb years and get a club option on his first free agent season.
SUNDAY: According to MLB.com's Steve Gilbert, the Diamondbacks are not close to a contract with arbitration-eligible outfielder Conor Jackson.
Jackson requested $3.65MM and the club countered with a $2.45MM figure back when arbitration numbers were due. That gap has been a tough one to close and his hearing is looming. It is currently scheduled for Wednesday, February 18.
MLB.com's Steve Gilbert reports that the Diamondbacks are working hard to avoid an arbitration hearing with left fielder Conor Jackson.
The D-Backs haven't required a hearing since Josh Byrnes took over as general manager in 2005. Jackson asked for $3.65MM and the club countered with $2.45MM back when figures were filed. The 26-year-old hit .300/.376/.446 in '08 with 12 home runs and 75 RBI. He is Arizona's last unsigned arbitration-eligible player.
According to Nick Piecoro, the D'Backs avoided arbitration with reliever Chad Qualls by signing him at $2.535MM for '09. The Conor Jackson case remains unresolved.
According to Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic, free agent lefty Randy Wolf rejected an offer from the Diamondbacks. Jon Garland did the same last week; Garland's offer apparently had two option years. Piecoro says the D'Backs have about $4-5MM left to spend this winter. Braden Looper is said to be next on the list.
Piecoro adds that the D'Backs have two arbitration-eligible players, Chad Qualls and Conor Jackson. They're closer to an agreement with Qualls than Jackson.
10:25pm: The D'Backs met with Brandon Webb's agent for more than an hour last night. They discussed Webb's desire to stay in Arizona but there is no extension offer at this time.
Also, the D'Backs could sign pitcher Mike Bascik to a minor league deal for depth.
7:55pm: D'Backs rumors for Tuesday...
- According to Nick Piecoro, the D'Backs met with Scott Boras on Monday to discuss Felipe Lopez. The D'Backs did not make an offer at that meeting. Lopez wants a multiyear deal, and figures to be out of their price range.
- Piecoro heard a Conor Jackson for Kelly Johnson trade was discussed, but it doesn't have momentum.
- Joe Beimel does not seem to be a priority for Arizona.
- At least one team is looking at Brandon Lyon as a starter.
12:10am: SI.com's Jon Heyman is hearing the Braves are locked in on the D'Backs, so I'm not sure who to believe. Heyman believes the Rays could be the fallback.
11:42pm: Jack Magruder of the East Valley Tribune has a source saying there's "no way" the D'Backs acquire Teixeira or Manny Ramirez. The Braves proposed a package of Scherzer, Parker, and Tracy for Tex. Sounds like these two teams are not close to being on the same page.
11:29pm: MLB.com's Mark Bowman checks in. His source says the Yankees, Rays, and Angels are more likely to acquire Teixeira than the D'Backs. Frank Wren isn't having the Tracy over Jackson idea.
11:06pm: Buster Olney heard from sources that the Braves are leaning toward the D'Backs. He believes a deal could be structured around Tracy and a non-Scherzer pitching prospect. Will Carroll believes the Braves have two solid offers and a third on the way, and Tex could be traded by tomorrow.
10:32pm: Ken Rosenthal has the D'Backs as frontrunners for Tex, noting that they'll trade Tracy but not Jackson. Micah Owings or a prospect not named Scherzer or Parker could also be included. Tracy and Owings does seem superior to two draft picks. Rosenthal notes that the D'Backs would not attempt to re-sign Teixeira after the season. Meanwhile, Will Carroll heard that the Orioles and Dodgers also inquired.
9:39pm: Steve Gilbert of MLB.com has a source saying the D'Backs don't want to part with Conor Jackson, Max Scherzer, or Jarrod Parker for Teixeira.
7:12pm: David O'Brien of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution talked to GM Frank Wren, who says the Braves have deals on the table right now for Teixeira. Wren is still trying to find the best deal.
6:38pm: The Braves are now taking bids for Teixeira. ESPN's Jayson Stark says the teams in the mix are the D'Backs, Red Sox, Rays, and Angels. Still, Arizona seems the most logical fit. The Angels won't trade Casey Kotchman, and the Braves don't care for Kendry Morales.
5:08pm: According to Yahoo's Steve Henson, negotiations between the Braves and Diamondbacks for first baseman Mark Teixeira are "pretty far along." Henson talked to a front office source from another team interested in Tex. The Braves reportedly want a prospect plus Chad Tracy or Conor Jackson.
ESPN's Keith Law wrote earlier today that the Braves have at least four suitors for Teixeira.
Rounding up rumors and links from the weekend...
- SI.com's Jon Heyman says the Mariners are asking the Mets for Jon Niese for Raul Ibanez. Not likely.
- ESPN's Buster Olney says the Braves would require Conor Jackson from the D'Backs in a Mark Teixeira deal, but Arizona is not biting.
- Another quick hit from Olney: the White Sox are surveying the relief market in the wake of Scott Linebrink's shoulder injury.
- Several readers have written in about Phillies' lefty J.A. Happ being pulled early from a Triple A start (2.2 scoreless innings) with no sign of injury. Something to keep an eye on, as the Phillies hunt for a lefty reliever on the trade market. UPDATE: Happ may be getting the call to replace Adam Eaton.
- Even on the DL, Phil Hughes has been in high demand.
- The White Sox let Esteban Loaiza go.
- No team claimed Kei Igawa off waivers. Also, the Yankees designated LaTroy Hawkins for assignment.
- Ned Colletti on the possibility of trading Derek Lowe: "No."
- Jim Bowden and Chad Cordero patched things up, making a re-signing possible this winter.
- The emergence of Jeff Samardzija this weekend may make Scott Eyre or Jon Lieber expendable.
- At least 20 teams have called about one of the Rangers' catchers.
- Jamey Newberg wrote a few days ago that most likely the only way Kevin Millwood can lock in his $12MM for 2010 will be to pitch 180 innings next year.
"A D-Backs executive called the speculation 'rumors without any real basis.' An attempt to obtain Teixeira, who is a free agent after 2008, would fly in the face of the D-Backs way of operating, which is to build for the future on a conservative, mid-market budget."
Conor Jackson and Chad Tracy were two names mentioned as pieces, but with Teixeira set to make upwards of $20MM per year next season and CoJack not even in arbitration yet, it never made a whole lot of sense. Chad Tracy and prospects Jarrod Parker and Dallas Buck were suggested to be in consideration by Peter Gammons but apparently that is a non-story.
- Scott Spiezio is in trouble with the law, and the Cardinals decided to release him for it. Joe Ostermeier notes that the Cards now have about $20MM in dead money on the payroll for '08.
- Evan Grant believes the Rangers would want Jose Ceda or Donald Veal in a deal for Marlon Byrd.
- Call it informed speculation, but Mike Berardino wonders whether Carl Pavano could end up back with the Marlins eventually.
- Ken Rosenthal recently wrote that the Padres were eyeing Gabe Gross. Tom Haudricourt found out that Kevin Towers never inquired on the Brewers outfielder, but that doesn't mean the Friars weren't eyeing him.
- Ken Davidoff makes a case for why the Astros should sign Roger Clemens.
- Sadly, the Rockies pulled the plug on a deal with Neifi Perez at the last minute.
- We hear "best shape of his life" often in Spring Training, but not with the newly signed Bartolo Colon. The Red Sox have some history pursuing Colon, as noted by Rob Bradford.
- Conor Jackson switched agents.
UPDATE, 12-5-07 at 11:20am: Joel Sherman says Stephen Drew, Mark Reynolds, and Tony Pena are also off the table in the Haren talks.
UPDATE, 12-5-07 at 8:09am: Susan Slusser adds that the A's aren't being unreasonable with Arizona - they haven't asked for Justin Upton or Chris Young. Slusser also notes that Billy Beane wouldn't sit down with the Tigers unless they'd discuss Andrew Miller and Cameron Maybin. That's when the Tigers turned to the Marlins. Beane downplayed the chances of trading Haren, but what else is he going to say?
FROM 12-5-07 at 12:09am:
Technically it's Wednesday now, and some of the more rumor-filled threads were getting really long. So I'm happy to start a set of new ones. You can check out Tuesday's Dan Haren thread here.
According to Jack Magruder of the East Valley Tribune, the D'Backs are willing to discuss a package of Carlos Gonzalez, Emilio Bonifacio, and Brett Anderson for Haren. That the D'Backs could spare these three very talented youngsters without skipping a beat speaks to how deep their farm system is. Magruder's source says the A's could ask for a staggering six players.
Jose Valverde, Dustin Nippert, and/or Alberto Callaspo could be involved to give the A's some MLB-ready talent. From previous reports, we know that Conor Jackson and Max Scherzer will not be involved. Ken Rosenthal had suggested last night that the A's initial request scared the D'Backs off, but he's since corrected that information.
The A's, however, want to wait for something to happen with Johan Santana before trading Haren.
Additionally, Magruder adds that the D'Backs have a touch of interest in Noah Lowry.