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Here's your rundown of minor moves from around the league for Friday…
- The Mets have released catcher Landon Powell, Adam Rubin of ESPN New York notes (via Twitter). Powell was hitting .159/.284/.290 for Triple-A Las Vegas. The former first-round draft pick received 363 at bats with the Athletics between 2009 and 2011, hitting .207/.284/.328.
- The Orioles have acquired first baseman Seth Loman from the White Sox for cash considerations, MLB.com's Scott Merkin tweets. Loman was hitting .223/.324/.471 for Triple-A Charlotte.
- The Yankees released right-hander Cody Eppley from Triple-A Scranton, tweets Matt Eddy of Baseball America. The 27-year-old pitched 1 2/3 innings for the Bombers this season but accumulated 46 innings out of their bullpen in 2012, posting a 3.33 ERA with 6.3 K/9 and 3.3 BB/9.
- The Mariners released Corey Patterson from Triple-A Tacoma, according to Tacoma Rainiers broadcaster Mike Curto (on Twitter). The former No. 3 overall draft pick and No. 2 MLB prospect (per Baseball America) hit just .175/.224/.270 in 68 plate appearances for Tacoma. He last appeared in the Majors in 2011, when he was included in the Colby Rasmus/Edwin Jackson trade.
- Minor league shortstop Cale Iorg announced, via Twitter, that he has retired from baseball. The long-time Tigers farmhand and defensive wizard never reached the big leagues and retires with a .215/.267/.336 batting line in the Minors. Baseball America rated him as the best defensive shortstop in the Florida State League in 2008, and he received the same honor in the Double-A Eastern League in 2009.
Charlie Wilmoth contributed to this post.
We'll keep track of today's minor moves here.
- The Reds acquired infielder/outfielder Mark Teahen from the Diamondbacks for cash or a player to be named later, according to the D'Backs. Teahen, 31, was hitting .209/.321/.254 in 81 Triple-A plate appearances after struggling offensively in the Washington organization at that level last year. He was drafted in the first round by the A's in 2002 and spent five seasons with the Royals, hitting 18 home runs in '06.
- The Dodgers have signed pitcher Aaron Laffey to a minor-league deal, Chris Cotillo of CLNS Radio reports. MLBTR's Tim Dierkes has confirmed the signing. Laffey has been designated for assignment by the Mets and Blue Jays so far this season, and he elected free agency yesterday instead of accepting an outright assignment from the Jays. Laffey has appeared in five big-league games so far this year.
- Rangers minor-leaguer Randy Wells has retired, FOX Sports Southwest's Anthony Andro reports (on Twitter). Wells, 30, finished sixth in NL Rookie of the Year balloting in 2009, when he was with the Cubs. He appeared in 98 big-league games, mostly with Chicago, posting a 4.08 ERA, 5.9 K/9 and 3.1 BB/9. He made five starts in 2013 for the Rangers' Triple-A affiliate in Round Rock.
- The Mariners have signed outfielder Corey Patterson to a minor-league deal, MLB.com's Greg Johns reports (on Twitter). Patterson will report to extended spring training. Patterson, 33, hit .251/.285/.410 for the Brewers' Triple-A team in Nashville in 2012. He has played for the Cubs, Orioles, Reds, Nationals, Brewers, Blue Jays and Cardinals.
We’ll keep an eye on the minor moves today right here.
- The Mariners have released catcher Ronny Paulino, MLB.com’s Greg Johns reports (on Twitter). Paulino, who collected 63 at bats with the Orioles in 2012, was in Mariners camp on a minor-league deal. He has hit .272/.324/.376 in parts of eight seasons with the Pirates, Marlins, Mets and O’s.
- The Mets have released a host of minor leaguers, tweets Adam Rubin of ESPNNewYork.com. The released players are: Brad Holt, Daniel Herrera, Craig Hansen, Mike Wilson, Corey Patterson, Pedro Zapata, and Brandon Brown. Herrera has a 3.72 ERA over 101 2/3 big league innings for his career, but has not pitched in the majors since 2011 and was working back from injury. Patterson, of course, has an extensive MLB track record but spent last year with the Brewers’ Triple-A affiliate, posting a .251/.285/.410 line in 387 plate appearances. Hansen had not played at the major league level since 2009, and Wilson saw only very limited action with Seattle in 2011. None of the other players released have played above the minor league level.
- Catcher Brian Jeroloman has been traded from the Indians to the Pirates in exchange for cash, reports Quinn Roberts of MLB.com. Jeroloman, now 27, advanced to Triple-A as a 23-year-old but has yet to see big league action. He spent last season primarily in Double-A, where he hit .195/.308/.195 in 137 plate appearances. Jeroloman was destined for Double-A with Omir Santos in Triple-A, so the Indians instead shipped him to Pittsburgh where there was an opening at the higher level, tweets Paul Hoynes of the Plain Dealer.
Charlie Wilmoth contributed to this post.
The Mets have signed outfielders Corey Patterson and Mike Wilson to minor league deals, according to Matt Eddy of Baseball America (on Twitter). Patterson is represented by Jim Bronner and Bob Gilhooley, according to the MLBTR Agency Database.
Patterson, 33, hooked on with the Brewers on a minor league deal last season. The veteran spent the year in Triple-A Nashville, hitting .251/.285/.410 with ten homers in 387 plate appearances. For his big league career, Patterson owns a .252/.290/.400 slash line across twelve seasons.
Wilson has a .269/.362/.477 line across four seasons at the Triple-A level but played in just 71 games last season. The 29-year-old was the Mariners' second-round pick in the 2001 draft.
The Brewers signed outfielder Corey Patterson to a minor league contract, Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel tweets. Patterson, a client of Jim Bronner and Bob Gilhooley, doesn't have an invitation to Major League Spring Training at the moment.
Patterson, 32, spent the 2011 season with the Blue Jays and Cardinals. He played all three outfield positions, posted a .239/.273/.359 line in 397 plate appearances, and stole 13 bases in 22 attempts. Patterson, who appeared in 11 games with the 2009 Brewers, has been an average defender since 2007, according to UZR.
On the off-chance you missed it, the Blue Jays, Cardinals and White Sox announced a pair of major trades today. The Blue Jays acquired center fielder Colby Rasmus and pitchers Trever Miller, Brian Tallet, and P.J. Walters from the Cardinals for starter Edwin Jackson, relievers Marc Rzepczynski and Octavio Dotel, outfielder Corey Patterson, and three players to be named later or cash considerations. Before completing the deal with St. Louis, the Blue Jays acquired Jackson and third baseman Mark Teahen from the White Sox for reliever Jason Frasor and prospect Zach Stewart. Here’s reaction to the trades from around MLB. Be warned, Cardinals fans, you might not like what follows…
- The price the Cardinals paid to acquire Jackson and bullpen help was "just too high," according to ESPN.com's Keith Law, who suggests St. Louis' internal emphasis is on manager Tony La Russa, not the players. Law loves what Toronto did and doesn't understand Chicago's move.
- Jim Bowden of ESPN says the Cardinals had better win this year "or they will really regret this one." He calls St. Louis' move the "worst trade of the year" and gives the Blue Jays an 'A.'
- Joel Sherman of the New York Post confirms that the Cardinals turned down the Rays' offer of Jeff Niemann and J.P. Howell for Rasmus (Twitter link). Sherman suggests the Cardinals would have been better off accepting Tampa Bay's offer.
- The Giants showed how to go for it today and the Cardinals showed how not to go for it, Yahoo's Jeff Passan writes.
- A longtime scout tells ESPN.com’s Buster Olney that Rasmus has a chance to be a star. “I don't understand that deal at all," the scout said (Twitter link).
- Matthew Leach of MLB.com likes what the Cardinals got for 2011, but finds it hard to like the deal for St. Louis because of what it means for 2012-14 (Twitter link).
- Now that Rasmus and Carlos Beltran are off of the market, the list of teams with possible interest in B.J. Upton is taking shape, as Marc Topkin of the St. Petersburg Times explains. The Braves, Indians, Nationals, Phillies, Pirates and Reds are possible destinations for Upton.
- As Matt Eddy of Baseball America explains, Walters should qualify for a fourth option year in 2012 and Rzepczynski "might be the prototype" pupil for Cards pitching coach Dave Duncan.
- Joe Pawlikowski of FanGraphs explains that it's easiest to see the trade from the Blue Jays' perspective, since they gave up three relievers and a prospect for a player who can help them contend for 2012-14.
- At CloserNews, Dan Mennella wonders if Kyle McClellan could be in line for some saves, now that he's back in the bullpen.
- Tim Dierkes wrote earlier today that “it's hard to see this as anything but a win for the Blue Jays.”
- I agree with Tim and many of the others above- it’s a win for the Blue Jays. Let’s not forget how much has to be in place for this kind of deal to happen: a creative GM who reads the market well, payroll flexibility (for Teahen’s contract), willingness from ownership to take on salary, enough appealing prospects to be able to part with Stewart and enough bullpen depth to send three quality relievers packing on the same day. This trade doesn’t seem simple and in some ways it may actually be more complicated that it appears.
An eight-player deal was struck today, as the Blue Jays announced they've acquired center fielder Colby Rasmus and pitchers Trever Miller, Brian Tallet, and P.J. Walters from the Cardinals for starter Edwin Jackson, relievers Marc Rzepczynski and Octavio Dotel, outfielder Corey Patterson, and three players to be named later or cash considerations. ESPN's Buster Olney first tweeted the full details.
In Rasmus (pictured), Alex Anthopoulos acquired a good young player who had worn out his welcome with management, much like the Blue Jays GM did with Yunel Escobar last summer. Rasmus, 24, is hitting .246/.332/.420 in 386 plate appearances, a down year compared to 2010. He'll be arbitration eligible for the first time after this season, so he's under team control through 2014. Cardinals GM John Mozeliak recently called a Rasmus trade "highly unlikely," but as Strauss notes, the center fielder has "fascinated and frustrated" the Cardinals over the last three years and made repeated trade requests. Mozeliak shopped Rasmus to the Blue Jays, Rays, and Red Sox, reports Joe Strauss of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. He adds that prior to public criticism from manager Tony La Russa earlier this month, the Cardinals were in contract extension negotiations with Rasmus.
Miller, 38, has been used sparingly by the Cardinals this year, logging only 15 2/3 innings. Most of them came against left-handed hitters, but Miller hasn't pitched well no matter how you slice it. About $700K remains on his contract. Tallet, 33, has been ineffective as well and currently resides on the DL for an intercostal strain. He spent the previous five seasons with the Jays. About $263K remains on his contract.
Walters, 26, has logged 50 innings in the bigs since 2009. The righty has a 4.27 ERA, 7.6 K/9, 3.7 BB/9, and 0.8 HR/9 in 103 1/3 Triple-A innings this year, his fourth stint at the level. Baseball America ranked him 19th among Cardinals prospects prior to the season, praising his plus changeup but projecting a long relief/swingman role.
Jackson, 27, was traded for the fifth and sixth times in his career today. The 27-year-old flourished in nearly 200 innings with the White Sox, and improves a Cardinals rotation that ranks seventh in the NL with a 3.84 ERA. The acquisition gives the Cards the flexibility to move Kyle McClellan back to the bullpen, leaving a rotation of Chris Carpenter, Jaime Garcia, Jackson, Jake Westbrook, and Kyle Lohse. Jackson, a Scott Boras client, figures to test free agency after the season as a Type B. About $2.9MM remains on his contract.
The Cardinals' bullpen gets a lift from Dotel, Rzepczynski, and McClellan. Dotel, 37, has a 3.68 ERA, 9.2 K/9, 3.7 BB/9, 1.53 HR/9, and 28.6% groundball rate on the season; he excels against right-handed batters. Should the Cardinals turn down his $3.5MM club option, Dotel projects as a Type B free agent in the AL at the moment. If the option is declined, about $1.7MM remains on Dotel's contract.
Rzepczynski, 25, switched to full-time relief this year. He has a 2.97 ERA, 7.6 K/9, 3.4 BB/9, 0.46 HR/9, and strong 65.7% groundball rate in 39 1/3 innings this year. He complements Dotel nicely, having dominated lefties and struggled against righties. Rzepczynski is under team control through 2015. Dotel and Rzepczynski do not appear to be a threat to closer Fernando Salas, writes Dan Mennella of CloserNews.
Patterson, 31, is hitting .252/.287/.379 in 341 plate appearances for the Blue Jays this year. He restores a little bit of outfield depth for St. Louis.
Though there are eight players in this deal, it mostly boils down to the Cardinals renting Jackson and Dotel and getting Rzepczynski long-term in exchange for Rasmus' three arbitration years. It's hard to see this as anything but a win for the Blue Jays. Ultimately Rasmus cost the Jays Zach Stewart, Jason Frasor, Dotel, Rzepczynski, and Teahen's contract.
Photo courtesy of Icon SMI.
12:08pm: The Cardinals will send Rasmus, Trever Miller, Brian Tallet, and P.J. Walters to the Blue Jays for Jackson, Rzepczynski, Dotel, and Corey Patterson, tweets ESPN's Buster Olney. Olney adds that Miller is then expected to be traded to the White Sox.
12:01pm: This trade is not yet official because of the money involved, tweets Danny Knobler of CBS Sports. He says that aspect may need to be reworked before it's approved.
11:35am: A trade of Rasmus to the Blue Jays for Jackson, Dotel, and Rzepczynski is imminent, reports Joe Strauss of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. He says an announcement could come early this afternoon.
11:22am: Edwin Jackson is definitely going to be traded by the Blue Jays, tweets SI's Jon Heyman. Heyman heard it's going to be for Cardinals outfielder Colby Rasmus. Rasmus being under team control through 2014 and still highly-regarded, the Cards will require more than just two months of Jackson. The two teams have talked about Marc Rzepczynski and Octavio Dotel, notes Olney, and Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports tweets that the Cards asked about outfielder Eric Thames.
Rasmus is a popular trade target. ESPN's Buster Olney tweets that the Rays offered one of Jeff Niemann, Wade Davis, and Alex Cobb, and the young center fielder is very much available. The Indians have interest as well.
The Blue Jays announced six minor league signings today: outfielder Corey Patterson, righty Winston Abreu, catcher Ryan Budde, lefty Sean Henn, lefty Mike Hinckley, and righty Brian Stokes. The deals for Abreu, Budde, Henn, Hinckley, and Stokes were reported on previously.
Patterson, 31, hit .269/.315/.406 in 340 plate appearances for the Orioles this year, playing mostly left field. He came up as a center fielder with the Cubs, who drafted him third overall in 1998. As Patterson can be a useful fourth outfielder, I thought he might be able to snag a big league contract. He is represented by Jim Bronner and Bob Gilhooley. The Jays' current outfield picture includes Travis Snider, Vernon Wells, and Rajai Davis, with Jose Bautista and Adam Lind seemingly more likely to occupy infield corners.
Abreu, 34 in April, spent the 2010 season with Tampa Bay's Triple-A affiliate. His signing was announced by Baseball America's Matt Eddy earlier this month, but the journeyman deserves elaboration here at MLBTR. In Triple-A Abreu posted a 2.28 ERA, 13.3 K/9, 3.4 BB/9, and 0.2 HR/9 in 55 1/3 innings. Abreu has done that type of thing at Triple-A before, but has yet to receive an extended big league trial.
A note about Henn: the Blue Jays originally claimed him off waivers from the Orioles in October of last year, marking GM Alex Anthopoulos' first move.
You might see Ty Wigginton in an Orioles uniform next season, but it’s less likely that the club re-signs Kevin Millwood or Julio Lugo. Orioles president of baseball operations Andy MacPhail told Dan Connolly of the Baltimore Sun that he has preliminary interest in re-signing some of Baltimore’s free agents, though final decisions are months away. Here are the details:
- Ty Wigginton: The Orioles have interest in re-signing Wigginton, and the infielder told Connolly that he would consider returning in 2011. "I enjoy getting to go out and compete and put on a Baltimore Orioles uniform,” Wigginton said. “I think I can definitely be a good fit; we'll just have to see how everything works out."
- Koji Uehara: The reliever said he’s not thinking about next year, but confirmed that he wanted to pitch for an MLB team. Uehara, who projects as a Type B free agent under the Elias Rankings, would do well to sign for a couple million, as Tim Dierkes explained today.
- Cesar Izturis: The shortstop says he’d like to spend the rest of his career in Baltimore, and the O’s have’t ruled out bringing him back.
- Corey Patterson: Connolly points out that if Patterson re-signs, the sides will likely reach a deal late in the offseason.
- Kevin Millwood: Millwood may seek out a pitcher-friendly environment after years of pitching in Baltimore and Texas. An arbitration offer seems unlikely for the projected Type B free agent.
- Mark Hendrickson: The Orioles have a $1.2MM option for the lefty’s services in 2011, so he could return.