David Purcey Rumors
Pour a tall cup of coffee and open up a Baseball Reference tab. It's time for this Saturday morning's minor moves, via the Pacific Coast League and International League transaction pages (except where otherwise noted) ...
- The White Sox have signed lefty David Purcey to a minor league deal. The 31-year-old had rejected an outright assignment from the Sox in late October to become a free agent. Purcey made 24 apperances for the Sox's major league club in 2013, posting a 2.13 ERA but walking 6 batters per nine innings.
- The Dodgers signed first baseman/outfielder Jamie Romak to a minor league deal, according to MLBTR's Tim Dierkes (on Twitter). Romak's deal includes a July 1st opt out. The 28-year-old posted a .242/.322/.461 slash line with 22 homers in 134 games for the Cardinals' Triple-A affiliate last season.
- Right-handed reliever Mark Lowe, 30, has signed with the Rays, reports ESPN.com's Jerry Crasnick (via Twitter). Lowe was battered in just eleven appearances with the Angels last year, but posted a 3.60 ERA across 2009-12 and has continued to notch high strikeout totals while being stashed in the upper minors.
- The Cardinals signed third baseman Scott Moore, a thirty-year-old who has thrived at Triple-A but has yet to have a real shot in the bigs. Last year, over 485 plate appearances in the Oakland and San Diego organizations, he hit .271/.353/.448 with fourteen long balls. In his most extended MLB action, a 2012 stint with the Astros, Moore hit a more-than-respectable .259/.330/.448 with nine home runs in 228 plate appearances.
- Right-hander Jim Miller is back with the Yankees on a minor league pact after making just one MLB appearance last year, an ill-fated inning-and-a-third that resulted in three earned runs. The 31-year-old had been a solid member of the A's pen just one year prior, however, as he registered a 2.59 ERA in 48 2/3 innings for Oakland. Miller did flash a 13.1 K/9 rate during his 63 1/3 Triple-A innings last year, a somewhat intriguing mark given his manageable walk rates. Chris Cotillo of MLBDailyDish.com had the news first on Twitter.
- Lefty reliever Will Startup will stay with the Tigers after he notched a 3.41 ERA in 58 Double-A innings last year. Startup reached Triple-A as a 21-year-old back in 2006, but before joining Detroit had landed with the Sugar Land Skeeters in 2012.
- The Giants have inked two righties to minor league deals, bringing aboard Jason Berken and Daryl Maday. Berken, 29, has thrown in 110 MLB games, including 28 as a starter, and recorded a 5.36 ERA over 248 2/3 innings. He spent last year at the White Sox' Triple-A affiliate, where he managed a 3.80 ERA in 161 innings -- all as a starter -- and posted 6.5 K/9 against 2.6 BB/9. Meanwhile, at 28 years of age Maday has yet to see San Francisco, but will continue to keep the dream alive in the Giants system. He has bounced between Double-A and Triple-A since 2008, and now serves primarily as a reliever. Last year, Maday notched a cumulative 4.17 ERA in 49 2/3 innings, with 7.1 K/9 and 3.6 BB/9.
- The Pirates signed first baseman Miles Durham and catcher Francisco Diaz to minor league deals. At age thirty, Durham has spent his entire career in the Pittsburgh organization, other than a brief Independent League stint, and apparently served as a player-coach last season. Dia, 23, has all the markings of a light-hitting backstop (two career home runs in 1,115 plate appearances), though he has reached base at a productive clip in the low minors.
- Longtime Yankees farmhand Walter Ibarra has agreed to play short in the Cubs organization on a minor league pact. The 26-year-old reached Triple-A for the first time last year. Known for his defense, Ibarra failed to himpress with a cumulative .276/.308/.367 slash across 212 Double-A and Triple-A plate appearances in 2013.
- And the Nationals have reached agreement with a player by the name of Josh Johnson -- not the starting pitcher, but the middle infielder and third baseman who has been in the Nats' system since 2010. Last year, playing at both of the two highest minor league levels, the 27-year-old Johnson put up an impressive .293/.390/.458 line in 300 trips to the plate. He was especially impressive in his short time at Syracuse, where he had a .924 OPS and was a perfect six-for-six in stolen bases in just 111 plate appearances. Washington also added catcher Sean McCauley to the fold on a minor league pact. The 24-year-old was brought back to professional baseball by the Nats last year in a coaching capacity after losing his career to injury.
- The Rangers have signed righty Zach Russell away from the Cards' system. The 24-year-old reliever topped out with a brief Double-A stint last year, but struggled there.
Here are today's minor moves from around the league...
- The Twins have outrighted outfielder Wilkin Ramirez off their 40-man roster, reports Tyler Mason of FOX Sports North (on Twitter). Ramirez, who turns 28 on Friday, broke camp with the team but missed a significant portion of the season with a concussion. He received just 87 plate appearances for the Twins, batting .272/.302/.370. Though he's been primarily a corner outfielder in his minor league career, Minnesota used Ramirez in center for 50 innings this season.
- Outfielder Trevor Crowe rejected his outright assignment from the Astros and elected free agency, according to the Pacific Coast League transactions page. The former first-rounder was outrighted last week and would have been eligble for arbitration had he remained on the 40-man roster. Instead, Crowe is now free to sign with any team following a season in which he batted .218/.287/.291 in 181 MLB plate appearances. Crowe was solid in the minors, slashing .304/.364/.388 with three homers and 16 steals in 60 Triple-A games.
- Left-hander David Purcey rejected his outright assignment from the White Sox in lieu of free agency as well, per the International League's transactions page. Purcey, 31, posted a 2.13 ERA with 8.2 K/9 but an ugly 6.0 BB/9 rate in 24 relief appearances for the South Siders in 2013. Like Crowe, he'd have been arbitration eligible, so his team decided to cut ties early on, knowing that he wouldn't be tendered a contract. Purcey missed the final week of the season with a sprained UCL in his throwing elbow, but the injury wasn't expected to require surgery and should be able to heal with offseason rest.
- The Dodgers' Alex Castellanos is the only player currently in DFA limbo, as can be seen in MLBTR's DFA Tracker.
We'll keep track of today's minor moves here..
- Infielder Ryan Roberts, 1B/OF Shelley Duncan, outfielder Jason Bourgeois and right-hander J.D. Martin have all elected to become free agents, MLBDailyDish.com's Chris Cotillo reports (Twitter links). All four players were outrighted off the Rays' roster earlier this season.
- Also from Cotillo (Twitter links), catcher J.C. Boscan and outfielder Darnell McDonald have elected to become free agents. Both players were outrighted off the Cubs' 40-man roster last week.
- The White Sox announced they have outrighted David Purcey to Triple-A Charlotte. Purcey, 31, posted a 2.13 ERA with 8.2 K/9 and 6.0 BB/9 in 24 relief appearances. The club's 40-man roster is now at 36. Purcey was one of Chicago's arbitration eligible players this winter.
- Left-hander Hideki Okajima and right-hander Chris Resop have elected free agency from the Athletics, according to Matt Eddy of Baseball America (Twitter link). Okajima, 38 in December, pitched in five big league games for the A's but spent the bulk of the year in Triple-A where he posted a 4.22 ERA with 9.5 K/9 and 1.5 BB/9 in 37 appearances. Resop, 31 in November, also spent the lion's share of the year in Triple-A and had a 6.81 ERA with 7.3 K/9 and 3.3 BB/9.
- Reds right-hander Jose Arredondo, Angels right-hander Robert Coello, and Marlins third baseman Gil Velazquez have elected free agency under Article XX(D), according to Eddy (via Twitter). Arredondo struggled at the Triple-A level in 2013, posting a 5.87 ERA with 10.4 K/9 and 6.5 BB/9. Coello made 16 big league relief appearances in 2013 and put up a 3.71 ERA with 12.2 K/9 and 4.2 BB/9.
- At Baseball America, Eddy has the full list of the past week's minor league transactions.
MLBTR's Mark Polishuk also contributed to this post
The White Sox announced that they agreed to sign seven players to minor league contracts that include invitations to MLB Spring Training. Right-handers Jeff Gray and Ramon Troncoso, left-hander David Purcey, catcher Bryan Anderson, infielders Josh Bell and Steve Tolleson and outfielder Stefan Gartrell will all report to Glendale next month.
Gray pitched for the Twins in 2012, posting a 5.71 ERA with 4.5 K/9 and 3.8 BB/9 in 52 innings. Troncoso, who turns 30 next month, pitched for the Dodgers' Triple-A team in 2012. Purcey also spent the 2012 season at Triple-A, and he struck out more than one batter per inning at that level while struggling to limit walks. The 26-year-old Anderson appeared in ten games for last year's Cardinals team. Bell, formerly a top prospect, played in 21 games for the Diamondbacks in 2012. Tolleson appeared in 29 games with the 2012 Orioles, posting a .183/.227/.310 batting line as a utility player. Gartrell posted a .787 OPS with 20 home runs for the Braves' top affiliate last year.
We’ll keep track of the day’s minor moves here...
- The White Sox signed catcher Bryan Anderson and left-hander David Purcey to minor league deals, Eddy reports (on Twitter).
- The Diamondbacks signed Kila Ka'aihue, Matt Eddy of Baseball America reports (on Twitter). The 28-year-old appeared in 39 games for the Athletics this past season, posting a .234/.295/.398 batting line.
- The Blue Jays announced that they signed outfielder Ricardo Nanita and left-hander Alex Hinshaw to minor league contracts. Nanita played for the Blue Jays' Triple-A team in 2012, hitting 12 home runs. Hinshaw appeared in 33 games for the Padres and Cubs in 2012, posting a 6.04 ERA. The team also confirmed its minor league contracts with infielder Jim Negrych and right-hander Neil Wagner.
- The Chunichi Dragons have agreed to sign utility player Hector Luna to a one-year, $450K deal that includes $200K in incentives, Enrique Rojas of ESPNDeportes.com reports (on Twitter). Luna, 32, appeared in 28 games for the Phillies this past season, playing first base, third base and left field. In seven seasons at the MLB level, he has a .262/.314/.385 batting line.
- The Pirates announced that they’ve agreed to sign right-handers Brooks Brown and Erik Cordier to minor league contracts with invitations to Spring Training. The club also announced minor league deals with right-handers David Bromberg and Luis Sanz, and infielder Alex Valdez. Finally, the Pirates officially announced their minor league deal with former MLB outfielder Felix Pie.
The Phillies have signed Dave Bush, Steven Lerud and David Purcey to minor league contracts, the team announced. All three players will be invited to Major League spring training camp as non-roster players.
Bush, 32, signed a minor league deal with Philadelphia last August and posted decent numbers in four starts for Triple-A Lehigh Valley. Bush is an eight-year Major League veteran, playing for the Blue Jays, Brewers and Rangers during his career.
Lerud, a catcher, has played eight seasons in the Pirates and Orioles' farm systems with a career OPS of .665. He has spent the majority of this time in Double-A ball, briefly cracking the Triple-A level in 2010.
Purcey, drafted 16th overall by the Blue Jays in 2004, was well-traveled in 2011, going from Toronto to Oakland and finally to Detroit in a six-week span. The left-hander has a 5.38 ERA in 87 career Major League games, 21 of them starts.
Here's today's list of players to get outrighted to Triple-A...
- Steve Melewski of MASNSports.com reports that the Orioles have outrighted Brandon Erbe off the 40-man roster. Erbe was sent to the team's New York-Penn League affiliate, which is short season Single-A ball, not Triple-A. Erbe had been designated for assignment over the weekend.
- The Tigers announced (on Twitter) that they outrighted left-hander David Purcey to Triple-A. Detroit designated him for assignment last week to create roster space for David Pauley. The 29-year-old Purcey has a 5.61 ERA with 5.9 K/9 and 7.2 BB/9 in 33 2/3 innings for three teams this year.
It's the second time this season that Purcey has been designated for assignment. The Blue Jays cut him in April, then sent him to the Athletics for Danny Farquhar. The next month, the Tigers acquired Purcey, sending Scott Sizemore to the A's.
In total, the 29-year-old has a 5.61 ERA with 5.9 K/9 and 7.2 BB/9 in 33 2/3 innings this year. Last year, he posted a career-best 3.71 ERA with 8.5 K/9 and 4.0 BB/9 in 34 innings out of Toronto's 'pen.
With only five teams more than seven games out of first place, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports thinks this year's trade market could play out differently than your usual scenario of struggling teams selling to contenders. An unnamed general manager tells Rosenthal “It might be more of a reallocation of pieces than classic buying or selling...Parity also means that teams that aren’t close are saying, ‘Next year, it can be us.’ Maybe they buy a two- to three-year asset that they wouldn’t otherwise.”
Here's the latest from Rosenthal on a number of teams looking to fill needs as the pennant races begin to heat up...
- The Rangers are looking for right-handed relievers and have a number of trade chips to offer other teams. Rosenthal speculates Texas could offer Taylor Teagarden to the Giants for a righty arm, or possibly Chris Davis to the Padres or another team that is looking for offensive help.
- Todd Coffey is drawing interest from the Rangers, and Rosenthal thinks Coffey could be part of a package for Julio Borbon since the Nationals need a center fielder/leadoff hitter type.
- Of course, Washington is also looking at B.J. Upton to fill that hole in center. Rosenthal thinks it's unlikely the Rays move Upton, though they could change their minds if the Nats offer Tyler Clippard and a young positional prospect.
- The Marlins are interested in acquiring veteran bullpen help in exchange for one of their minor league relievers. Right-handers Jose Ceda, Jhan Marinez and Sandy Rosario have all attracted some attention from other clubs.
- While "the Indians’ most obvious need remains a quality starting pitcher," Rosenthal also thinks the Tribe could be in the market for right-handed hitting help. One of Rosenthal's Twitter followers asked if Cleveland could make a move for Hunter Pence, but Rosenthal doesn't think Houston will move Pence and the Indians already have Shin-Soo Choo in right field.
- The Brewers "would love to add another power arm to their 'pen," as Milwaukee relievers rank 13th in the league in K/9.
- The Diamondbacks had an interest in David Purcey before the A's dealt the left-hander to the Tigers on May 27.
- Bruce Bochy thinks rookie shortstop Brandon Crawford can be a productive Major League hitter, which would seem to lessen the Giants' chances of acquiring Jose Reyes before the deadline or trying to sign Reyes this winter in free agency.
- Rosenthal "can't see" Jim Hendry returning as the Cubs' general manager given the team's current state. "Forget about signing a free agent such as the Cardinals' Albert Pujols or the Brewers' Prince Fielder," Rosenthal writes. "The Cubs are so far gone, they are much more than one player away." Carlos Pena, John Grabow, Kosuke Fukudome, Kerry Wood and Jeff Baker are all trade candidates this summer; MLBTR's Tim Dierkes recently looked at the values of these players and others on the struggling Cubbies.
A night after striking out four times in four plate appearances, Adam Dunn walked in all four of his plate appearances in Friday's 4-2 loss to Toronto. If we're sticking to a pattern of Dunn's "three true outcomes," then theoretically, Dunn should hit four home runs against the Blue Jays tomorrow. Set your fantasy lineups accordingly!
Some news from around the majors as we go into the weekend...
- Frank McCourt will be able to meet the Dodgers' May 31 payroll, reports Bill Shaikin of the Los Angeles Times. One of Shaikin's sources says McCourt is still looking to secure the funds to meet the next payroll deadline on June 15. If McCourt fails to meet payroll, Major League Baseball will seize control of the team from the embattled owner and cover the payroll itself.
- With Bobby Abreu on pace to easily reach 433 plate appearances and cause his $9MM option for 2012 to vest, the Angels will owe $48MM in 2012 to Abreu, Vernon Wells and Torii Hunter. Mark Saxon of ESPNLosAngeles.com thinks allowing Abreu's option to vest "would be just another poor long-term decision for a GM [Tony Reagins] that seems to be specializing in them," and wonders why the Halos would tie so much money up in the outfield when their top prospect (Mike Trout) is an outfielder and Peter Bourjos is in the picture.
- In his analysis of today's Scott Sizemore-for-David Purcey trade, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports notes that the Tigers first contacted the Athletics about Purcey on the very day that Oakland acquired the left-hander from the Blue Jays. The deal was a natural match since "the A’s long have had interest in Sizemore," and plan to convert him to a third baseman.
- Matthew Eddy of Baseball America wraps up the week's minor league transactions.
- Joe Girardi said he could move Nick Swisher into a platoon with Chris Dickerson if Swisher doesn't pick up his hitting from the left side of the plate, reports Wallace Matthews of ESPNNewYork.com. Swisher still has four months to get on track, but right now it looks like there's no chance the Yankees will pick up his $10.25MM option for 2012.
- Ryan Drese was granted his release by the Orioles earlier today, and Jeff Zrebiec of the Baltimore Sun reports the veteran righty is expected to sign a minor league deal with the Astros.