David DeJesus Rumors
The Red Sox and Royals discussed outfielder David DeJesus about ten days ago and agreed to stay in contact, according to Ken Rosenthal and Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports. They add, "The Royals are scouting the Red Sox’s minor-league system, but the teams have yet to exchange names." Scott Lauber of the Boston Herald first reported the Red Sox' interest in DeJesus on June 26th. The Padres and Giants seem like good fits for the Royals outfielder as well, though their level of interest is not known.
The Red Sox are not likely to deal for DeJesus unless his price drops, a source tells Alex Speier of WEEI.com. The Royals are currently asking for a lot in return for their right fielder.
As Rosenthal and Morosi note, the Red Sox have dealt with injuries to Jacoby Ellsbury and Mike Cameron this season and could use the versatile DeJesus. Given his $6MM club option, the Sox would have DeJesus, Ellsbury, Cameron, and J.D. Drew under control for 2011. Such depth could prompt a trade of Ellsbury, but let's not get ahead of ourselves. This year, DeJesus is owed an additional $2.12MM.
DeJesus is having a career year so far at age 30, with a .326/.395/.460 line in 370 plate appearances. He's also playing above-average defense. The Royals will wait until closer to the July 31st deadline to decide whether to trade DeJesus, reported ESPN's Buster Olney three days ago.
In today's blog post at ESPN (Insider req'd), Buster Olney names the winners and losers in yesterday's Cliff Lee deal. Beyond the obvious, he says the Red Sox and Rays win because Lee stays away from the team they're chasing in the AL East while the Athletics and Angels lose because he's going to the team they're chasing in the AL West. Olney also dubs the Phillies losers because yesterday's trade again showed that they didn't receive as much as they could have for Lee when they traded him last winter.
Here are the rest of Buster's rumors...
- People within the Mets' front office are working under the assumption that they will not be able to expand payroll. Earlier this week we heard that the team liked the idea of acquiring Ted Lilly and taking on the now $5.55MM left on his deal as a way to move fewer prospects.
- The Phillies would prefer to move Raul Ibanez and the $17MM left on his deal to make room for top prospect Domonic Brown, but I can't imagine anyone will bite. Impending free agent Jayson Werth might go instead.
- Kosuke Fukudome's stock is falling, but the Cubs are still keeping the eye on the market for his services.
- The Royals are telling teams that they are going to hang on to David DeJesus until the trade deadline before deciding whether or not to move the outfielder.
- Newsday's David Lennon tweets that the Mariners/Mets negotiations for Lee fell through when Seattle wanted Ike Davis as part of the trade package.
- The Mariners were after James Loney or Chad Billingsley from the Dodgers in a possible Lee trade, reports Dylan Hernandez of the Los Angeles Times. (Twitter link)
- Most teams feel the Royals will wait until closer to the trade deadline before thinking about a David DeJesus trade, tweets ESPN's Buster Olney.
- Dan Hayes of the North County Times reports (via Twitter) that the Padres have heard some inquiries about right-handed prospect Keyvius Sampson, among other notable minor leaguers in the San Diego system.
- Jamie Samuelsen of the Detroit Free Press says the Tigers are virtually obligated to make a move at the trade deadline.
- Blogger El Lefty Malo thinks the Giants should make an offer on Stephen Drew. Not a bad idea, but it's hard to believe that San Francisco would give up Jonathan Sanchez for Drew, as E.L.M. proposes.
- Speaking of Drew, MLB.com's Jason Beck thinks that he's "a more realistic target" than Dan Haren in a potential Tigers/Diamondbacks trade.
- Dejan Kovacevic of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette discusses the Pirates' international scouting system.
- Milwaukee GM Doug Melvin says his team isn't in out-and-out "seller" mode, reports MLB.com's Adam McCalvy.
- Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com writes that the Cubs could be contenders again in the near future.
- And finally, Fangraphs' Matt Klaaseen pokes some fun at the newest members of the Miami Heat by predicting a familiar scenario for some of this winter's top free-agent outfielders.
Many of this year's trade candidates share a distinguishing characteristic: they are about to become free agents. After the season, their teams will decide whether to offer arbitration and have a chance at top picks in next year's draft. A player's ranking can contribute to or detract from his trade value, so let's take a look at some of this year's trade candidates and see where they place under our reverse-engineered Elias rankings.
We'll start with some trade candidates who project as Type A free agents. If these players decline arbitration offers to sign elsewhere, their former teams will receive two top picks in the 2011 draft. These players are sometimes more inclined to accept arbitration, since their Type A status can intimidate would-be suitors who don't want to surrender a pick (just ask Juan Cruz and Orlando Hudson).
It's important to note that teams don't necessarily give first rounders up to sign the players below. The first 15 picks are protected and sometimes teams sign more than one Type A player. Say the Red Sox sign Adam Dunn (75.8 ranking) and Scott Downs (74.6 ranking) and both were offered arb. The Nationals would get Boston's top pick and the Blue Jays would get their second-best pick because Dunn ranks higher than Downs. In that instance, Downs only costs the Red Sox a second rounder.
Once a team signs one Type A free agent, the cost of signing a second and a third drops, since the club is giving up lesser picks. Rafael Soriano (88.9), Vladimir Guerrero (88.6), Carl Crawford (85.5), Javier Vazquez (79.0) and Adrian Beltre (78.9) could all get arbitration offers this winter, so Type As, especially lower-ranked players, don't always cost a first rounder. With that in mind, here are some trade candidates who currently have Type A status:
- Cliff Lee (91.8) - He is getting an arbitration offer and turning it down. Lee's Type A status boosts his trade value.
- Jayson Werth (86.0) - Same goes for Werth.
- David DeJesus (78.3)- Matt Klaassen of FanGraphs argued yesterday that the Royals shouldn't offer arbitration, since DeJesus would accept. It's entirely possible that the Royals can get more value for DeJesus in a trade, but I don't think DeJesus would necessarily accept arbitration. He will easily be a top-five outfielder if his team lets him hit free agency instead of picking up his $6MM option. And if he accepts? The team has an above-average outfielder on an affordable one-year deal.
- Adam Dunn (75.8) - He will get an arbitration offer and will probably turn it down. Dunn's Type A status boosts his trade value.
- Scott Downs (74.6) - Earlier this week, I suggested the Blue Jays could offer Downs arbitration and either collect the picks or pay him $5MM or so in 2011. There's a good chance that Downs accepts an offer of arbitration, but the chance at two top picks probably makes that a risk worth taking.
- Miguel Tejada (74.4) - It's hard to imagine teams forfeiting picks to sign Tejada. It seems unlikely that a team would offer arbitration. Tejada's Type A status doesn't affect his trade value (and he is only a couple points away from becoming a Type B).
- Ted Lilly (74.3) - Lilly will be a top free agent starter after the season, so the Cubs will likely offer arbitration. Lilly's Type A status boosts his trade value.
And here are some players who currently project as Type B free agents. These players will bring their former teams a supplementary round pick if they decline arbitration to sign elsewhere. But teams don't have to give up their picks to sign Type Bs, which makes these players appealing as free agents.
- John Buck - J. P. Arencibia is Toronto's catcher of the future, but it's easy to imagine the Blue Jays (or another team) offering Buck arbitration after the season. It worked last year, when the Jays got a supplemental rounder for losing Rod Barajas. Buck wouldn't make much through arbitration, so his Type B status boosts his trade value.
- Jose Guillen - It's extremely hard to imagine the Royals offering arbitration. His Type B status does not affect his trade value.
- Mike Lowell - Same goes for Lowell.
- Kevin Millwood - And for Millwood.
- Jason Frasor - Frasor makes only $2.65MM this year, so he wouldn't be making an overwhelming amount even if he accepted arbitration. Obtaining a pick for Frasor would be a plus, so his Type B status helps his trade value.
- Derrek Lee - Given Lee's struggles and salary, it's hard to imagine his team offering arbitration.
- Cristian Guzman - Guzman makes $8MM this year and though players aren't guaranteed raises via this kind of arbitration, Guzman isn't even worth his current salary on the open market. An arbitration offer seems unlikely, so his status doesn't affect his trade value.
- Octavio Dotel - Like Frasor, Dotel could see an offer of arbitration, depending on how he finishes the season, so his Type B status helps his trade value. The Pirates have a $4MM option for Dotel that becomes mutual if he is traded.
- Aaron Heilman - It seems unlikely that the D'Backs would feel comfortable offering Heilman arbitration, given his inconsistent performance in 2010, so his status doesn't help his trade value.
Links for Friday, as the international signing period begins...
- Chad Tracy's agent told MLB.com's Bill Ladson that his client has interest in playing for Mike Rizzo's Nationals, since Rizzo, Arizona's former scouting director, drafted Tracy in 2001 (Twitter link).
- You can listen to MLBTR's Tim Dierkes talking trades on the YES Network's Off the Wall podcast right here.
- Earlier in the week we heard that the Braves weren't crazy about David DeJesus and that remains true, according to Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports (Twitter link). Morosi says the Braves are not pursuing DeJesus or Jose Guillen.
- The Brewers would listen to offers for Todd Coffey and Carlos Villanueva, according to Ed Price of AOL FanHouse (via Twitter).
- Assistant GM Scott Proefrock told Matt Gelb of the Philadelphia Inquirer that the current edition of the Phillies has to perform. Chase Utley will miss eight weeks or more and Placido Polanco will miss three to four weeks, so the Phillies’ depth will be tested if they don’t make a trade.
- As expected, the Yankees promoted Dustin Moseley, according to Conor Orr of the Star Ledger. Some teams called the Yankees to inquire about the righty's availability as his opt-out date drew nearer.
- One GM who just did an overview of the Royals' farm system told ESPN.com's Buster Olney that he's impressed by the team's prospects.
- D'Backs president Derrick Hall says the team won't likely start searching for a permanent GM until the offseason, according to Dylan Hernandez of the LA Times (via Twitter).
- Not surprisingly, the D'Backs have yet to ask the Dodgers for permission to interview assistant GM Logan White, according to Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports (via Twitter).
- Red Sox supplemental rounder Anthony Ranaudo is looking to be paid like a top-ten pick, according to Amanda Comak of the Cape Cod Times. Check out the complete list of first rounders to sign right here.
- The Brewers released Triple A outfielder Trent Oeltjen, according to Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.
We already know that rookie GM Jed Hoyer is looking to add some starting pitching to his Padres' team, and now MLB.com's Corey Brock passes along a quote indicating that he's ready to add offense as well."I don't feel like you're ever all set," Hoyer said. "I think we're looking on both sides [pitching and offense]."
Brock says the team is reluctant to part with prospects just like everyone else, but the Padres could realistically shop closer Heath Bell for a package that includes a big league piece and prospects. Bell will be arbitration eligible next season after earning $4MM this year, and might get a little too rich for San Diego's tastes. Mike Adams and Luke Gregerson would then move up a peg in the bullpen pecking order, and the team likely wouldn't miss a beat.
The Padres survive with stellar pitching (MLB best 3.10 ERA) and defense (MLB best 31.5 UZR), though they have obvious offensive shortcomings. Their shortstops have hit just .234/.295/.338, their left fielders .196/.294/.288, and their center fielders .234/.328/.360, so they could have interest in someone like David DeJesus or Xavier Nady. Brock mentions that owner Jeff Moorad will consider adding payroll in order to make a move happen.
Links for Thursday, as Travis Wood prepares to make his first major league start....
- Chase Utley's injured thumb requires surgery, tweets MLB.com's Peter Gammons, and MLB.com's Todd Zolecki adds that the second baseman will go under the knife later today. After Utley and Placido Polanco hit the disabled list, MLBTR's Ben Nicholson-Smith examined the Phillies' infield options. Jim Bowden of Sirius XM Radio also has some ideas for the Phils (Twitter link).
- Bobby Valentine on how the Marlins handled their managerial search: "It's very disturbing, confusing and it was insulting at times, but it's over." Joe Capozzi of the Palm Beach Post has the details.
- Fangraphs' Dave Cameron offers his opinion on the Giants' next move, concluding that David DeJesus is "exactly what the doctor ordered."
- The Mariners' performance at Yankee Stadium this week is what Jack Zduriencik envisioned when he acquired Cliff Lee to complement Felix Hernandez, writes Joel Sherman of the New York Post. However, this recent surge doesn't change the fact that the M's will move Lee, writes Geoff Baker of the Seattle Times.
- David Murphy of the Philadelphia Daily News breaks down the reasons why a Dan Haren trade appears unlikely for the Phillies.
- The Yankees will soon add Dustin Moseley to their roster, probably at the expense of Chan Ho Park or Chad Gaudin, according to Mark Feinsand of the New York Daily News (via Twitter). Moseley's opt-out clause kicks in tomorrow.
- Reds GM Walt Jocketty told MLB.com's Mark Sheldon that he's looking at pitching, though the team has a limited number of 'bullets' to fire this summer.
- A veteran scout told Tom Krasovic of AOL FanHouse that Mark Prior was "just all right" in his workout today (Twitter link). Prior, who last pitched in the majors in 2006, is attempting a comeback.
- Nationals GM Mike Rizzo told Adam Kilgore of the Washington Post that he would like the Nats to become “younger, better [and] more athletic” if they make trades this summer.
- Geoff Baker of the Seattle Times notes that the Phillies scouted last night's Yankees-Mariners game and wonders if the Phils are eyeing Jose Lopez, who could fill in for Chase Utley and Placido Polanco.
- The Nationals appear satisfied with hot-hitting Roger Bernadina in right field, but they did have interest in David DeJesus at one point, according to MLB.com's Bill Ladson (via Twitter).
- Two executives told MLB.com’s Peter Gammons that there's no way the Twins will give up pitcher Kyle Gibson this summer. Like Cardinals prospect Shelby Miller, Gibson is a 2009 draft pick who signed late, so he would have to be dealt as a ‘player to be named later’ in any July trade.
- Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports hears that the Padres had interest in Eric Patterson before the Red Sox acquired him over the weekend (Twitter link).
Cliff Lee starts tonight at Yankee stadium, and it figures to be one of his last outings in a Mariners uniform. Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports leads his column with an examination of the market for Lee, noting that "the acquisition cost should be lower than the last two times he was traded." Rosenthal sees no obvious favorite for the lefty at this time, though Geoff Baker of the Seattle Times believes "the buzz about a possible deal with the crosstown Mets is growing louder and louder." Rosenthal's other rumorage:
- The Nationals have until Thursday to decide whether to promote Mike MacDougal. Otherwise, he can elect free agency. The hard-throwing righty has a 4.71 ERA, 5.6 K/9, and 4.7 BB/9 in 21 minor league innings.
- Rosenthal confirms other reports that the White Sox and Angels like Nationals slugger Adam Dunn. He notes that Dunn "does not want to become a DH."
- One executive feels that Jose Guillen will continue to hit well with the contract year carrot dangling. Yesterday we learned from ESPN's Buster Olney that the Royals are pushing hard to move Guillen and will eat much of the $6.3MM remaining on his contract. As for David DeJesus, an exec told Rosenthal the Royals "want to hit a home run" in any trade.
- The Giants seek stability in their left-handed relief crew (currently Jeremy Affeldt and Dan Runzler), but the need could be addressed internally.
- The Cardinals "likely will wait until at least the All-Star break to fully assess their needs." The starting pitching situation will depend on the recoveries of Brad Penny and Kyle Lohse.
- At another link, Rosenthal updates the Bobby Valentine-Marlins situation.
The Giants and Red Sox are among the teams eyeing Royals players, according to Bob Dutton of the Kansas City Star. Royals GM Dayton Moore is willing to listen to offers, but anticipating the return for the likes of David DeJesus and Jose Guillen is difficult, even for those in the team’s front office.
“I can tell you this much,” one Royals official told Dutton, “nobody is willing to take on payroll. But teams don’t want to deal prospects, either. So it makes it tough to do anything.”
Dutton reports that the Giants have interest in Guillen on the condition that the Royals absorb most of the $6.3MM or so remaining on his contract. Earlier today, ESPN.com’s Buster Olney reported that the Royals are looking to move Guillen and are willing to pick up most of his salary in a trade, but Moore insists that the Royals are not actively looking to trade. Two rival scouts told Dutton that the Royals say they will take on a considerable amount of Guillen’s salary, so it doesn’t appear that Guillen would be tough to obtain.
If the Royals decide to start selling aggressively, they could discuss Mike Aviles and Willie Bloomquist with the Red Sox, who see the infielders as candidates to fill in while Dustin Pedroia's fractured left foot heals. The Red Sox are considering infielders and had some interest in Adam Everett before Pedroia's injury. One scout said Kyle Farnsworth could appeal to teams as a reliever if the Royals decide to part with him.