David Ortiz Rumors
- The Red Sox and David Ortiz are still "not very close" to a new contract, reports Nick Cafardo of The Boston Globe. The two sides have reportedly been discussing a new two-year deal recently.
- The Yankees have some interest in Torii Hunter, reports Mark Feinsand of The New York Daily News (on Twitter). Since the Angels are unlikely to make Hunter a qualifying offer, it wouldn't cost a draft pick to sign him.
- Earlier today the Blue Jays exercised their $3MM option for Darren Oliver, but Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com hears that the veteran left-hander is still leaning towards retirement (Twitter link).
- The Marlins looked into trading for Ervin Santana before the Royals acquired the right-hander earlier today, reports Bob Nightengale of USA Today (on Twitter).
- Bob Brookover of The Philadelphia Inquirer listed the pros and cons of some free agent corner outfielders who could be of interest to the Phillies.
We've already had two managerial changes in the AL East this offseason, and a ton of player moves will surely follow this winter. Here's the latest from the only division to house three 90-win teams in 2012...
- "I wouldn't be trying to re-sign him if I had any concern about David's commitment to baseball or to the Red Sox," said Red Sox GM Ben Cherington to ESPN Boston's Gordon Edes when asked about former manager Bobby Valentine's recent disparaging comments about David Ortiz's commitment to the team. The Sox and Ortiz are reportedly working on a new two-year contract.
- In a recent radio interview, Yankees GM Brian Cashman said he would like to make his team younger but will only do it if it makes them better according to Kristie Ackert of The New York Daily News. "In theory, I want us to get younger and better, but in reality, that’s not always realistic," he said.
- Dan Connolly of The Baltimore Sun lists ten free agents who could be fits for the Orioles next season, from stars like Josh Hamilton to role players like Jeff Keppinger.
Earlier today, the Red Sox (re-)introduced John Farrell to the Boston media, two days after sending Mike Aviles north of the border to free him from the manager from his contract with the Blue Jays. Here's more on the Red Sox..
- In an interview with NBC's Bob Costas, former Red Sox skipper Bobby Valentine opined that David Ortiz quit on the team after their blockbuster deal with the Dodgers, writes Matthew Pouliot of HardballTalk. "He realized that this trade meant that we’re not going to run this race and we’re not even going to finish the race properly and he decided not to play anymore. I think at that time it was all downhill from there," said Valentine. The slugger is currently working to iron out a new deal with Boston.
- Peter Abraham of the Boston Globe (via Twitter) found it interesting that Farrell mentioned Cody Ross right away when asked about players that he has reached out to. Ross is set to hit the open market after turning in a strong campaign on a one-year, $3MM deal.
- There has been talk that the Blue Jays are upset with the Red Sox over what they perceive as tampering in the courtship of John Farrell, but GM Ben Cherington says that nothing of the sort took place, writes Alex Speier of WEEI.com. "I can say definitively that wherever that speculation was coming from, it wasn't coming from me. The only conversations I had about the situation were directly to [CEO] Paul [Beeston] and [GM] Alex [Anthopoulos]'s until Saturday, when I got a chance to talk to John," said Cherington.
- The solid relationship and familiarity between Cherington and Farrell will be key to the club's success going forward, writes Scott Lauber of the Boston Herald.
The Red Sox and Blue Jays are making progress on compensation talks for manager John Farrell, reports Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports. A contract between Farrell and the Red Sox won't be an obstacle once compensation is agreed upon. Here is the latest from baseball's two East divisions...
- Nick Cafardo of The Boston Globe reports (on Twitter) that the Red Sox and David Ortiz did engage in contract talks earlier this week. A few days ago we learned that the slugger was still seeking two years and $25-30MM.
- The status of Marlins manager Ozzie Guillen is expected to be settled early next week, reports Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com. Club officials will meet in New York to discuss the state of the team.
- Jesse Litsch still feels pain in his throwing arm and has started to think about his post-playing career, perhaps coaching or scouting according to Shi Davidi of Sportsnet.ca. The right-hander had two surgeries this year and could have a third soon. The Blue Jays recently outrighted him off the 40-man roster and he elected free agency.
- Orioles third base coach DeMarlo Hale is unlikely to get the Red Sox gig as the club apparently has their heart set on Farrell, writes Rich Dubroff of CSNBaltimore.com.
- Meanwhile, Hale told Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe (via Twitter) that he believes that his interview with the Red Sox went well. The coach added that he's unsure of when he'll he might hear back from the club.
Zach Links contributed to this post.
Some links from around the AL East for your Monday reading pleasure...
- David Ortiz is still looking for two years and $25-30MM, according to the Boston Herald's John Tomase. Ortiz told Tomase that he expects the Red Sox to reach out to his representatives at SFX next week.
- Rich Dubroff of CSNBaltimore.com cautions Orioles fans not to buy into any rumblings that Ortiz could end up in Baltimore if he doesn't re-sign with the Red Sox. Dubroff notes that manager Buck Showalter felt handicapped by Vladimir Guerrero's inability to play in the field the last time the team had a strict DH in 2011.
- In his latest mailbag, MLB.com's Bill Chastain tells one reader that Joel Peralta is so intent on returning to the Rays that he will likely deal with them exclusively before talking to other teams. Chastain does opine that a multi-year deal from an outside team could sway Peralta's thinking.
- Chastain also says he believes that the Rays will open the season with Ben Zobrist as the shortstop, as Hak-Ju Lee may not be ready from an offensive standpoint yet.
- Danny Knobler of CBS Sports tweets that the Blue Jays had nine different scouts in attendance for Edwin Jackson's final three regular season starts. Jackson will be a free agent this offseason, and while he'd like to return to the Nationals, he could end up elsewhere. The Jays are planning to shop aggressively this offseason.
Serious conversations about a new contract for David Ortiz are expected to begin at some point next week, Joe McDonald of ESPNBoston.com reports. The Red Sox have already had some informal talks about contracts for Cody Ross and Ortiz, who are both on track to hit free agency next month.
"David is someone who we feel strongly about bringing back and we're trying to figure out a way to do that and we hope that happens," GM Ben Cherington said at the end of the regular season.
Ortiz, who turns 37 next month, posted a .318/.415/.611 batting line in 383 plate appearances this past season. He hit 23 home runs and 26 doubles, but appeared in just one game after suffering a right Achilles strain on July 16th. Ortiz is an SFX client.
General Manager Ben Cherington confirmed to reporters that the Red Sox have begun contract talks with both David Ortiz and Cody Ross, according to Michael Silverman of the Boston Herald (via Twitter). Both players are set to hit the open market after this season.
Ortiz has made it clear that he is looking for a two-year deal this offseason, but isn't seeking anything longer than that. In the slugger's view, a two-year pact will allow him to avoid questions about his contract status in the 2013 and would mark a sign of respect from the organization. The soon-to-be 37-year-old earned his eighth All-Star selection this season, hitting .318/.415/.611 with 23 homers.
Ross, 31, says that his top priority this offseason will be signing with a contender. The Red Sox picked up the outfielder on a one-year, $3MM deal last winter and figures to see a significant bump in pay and contract length this time around.
Yankees prospect Manny Banuelos will undergo Tommy John surgery on Thursday, which is expected to keep the left-hander out of action for the entire 2013 season. The 21-year-old was plagued by injuries this season and made just six Triple-A starts, posting a 4.50 ERA and an 8.2 K/9 rate in 24 innings. Coming into the season, Banuelos was ranked as the 29th-best prospect in the sport by Baseball America.
Here's some more news from around the AL East...
- Blue Jays manager John Farrell denied a recent internet report that claimed there was tension between he and GM Alex Anthopoulos, telling media (including MLB.com's Gregor Chisholm) that the report was "unfounded" and "irresponsible."
- Also from Farrell, "there's nothing to suggest right now changes will be made" to the Blue Jays' coaching staff, tweets Sportsnet.ca's Shi Davidi.
- In the opinion of David Ortiz, the Red Sox didn't err in acquiring Carl Crawford and Adrian Gonzalez, the slugger tells Gordon Edes of ESPN Boston. "No, I think when it comes down to that, I'm a big-time believer that you go for the best that is out there," Ortiz said. "Now if you don't get what you're expecting, that's a different story, but they went for what was the best out there." Edes opines that the Sox should re-sign Ortiz to a two-year contract this winter.
- Though the Yankees went from a big AL East lead in mid-summer to fighting for the division title with two games left, managing general partner Hank Steinbrenner told reporters (including MLB.com's Bryan Hoch) that the team's minor collapse won't lead to any offseason changes. "Are jobs riding on this? Not that I know of," Steinbrenner said. "Jobs are not riding on this, but that's not something I'm concerned about right now. We look at everything in the offseason, as we always do."
Wade Boggs reached the 200-hit plateau for the seventh consecutive season on this date in 1989. Boggs also became the first player in MLB history to collect both 200 hits and 100 walks in four consecutive seasons. Here are some links from the division in which Boggs spent his entire 18-year career...
- Manny Machado jumped from Double-A to the pennant race, but Orioles executive vice president Dan Duquette said the infielder “looks like a big leaguer,” Roch Kubatko of MASNsports.com reports. Duquette indicated the Orioles are set at third base for 2013, saying Machado "looks pretty good to me."
- The Orioles “have interest” in retaining Mark Reynolds for 2013, Duquette said. If the Orioles decline Reynolds’ $11MMM option for 2013, they’ll have to determine whether to tender him a contract through the arbitration process. "We'll see how that shakes out," Duquette said.
- David Ortiz said his upcoming contract negotiations with the Red Sox are about respect, not just money, Scott Lauber of the Boston Herald reports. The designated hitter said a two-year deal would help him keep his focus on the field. "I think it’s easier for me not to be answering the questions you’re asking me right now the whole year," he said.
- Shi Davidi details Travis Snider's tenure in Toronto, including his clashes with former manager Cito Gaston, in a revealing feature at Sportsnet.ca. Within the piece Davidi reports that Snider once turned down a contract extension from the Blue Jays. The Blue Jays traded Snider to Pittsburgh for Brad Lincoln leading up to the July 31st trade deadline.
David Ortiz will hit free agency this offseason and he’s looking for a multiyear deal. Sound familiar? It should, but this offseason will be different than most for the Red Sox. The team recently freed up approximately $260MM in payroll yet there are numerous questions heading into the 2012-13 offseason. The future of Ortiz, who’s currently sidelined with an Achilles tendon injury, is one of them. Ortiz recently shared his thoughts on the Red Sox and his upcoming appearance on the free agent market with Rob Bradford of WEEI.com. Here are some highlights:
- Ortiz said he wants to re-sign in Boston, but explained that he expects the Red Sox to win. “We have two wild cards, and we're not even in it,” he said. “You can't let that happen." The team’s current situation is “disgusting” in Ortiz’s view. However, he told Bradford the Red Sox should be better in 2013 since they have payroll flexibility this coming offseason.
- Ortiz continues seeking a multiyear deal, but he made it clear he’s not looking too far into the future. "The thing is when people talk about me signing a multi-year contract, they make it seem like I'm asking for a four- or five-year deal,” he told Bradford. “A guy like me isn't going to be looking for more than two years in the market.”
- If the Red Sox front office has questions about potential acquisitions, Ortiz will be “happy to answer" them. He tells free agents that Boston is a good place to play as long as you’re consistent.
- Ortiz joked that the Red Sox should get three of him if they want to improve.
- MLBTR's Mark Polishuk recently previewed Ortiz's free agent stock.