Derek Holland Rumors

AL West Notes: Correa, Holland, Shoemaker, Otero

Top Astros prospect Carlos Correa will miss the rest of the year after undergoing surgery on a broken fibula, reports Evan Drellich of the Houston Chronicle“The surgery went very well,” said GM Jeff Luhnow. “We expect him to go through a rehab process and return to exactly the point he was at when he got injured.” The 19-year-old shortstop had been close to earning a promotion to Double-A, says Drellich. He owns a robust .325/.416/.510 triple-slash with six long balls and 20 stolen bases in his first 293 plate appearances at the High-A level.

As Astros fans deal with this tough news, here are a few more notes from the AL West…

  • Rangers lefty Derek Holland will have his minor league rehab assignment pushed back, reports Gerry Fraley of the Dallas Morning News. Holland participated in fielding drills today but wasn’t ready to progress to pitching in games, manager Ron Washington tells Fraley. GM Jon Daniels tells Fraley that the club hasn’t given consideration to shutting Holland down for the season at any point and won’t do so unless there’s significant risk that he could re-injure his problematic knee.
  • Tim Brown of Yahoo Sports looks at the journey of Matt Shoemaker from undrafted college arm to Angels starting pitcher. After Shoemaker went undrafted, his college coach called Major League teams to tell them that they missed a prospect, and he eventually signed with Anaheim for a modest $10K bonus. Brown’s story also chronicles Shoemaker’s journey and his close relationship with his father and the work the pair put into baseball throughout Shoemaker’s childhood.
  • Dan Otero has gone from unheralded waiver claim to one of the most valuable relievers in the league, writes Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle. Assistant GM David Forst — the driving force behind acquiring Otero — tells Slusser that Otero’s command attracted the A’s. Scout John McLaren gave a strong review of Otero after seeing him pitch with the Giants’ Triple-A affiliate. When Otero was waived by the Giants, the Yankees claimed him and tried to sneak him through waivers, only to lose him to the A’s the next day. Since that time, Otero has posted a 1.79 ERA with 5.1 K/9, 1.4 BB/9 and a ground-ball rate north of 57 percent.

Jeff Todd contributed to this post.


Derek Holland Expected To Be Out Until All-Star Break

TUESDAY: Holland actually underwent microfracture surgery, reports Gerry Fraley of the Dallas Morning News. That procedure comes with a longer rehabilitation time, says Fraley, who notes that Scott Feldman did not return to action until July 22, 2011 after undergoing the surgery in November of 2010.

The club anticipates that Holland will be out until the All-Star break, Fraley notes. 

FRIDAY: Rangers starter Derek Holland is out until midseason after a left knee injury that took place Tuesday, according to a team release. Holland suffered the injury in a fall at home, and he had arthroscopic surgery today to fix torn cartilage.

The effect the injury will have on the Rangers' offseason planning is unclear. The Rangers are, however, still unlikely to acquire any of the remaining top pitching options, MLB.com's T.R. Sullivan writes (also via Twitter). Instead, they will try to acquire more depth. That likely means the Rangers are still unlikely to be big players for Masahiro Tanaka.

With Holland out, the Rangers still figure to have Yu Darvish, Martin Perez and Matt Harrison in their rotation. If the Rangers don't add anyone else, Alexi Ogando, Colby Lewis, Nick Tepesch, Robbie Ross, Michael Kirkman and Tanner Scheppers could all be candidates for the final two spots.


Red Sox Notes: Crawford, Ramirez, Beckett, Ellsbury

One year ago, the Red Sox shocked the baseball world when they hit the reset button with their massive blockbuster deal with the Dodgers.  Today, Boston finds themselves atop of the AL East, something that very few could have predicted after they shed roughly $270MM in payroll.  Alex Speier of WEEI.com has a fascinating article today on the trade that altered the direction of the club and the possible alternatives that could have also taken place.  Here's a look at some of the highlights..

  • One rumor prior to last year's non-waiver deadline had the Red Sox considering a swap of Carl Crawford and Hanley Ramirez with the Marlins.  However, such a deal never came close.  One source familiar with the talks said that Boston would done the deal straight up, but the problem was the difference in salary.  Such a move would have required the Marlins to break out the checkbook as there was $37MM+ owed to Ramirez through 2014 and a whopping $110.5MM owed to Crawford through 2017.
  • However, there were other proposed deals that had legs, particularly ones involving Josh Beckett.  According to multiple industry sources, the Rangers and Red Sox explored a number of possible deals including one that had a framework of Beckett and Jacoby Ellsbury going to Texas with the Red Sox getting left-hander Derek Holland.  However, Beckett told WEEI's Rob Bradford that the talks never gained enough traction for the team to discuss the possibility of him waiving his no-trade rights.
  • The Dodgers were among the clubs with interest in Beckett prior to the July 31st deadline and that was information that the Red Sox stored for later.
  • The club's previous free-spending ways handcuffed them from even considering a run at Yu Darvish after the 2011 season.  Of course, the blockbuster with L.A. gave them much more flexibility going forward.  GM Ben Cherington acknowledged that a trade deadline deal like the Jake Peavy trade this year simply wasn't possible given the payroll constraints that the team previously faced.
  • Boston considered using their prospects to help get out from under bad contracts, but they ultimately decided against that.  "We'd made the decision long term, we were just going to need to start holding on to [top prospects] and figuring out what they could do," said one team official. "Instead of picking the right guy, keep them all in the tub and let them decide for us. Back when we were good, that's what we did."  
  • Up until the Dodgers deal happened, Cherington says that he wasn't planning on making any significant moves in August.  There was some thought given to turning the Dodgers down and waiting until the offseason when they could revisit talks with L.A. and other clubs.  However, Boston didn't want to let the opportunity to start fresh pass them by. 


Latest On Multi-Team Justin Upton Talks

A ridiculous number of three and four-team trade scenarios have been discussed at the Winter Meetings, most of them seemingly involving Arizona's Justin Upton winding up with the Rangers. We'll track the latest on the discussions right here:

  • The Upton talks aren't dead and never have been, an involved official tells Ken Rosenthal, but it doesn't have more legs than it did two weeks ago.
  • Rangers GM Jon Daniels left the Winter Meetings without a deal, telling reporters including Jeff Wilson, "I would have guessed something would have happened here.  And I would have been wrong. It hasn't gotten to the point where something had fallen through that I thought was going to get done."

Earlier updates:

  • The Rangers, D'Backs, and Rays are still at the Winter Meetings, working on an Upton blockbuster according to Rosenthal.  A friend of Rays top exec Andrew Friedman says that while Friedman has never done a three-way trade, he's determined to get one done.
  • D'backs GM Kevin Towers made it clear that he seeks a shortstop he controls for more than two years, so it seems Elvis Andrus or Asdrubal Cabrera would not be sufficient, tweets Jim Bowden of SiriusXM and ESPN.
  • Rosenthal has one possible outcome: Upton to the Rangers, a Rays starter to the D'Backs, and Mike Olt and other prospects to the Rays.  The scenario doesn't seem to satisfy the needs of the D'Backs and Rays, but we'll see.
  • There's nothing close on the Upton front, Diamondbacks GM Kevin Towers told Bob Nightengale.
  • Bowden adds (also via Twitter) that the Mariners' reasoning for being in these talks is to use their prospects to ensure that Upton lands with Texas, which will open the door for them to sign Josh Hamilton. The Mariners are reportedly in serious talks with Hamilton, who considers them his fallback should he not sign with Texas.
  • Jim Bowden of ESPN and MLB Network Radio tweets that the Diamondbacks will not budge from their insistence that Andrus or Profar be included in a trade with the Rangers. As such, they're more likely to trade two young pitchers to the Indians to land Cabrera.
  • The fourth team in some permutations of the blockbuster is the Mariners, reports Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports.  One official in the talks sees them as the biggest roadblock, as they're unsure whether to move forward and surrender prospects.  A source tells Rosenthal the player the Mariners want most in these talks is Derek Holland of the Rangers.  Rosenthal says Rangers GM Jon Daniels is driving the trade, "feverishly trying to land" Upton.  In the end, the FOX writer says the four-team blockbuster "appears unlikely to happen."
  • D'Backs GM Kevin Towers said today"I've had more multi-team talks this year than ever before. In every discussion it seems three or four teams are involved."
  • One scenario had Upton going to the Rangers, Cabrera to the D'Backs, and Martin Perez and more to the Indians, tweets Jon Heyman of CBS Sports.
  • The Indians are pushing for the Diamondbacks to include Tyler Skaggs in a deal for Cabrera, tweets Jeff Passan of Yahoo! Sports. However, Arizona would prefer to move Trevor Bauer.
  • Although the Diamondbacks like many of the Rangers' prospects, such as Mike Olt, Leury Garcia, and Cody Buckel, they continue to want Elvis Andrus or Jurickson Profar in return for Upton, tweets Passan. At this point, it seems more likely that the D-Backs would move Upton in a multi-team scenario that nets them Cabrera rather than trading straight-up with the Rangers.

Teams Contacting Rangers About Holland

With the Rangers believed to be very much involved in the Zack Greinke sweepstakes, Texas is a candidate to add a big-name starter this week, in which case the team may look to trade one of its in-house options. As such, rival teams are calling to inquire about the availability of left-hander Derek Holland, according to Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports (via Twitter).

The Brewers, Twins, and Royals are among the clubs that have been in touch with the Rangers about Holland, says Morosi.


Justin Upton Rumors: Monday

We'll round up today's rumors on Justin Upton, one of the winter's most intriguing trade candidates, right here, with the latest updates added to the top of the page throughout the day…

Earlier updates:

  • The Diamondbacks are said to be one of the most aggressive teams at the Winter Meetings so far, tweets ESPN.com's Buster Olney, who says rival teams believe Arizona will move Upton.
  • The Rangers haven't given up on Upton, though the D-Backs continue to insist Elvis Andrus is included in any deal, says Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports. Texas would prefer to build a package around players like Mike Olt and/or Derek Holland rather than giving up Andrus or Jurickson Profar, according to Rosenthal.
  • Jack Magruder of FOXSportsArizona.com tweets that the Rangers and D-Backs are still talking about Upton, but that there's "nothing there" at the moment.

Rangers Notes: Hamilton, Holland, Ellsbury

The Rangers are one of three teams to win 90-plus games in each of the past three seasons (the Yankees and Rays are the others) but they’ll be spectators for the remainder of postseason following a loss to the Orioles in Friday night’s Wild Card play-in game. Here’s the latest from Texas…

  • It wouldn’t shock baseball people if the Rangers walk away from Josh Hamilton altogether this offseason, ESPN.com’s Buster Olney writes. The assumption around MLB is that the Rangers know Hamilton better than anyone else, so potential suitors will be carefully monitoring Texas’ bids. However, the Rangers intend to sit back and let other teams make the first move.
  • It might be time for the Red Sox to use Jacoby Ellsbury as a trade chip for rotation help, Scott Lauber of the Boston Herald writes. GM Ben Cherington is expected to consider a multiyear extension for the center fielder, but agent Scott Boras figures to seek a deal in the $160MM range. The Rangers could find themselves in the market for a center fielder this offseason, so Lauber wonders if they'd make Derek Holland available in a deal for Ellsbury.
  • One MLB executive said there’s “zero” chance the Red Sox sign Ellsbury to a contract extension before he reaches free agency at the end of the 2013 season, Sean McAdam of CSNNE.com reported last month. Ellsbury has one more season of arbitration eligibility after earning $8.05MM in 2012. 

Rangers To Extend Derek Holland

8:56pm: The total value of Holland's deal will be $49MM if both option years are exercised according to Jeff Wilson of The Fort Worth Star-Telegram (on Twitter). The contract values each of his free agent years at $10-11MM compared to $11-13MM for Lester, Gallardo, Romero, and Cahill.

8:42am: We can officially pencil Derek Holland into the Rangers' rotation for the foreseeable future. The Rangers agreed to terms with the left-hander on a five-year, $28.5MM contract extension. The deal covers the 2012-16 seasons and includes two club options, as MLBTR's Tim Dierkes first reported. Martini Sports Management represents the 25-year-old Holland.

Derek Holland - Rangers

Yovani Gallardo, Ricky Romero, Jon Lester, Clay Buchholz and Trevor Cahill signed five-year deals in the $30MM range at similar stages in their respective careers and were no doubt points of reference in talks leading up to today's agreement. Holland has more career innings than any of those pitchers did at the time of their extensions, but none of them had a career ERA above 3.94 at the time of their deals, while Holland has a career mark of 4.73. The deals for Cahill and Buchholz include two club options, while the others include just one.

Holland posted a 3.95 ERA with 7.4 K/9, 3.0 BB/9 and a 46.4% ground ball rate in 198 innings this past season. If he can replicate that level of performance, the deal will prove to be a success for the team. Yet Holland obtains financial security by agreeing to terms now instead of going year to year.

The Rangers signed Nelson Cruz and Elvis Andrus to extensions earlier in the offseason. However, the club didn't obtain additional years of control on either of those two deals.

Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News first reported that the sides were on the verge of an agreement with Jeff Wilson of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram and Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com adding detail. Photo courtesy Icon SMI.


Rangers Close To Extension With Derek Holland

The Rangers are "on the verge" of signing left-hander Derek Holland to a contract extension, reports Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News.  The deal would be for at least five years (though the 2016 season), overriding Holland's near-league minimum salary for this season and covering his three arbitration years and his first year of free agency. 

We heard in December that the two sides were discussing a five-year extension with an option for a sixth year, though talks were thought to be shelved in January.  MLBTR's Ben Nicholson-Smith considered that extensions given to such pitchers as Jon Lester, Ricky Romero and Yovani Gallardo (five years for around $30MM) were "unavoidable points of reference" for a possible Holland extension.

The Rangers have also signed Nelson Cruz and Elvis Andrus to extensions this offseason, though those contracts were just for two and three years, respectively, and only covered each player's arbitration seasons.  Obviously Texas has more interest in locking Holland up for the longer-term, given that Cruz is 31 and Andrus could be made expendable in a few years by top shortstop prospect Jurickson Profar.

Holland, 25, was a key part of the Texas rotation last season, posting a 3.95 ERA in 32 starts with a 46.4% ground ball rate and a 2.42 K/BB ratio.  He also threw a gem in Game Four of the World Series, shutting out the Cardinals on just two hits over 8 1/3 innings.  Holland is represented by Martini Sports Management.


Rangers, Holland Put Extension Talks On Hold

The Rangers and left-handed starter Derek Holland have stopped discussing a possible contract extension for the time being, Richard Durrett of ESPNDallas.com reports. The Rangers and Holland’s representatives at Martini Sports Management started discussing a long-term deal in December, but aren’t likely to resume negotiations this offseason.

Holland, who missed this year's super two cutoff and is not yet arbitration eligible, will remain under team control through 2015. A five-year deal would buy out one pre-arbitration season, his three years of arbitration eligibility and his first season of free agency.

The 25-year-old posted a 3.95 ERA with 7.4 K/9, 3.0 BB/9 and a 46.4% ground ball rate in 198 innings this past season. He set career highs in everything from ERA to innings to strikeouts (162) to wins above replacement (3.6).

Yovani Gallardo, Ricky Romero, Jon Lester, Clay Buchholz and Trevor Cahill are unavoidable points of reference for the Rangers and Holland’s representatives. All five starters signed five-year deals in the $30MM range at similar stages in their respective careers. Holland has more career innings than any of those pitchers did at the time of their extensions, but none of them had a career ERA above 3.94 at the time of their deals, while Holland has a career mark of 4.73. Options are often a point of contention in extension talks, so it's worth noting that the deals for Cahill and Buchholz include two club options, while the other deals include just one.