Domingo Santana Rumors

AL Notes: Indians, Santana, Red Sox

Indians scouting director Brad Grant says he had indications on the first day of the draft that University of San Francisco outfielder Bradley Zimmer would be available when Cleveland picked at No. 21, Fangraphs’ David Laurila reports. “There are a lot of sources who provide information on who is going to go where,” Grant says. “You talk to different sources in order to kind of put that together. … You usually get a pretty good feel from that and can normally narrow it down to one or two players for your first pick.” Grant adds that the Indians became especially interested in No. 31 overall pick Justus Sheffield because they scouted his older brother Jordan, a 2013 Red Sox 13th-round pick who is now at Vanderbilt. Here are more notes from the American League.

  • Astros top prospect Domingo Santana isn’t likely to be promoted this summer, Evan Drellich of the Houston Chronicle reports. “Domingo still has some developing in Triple A, from our perspective,” says GM Jeff Luhnow. “We’re really excited about what he’s done, and I think the higher average at a higher level has been clearly a sign of better development and of him becoming a more complete player. But, the profile of the feast or famine is not something that we want to continue to have.” Santana has hit .305/.383/.508 so far this season for Oklahoma City, but with 94 strikeouts in 350 plate appearances. He’s already on the Astros’ 40-man roster, however, which makes him a good candidate for a September callup.
  • The Red Sox‘ options this summer remain wide open, WEEI.com’s Alex Speier writes. The Red Sox, in the midst of a disappointing season but still only 6 1/2 games back in the AL East, could become buyers with a good month, and the recent addition of top prospect Mookie Betts could spark the Red Sox to add talent this July. If they don’t play well, they could sell. They could also pursue a multifaceted strategy in which they move players who are eligible for free agency after the season in exchange for players who might be around for the longer term but still could help this season.

Quick Hits: Athletics, Phillies, Red Sox, Denorfia

The Athletics have been successful recently because they excel at finding role players, and because manager Bob Melvin helps keep them happy, Andy Martino of the New York Daily News writes in a piece contrasting the A’s with the Yankees and Mets. “(Melvin) has a good feel of the heartbeat of the clubhouse. You can look around and see when a guy is unhappy, and he calls him in the office. The rest of us might not even know he is doing it,” says Nick Punto. The A’s also get lots of mileage out of players acquired from outside their organization, like Josh Donaldson, Brandon Moss and Jesse Chavez. Being in a lower-pressure environment may also help the A’s, who managed to keep their GM in place and take the time to build a top team despite not having a winning season from 2007 through 2011. Here are more notes from around the big leagues.

  • The Phillies deny that they make a mistake in including prospect Domingo Santana on a list of potential players to be named in the 2011 Hunter Pence trade with the Astros, Jim Salisbury of CSNPhilly.com reports. A story in the Houston Chronicle last week stated that Santana had been placed on the list of potential PTBNLs by accident. “There was no mistake,” says Phillies GM Ruben Amaro. “If someone said that, they are misinformed because it’s absolutely, unequivocally wrong. It’s false.” Then-Astros GM Ed Wade requested that Santana be placed on the list, Amaro says.  Santana, 21, is now a top prospect with the Astros, hitting .292/.368/.485 so far this season with Triple-A Oklahoma City.
  • The biggest problem in the Red Sox‘ disappointing season has been its outfield, Tim Britton of the Providence Journal writes. Britton suggests that the team’s decision to allow Jacoby Ellsbury to leave appears defensible, but there weren’t many good backup plans available if Jackie Bradley Jr. struggled, which he has. In addition, Daniel Nava has played poorly, and Shane Victorino has had injury trouble. In hindsight, Britton suggests, the best reasonable move might have been to acquire an outfielder like Chris Denorfia of the Padres in a trade.
  • Denorfia could be a hot name on the trade market this summer, Jon Morosi of FOX Sports predicts (scroll down). Denorfia can play all over the outfield and hit lefties, and he’ll be a free agent after the season. The Padres, meanwhile, have struggled, going 27-34 so far. Denorfia is hitting .265/.313/.368 in 167 plate appearances so far this season, although he’s hit better than that in four straight seasons before this one.