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Erick Aybar Rumors
Angels GM Jerry Dipoto will continue extension talks with the representatives for Erick Aybar but doesn't foresee completing a deal before the start of the season, writes Alden Gonzalez in MLB.com. Working out an extension at some point is still "very much a possibility" but Dipoto doesn't see it happening before Opening Day.
The shortstop, who avoided arbitration with the Halos by agreeing to a one-year, $5.075MM deal, is set to hit the open market after this season. The Angels worked out a four-year, $33.5MM deal with Howie Kendrick last month to cover the 28-year-old's final year of arbitration and first three years of free agency.
The Angels avoided arbitration with shortstop Erick Aybar by signing him to a $5.075MM deal, tweets ESPN's Enrique Rojas. MLBTR had projected the SFX client for $4.7MM. The Angels have now signed all of their arbitration eligible players.
Aybar will be eligible for free agency after the 2012 season, but GM Jerry Dipoto told Mike DiGiovanna of the L.A. Times via text message, "We are continuing to work toward an extended contract and definitely desire to keep Erick in an Angels uniform for the long term."
Here's the latest from the Big A…
- With the closer market quickly shrinking, Francisco Cordero could "fall in [the] Angels' laps," reports ESPN Los Angeles' Mark Saxon.
- Albert Pujols will have trouble living up to his massive contract on the field, but Mike DiGiovanna of the Los Angeles Times examines how Pujols' arrival has impacted ticket sales, merchandise sales and the overall value of the franchise.
- MLB.com's Alden Gonzalez looks at what it might cost the Halos to lock up Dan Haren and Ervin Santana to contract extensions. The team has options on both pitchers ($15.5MM for Haren, $13MM for Santana) for 2013. Haren will be 32 in September and, as durable as Haren has been, I'd argue the Angels should wait until this season is through before exploring an extension. A source tells Gonzalez that the Angels haven't discussed a new contract with Santana yet.
- Also from Gonzalez, he reports that GM Jerry Dipoto declined to comment on the status of Erick Aybar's extension talks. LAA has already signed one infielder (Howie Kendrick) to a multiyear deal this week.
The Angels opened extension talks with the agents for second baseman Howie Kendrick and shortstop Erick Aybar, GM Jerry Dipoto told Mike DiGiovanna of the LA Times. Both infielders are entering their final year of arbitration, but Dipoto has interest in keeping them in Anaheim beyond 2012.
“At this point, it’s something we’ve begun to explore and will continue to explore,” Dipoto said. “There is no timetable, but certainly, it’s something we’re interested in pursuing.”
Kendrick, a 28-year-old Reynolds Sports Management client, posted a .285/.338/.464 line with a career-best 18 homers in 2011. MLBTR projects a $5.2MM salary for him in 2012. That's $500K more than Aybar, who comes in at $4.7MM in our projections. SFX represents the 27-year-old Aybar, who posted a .279/.322/.421 line with 30 stolen bases as the Angels' shortstop in 2011.
Scott Miller of CBSSports.com has updates on the trade market. Here they are…
- Miller’s sources expect the Rays to trade B.J. Upton by Sunday (click here for the latest on Upton).
- Angels owner Arte Moreno has approved a payroll increase, according to Miller. The Angels are looking for a third baseman, but they would send Erick Aybar to the Mets for Jose Reyes straight up, according to Miller. The Mets, however, aren’t interested; they’ll keep Reyes instead.
- Minnesota is expected to trade Kevin Slowey, who continues to draw interest, according to Miller. Earlier tonight, we heard that the Rockies are interested in Slowey.
Today is the deadline for players and teams to submit arbitration figures. The sides will then settle on a salary between the team's proposed number and the player's proposed number or go to an arbitration hearing. Arbitration eligible players are under team control, so the clubs don't risk losing them – it's a question of how much the players will earn.
Yesterday, 11 players avoided arbitration. We could see just as many agreements trickle in today and we'll keep you posted on them right here and with our Arb Tracker. The latest updates will be at the top of the post:
- The Angels have agreed to terms with Reggie Willits and Howie Kendrick, tweets Bill Shaikin of The Los Angeles Times. Bill Plunkett of The Orange County Register tweets that Kendrick will earn $3.3MM, Willits $775K (on Twitter).
- The Giants agreed to terms with Santiago Casilla on a one-year deal worth $1.3MM with incentives, according to ESPN Deportes' Enrique Rojas (on Twitter). The team also announced that they avoided arb with Jonathan Sanchez and Ramon Ramirez (on Twitter). Sanchez will earn $4.8MM with incentives tweets Hank Schulman of The San Francisco Chronicle while Ramirez will earn $1.65MM according to Janie McCauley of The Canadian Press.
- The Braves agreed to terms with Peter Moylan and Eric O'Flaherty, according to MLB.com's Mark Bowman (on Twitter). Moylan gets $2MM, O'Flaherty gets $895K according to Dave O'Brien of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution (on Twitter).
- The Mariners agreed to terms with Brandon League, David Aardsma and Jason Vargas, the team announced. Aardsma will earn $4.5MM with plenty of incentives, according to Geoff Baker of the Seattle Times (plus Twitter link).
- The Rangers agreed to terms with C.J. Wilson and Nelson Cruz, according to MLB.com's T.R. Sullivan (Twitter links). Cruz gets $3.65MM, and Wilson gets $7.05MM with a chance to earn another $100K according to his agent Bob Garber, via email.
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- Mike Scioscia tells Mike DiGiovanna of the LA Times he's "very optimistic" that Erick Aybar's left knee injury won't lead to a DL stint. That reduces the chances that the Angels will go after a shortstop.
- It's been a great year for young players like Strasburg and Mike Leake, as ESPN.com's Tim Kurkjian shows.
- Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic reports that the D'Backs often hear trade rumors from Dan Haren, who reads MLBTR. As Piecoro explains, players are generally aware of the latest rumblings in "the era of the trade rumor."
- Another top pitcher, Cliff Lee, chooses to ignore the rumors, according to Larry Stone of the Seattle Times.
- Joel Sherman of the New York Post asked 12 baseball insiders whether they would prefer to have Phil Hughes or Mike Pelfrey for the next five years and was surprised to see all 12 select Hughes.
- Edwin Jackson and Dontrelle Willis say they have good memories of Detroit and no hard feelings over the trades that sent them to Arizona, according to the Detroit Free Press.
Injuries to Maicer Izturis and Erick Aybar could force the Angels to trade for or sign a shortstop. For now, GM Tony Reagins tells Bill Shaikin of the LA Times that he’s hoping Aybar’s left knee and Izturis’ left forearm heal on schedule.
"Hopefully, our injury situation isn't long-term," Reagins said. "If it is, you'd probably have to look outside the organization."
The Angels are aware of available shortstops. Adam Everett is a free agent; Maicer’s half-brother Cesar Izturis could become a trade target; the Rays have shortstop depth; Stephen Drew, Ryan Theriot, Omar Vizquel and others could also be available. But the Angels aren’t pursuing any of them.
"We're not at that point," Reagins said.
It’s not a good year to be an Angels infielder. Kendry Morales is out for the season after breaking his leg, so the Angels have been linked to available first basemen for weeks. Despite these injuries, the Angels are just 2.0 games out of first place in the AL West.
The Angels avoided arbitration with shortstop Erick Aybar, signing him to a one-year deal worth at least $2.05MM, according to Mike DiGiovanna of the LA Times. Aybar can earn $100K in bonuses if he makes 625 plate appearances this year.
The sides agreed on a deal $200K below the midpoint. The Angels had offered $1.75MM and Aybar countered with $2.75MM. This is Aybar's first season as an arbitration-eligible player. He isn't expected to hit free agency until after the 2012 season.
Aybar, who turned 26 last month, hit .312/.353/.423 in 556 plate appearances for the Angels last year. He added value in nearly 1200 innings at short last year, posting a UZR/150 of 7.6.
11:36pm: One baseball source tells Tom Verducci of SI.com that the Phillies have been "very aggressive" in their efforts to obtain Halladay. Apparently the Phils are trying to find the players the Blue Jays want, even if that means looking on other teams.
10:00pm: Angels GM Tony Reagins didn't comment on the reported offer of Saunders, Aybar and Bourjos, but two sources shot the rumor down when Mike DiGiovanna of the LA Times asked them about it.
Reagins said the Blue Jays have targeted Saunders, Bourjos and Mike Napoli. It's even "possible" that the deal could be expanded to send more Blue Jays to Anaheim.
"They have a lot of pieces that are attractive," Reagins said.
8:33am: Phillies GM Ruben Amaro Jr. had this to say to Scott Lauber about acquiring Halladay: "I don't think there's any likeliness. None."
6:01am: Mark Feinsand of The NY Daily News spoke to a source who said "Don't rule out them including Cole Hamels" in a potential Halladay deal. I'm not sure it's wise for Philly to sell low on Hamels for only one year of Halladay, but that would be something.
4:47am: Ken Rosenthal of FoxSports.com says that the Angels and Phillies have emerged as the frontrunners in the Roy Halladay sweepstakes. Philadelphia is prepared to offer a package that will likely include J.A. Happ, plus either Michael Taylor or Domonic Brown. Echoing a report from yesterday, Rosenthal says the Angels offered Joe Saunders, Erick Aybar, and Peter Bourjos to the Blue Jays.
Halladay will likely require a contract extension in exchange for waiving his no-trade clause according to Rosenthal, and the Phillies would almost certainly have to make another move to fit Halladay into the payroll. Joe Blanton is a prime candidate to be that sacrificial lamb. Meanwhile, the Angels are trying to re-sign John Lackey, and could withdraw from the Halladay pursuit if he returns.