Erick Aybar Rumors

Quick Hits: Greinke, Indians, Aybar, Kazmir, Matsui

Angels GM Jerry Dipoto recently said that it's unlikely the club will work out an extension with Erick Aybar before Opening Day. However, Dipoto acknowledged that it's very much a possibility that the club will work out a new deal with the shortstop. Here's more on Aybar and other notes from around the baseball…

  • Zack Greinke helped the Brewers evaluate pitchers prior to the draft according to MLB.com's Adam McCalvy, asking to see video of prospects before the team chose hurlers Taylor Jungmann and Jed Bradley in the first round. Tom Haudricourt of The Journal Sentinel says (on Twitter) that Greinke is at Arizona State scouting right-hander Brady Rodgers with Craig Counsell tonight.
  • Within this article comparing the Phillies to the late-90s Indians, Sam Donnellon of The Philadelphia Daily News says the Tribe had a deal in place to acquire Curt Schilling in 2000. "I banged hard on that one," said then-Indians GM John Hart when asked how he felt after the deal fell through.
  • Aybar told reporters that he hopes to remain with the Angels beyond this season, writes Alden Gonzalez of MLB.com. The 28-year-old declined to go into details about the kind of deal he’s looking for, but the Halos might not be willing to shell out major money for him with prospect Jean Segura in the fold.
  • The Mets were the only club to watch Scott Kazmir throw yesterday and Sandy Alderson didn't exactly offer a ringing endorsement of the pitcher, tweets Anthony DiComo of MLB.com. A reunion between the club and left-hander is unlikely, according to Adam Rubin of ESPNNewYork.com (via Twitter).
  • Mark Feinsand of the New York Daily News (via Twitter) spoke with someone that said Hideki Matsui isn't close to signing anywhere. The veteran will likely wait and see which teams have needs as spring training goes on.

Angels Unlikely To Extend Erick Aybar Before Season

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.


Angels Avoid Arbitration With Erick Aybar

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."



Angels Notes: Cordero, Pujols, Haren, Santana

Here's the latest from the Big A…


Angels Open Extension Talks With Kendrick, Aybar

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.


Miller On Upton, Angels, Slowey

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.

Players To Avoid Arbitration: Tuesday

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:

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Odds & Ends: Aybar, Haren, Hughes, Jackson

Links for Friday, before the Subway Series, Stephen Strasburg's third MLB start and Manny Ramirez's return to Fenway…


Angels May Need A Shortstop

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.


Angels, Aybar Avoid Arbitration

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.