Erick Aybar Rumors

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.


Roy Halladay Rumors: Thursday

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.