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Esteban German Rumors
Today's minor moves…
- The Royals signed Juan Gutierrez to a minor league deal, according to MLB.com's Steve Gilbert (on Twitter). The right-hander posted a 5.40 ERA with 11.3 K/9 and 4.4 BB/9 in 18 1/3 innings with Arizona this past season.
- The Astros released Nick Stavinoha so that he can sign with a Japanese team, according to Zachary Levine of the Houston Chronicle. The 29-year-old spent the 2011 season at Triple-A, where he hit .270/.329/.488 in 586 plate appearances. The Hiroshima Carp are working toward a deal with Stavinoha, according to a Japanese report passed along by Patrick Newman of NPB Tracker.
- The Nationals signed Jarrett Hoffpauir to a minor league deal, according to MLB.com's Bill Ladson (on Twitter). Hoffpauir, 28, posted a .281/.356/.428 for the Padres' top affiliate this past season.
- The Royals announced that the club has granted the release of minor league pitcher Mario Santiago in order for the right-hander to sign a contract with the SK Wyverns of the Korean Baseball Organization. Santiago, who turns 27 on Friday, split time between the Royals' Double-A and Triple-A affiliates in 2011.
- Japan's Seibu Lions signed former Rangers utility man Esteban German for $1MM, tweets Enrique Rojas of ESPN Deportes. The 33-year-old was removed from the Rangers' 40-man roster in November.
The latest players to be outrighted off 40-man rosters:
- The Indians outrighted Trevor Crowe off of their 40-man roster, according to the team. Crowe, who appeared in 15 games for the Indians in 2011, cannot elect free agency
- The Rangers outrighted pitchers Omar Beltre, Merkin Valdez and Eric Hurley and infielders Andres Blanco and Esteban German off of the 40-man roster, according to MLB.com's T.R. Sullivan. Blanco, who would have been arbitration eligible, projected to earn $500K through arbitration. He posted a .605 OPS in 82 plate appearances as a utility player and was the only one of the outrighted players to pick up significant playing time in 2011.
- The Mariners outrighted infielder Luis Rodriguez, tweets Geoff Baker of the Seattle Times. I named Rodriguez and David Aardsma as the Mariners' primary non-tender candidates back in September, and now both are off the 40-man roster, which stands at 36. Rodriguez has elected free agency, reports MLB.com's Greg Johns.
- The Braves outrighted catcher J.C. Boscan, reliever Stephen Marek, outfielder Wilkin Ramirez, and outfielder Antoan Richardson to Triple-A Gwinnett, tweets MLB.com's Mark Bowman. Meanwhile, starter Todd Redmond's contract was selected. Marek had Tommy John surgery in May; he was obtained from the Angels with Casey Kotchman for Mark Teixeira at the '08 trade deadline. I thought at the time that the Braves' return topped the value of a couple of draft picks. That hasn't been true if you look at who the Angels took with their two Teixeira picks: top prospect Mike Trout and lefty Tyler Skaggs, a main component in the Dan Haren trade.
A look at the minor deals struck today…
- Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports tweets that Esteban German is returning to the Rangers on a minor league deal. German, 33 in January, hit .280/.371/.388 in 567 Triple-A plate appearances this year, playing all around the diamond. He was outrighted on November 5th and chose to become a free agent.
- The Royals signed outfielder Brett Carroll to a minor league contract, reports Juan C. Rodriguez of the South Florida Sun Sentinel (Twitter link). The 28-year-old is a .205/.284/.325 career hitter in 319 plate appearances with the Marlins.
- Infielder Scott Moore signed a minor league deal with the Cubs, reports Jeff Zrebiec of The Baltimore Sun. He originally broke in with the Cubs back in 2006, but was later traded to the Orioles for Steve Trachsel.
- Infielder Chad Tracy signed with the Hiroshima Carp for about $1.3MM according to a report passed along by NPB Tracker's Patrick Newman (Twitter link).
Mike Axisa contributed to this post.
SATURDAY, 10:47am: CBSSports.com reports that German, Mathis, and McCarthy all refused the minor league assignments and elected to become free agents.
FRIDAY, 3:54pm: Two White Sox will soon hit free agency and a trio of Rangers could join them before long. Left-hander Randy Williams and catcher Donny Lucy were outrighted and will soon become free agents, according to MLB.com's Scott Merkin (on Twitter).
Meanwhile, the Rangers outrighted Esteban German, Doug Mathis and Brandon McCarthy off of the 40-man roster and all three can become free agents, according to MLB.com's T.R. Sullivan. McCarthy was a non-tender candidate, though he's just 27, made 17 useful starts for the Rangers last year and posted a 3.36 ERA at Triple-A in 2010.
The Rangers designated infielder Alex Cora for assignment to create roster space for Esteban German. The Rangers signed Cora last month after the Mets released him, but the 34-year-old played in just four games for Texas, batting only seven times (he singled twice).
German, 32, has not yet appeared in the majors this season, though he is an eight-year major league veteran. He posted a .280/.371/.388 line at Triple A this year, spending most of his time at short, second and third. The utilityman also played left and center, though the Rangers presumably intend to use German on the infield.
Texas has signed reliever Geoff Geary and infielder Ray Olmedo to minor league contracts and invited both players to spring training, reports T.R. Sullivan of MLB.com. Geary, a right-hander, spent the last two seasons in Houston, posting an 8.10 ERA in 16 appearances last year and spending most of 2009 pitching with the Astros' Triple-A affiliate in Round Rock. Geary played with the Phillies for the first five years of his career, with his best season coming in 2006 (2.96 ERA, 3.00 K:BB ratio, 81 appearances).
Olmedo last played in the majors with Toronto in 2007, and spent the last two seasons with Tampa Bay and Washington's Triple-A teams, respectively. He has a career slash line of .228/.276/.293 in 442 major league plate appearances and has experience playing at second, third and shortstop.
Sullivan also notes that the Rangers assigned Esteban German and Clay Rapada to Triple-A Oklahoma City after the two players cleared outright waivers.
Midnight ET is the non-tender deadline, so we'll keep track of all the players who are offered and/or agreed to contracts today in this post. Keep coming back throughout the day for updates.
- Washington tendered contracts to Josh Willingham, Jesus Flores, Wil Nieves, Jason Bergmann, and Sean Burnett.
- Zach Duke was tendered an offer by the Pirates.
- The Marlins reached an agreement with Ronny Paulino. The deal will be for one-year, $1.1MM.
- The Royals avoided arbitration by reaching one year deals with Brian Bannister ($2.3MM) Roman Colon ($660K), and Kyle Davies ($1.8MM).
- Dioner Navarro will remain with the Rays on a one-year deal worth $2.1MM.
- The White Sox will offer contracts to Bobby Jenks, John Danks, Carlos Quentin, and Tony Pena.
- Milwaukee will tender offers to six players: Dave Bush, Carlos Villanueva, Todd Coffey, Jody Gerut, Corey Hart, and Carlos Gomez.
- Toronto will tender an offer to Jeremy Accardo.
- Kevin Correia will remain with the Padres for one-year, $3.6MM.
- The Rangers have signed Esteban German to a 2010 contract. He'll earn $600K in the majors and $200K in the minors. They offered contracts to their other arbitration-eligible players including Scott Feldman, Chris Ray, Frank Francisco, C.J. Wilson, Dustin Nippert, Brandon McCarthy, and Josh Hamilton.
- Tampa Bay avoided arbitration with Lance Cormier by inking him to a one-year deal. The contract will pay Cormier $1.2MM.
- The Twins will tender contracts to all 30 unsigned players on their 40-man roster. That means Jesse Crain, Matt Guerrier, J.J. Hardy, Brendan Harris, Francisco Liriano, Pat Neshek, Delmon Young, and many more figure to be in the Twins' plans in 2010.
- The following eight Cubs will receive offers from the team: Carlos Marmol, Ryan Theriot, Jeff Baker, Angel Guzman, Sean Marshall, Koyie Hill, Tom Gorzelanny, and Mike Fontenot.
- Atlanta tendered offers to relievers Peter Moylan and Boone Logan.
- The Marlins will tender offers to almost all of their arbitration-eligible players – Dan Uggla, Jorge Cantu, Ricky Nolasco, Cody Ross, Josh Johnson, Leo Nunez, and Renyel Pinto.
- The Astros will tender offers to all remaining arbitration-eligible players. This means Michael Bourn, Hunter Pence, Wandy Rodriguez, Matt Lindstrom, Tim Byrdak, Chris Sampson, Jeff Keppinger, and Humberto Quintero are invited back.
- Matt Albers and Cla Meredith have agreed to terms with the Orioles. Albers' deal is worth $.68MM for one-year. Meanwhile, Meredith will recieve $.85MM in 2010.
- Randy Choate agreed to a one year deal. Terms of the deal are one-year, $700K.
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A few tidbits from around the majors….
- Blue Jays reliever Jeremy Accardo hopes to be non-tendered tomorrow, writes MLB.com's Jordan Bastian. The righty, 28 this month, dealt with a groin injury and bounced up and down between Triple A and the Majors this year. He earned $900K.
- Cases of players avoiding arbitration and signing for 2010, according to the AP: Matt Diaz of the Braves at $2.55MM, Ronny Cedeno of the Pirates at $1.125MM, and Esteban German of the Rangers at $600K. Diaz gets a 106% raise, heading into his third arbitration year.
- The AP also notes that the Nationals signed pitcher Ryan Speier for $425K. The 30-year-old toiled at Triple A for the Rockies this year, mainly.
- MLB.com's Steve Gilbert (via Twitter) reports that the Diamondbacks have avoided going to arbitration with Augie Ojeda by re-signing the veteran infielder to a one-year deal. Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic says the contract is worth $825K. Ojeda, 34, has spent the last three seasons with Arizona and hit .246/.340/.345 in 309 plate appearances in 2009. The defensive specialist is a valuable utilityman, able to play second, third and shortstop.
- Twins GM Bill Smith tells Kelsie Smith of the St. Paul Pioneer Press that his traditionally low-spending team has "substantial funds" to cover arbitration raises and potential signings that could raise Minnesota's payroll into the $90MM neighborhood for next season. The general manager was predictably non-committal when asked if "substantial" translated to "enough to extend Joe Mauer."
- NPB Tracker passes on news from Japanese site Sanspo.com that the Yakult Swallows will announce next week that they have signed Eulogio De La Cruz. The right-hander was released by the Padres on Wednesday. De La Cruz has an 11.84 ERA in 15 appearances over three seasons with San Diego, Florida and Detroit.
- The White Sox seem ready to stick with Randy Williams as the only left-handed reliever (besides, of course, set-up man Matt Thornton) next season, as Chicago GM Kenny Williams told Mark Gonzales of the Chicago Tribune. Gonzales notes that if the club changes its mind, a possible target could be former White Sox reliever Neal Cotts, who will be non-tendered by the Cubs tomorrow.
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According to MLB.com's T.R. Sullivan, the Royals claimed third baseman Travis Metcalf off waivers from the Rangers today. The Rangers signed infielder Esteban German, formerly of the Cubs and Royals, to replace Metcalf.
Metcalf, 26, has a career line of .249/.300/.475 in 242 plate appearances. He has not had success in a couple of Triple A stints. Back in their '06 Handbook, Baseball America said Metcalf profiled as "as average hitter with potentially above-average power." They considered him a "solid defender" at the time. Bob Dutton of the Kansas City Star notes that Metcalf starred at the University of Kansas back in the day.
German, 31, hit .245/.303/.338 in 242 plate appearances last year, spending time at multiple positions. He played for the Rangers back in '05 before he was traded to the Royals for Fabio Castro.
According to a press release from the team, the Cubs signed infielder Esteban German to a minor league deal. He was released by the Royals last week after clearing waivers.
German, 31, hit .245/.303/.338 in 242 plate appearances last year while playing in left field as well as all around the infield. Presumably the Cubs consider German a possible third base backup; he played 281 innings at the hot corner in ’07 and 43 in ’08. The Cubs will have the option of keeping German for 2010, as he’ll be arbitration-eligible after ’09.