Felix Hernandez Rumors
Brendan Ryan singled in the seventh to break up C.C. Sabathia's perfect game bid, but that didn't stop the Yankees from extending Seattle's losing streak to 17 games. The latest on the struggling Mariners...
- Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports hears that teams may value Doug Fister more than Hiroki Kuroda because Fister pitches in the American League and is under team control well beyond 2011, unlike Kuroda (Twitter link).
- The Mariners would deal Erik Bedard, who will pitch in front of a full scout section on Friday, according to Danny Knobler of CBSSports.com (on Twitter). Fister, however, would "take a lot" to acquire.
- Bedard won't be easy to obtain, either. Sean McAdam of CSNNE hears that the Mariners are asking for a "ton" in exchange for the lefty (Twitter link).
- How many times does Jack Zduriencik have to repeat that Felix Hernandez isn’t going anywhere? The Mariners' GM told Andrew Marchand of ESPNNewYork.com that Hernandez is staying put this summer.
- Brandon League told Greg Johns of MLB.com that he hopes to stay in Seattle. League appears to be in luck; Zduriencik said earlier today that he’s not trading his closer.
On this date last year, the Angels acquired Dan Haren from Arizona for Patrick Corbin, Tyler Skaggs, Rafael Rodriguez and Joe Saunders. The Angels finished with a losing record in 2010, but they're in contention now and Haren has been excellent, posting a 3.01 ERA with 7.3 K/9 and 1.7 BB/9 in 239 innings for the Halos. Meawhile, Skaggs has developed into one of the top prospects in the game and Corbin is highly-regarded as well. Here's the latest from the AL West...
- Mariners starters Felix Hernandez and Doug Fister told Danny Knobler of CBSSports.com that they don't want to be traded.
- Rangers manager Ron Washington confirmed to T.R. Sullivan of MLB.com that he'd like to see the Rangers fortify their bullpen before the trade deadline.
- The Mariners appear to believe Fister is better than Jason Vargas, so they may not want to deal Fister, according to Knobler (on Twitter).
- Rangers assistant GM Thad Levine told Jim Bowden of MLB Network Radio that Texas continues discussing a contract extension for left-hander C.J. Wilson (Twitter links). Wilson, who hits free agency after the season, received a contract offer from the Rangers in March.
- Levine also confirmed that the Rangers are looking for bullpen help and a left fielder.
- The Mariners, A's, Brewers and Giants have looked at free agent slugger Wily Mo Pena, according to Jon Heyman of SI.com (on Twitter). The Diamondbacks recently released Pena, who hit five homers in 46 plate appearances this year.
Here are some late night links as Thursday turns into Friday...
- Ken Rosenthal and Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports spoke to rival executives who believe the only three Mariners off limits in trade talks are Felix Hernandez, Michael Pineda, and Dustin Ackley. Impending free agents like Adam Kennedy, Jack Wilson, and Jamey Wright are certainly on the block, but pitchers Jason Vargas, Brandon League, and Doug Fister would be the most interesting trade candidates.
- The Blue Jays scouted Kevin Slowey's minor league rehab start on Wednesday night, tweets Morosi. They've had interest in him since Spring Training.
- MLB.com's Todd Zolecki says the Phillies are unlikely to add both a reliever and a right-handed bat before the trade deadline. Healthy returns from Brad Lidge and Jose Contreras could be all the bullpen help they need.
The Red Sox are "not pursuing anyone aggressively right now," a source familiar with the team's thinking told WEEI's Alex Speier. Instead, the team is currently trying to determine which internal solutions will work. We've heard the Red Sox named as one of the most aggressive suitors for Carlos Beltran, but that may not be the case.
The Sox are still taking their normal approach of "inquiring about anyone who may make an appreciable difference to the team," in the words of the Boston Globe's Nick Cafardo. Cafardo says the Red Sox have inquired on Beltran, Ubaldo Jimenez, Felix Hernandez, Jose Reyes, Jeff Francoeur, Jeff Baker, Michael Cuddyer, Ty Wigginton, Hiroki Kuroda, Ted Lilly, Jeremy Guthrie, Ryan Ludwick, Josh Willingham, Conor Jackson, Ryan Spilborghs, Mike Adams, and others. The team needs include starting pitching, a reliever, an outfielder, and a shortstop, but the Red Sox may prefer internal options in many cases.
The Mariners are sellers, and they might be willing to part with decent pitching. Here's the latest...
- Mariners GM Jack Zduriencik still plans to retain ace Felix Hernandez, he tells Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports. Rosenthal says the Yankees occasionally check in to see if the team will change its stance, but there's no indication they'll budge. Yesterday, though, CBS' Danny Knobler reported that the Mariners are willing to discuss starters Jason Vargas and Doug Fister. Both seem capable of ERAs around 4.00 going forward.
- The Mariners are fielding a heavy volume of calls on closer Brandon League, reports Jon Paul Morosi. Morosi believes League is favorable to Mike Adams in some regards. Both are under team control through 2012. Fantasy leaguers might want to add David Pauley in the event League is traded, writes Dan Mennella at CloserNews.
- The Mariners need to raise payroll and add offense, writes Geoff Baker of the Seattle Times.
It's unlikely that incoming Astros owner Jim Crane would want to start his tenure as Houston's new owner by opposing MLB's other teams, as Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports points out. That means it will be hard for Crane to turn Bud Selig down if the commissioner asks the Astros to move to the American League West at some point. Here are more of Morosi's notes from around MLB:
- The Mariners are taking calls on Brandon League and have no plans to make Felix Hernandez available (Twitter link).
- Despite the many injuries to their starting pitchers, the Red Sox haven't begun an all-out search for rotation help, according to Morosi. The Red Sox, who have checked in on Carlos Beltran, are prioritizing a right-handed hitting outfielder.
- The Blue Jays are hearing from teams interested in their relievers (Twitter link).
- The Angels prefer left-handed hitters over right-handed hitters, according to Morosi (on Twitter). They had serious discussions about the left-handed hitting Garrett Jones earlier in the year.
With over 20 international players across AL and NL rosters last night, the quotes were flowing in both of America's native tongues. Links are in Spanish...
- Felix Hernandez wants to stay in Seattle well beyond the end of his contract in 2014, the reigning Cy Young winner told Manuel Lira at the Venezuelan paper Líder en Deportes. "Hopefully Seattle locks me up further," Hernandez said. "I want to sign for more. At least five years more." As for any chance of being traded to New York or elsewhere, Hernandez dismissed the notion as "just rumors."
- At a charity event in the Dominican Republic yesterday, six-time former All-Star Miguel Tejada sounded undecided about the direction of his career. "I won't disgrace myself in order to continue playing," he told Juan Mercado of the Dominican daily Hoy. "With the pride that I have, I don't think anyone is going to see me embarrassing myself in baseball, when I feel that I'm not useful enough to be in the Major Leagues." On the other hand, Tejada told Freddy Tapia from Listin Diario, "I'm used to having good years with losing teams. Now the opposite is happening, and the truth is that I'm enjoying it."
- Cuban National Team star center fielder Yoennis Céspedes has been missing for almost two weeks. In a piece today, Jorge Ebro at the Miami-based El Nuevo Herald explains, "His presence hasn't been reported, nobody responds at his telephone, and people are talking about three possible hypotheses: that he is in the power of the island authorities, that he is hidden somewhere in the country, or that he took to the sea," in an attempt to escape Cuba. Cuban baseball writer Fernando Vilá tells Ebro, "In years of following Cuban baseball, I don't remember a case like this."
Even before reports of David Einhorn's $200MM investment in the Mets surfaced, things could've been worse in Queens, writes Mike Vaccaro of the New York Post. Vaccaro points out that New York's baseball history includes plenty of stretches more dismal than the one endured by the present-day Mets, and breaks down his top five. Here are some other Sunday morning notes on the Mets and Yankees:
- Einhorn got a first-hand look at Jose Reyes on Saturday, but refused comment when asked about the possibility of re-signing the shortstop, says Kevin Kernan of the New York Post.
- Whenever Felix Hernandez faces the Yankees, as he did Saturday night, it seems invariably to lead to speculation about King Felix someday wearing pinstripes. However, as Mark Feinsand of the New York Daily News writes, that's not about to happen anytime soon.
- Phil Hughes took "a step in the right direction" this weekend, throwing off a mound for the first time in over a month, according to Feinsand.
- The New York Post's Steve Selby argues that if there's one player who deserves to be cut some slack when he struggles, it's Derek Jeter.
We know that Mets owner Fred Wilpon doesn’t think Jose Reyes is a $142MM player, but how do other insiders see it? Jon Heyman of SI.com hears from five MLB executives who estimate Reyes will sign for somewhere between $45-108MM after the season when he hits free agency. Here’s the latest from around the majors, with a focus on Reyes’ Mets:
- Francisco Rodriguez, who can veto trades to ten teams, told Heyman that he understands baseball is “a business” and deals happen.
- There’s no chance the Mariners trade Felix Hernandez now that they’re playing better, according to Heyman.
- If the White Sox make a starter available, Edwin Jackson could be the one to hit the trade market, as he’s eligible for free agency after the season.
- Over the weekend, MLBTR’s Mark Polishuk weighed in on what a “bad” season would mean for Albert Pujols. Heyman says Pujols will surely do well even if his off-year continues, since the Cardinals “aren't going to lower their offer of nine years and more than $200MM.”
- Ivan Rodriguez repeated that he wants to play three more years.
- Despite the recent controversy involving A’s manager Bob Geren and relievers Brian Fuentes and Huston Street, Heyman says the skipper “isn't going anywhere.”
- The Indians are one of a few teams that has shown interest in former Mets and Expos GM Omar Minaya.
Six years ago today, Robinson Cano made his MLB debut. Since then, all he's done is hit .309/.346/.493, make two All-Star teams, club 124 home runs and help the Yankees win another World Series. Here are today's links, as Cano and the Yankees take on the Tigers...
- As Paul Hagen of the Philadelphia Daily News explains, the Phillies' roster now has far more Latin American players than it did two-plus decades ago, when current third base coach Juan Samuel was still playing.
- Mariners president Chuck Armstrong told Peter Gammons of MLB.com that the M's have no intention of trading the defending Cy Young winner. "It's ridiculous when people talk about our trading Felix," Armstrong said. "We have Felix [Hernandez] and [Michael] Pineda for five years. Why would we move either one?"
- As Yahoo's Jeff Passan explains, the 9-18 Twins could use former teammate Mike Redmond and his... unconventional way of busting out of slumps.
- Giants manager Bruce Bochy acknowledged that he and GM Brian Sabean have discussed promoting Brandon Belt back to the Major Leagues, according to Andrew Baggarly of the San Jose Mercury News.