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Here are today’s minor transactions from around the league…
- The Mariners announced the signing of lefty Rafael Perez to a minor league deal with a Spring Training invitation. Perez posted a 3.64 ERA, 2.29 K/BB rate and 7.3 K/9 over 329 relief innings with the Indians from 2006-12, but he hasn’t since pitched off a big league mound. The southpaw has pitched in the minors for the Red Sox, Twins, Pirates and Rangers over the last two seasons.
- The Brewers have signed right-hander Josh Roenicke to a minor league deal, per the club’s transactions page (a Spring Training invite is not mentioned, seemingly indicating that he will head to minor league camp). The 32-year-old Roenicke — the nephew of Brewers manager Ron Roenicke — spent the 2014 season with the Triple-A affiliates for the Nationals and Rockies, pitching to a combined 6.04 ERA with 4.5 K/9 and 3.5 BB/9 in 89 1/3 innings (15 starts, 14 relief appearances). The former Reds prospect brings plenty of big league experience to the table in Milwaukee, as he has 220 1/3 career innings in the Majors. He most recently pitched to a 4.35 ERA in 62 innings with the Twins.
- Right-hander Fernando Cabrera has agreed to a minor league deal with the Giants, tweets Jon Heyman of CBS Sports. The 33-year-old Cabrera hasn’t appeared in the Majors since 2010 and hasn’t logged significant MLB innings since 2008, but he has an excellent track record at Triple-A, where he has compiled a 3.00 ERA with 10.0 K/9 and 4.0 BB/9 in 467 2/3 innings in parts of 10 seasons. Cabrera was considered to be one of the Indians’ best prospects in the early 2000s, but he wasn’t able to fully tap into his potential.
The baseball community is buzzing over Michael Bourn's four-year pact with the Indians, but there's more news than just that in the baseball world. Here's a collection of links pertaining to the AL West…
- Right-hander Fernando Cabrera, who signed a minor league contract with the Angels in January, can opt out of his deal if he is not on the Major League roster by July 31 according to MLB.com's Alden Gonzalez (Twitter link).
- John Hickey of the Bay Area News Group tweets that Athletics manager Bob Melvin called Hiroyuki Nakajima and told him not to worry about the club's acquisition of Jed Lowrie. The A's traded for Lowrie a week ago.
- There's no bad blood between Bartolo Colon and his teammates, writes CSN Bay Area's Casey Pratt. The Athletics have welcomed Colon back with open arms, and his teammates are glad to have him back in the fold as they look to defend their AL West title.
- A scout texted Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports and praised the Mariners for their minor league pact with Jon Garland. The scout tells Rosenthal that Garland looks healthy and was impressive in a recent workout. Garland told Rosenthal that his decision not to go to camp with the Indians after agreeing to a minor league deal with them last winter may have been the best decision of his career because it helped him finally get back to 100 percent. Cleveland GM Chris Antonetti called Garland's decision "very classy."
- Kenji Nimura, who served as Hiroki Kuroda's intepreter for the Yankees last season, will now assume that role with Yu Darvish of the Rangers, Newsday's David Lennon tweets.
- Ryan Madson suffered a setback in his recovery from Tommy John surgery, which means he probably won't be ready to take the reins as the Angels' closer on Opening Day, writes Mike DiGiovanna of the L.A. Times. Remember fantasy baseball players, you can keep track of all the latest closer-related injuries and news this season by following Tim Dierkes' @closernews on Twitter.
- The Yankees have released Chris Dickerson according to the MLB.com transactions page. New York designated the 30-year-old outfielder for assignment after claiming Russ Canzler last week. Dickerson hit .316/.417/.515 in Triple-A last year and received a September call-up.
- Fernando Cabrera signed a minor league deal with the Angels, according to Jeff Fletcher of the Orange County Register. Cabrera, 31, owns a 5.24 ERA with 9.9 K/9 and 5.0 BB/9 across parts of seven career big league seasons. The right-handed reliever spent last season with the Mets' Triple-A affiliate.
- Mark Hendrickson will have a tryout with the Orioles during their mini-camp next week, reports Roch Kubatko of MASNSports.com (Twitter links). The 39-year-old left-hander has not appeared in the big leagues since 2011, and Kubatko says he's trying to reinvent himself as a sidearmer.
- The Indians have released Thomas Neal, the team announced (Twitter links). The 25-year-old outfielder was designated for assignment to clear room on the 40-man roster for Nick Swisher earlier this month. The team says they have interest in re-signing Neal, who hit .314/.400/.467 in Double-A last season.
Batista, 41 in February, posted a 3.60 ERA, 4.7 K/9, 5.0 BB/9, 0.30 HR/9, and 44.9% groundball rate in 60 innings for the Mets and Cardinals last year. He ended the Mets' season on a high note with a shutout against the Reds.
Cabrera, 30, posted a 2.71 ERA, 10.4 K/9, 3.7 BB/9, and 0.86 HR/9 in 63 innings for the Athletics' Triple-A affiliate last year.
WEDNESDAY: Cabrera cleared waivers and was outrighted to Triple A, according to the team.
SATURDAY: The Red Sox will designate righty reliever Fernando Cabrera for assignment according to WEEI.com's Rob Bradford. The move frees up a roster spot for Manny Delcarmen, who is returning from the disabled list, though manager Terry Francona told Bradford that multiple moves could be announced today.
Cabrera, 28, appeared in one game for the Sox this year, giving up a grand slam to Bengie Molina last night in an appearance that included two walks, two hits, three runs, and four outs. He spent the majority of the season with Boston's Triple-A affiliate, where he posted a 3.50 ERA with a 12.5 K/9 in 36 innings. The former Indian and Oriole has struck out an impressive 9.9 batters per nine innings in 175.1 big league innings, but his 5.24 ERA and 5.0 BB/9 are rather forgettable.
The Red Sox designated Fernando Cabrera for assignment according to Amalie Benjamin of the Boston Globe. The 27-year-old righty didn't do badly in four MLB games this year, walking two and allowing four hits in 4.0 innings and striking out seven batters along the way. He'd been striking out nearly a batter an inning at Triple A Pawtucket before getting the call to the majors.
Links for Monday…
- Mariners GM Jack Zduriencik admitted to have a conversation with Ken Griffey Jr.‘s agent, but wouldn’t reveal anything else.
- One of Matthew Cerrone’s readers dug up a Primera Hora article saying the Mets have been scouting free agent reliever Fernando Cabrera.
- Bob Klapisch looks at Pedro Martinez‘s four-year, $53MM deal and asks: was it worth it?
- Rays Index notes that Grant Balfour will use WBC participation as a bargaining chip in contract negotiations (he’s eligible for arbitration).
- Marc Hulet of Baseball Analysts looks at top hitters for the Rule 5 draft.
- Fire Brand of the American League did a Q&A with ESPN’s Peter Gammons. Some good stuff in there.
- A few notes from Patrick Newman at NPB Tracker. The Hanshin Tigers are reportedly considering offering $20MM over four years to Kenshin Kawakami, while Yu Darvish had his contract renewed at $2.7MM for next year.
- Joel Sherman of the New York Post says the Mets want to add one starter and push Jonathan Niese to the #5 spot.
- Rany Jazayerli notes that a John Buck trade would make sense for the Royals.
- I mentioned the Royals’ signing of J.R. House earlier, but should add that they also signed Franquelis Osoria and Matt Tupman to minor league deals.
The Orioles already plucked Jeremy Guthrie from the Indians and turned him into a credible American League starter. Today, they signed another former Indian in 25 year-old reliever Fernando Cabrera. Can Leo Mazzone mold this electric arm into the team’s future closer?
There’s a Guthrie connection here, as the two hurlers were teammates for the Buffalo Bisons. Dave Trembley saw them up close and personal as manager of the Ottawa Lynx.
According to Marc Lancaster of the Tampa Tribune, the Devil Rays are interested in recently released 25 year-old reliever Fernando Cabrera. In the past, it was revealed that the Orioles inquired on him.
Since he was released, Cabrera is eligible to sign with any team. According to R.J. Anderson of Drays Bay:
"Cabrera throws a 92-95 fastball with a good hard splitter and a slider that produces a load of swings and misses."
The Indians have ten days to waive, trade, or release 25 year-old reliever Fernando Cabrera. By my count they’ll need to do something by Friday. The best option would be to work out a trade, and the Orioles called to inquire.
The O’s would have to put Cabrera on the 25-man roster, or else try to pass Cabrera through waivers themselves. It would make more sense to carry Cabrera than Paul Shuey, so this shouldn’t be a problem.