Gaby Sanchez Rumors


Players Avoiding Arbitration: Friday

We'll keep track of today's smaller deals to avoid arbitration in this post. Click here for background on the upcoming arbitration schedule and how MLBTR is covering it. You can also check in on our Arbitration Tracker and look at MLBTR contributor Matt Swartz's arbitration projections.

Today's noon CT deadline to exchange arb figures has passed, but negotiations to avoid an arbitration hearing can continue into February. The Braves are the only strict "file and trial" team that did not agree to terms with all of its arb-eligible players, meaning they could be headed for several hearings. The Nats and Indians have also shown a willingness to go to a trial and still have some players unsigned. On to today's contract agreements...

  • After exchanging numbers, the Mets and pitcher Dillon Gee have agreed to settle at the midpoint of $3.625MM, tweets Adam Rubin of ESPNNewYork.com. Swartz projected Gee to earn $3.4MM.
  • The Cubs have avoided arbitration with reliever Pedro Strop, president Theo Epstein told Mark Gonzales of the Chicago Tribune (Twitter link). He will earn $1.325MM next year, according to a tweet from Gordon Wittenmyer of the Chicago Sun-Times. It is not immediately apparent whether the deal was reached before the sides exchanged terms.
  • The Angels have reached agreement on a $3.8MM deal with reliever Ernesto Frieri, reports Alden Gonzalez of MLB.com (on Twitter). 
  • Mike Minor has agreed to terms on a $3.85MM deal with the Braves to avoid arbitration, reports Mark Bowman of MLB.com (Twitter links). The deal came before figures were exchanged, Bowman notes.
  • Chris Cotillo of MLB Daily Dish reports that the D-Backs and lefty Joe Thatcher have avoided arb with a one-year, $2.375MM deal (Twitter link).
  • Nicholson-Smith tweets that the Angels and Fernando Salas reached an agreement to avoid arbitration. Salas is the first Halos player to avoid arb. Mike DiGiovanna of the L.A. Times tweets that Salas will earn $870K, which beats out his $700K projection.
  • MLB.com's Jason Beck reports (via Twitter) that the Tigers and righty Al Alburquerque have reached agreement on a deal to avoid arb. The hard-throwing righty will earn $837.5K in 2014, tweets Beck.
  • Sherman tweets that the Yankees and Ivan Nova avoided arbitration with a one-year, $3.3MM deal.
  • The Pirates and Vin Mazzaro inked a one-year, $950K deal in lieu of an arbitration hearing, tweets Rob Biertempfel of the Pittsburgh Tribune.
  • The Royals announced that they've avoided arbitration with infielder Emilio Bonifacio. Heyman tweets that Bonifacio will earn $3.5MM in 2014.
  • Sherman reports that the Rays avoided arbitration with Jeremy Hellickson and Sean Rodriguez (Twitter link). Hellickson landed a $3.625MM payday with a $25K bonus if he hits 195 innings pitched. Rodriguez will get $1.475MM with a $25K bump for hitting 300 plate appearances.
  • Roch Kubatko of MASNsports.com tweets that Brian Matusz avoided arb with the Orioles. Sherman adds that he'll earn $2.4MM in 2014.
  • MLB.com's Brian McTaggart tweets that Jason Castro and the Astros have avoided arbitration. McTaggart adds in a second tweet that Jesus Guzman avoided arb as well. Heyman reports that Castro will be paid $2.45MM, while Sherman tweets that Guzman will make $1.3MM.
  • The Indians tweeted that they've avoided arb with lefty Marc Rzepczynski, and MLB.com's Jordan Bastian tweets that he'll earn $1.375MM in 2014. Bastian adds that Scrabble will earn an additional $25K for appearing in 55 games and another $25K for 60 games.
  • The Giants avoided arbitration with Yusmeiro Petit, according to MLBTR's Steve Adams (on Twitter).  He'll earn $845K, according to Sportsnet's Ben Nicholson-Smith (via Twitter).
  • Cesar Ramos got $750K from the Rays in his deal, Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times tweets
  • Sherman tweets that the Athletics' Craig Gentry will get $1.145MM on a one-year deal to avoid arbitration.
  • Jerry Blevins and the Nationals avoided arbitration, tweets Dan Kolko of MASNsports.com. He will earn $1.675MM for the year, tweets Ben Nicholson-Smith of Sportsnet.ca.
  • Alejandro De Aza agreed to a $4.25MM deal with the White Sox, Sherman tweets.  Within the same tweet, Sherman says the Rays shook hands with Jose Lobaton on a $900K deal and James Russell agreed to a $1.775MM pact.
  • The White Sox and Gordon Beckham agreed to a one-year, $4.175MM deal, Sherman tweets.
  • The Brewers avoided arbitration with Marco Estrada and Juan Francisco, Sherman tweets.  Estrada gets $3.325MM with $100K in innings pitched bonuses while Francisco gets $1.35MM.
  • Mike Dunn agreed to a $1.4MM deal with the Marlins, according to Juan C. Rodriguez of the Sun Sentinel (on Twitter). 
  • Pedro Alvarez will earn $4.25MM on his brand new deal with the Pirates, Sherman tweets.
  • The Nationals announced that they've struck an arb-avoiding deal with Wilson Ramos.  Ramos gets $2.095MM with the opportunity to get $105K more through plate appearance bonuses, per Sherman.
  • Alexi Ogando gets $2.625MM in 2014 from the Rangers, according to Sherman.
  • Mark Melancon will get $2.595MM after striking a deal with the Pirates, tweets Sherman.
  • Brandon Moss and the Athletics avoided arbitration with a $4.1MM pact, Sherman tweets.
  • The Red Sox and Jonathan Herrera avoided arbitration with a $1.3MM deal for 2014, Sherman tweets.
  • Brian Duensing has agreed to a $2MM deal with the Twins, according to Mike Berardino of the Pioneer Press (via Twitter). Berardino adds in a second tweet that Anthony Swarzak also avoided arb with a $935K deal. The swingman will earn a $25K bonus if he starts 10 games.
  • The Rangers and Neftali Feliz agreed to a $3MM deal with bonuses of $25K for 50/55 games finished, Sherman tweets.
  • Jake McGee will earn $1.45MM in his new deal with the Rays, Sherman tweets.
  • The Royals and Eric Hosmer have agreed to a one-year, $3.6MM deal, Sherman tweets.
  • Mike Carp gets $1.4MM in his deal with the Red Sox, according to Sherman (via Twitter).
  • Bobby Parnell agreed to a one-year, $3.7MM with the Mets that can increase by $50K if he appears in 60 games, Sherman tweets.
  • The Braves avoided arbitration with Jordan Schafer with a $1.09MM deal, tweets Sherman.  Sherman adds that Andy Dirks and the Tigers have also avoided arbitration with a $1.625MM deal.  
  • Shawn Kelley and the Yankees dodged arbitration by agreeing to a $1.765MM deal for 2014, Sherman tweets.  Kelley, 29, has a career 3.77 ERA with 9.6 K/9 and 3.1 BB/9.
  • The Red Sox agreed to a one-year, $1.275MM deal with Junichi Tazawa, according to Sherman (on Twitter).  Tazawa posted a 3.16 ERA in 2013 with 9.5 K/9 and 1.6 BB/9.
  • The Rockies avoided arbitration with Drew Stubbs by agreeing to a $4.1MM deal for 2014, according to Joel Sherman of the New York Post (on Twitter).  With the signing of Stubbs, the Rockies have now taken care of all of their arbitration-eligible players.
  • Kyle Blanks has avoided arbitration with the Padres by agreeing to a one-year, $988K deal, according to Jerry Crasnick of ESPN.com (via Twitter). 
  • Sherman also reports (on Twitter) that the Giants have avoided arbitration with Gregor Blanco and Tony Abreu by agreeing to one-year deals that are worth $2.525MM and $745K, respectively.
  • The Cardinals and Peter Bourjos have avoided arbitration by agreeing to a one-year, $1.2MM contract, tweets Sherman. Bourjos can earn another $150K based on plate appearances.
  • Gaby Sanchez and the Pirates have avoided arbitration with a one-year deal, according to Sanchez's agency, the Beverly Hills Sports Council (on Twitter). Jon Heyman of CBS Sports tweets that Sanchez will earn $2.3MM.
  • Sherman reports (via Twitter) that the Blue Jays also avoided arbitration with Esmil Rogers by agreeing to a one-year, $1.85MM contract.
  • The Nationals announced that in addition to their two-year deal with Jordan Zimmermann, they've also signed Drew Storen to a one-year deal to avoid arbitration. Sherman tweets that he'll earn $3.45MM in 2014 with an additional $1MM of incentives in his contract for games finished.
  • The Rockies and righty Juan Nicasio avoided arbitration with a one-year, $2.025MM contract, Sherman tweets.
  • The Blue Jays and lefty Brett Cecil have avoided arbitration with a one-year, $1.3MM pact, per Sherman (on Twitter).
  • Sherman tweets that the Rays and Matt Joyce agreed to a one-year, $3.7MM contract, thereby avoiding arbitration.
  • Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports that the Reds have avoided arbitration with Alfredo Simon by agreeing to a one-year, $1.5MM contract (Twitter link).
  • Connolly also reports that the Orioles have avoided arbitration with Tommy Hunter (Twitter link). Currently the front-runner to serve as Baltimore's closer in 2014, Hunter will earn $3MM after posting a 2.81 ERA with 7.1 K/9 and 1.5 BB/9 in 86 1/3 innings for the O's in 2013.
  • Dan Connolly of the Baltimore Sun reports that the Orioles and Troy Patton have avoided arbitration (Twitter link). Patton topped Swartz's $1.2MM salary projection by earning a raise to $1.275MM, Connolly adds in a second tweet.. Patton will be suspended for the first 25 games of 2014 for amphetamine use.
  • The Twins and Trevor Plouffe have agreed to a one-year, $2.35MM contract, Sherman tweets. Plouffe saw his power numbers drop as he batted .254/.309/.392 with 14 homers in a career-high 522 plate appearances in 2013 (he'd belted 24 homers in 465 PAs in 2012). He figures to open the season as Minnesota's everyday third baseman but could eventually have competition from top prospect Miguel Sano.
  • Jon Jay and the Cardinals have avoided arbitration by agreeing to a one-year, $3.25MM contract, according to Sherman (on Twitter). Jay batted .276/.351/.370 with the Cards in 2013 but struggled defensively (particularly in the playoffs) and will have center field competition in the form of offseason acquisition Peter Bourjos in 2014.
  • Joel Sherman of the New York Post tweets that the Phillies and John Mayberry Jr. have avoided arbitration by agreeing to a one-year deal worth $1.5875MM. Mayberry slashed .227/.286/.391 in 2013 and has a career .274/.321/.526 batting line against lefties. He came in just under Swartz's $1.7MM projection.
  • The Cubs and Luis Valbuena have also avoided arbitration by agreeing to a one-year pact, tweets Sherman. Valbuena will earn $1.71MM after slashing .218/.331/.378 and setting a new career-best with 12 homers in 2013. He exceeded Swartz's projection by $210K.

Zach Links contributed to this post.



How Valuable Are Competitive Balance Draft Picks?

This year's draft will be the first to feature competitive balance draft picks. These picks, which go to small-market and low-revenue teams, were awarded in a lottery last year. Some will take place after the first round, others after the second round. Unlike with regular draft picks, it's possible for teams to trade competitive balance picks, which means that each team surely has decided how much these picks are worth.USATSI_7210839

This is the full draft order. The competitive balance picks are as follows:

34. Royals
35. Marlins (from Pirates)
36. Diamondbacks
37. Orioles
38. Reds
39. Tigers (from Marlins)

69. Padres
70. Rockies
71. A's
72. Brewers
73. Marlins (from Tigers)

A 2009 study by Baseball Analysts' Sky Andrecheck suggested that the average value of the No. 30 overall pick was 3.6 WAR -- basically, the equivalent of about two decent seasons for a role player. The value of the competititve balance picks from No. 34 to No. 39, then, would be slightly less. Placing a numerical value on these draft picks in the current draft environment is tricky, however, because so much about the draft has changed in the past two years. Unlike in years past, teams are reined in by bonus pool allotments, so they aren't picking players for the same reasons they used to.

Teams can trade competitive balance picks, and two trades have already occurred, both of them involving the Marlins. The Pirates traded (what turned out to be) their No. 35 pick to Miami, along with outfielder Gorkys Hernandez, for first baseman Gaby Sanchez and minor-league pitcher Kyle Kaminska. The Marlins also traded their own competitive balance pick to the Tigers in the Anibal Sanchez deal, receiving the Tigers' pick in return.

The Gaby Sanchez deal is a lot simpler, so let's work from there. Hernandez and Kaminska weren't key parts of the trade, so the deal boils down to Gaby Sanchez for the No. 35 overall pick. Pirates GM Neal Huntington recently explained the rationale behind the deal in an interview with David Todd on 970 ESPN in Pittsburgh (beginning at around 12:30).

"You see a David Wright, and you recognize, man, there's a comp pick and there's the risk, is we may have given up David Wright," Huntington says. (Obviously, Wright wasn't a competitive balance pick, but he was the No. 38 overall pick in the draft in 2001.)

"But ... you recognize there's about a 15% chance of getting an everyday big-leaguer in the 30-to-40 pick range," says Huntington. "We felt like it was worth that 15% chance that we were going to get an everyday big-leaguer.

"You've also got a smaller chance to get an impact guy like David Wright, but you've got about a 60% miss rate at those picks, and in our minds, it's going to be even [higher] now that the draft is much more scripted than it's ever been."

A look at recent draft history reveals Huntington's analysis to be essentially correct. Let's look at the 30-40 pick range from the 2001 through 2005 drafts. (Although Huntington mentioned the "30-to-40 pick range," the No. 30 pick will typically be a traditional first-round pick, not a competitive-balance pick.)

2001: Noah Lowry (30), Jeff Mathis (33), Bronson Sardinha (34), J.D. Martin (35), John Rheinecker (37), David Wright (38)

2002: Dan Meyer (34), Jeremy Brown (35), Mark Teahen (39)

2003: Mitch Maier (30), Matt Murton (32), Omar Quintanilla (33), Luis Atilano (35), Jarrod Saltalamacchia (36), Adam Jones (37), James Houser (38), Tony Gwynn, Jr. (39), Jay Sborz (40)

2004: Eric Hurley (30), J.P. Howell (31), Zach Jackson (32), Matt Fox (35), Danny Putnam (36), Gio Gonzalez (38), Huston Street (40)

2005: Tyler Greene (30), Ryan Tucker (34), Cesar Ramos (35), Travis Buck (36), Trevor Bell (37)

This distribution of outcomes is fairly telling -- in 55 picks, there's one superstar (Wright), two very good players (Jones and Gonzalez), a good closer (Street), a decent regular (Saltalamacchia) and a smattering of role players. This was a better five-year period for picks 31 through 40 then the five years periods before or after it, and still the chances of nabbing a meaningful player with one of those picks was, it appears, relatively small. For competitive balance picks after the second round, the chances of grabbing a good player are even smaller. (Well, at least theoretically. From 2001 through 2005, the list of quality players chosen between No. 66 and No. 75 includes Dan Haren, Kurt Suzuki, Jason Vargas, Wade Davis and Chase Headley. That's not bad.)

Gaby Sanchez, who has produced 0.4 WAR for the Pirates this season, is more valuable than most players from the 31 through 40 range who made the majors, and obviously also more valuable than the ones who didn't make the majors. He's also cheap, making $1.75MM in his first year of arbitration eligibility. Notably, though, the Pirates quickly slotted him into the short end of a platoon role, meaning that they recognized him as a part-time player.

Is it worth it to give up a shot at the next David Wright for a part-time player? That depends on how great the shot is, and the position of the franchise making the trade. The Marlins were selling off their disappointing 2012 team at the time of the Sanchez deal, so it made sense for them to take a shot in the dark at finding the next David Wright. But the Pirates were trying to position themselves as a contender, so Sanchez had more value for them than a shot in the dark did.

Another consideration is the bonus pool allotment for competitive balance picks. Last year's pool value for the No. 35 pick was $1.4MM; this year, that figure will be slightly higher. So the Marlins will have a little over $1.4MM extra to distribute to all its draft picks, assuming they sign whoever they take at No. 35, while the Pirates will forfeit the ability to spend that money. The Astros, for example, used a large bonus pool to their advantage in the later rounds last year, signing players like Lance McCullers Jr. for well over the bonus recommendation.

In the next few years, teams' ability to trade competitive balance draft picks should allow us to begin to see how teams value draft picks. The competitive balance picks are late enough in the draft that they're fairly low-percentage plays. They're still valuable, however, so we should see rebuilding small-market and low-revenue teams try to acquire them -- either one-for-one (or more or less one-for-one) for role players like Gaby Sanchez, or as part of packages in deals involving more premium talents.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.



Quick Hits: Yankees, Overbay, Rolen, Gardenhire

The Yankees are still looking for help at both corner infield spots and no shortage of veteran names have been mentioned in connection to the search.   CBS Sports' Jon Heyman (via Twitter) wonders if New York would be interested in Pirates first baseman Gaby Sanchez, who "appears to be available."  The Yankees have also been scouting Lyle Overbay, Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe reports, and Overbay can opt out of his minor league deal with the Red Sox on Tuesday if he isn't on Boston's Major League roster.  As of now, however, Cafardo believes Overbay would "probably" make the Red Sox.

Here's some more news from around baseball as we head into the weekend...



Players Avoiding Arbitration: Friday

Dozens of players will agree to terms with their respective teams today and avoid arbitration. We'll have detailed posts on the top earners around MLB, and we'll track more modest agreements -- those worth less than $4MM -- right here. MLBTR's Arbitration Tracker will have all of the details.

Teams had until 12pm CDT today to exchange filing numbers with their arbitration eligible players. Generally speaking the deadline creates lots of discussion and leads to early deals. Plus, for ‘file and trial’ teams this marks the final chance for negotiations in advance of a hearing. Here are the latest agreements from around MLB...

  • The Padres announced that they have avoided arbitration with Edinson Volquez.  Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
  • The Red Sox announced that they avoided arbitration with Andrew Bailey ($4.1MM), Daniel Bard ($1.8625MM), Andrew Miller ($1.475MM), and Franklin Morales ($1.4875MM).  Terms courtesy of WEEI.com's Rob Bradford.
  • The Mets and Bobby Parnell avoided arb with a $1.7MM deal, Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com reports (on Twitter).
  • The Red Sox avoided arbitration with Alfredo Aceves, agreeing to a deal worth $2.65MM plus incentives, according to O'Connell Sports Management, Aceves' agency (on Twitter via Jon Heyman).
  • The Cubs avoided arbitration with James Russell and Jeff Samardzija, Jesse Rogers of ESPNChicago.com reports (on Twitter). Samardzija obtains $2.64MM while Russell gets $1.075MM, Bruce Levine of ESPNChicago.com reports (on Twitter).
  • The Diamondbacks announced that they avoided arbitration with Chris Johnson ($2.2875MM). The team also avoided arbitration with Brad Ziegler ($3.15MM), agreeing to a one-year deal, ESPN.com's Jayson Stark reports (on Twitter).  Terms courtesy of Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic (on Twitter).
  • The Nationals announced that they agreed to terms with Tyler Clippard, avoiding arbitration (via Amanda Comak on Twitter). The Nationals avoided arbitration with Ian Desmond, agreeing to a one-year, $3.8MM deal, Amanda Comak of the Washington Times reports (on Twitter). The Nationals also avoided arb with Roger Bernadina according to the outfielder's agent, James Wagner of the Washington Post reports (on Twitter). The Nationals and Ross Detwiler agreed to a one-year, $2.3375MM contract, according to CAA (via Twitter).
  • Brennan Boesch and Phil Coke avoided arbitration, agreeing to one-year deals with the Tigers, Jason Beck of MLB.com reports (on Twitter). Boesch will earn $2.3MM while Coke will earn $1.85MM. The Tigers also avoided arbitration with Alex Avila, agreeing to a one-year, $2.95MM deal, Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com reports (all Twitter links). Austin Jackson agreed to a deal worth $3.5MM for 2013, Heyman reports. Doug Fister obtained a one-year, $4MM deal from Detroit, Heyman reports.
  • The Dodgers and A.J. Ellis avoided arbitration, agreeing to a one-year, $2MM deal, Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com reports (on Twitter). Ronald Belisario agreed to a one-year, $1.45MM deal, MLB.com's Ken Gurnick reports (on Twitter).
  • The Mariners announced that they avoided arbitration with Kendrys Morales and Brendan Ryan on one-year agreements for 2013. Morales will obtain $5.25MM plus performance bonuses, Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com reports (on Twitter). Ryan obtained $3.25MM, Heyman reports (on Twitter).
  • The Rockies avoided arb with Tyler Colvin, agreeing to a one-year deal, the team announced (on Twitter). Colvin will earn $2.275MM, Troy Renck of the Denver Post writes (on Twitter).
  • The Braves avoided arbitration with Cristhian Martinez, agreeing to a one-year deal, MLB.com's Mark Bowman reports (on Twitter). The Braves avoided arb with Kris Medlen, David O'Brien of the Atlanta Journal Constitution reports (on Twitter). Medlen will earn $2.6MM in 2013. They also avoided arb with Jason Heyward, agreeing to a one-year, $3.65MM deal, Bowman reports (onTwitter). The Braves agreed with another young player, avoiding arb with Jonny Venters, O'Brien reports (on Twitter). It's a $1.625MM deal. Earlier today the Braves agreed to a one-year deal with Eric O'Flaherty, avoiding arbitration, Bowman reported (on Twitter). He'll earn $4.32MM plus awards bonuses, Bowman adds.
  • The Athletics announced they avoided arb with Jerry Blevins and Brandon Moss, agreeing to one-year deals for 2013.
  • The Cardinals avoided arb with Mitchell Boggs and Edward Mujica, B.J. Rains of FOX Sports MidWest reports (on Twitter).
  • The Indians announced that they avoided arb with Matt Albers and Justin Masterson. Albers will earn $1.75MM in 2013, MLB.com's Jordan Bastian reports (on Twitter). Masterson will earn $5.6875MM according to Bastian (on Twitter). The Indians and Joe Smith avoided arbitration with a one-year, $3.15MM deal, Bastian reported earlier today (on Twitter). The Indians also avoided arbitration with Lou Marson, Bastian reports (Twitter links). The catcher will earn $1MM on a one-year deal in 2013.
  • The Astros avoided arb with Wesley Wright, agreeing to a one-year deal, MLB.com's Brian McTaggart reports (on Twitter).  Wright will earn $1.025MM, according to Heyman (on Twitter). Earlier today the Astros and Bud Norris avoided arb with a one-year, $3MM deal, McTaggart reports (on Twitter). The Astros and Jed Lowrie avoided arbitration with a one-year, $2.4MM deal with awards bonuses, according to his representatives at CAA Baseball (on Twitter).
  • The White Sox announced that they avoided arbitration with Alejandro De Aza, agreeing to a $2.075MM deal for 2013. The White Sox also avoided arb with Gordon Beckham, agreeing to a one-year deal worth $2.925MM for 2013, MLBTR has learned.
  • The Orioles announced that they avoided arb with Chris Davis and Brian Matusz (Twitter link). Matusz gets a base salary of $1.6MM while Davis gets $3.3MM, Dan Connolly of the Baltimore Sun reports (Twitter links). The Orioles also avoided arbitration with Troy Patton. The sides agreed to a one-year, $815K deal, his agency, CAA Sports, announced on Twitter
  • The Brewers avoided arb with right-hander Marco Estrada and reliever Burke Badenhop, Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports (Twitter links). Estrada will earn $1.955MM while Badenhop will earn $1.55MM, Haudricourt reports.
  • The Rays avoided arbitration with Matthew Joyce and Ryan Roberts, Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports (on Twitter). Joyce will earn $2.45MM and Roberts will earn $2.95MM plus incentives, the Rays announced. The Rays also avoided arbitration with Sam Fuld, agreeing to a one-year, $725K deal, Topkin reported (on Twitter). Earlier today the Rays avoided arbitration with Jeff Niemann. The sides agreed to a one-year, $3MM deal, Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com reports (on Twitter).
  • The Royals announced that they avoided arbitration with Luke Hochevar, agreeing to a one-year deal for 2013. Hochevar will earn $4.56MM plus performance bonuses, Pete Grathoff of the Kansas City Star reports (on Twitter).
  • The Yankees avoided arb with Boone Logan, agreeing to a one-year, $3.15MM deal (via CAA Sports on Twitter).
  • The Padres avoided arb with John Baker, agreeing to a $930K deal (via CAA Sports on Twitter).
  • The Twins and Brian Duensing avoided arb with a $1.3MM deal for 2013 (via CAA Sports on Twitter).
  • The Marlins avoided arbitration with Ryan Webb, agreeing to a $975K deal, Clark Spencer of the Miami Herald reports (on Twitter).
  • The Blue Jays announced that they avoided arbitration with Emilio Bonifacio by agreeing to a one-year, $2.6MM deal. The Blue Jays also announced that they avoided arbitration with J.A. Happ, agreeing to a one-year, $3.7MM deal for 2013.
  • The Angels and Tommy Hanson avoided arbitration with a one-year, $3.725MM deal, Jeff Fletcher of the Orange County Register reports. 
  • The Giants avoided arb with Gregor Blanco, agreeing to a one-year, $1.35MM deal, Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com reports (on Twitter).
  • The Phillies announced that they avoided arbitration with Antonio Bastardo with a $1.4MM contract for 2013.
  • Gaby Sanchez and the Pirates have reached agreement on a one-year, $1.75MM deal plus bonuses to avoid arbitration, according to the Beverly Hills Sports Council (on Twitter).


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Pirates Acquire Gaby Sanchez

2:28pm: The Pirates obtained right-handed reliever Kyle Kaminska in the deal, Peter Gammons of MLB Network reports (on Twitter). The 23-year-old has a 5.20 ERA with 7.4 K/9 and 1.5 BB/9 in 53 2/3 innings of work for the Marlins' top two affiliates this year. He was selected in the 25th round of the 2007 draft.

2:08pm: The Pirates have acquired first baseman Gaby Sanchez from the Marlins for outfielder Gorkys Hernandez and a competitive balance pick, tweets Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports.

Gaby Sanchez - Marlins (PW)

Sanchez, 28, hit 19 homers in both 2010 and 2011 and entered the 2012 season with a career batting line of .269/.346/.440. However, he posted a .202/.250/.306 batting line in 196 plate appearances with Miami this year, and the Marlins optioned him to the minor leagues on July 5th.

Hernandez, 24, appeared in 25 games for the Pirates this year, playing all three outfield positions and collecting his first two hits as a Major Leaguer. The former top prospect has a .281/.343/.377 batting line in seven minor league seasons. Hernandez was traded to Pittsburgh along with Jeff Locke and Charlie Morton three years ago in the Nate McLouth trade.

The Marlins are tentatively going to obtain the 33rd overall pick in the draft from Pittsburgh, Jim Callis of Baseball America reports (on Twitter). MLB recommended a bonus of $1.525MM for the 33rd overall selection this year.

Photo courtesy of US Presswire.



Pirates Close To Acquiring Gaby Sanchez

The Pirates are close to acquiring first baseman Gaby Sanchez from the Marlins for outfielder Gorkys Hernandez and a competitive balance pick, tweets Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports.



Stark On Marlins, Phillies, Dodgers, Garza, Twins

Here's the latest from ESPN's Jayson Stark...

  • One official who spoke with the Marlins brass estimates that the odds Josh Johnson remains with Miami are "95 percent." The Red Sox, Angels, Rangers, White Sox, Blue Jays, and Royals have all checked in.
  • Carlos Lee, Ricky Nolasco, Heath Bell, and Gaby Sanchez are all very available. Other than Johnson, Giancarlo Stanton will be the toughest player to pry away from the Fish.
  • The Phillies have talked about trading Cliff Lee following the Cole Hamels extension and they haven't discouraged other teams from inquiring, but their game plan right now is to keep their trio of aces intact.
  • Shane Victorino and Joe Blanton are good bets to be dealt and the Phillies will listen on Hunter Pence. They want multiple young big leaguers to plug holes at third base, in the outfield, and in the bullpen in return.
  • The Dodgers are in on a number of starting pitchers, including Nolasco, Blanton, Kevin Millwood, and Jason Vargas in addition to Ryan Dempster and Matt Garza. They've also checked in on outfield and first base help, including Victorino and Justin Morneau.
  • Clubs have not been assured by the Cubs that Garza will make another start before the trade deadline due to his triceps issue. He's more likely to be dealt in the offseason.
  • In the wake of acquiring Wandy Rodriguez, the Pirates are sending signals that they could trade away a starter like Jeff Karstens or Kevin Correia.
  • The Twins' asking prices for Morneau ("pricey"), Denard Span ("more pricey"), and Josh Willingham ("it made me laugh") are high. Minnesota insists they will listen on anyone and Stark says Morneau is the bat they're most likely to move. Francisco Liriano is "nearly 100 percent" likely to be traded.
  • The Orioles continue to look for pitching, someone they consider a number three starter or better. Garza and Vargas have their eye but Dylan Bundy and Manny Machado are off the table. They've gotten hits on Jake Arrieta but won't move him unless they get a similar young arm with several years of team control remaining in return.
  • The Brewers will trade Randy Wolf "for nothing if you take the money," according to one official. 
  • The Rays have "got a big market" for Wade Davis



Marlins Links: Gaby, Anibal, Reyes, Cespedes, Pudge

Here's the latest from South Beach...

  • Once Albert Pujols was off the market, the Marlins told Gaby Sanchez and his agent that rumors about Miami pursuing Prince Fielder were false and that the club wasn't looking for another first baseman, reports MLB.com's Joe Frisaro.  Sanchez said he wasn't offended that the Marlins were pursuing Pujols: "He's proven what he can do for 10 straight years. I still have so much time to go."
  • Anibal Sanchez told reporters (including MLB.com's David Villavicencio) says the Marlins haven't approached him about a contract extension but he'd be open to signing such a deal.  MLBTR's Ben Nicholson-Smith recently examined Sanchez as an extension candidate.
  • Sanchez also didn't mind his recent arbitration hearing with the Marlins, where he won his case and earned an $8MM salary for 2012.  "I think everybody thought they were going to say a lot of things that were bad about me. But I didn't think they said anything bad or that I didn't know. It's part of the business," Sanchez said.
  • Jose Reyes understands that the Mets didn't have the finances to re-sign him, but he wished his former team would've at least made some kind of offer, reports Dan Martin of the New York Post.
  • The Marlins offered Yoenis Cespedes a six-year, $36MM contract, reports Frisaro.  The team wanted a six-year deal since they felt Cespedes would need minor league seasoning and didn't want to pay him a large salary if he'd be spending time in the minors.  Cespedes instead agreed to sign with the A's for $36MM over four years.   
  • With Cespedes gone, Frisaro says the Fish aren't expected to add any more players before Spring Training, though they could look for veteran starting pitching later in camp.  The Marlins aren't interested in Ivan Rodriguez for the backup catching job.



Pujols Has Three Offers Of Ten Years, $200MM+

After a pair of meetings between the Marlins and agent Dan Lozano on Monday, Albert Pujols reportedly has a whopping ten-year offer in hand to join Jose Reyes in Miami. The Cardinals and Cubs met with Lozano yesterday as well.  Here's the latest on Pujols...

  • The Cubs are "definitely in" on Pujols still, tweets Joel Sherman of the New York Post. If nothing else, they want to make things hard on the Cards by increasing the bidding, says Sherman.
  • The Marlins' brass completed their evening meeting with Dan Lozano, but told reporters, including Ken Rosenthal, that they had nothing to report. The Fish aren't sure if a third team is involved in the bidding, tweets Jon Paul Morosi. If there's a mystery team, it's definitely not the Phillies this year, tweets Jim Salisbury of CSNPhilly.
  • The Mystery Team has entered the mix! USA Today's Bob Nightengale reports that a third team, in addition to the Marlins and Cardinals, has made an offer to Pujols. All three offers are for ten years and at least $200MM, according to Nightengale.
  • The Marlins are pushing "very, very hard" to get closure on Pujols tonight, so they can move one way or the other, according to Scott Miller of CBS Sports. They don't want to be used to jack up the Cardinals' bid, and want to move on to other free agents if they don't land Pujols (all Twitter links).
  • The Cardinals expect resolution "sooner rather than later" and indicated that the ball is in Pujols' court, writes Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. The Marlins also would like resolution soon, tweets Morosi. Meanwhile, the Marlins met with an official from the commissioner's office tonight, and a possible Pujols contract was the topic of discussion, tweets Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports.
  • A source tells Martino (Twitter link) to be "on red alert" for a Pujols deal tonight.
  • The Marlins' offer to Pujols is believed to be in the neighborhood of $220MM, Andy Martino of the New York Daily News reports (via Twitter). Cardinals GM John Mozeliak confirmed to reporters, including B.J. Rains of FOX Sports Midwest (Twitter link), that his team made another offer to Pujols today.
  • The Marlins also remain hopeful on Pujols, having offered a "creative" contract, tweets Danny Knobler of CBS Sports.
  • Talking to Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports, Cards chairman Bill DeWitt Jr. declined to offer odds on the team re-signing Pujols: "I'm hopeful, but I don't like to use the word 'optimistic.' We're realistic about the fact that it may not happen." (all Twitter links).
  • Marlins president David Samson countered Spencer, saying the team will not sign a free agent to a deal including a no-trade clause.
  • In a break with team policy, the Marlins are willing to give Pujols a no-trade clause, tweets Clark Spencer.  This could be a major development.  The Cardinals are still alive for now, tweets Joe Strauss.
  • Marlins' brass concluded the 75-minute Lozano meeting without public comment.
  • The Marlins are heading up to meet with Lozano and expect a Pujols decision soon, tweets Clark Spencer of the Miami Herald.
  • As you might expect, the Marlins' ten-year offer exceeds $200MM, tweets Bob Nightengale of USA Today.  The Cardinals are expected to counter today.
  • There is optimism that the Marlins and Lozano will work through the no-trade clause hurdle, tweets ESPN's Buster Olney, though Ken Rosenthal says the Marlins will not relent completely on the clause.
  • The Cardinals do not expect to get an opportunity to match or beat an offer from another team before Pujols accepts, hears Derrick Goold of the Post-Dispatch.  The Cardinals have not ruled out a ten-year offer for Pujols, tweets Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports.  Morosi's club source says it depends on the average annual value.
  • The Cubs submitted a bid for Pujols, reports Joe Strauss of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.  However, MLB.com's Carrie Muskat says a Cubs official denied the report.
  • The Marlins' reported ten-year bid includes an average annual value that tests or exceeds $20MM, writes Strauss, but it does not include full no-trade protection.  The Marlins will meet with Lozano again today.  One club executive who spoke to Strauss pegged the team's chances of signing Pujols at 50-50.
  • ESPN's Buster Olney tweets a reminder that the disconnect in last offseason's negotiations between Pujols and the Cardinals wasn't the length, but the proposed annual value of $22MM.
  • Not surprisingly, David O'Brien of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution hears that the Marlins would trade Gaby Sanchez if Pujols lands in Miami (Twitter link).  Paul Sullivan of the Chicago Tribune thinks the Cubs would try for Sanchez in that scenario.

Tim Dierkes and Luke Adams contributed to this post.



Brewers Rumors: Furcal, Aramis, Barmes, Reyes

Here's the latest on the Brewers, including what's happening at the GM meetings in Milwaukee:









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