Gavin Floyd Rumors
Brewers GM Doug Melvin has acknowledged that Zack Greinke could be traded before he makes his scheduled start this Sunday. He told USA Today the right-hander will be traded ("It's going to be difficult when we trade him'') then offered a less definitive statement later on last night ("I just said there was that possibility"). The Rangers, Angels, Braves and White Sox are pursuing Greinke. Here are the latest rumors surrounding the right-hander...
- Though the White Sox don't have a highly-regarded farm system, they have enough talent in the Major Leagues to acquire Greinke, Heyman reports. Gavin Floyd's name has come up in trade talks, but he doesn't appear to be related to the Greinke sweepstakes, Heyman reports.
- The Braves continue to seek a starting pitcher and Greinke and others remain in play, MLB.com's Mark Bowman reports (on Twitter). However, the Braves are telling teams they’re focused on bullpen and bench help, rather than starting pitching, according to Jayson Stark.
- The Angels remain very much involved in the Greinke talks, Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports reports (on Twitter). Morosi reports that Greinke has a "high regard" for the Angels and thus would likely be more open to signing a contract extension to remain in Anaheim. The Angels might prefer Greinke to Shields and Johnson, according to Danny Knobler.
- The Dodgers could check in on Greinke, Jon Heyman reported today.
White Sox GM Kenny Williams has already traded for Kevin Youkilis and Brett Myers, but he may not be done dealing yet, Ken Rosenthal and Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports write. The White Sox want to add a starting pitcher and Zack Greinke is high on their list of potentially available arms, Rosenthal and Morosi report. Here are the rest of the notes and rumors from the FOX reporters...
- The White Sox are eager to move Gavin Floyd, Rosenthal and Morosi report.
- Though the White Sox don’t have a deep farm system, they could flip Floyd for prospects and use those prospects to acquire Greinke from Milwaukee, Rosenthal and Morosi suggest.
- A National League executive suggested to Morosi that Anibal Sanchez will be the third-best free agent starter this offseason behind Greinke and Cole Hamels (Twitter link).
- Morosi expects the Tigers to extend catcher Alex Avila at some point (Twitter link). Avila, the son of Tigers assistant GM Al Avila, has a .237/.339/.381 batting line this year. He has battled hamstring issues in 2012, his final year as a pre-arbitration eligible catcher.
- The Blue Jays remain in buy mode, Morosi notes. Toronto executives believe a second-place finish in the AL East is possible (Twitter link).
- The Blue Jays, Yankees, Giants, Indians, Diamondbacks and Cardinals all had scouts at last night’s Marlins game, according to Morosi (Twitter link).
- Josh Willingham is available, but prohibitively expensive, one GM told Rosenthal (Twitter link).
- Josh Johnson, James Shields and Greinke are among the starting pitching options the Angels could consider, Rosenthal writes.
The Padres signed Hall of Fame outfielder Rickey Henderson on this date in 2001 and the 42-year-old went on to steal 25 bases with San Diego in his final season as a Major League regular. Here are today's links...
- Joey Votto told Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com that it'd be tough for a premium position player to sign a five-year deal. "No matter how fond a person is of the city, players have to maximize the number of years," Votto said. The first baseman, who is under contract with the Reds through 2013, says Prince Fielder and Albert Pujols "did excellent'' in free agency this offseason. Votto added that he would like to stay with the Reds and that the Cincinnati market seems strong.
- Twins GM Terry Ryan said there's a "possibility" the club looks to obtain a utility player from outside of the organization, according to MLB.com’s Rhett Bollinger (Twitter links). Ryan said he’s open to promoting a Double-A player like Brian Dozier, but not for the utility role.
- Rival executives say manager Don Mattingly is one of the reasons the Dodgers are currently an underrated team, according to Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports. The second-year skipper told Rosenthal that Spring Training has been easier this year, since he’s no longer breaking new ground at every turn.
- Rosenthal hears the Tigers and Red Sox are the most serious suitors for left-hander John Lannan (Twitter link). However, Lannan hasn’t looked great this spring and the Nationals aim to clear his entire $5MM salary in any trade. Chien-Ming Wang’s hamstring injury could also affect Lannan's status as a trade candidate.
- The Blue Jays remain interested in upgrading their rotation, Danny Knobler of CBSSports.com tweets. It doesn't sound like the chances of a deal involving Gavin Floyd are particularly high, however.
Here's a look at some items on the Tigers and White Sox..
- The Tigers are keeping an eye on Nats pitcher John Lannan but have yet to have detailed talks involving him, writes Danny Knobler of CBSSports.com.
- In the end, Monday’s release of David Pauley had the feeling of a mercy move, writes Jason Beck of MLB.com. By releasing him now, the Tigers give the 28-year-old a better chance to hook on somewhere before pitching staffs are set.
- Octavio Dotel is set to pitch for his 13th club in 13 big league seasons, making him the ultimate nomad, writes Jayson Stark of ESPN.com. Mike Morgan, Ron Villone, and Matt Stairs were all close, having played for a dozen teams.
- There has been concern with Jacob Turner's drop in velocity this spring, but Buster Olney of ESPN.com (via Twitter) spoke with execs with other clubs who say that scouts spotted this in late 2011 as well. The Tigers have said that they are not looking to trade the right-hander but he can reportedly be had in the right deal.
- Rival executives say that the price tag for White Sox pitcher Gavin Floyd was huge over the winter, tweets Olney.
7:17pm: The Red Sox and Orioles had interest in Floyd over the winter and Baltimore had talks that nearly resulted in a deal, a source told Danny Knobler of CBSSports.com.
TUESDAY, 7:32am: The Blue Jays and White Sox have discussed many players, but there's no evidence that serious talks regarding Floyd have taken place, Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com tweets.
MONDAY, 9:12pm: "I am not looking to move [Floyd]," White Sox GM Kenny Williams said in an e-mail to MLB.com's Scott Merkin.
2:12pm: The Blue Jays continue pursuing White Sox right-hander Gavin Floyd, Ken Rosenthal and Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports report. Toronto GM Alex Anthopoulos has interest in upgrading the club's rotation before Opening Day, the FOX reporters add.
The Blue Jays and White Sox have had dialogue about Floyd since Spring Training began, according to Rosenthal and Morosi. The 29-year-old will earn $7MM in 2012 and his contract includes a $9.5MM club option for 2013. Henderson Alvarez and Dustin McGowan currently profile as the club's fourth and fifth starters. Alvarez has just ten big league appearances and though McGowan is looking sharp this spring, he has struggled to stay healthy in recent years, appearing in just five big league games since 2008.
The Blue Jays' pitching staff includes two relievers who were traded to Toronto after finishing the 2011 season with the White Sox: closer Sergio Santos and right-hander Jason Frasor. Anthopoulos and GM Kenny Williams have completed three trades since last summer, as MLBTR's Transaction Tracker shows.
Here's the latest from both of MLB's Central divisions...
- MLB.com's Gregor Chisholm doesn't put much stock in the latest Gavin Floyd trade rumors between the White Sox and the Blue Jays because of the Jays organization's "cone of silence" under Alex Anthopoulos. "There’s a general rule of thumb Toronto’s GM likes to use in these type of situations," Chisholm writes. "If a report gets out that a deal is done then it very likely is done. If a report comes out that two teams are discussing something, or that a team and agent have begun serious negotiations, more often than not it’s false."
- Cubs general manager Jed Hoyer declined to comment on whether the team was any closer to a multiyear extension with Matt Garza, reports Patrick Mooney of CSNChicago.com. We heard last month that the two sides planned to talk contract during Spring Training.
- Dusty Baker was non-committal about his future with the Reds as he enters the last year of his contract, Baker told the media (including MLB.com's Barry M. Bloom). "This year, it's my decision, as well as a [Reds] ownership decision. It depends whether I'm asked back. It depends on my feelings," Baker said. "You get to that certain point in your life. We'll see at the end of the year or before it, depending on how things go."
- Indians right-hander Roberto Hernandez (a.k.a. Fausto Carmona) has agreed to complete a work program in the Dominican Republic in exchange for having the false identity charges against him dropped, reports The Associated Press. Hernandez is currently on Cleveland's restricted list while the matter is being investigated. It is still unknown when Hernandez will be allowed to obtain a new visa and resume his baseball career.
- The Indians are interested in Jorge Soler, but Paul Hoynes of the Cleveland Plain Dealer thinks the Tribe will be outbid for the Cuban outfield prospect. At least nine teams are known to have some level of interest in Soler, with the Cubs considered by "most in the industry" to be the favorites.
- The Pirates' process of rebuilding their minor league system in order to restock their team's talent base is slowly beginning to pay dividends, writes MLB.com's Anthony Castrovince.
- Pirates right-hander Gerrit Cole's first pro Spring Training experience and his road to being the first overall pick in last summer's amateur draft are profiled by J. Brady McCollough of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
Agent Scott Boras told Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe that he expects trade deadline activity to decrease because the superpowers in baseball are going to save money on the luxury tax and can’t spend it in the draft. Boras was in attendance for the Sloan Sports Analytics Conference in Boston and our own Tim Dierkes sat down for an interview with the super agent. Here's more from Cafardo's Sunday column..
- The Orioles' Adam Jones keeps popping up in trade discussions with the Nationals, but O's sources indicate that there’s very little chance he'll be dealt. The Nats are trying to figure out center field, and for the moment they’re content with using Jayson Werth, Roger Bernadina, and Rick Ankiel. However, they will be scouting Michael Bourn, B.J. Upton, Gerardo Parra, and Peter Bourjos in spring training.
- White Sox right-hander Gavin Floyd could be in play for the Blue Jays or Red Sox. The White Sox don’t appear eager to move Floyd, but GM Kenny Williams wouldn’t be shy if it brought him a decent bounty in return.
- The Indians will try to fill in for Grady Sizemore with Michael Brantley, but their scouts are looking for a center field option in the trade market.
- Free agent Adonis Garcia is drawing interest from several teams, but the Red Sox aren’t overly enamored, according to a team source.
- Roy Oswalt is still in play and later in camp the Red Sox could put on a full-court press for him.
- The Rays are looking for a catcher to back up Jose Molina and Boras may look to put Ivan Rodriguez in that spot.
- There seems to be concern that the Astros are shooting themselves in the foot by moving starter Brett Myers into the closer role as he is one of the veterans they have been trying to deal. Teams typically need innings-eaters over late-inning relievers.
- Cafardo wonders aloud if Terry Francona will land with the Mets when he resumes his managerial career.
The Indians made a trade today, acquiring 2011 International League MVP Russ Canzler from the Rays. It wouldn't be surprising to see Cleveland add another hitter before Opening Day, but their division rivals appear to have completed most of their offseason shopping at this point. Here's the latest from the AL Central...
- Tigers GM Dave Dombrowski ruled out the possibility of playing Miguel Cabrera in left field, according to James Schmehl of MLive.com.
- White Sox starter Gavin Floyd joined Jim Memolo and Jeff Nelson on MLB Network Radio and said he's been kept in the dark about the trade rumors surrounding him this offseason and that he knows it's out of his control.
- GM Dayton Moore told Rustin Dodd of the Kansas City Star that he'll consider ways of upgrading the Royals if they're in the pennant race midseason. For now, Kansas City is likely done adding major pieces.
It was on this day in 1982 that the Cubs acquired Ryne Sandberg and Larry Bowa from the Phillies in a trade for Ivan De Jesus. The Bowa-for-DeJesus component ended up being pretty even, but needless to say, Chicago won that trade --- Sandberg went on to a Hall Of Fame career as one of the greatest Cubs of all time. Sandberg eventually returned to the Phillies organization in 2011, managing the team's Triple-A affiliate to an 80-64 record.
Here are some news items as we enter the last weekend of January...
- Bud Selig told reporters (including Ronald Blum of the Associated Press) at the Chicago SoxFest event that he believes baseball will add a second wild card team for 2012. "Clubs really want it. I don't think I've ever seen an issue that the clubs want more than to have the extra wild card this year," Selig said, adding that each league's two wild cards would compete in a one-game playoff to advance to the LDS. Blum reports that MLB and the Players' Association have agreed that a tie for a division lead would be settled by a one-game playoff, rather than a tiebreaker formula.
- The biggest obstacle standing in the way of an expanded postseason for 2012 would be finding room in the schedule for the extra wild-card game and potential tiebreaker games, reports FOX Sports' Ken Rosenthal. “It’s going to be hard to do...but it’s still possible,” a source informs Rosenthal.
- At least eight potential owners looking to buy the Dodgers have advanced to the second round of the bidding process, reports Bill Shaikin of the Los Angeles Times. Among those making the cut were Steven Cohen, Peter O'Malley and Stan Kroenke, as well as the groups fronted by Magic Johnson, Joe Torre and the Stanley Gold/Disney family group. Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban and a group led by White Sox executive Dennis Gilbert were among the bids that didn't make the second round, Shaikin adds.
- More than one ownership group has expressed an interest in the Padres if the team's sale to Jeff Moorad can't be finalized, reports Bill Center of the San Diego Union-Tribune. None of these groups are any of the prospective Dodgers buyers, however, as those would-be owners want to specifically buy the Dodgers, not just any team.
- Also as part of Center's online chat with fans, he reports Padres GM Josh Byrnes is looking at signing a starter with big league experience to a minor league contract.
- Gavin Floyd tells Daryl Van Schouwen of the Chicago Sun-Times that he's trying to block out trade rumors, but says that he wants to remain with the White Sox. "I love Chicago, I want to be here,'' Floyd said. "I've been part of this organization for four or five years. I feel like I've grown and gotten better every year and established relationships I'll cherish the rest of my life."
- The Astros' hiring of Sig Mejdal as the director of decision sciences indicates a new, analytical direction for how Houston scouts and evaluates players, writes Zachary Levine for Baseball America.
- Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports has a quick rundown of the American League's "super six" teams.
Some news items out of Fenway Park...
- The Red Sox weren't close to a deal with Edwin Jackson as of late Thursday evening, tweets Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe. It was reported two days ago that the Sox had offered contracts to both Jackson and Roy Oswalt.
- Oswalt is Boston's "No. 1 target," reports Gordon Edes of ESPN Boston, and if Oswalt signs elsewhere, the Red Sox will then explore a trade for White Sox right-hander Gavin Floyd. Jackson would be "a long-shot option" to sign.
- Manager Bobby Valentine is satisfied with his current rotation and admits another starting pitcher is "not at the top of my wish list," reports Joe McDonald of ESPN Boston.
- "Free agency is not fun these days," Conor Jackson tells WEEI.com's Rob Bradford. "Obviously at the end of the day you have to be a realist. That’s the big thing. I just want people to be honest with me where I stand with them. I understand nothing is going to be handed to me. I’ve had a couple of bad years so I have to prove I can play everyday again.” Jackson is looking to find a backup spot and doesn't think it will be in Boston since the Red Sox now have Cody Ross in the fold.
- The Red Sox are already projected to pass the luxury tax threshold, reports WEEI.com's Alex Speier as part of his breakdown of the club's 2012 payroll and what the Sox hope to gain by sticking to their budget.