Henry Blanco Rumors
The Padres will not offer arbitration to Type B free agent outfielder Brian Giles, MLB.com's Corey Brock learned from GM Jed Hoyer. Backup catcher Henry Blanco, who is neither A nor B, also will not get an offer. Brock says the Padres would like to re-sign Blanco, but Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports believes he's close to a deal with the Mets.
Giles was an easy decision after he fell off a cliff in 2009, hitting just .191/.277/.271 in 253 plate appearances while earning $9MM. Giles dealt with a knee injury during the season.
If San Diego doesn't re-sign Henry Blanco before their exclusive negotiating window ends on Thursday, it appears as if there is at least one known suitor for the veteran catcher. According to Mark Gonzales of the Chicago Tribune, Blanco's agent Steven Schneider singled out the White Sox as one of "several teams" who have shown interest in Blanco's services.
Blanco's role in Chicago would be to back up incumbent starter A.J. Pierzynski, with Blanco providing a natural right-handed hitting counterpart to the lefty Pierzynski. The batting is secondary, however, to Blanco's defensive presence and ability to throw out runners. Blanco threw out 40 percent of all runners attempting to steal on him in 2009.
The White Sox would be the eighth team that Blanco has played for in his 12-year career, but it wouldn't be his first time in Chicago. Blanco's longest stint with any club was with the Cubs from 2005 to 2008, and Schneider told Gonzales that the catcher and his family enjoyed their time living in the Windy City.
Padres fans have plenty to think about beyond considering the future of Adrian Gonzalez, and Corey Brock of MLB.com does a terrific job breaking down some of those potential moves in his latest mailbag.
- Brock says that he doesn't see Kevin Correia "going anywhere."
- His "GM-for-a-day" scenario involves signing Mike Cameron and Henry Blanco.
- He's a big fan of the minor league third basemen in the organization.
Some links to peruse this morning:
- Joel Sherman at the New York Post asked seven top team executives who they'd rather have manning second base over the next five years: Dustin Pedroia or Robinson Cano? Click over for the results.
- Bill Center at the San Diego Union-Tribune hears that the the Padres are interested in keeping impending free agent backstop Henry Blanco.
- The Rockies' newly-signed lefty phenom Tyler Matzek said a "gut feeling" led him to ink his $3.9MM deal with the team with only 10 minutes left till deadline, forgoing his career at the University of Oregon, according to the Associated Press. My gut says that $3.9MM is kind of a lot of money, but that could be just me.
Ken Rosenthal of FoxSports.com is reporting that the Rangers have contacted several clubs in search of catching help, according to a major league source. Texas lost regular backstop Jarrod Saltalamacchia to the disabled list when he left Friday's game with numbess in his right hand, and Rosenthal hears from a source that he may have a nerve issue.
Henry Blanco of the Padres could be one possibility, but Rosenthal says the "team is considering a number of other alternatives as well."
Padres GM Kevin Towers spoke with Darren Smith of 1090 XX Sports Radio earlier today, touching on a variety of Padre related topics. You can download and listen to the interview by clicking here, but here's a roundup of the rumors...
- Towers said he expects to get calls from contending teams about his "experienced players," mentioning David Eckstein, Brian Giles, Henry Blanco, Kevin Correia, Chad Gaudin, Cla Meredith and Mike Adams by name.
- He also said it's doubtful that the team would take on salary in a deadline deal, but they might be able to during the offseason.
- Depending on how he comes back from injury, there may be interest in Giles. Towers said it's doubtful anything happens before the deadline, but a waiver trade could be made in August. Giles, of course, has a full no-trade clause.
- When asked why he wouldn't trade Adrian Gonzalez or Heath Bell before the deadline to bring back as much talent as possible, Towers said "it's not to say we won't." He then mentions that they first need to determine what young players they're committed to keeping here and what they need to bring in from outside the organization, but if someone approaches them about one of those guys "they need to listen."
MLB.com's Corey Brock tells us, via Twitter, that the Padres have designated right-hander Edwin Moreno for assignment in order to make room on the 40-man roster for catcher Jose Lobaton.
The Padres were forced to create room for another catcher on the roster following injuries to both Nick Hundley and Henry Blanco.
Moreno, 28, was 1-3 for the Pads with a 4.84 ERA. He had notched 15 strikeouts through 22.1 innings to go along with 15 walks, while opposing hitters were batting .311 off of him.
Lobaton, 24, is hitting .248/.301/.360 with three home runs through 37 games at AAA this year.
Links for Friday...
- RotoAuthority talks about the popular fantasy pickups this week.
- Rangers GM Jon Daniels says Ben Sheets is "watching from a distance" while recovering from elbow surgery, according to Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports.
- MLB.com's T.R. Sullivan says the Rangers "apparently are in position to sign Guillermo Pimentel, a top outfield prospect from the Dominican Republic" for $1.5-2MM.
- Amalie Benjamin of the Boston Globe says Red Sox reliever Javier Lopez cleared waivers and will head to Triple A.
- Sam Miller of the OC Register assembled a lineup/slideshow of prospects who deserve a big league shot.
- Henry Blanco isn't sure why he wasn't able to re-sign with the Cubs, according to the Chicago Tribune's Paul Sullivan.
- Nick Yohanek, the fan who caught Chris Coghlan's first big league home run, explains his side of the story in asking for the following for the ball: a signed Coghlan game bat, a signed Coghlan ball, and a Hanley Ramirez game bat. What's your take on this?
ESPN.com's Buster Olney reports that the Padres have agreed to terms on a one-year, $750K deal with catcher Henry Blanco.
The Dodgers' signing of Brad Ausmus made this an easy decision for the Friars. Blanco, who hit .292 with three homers and 12 RBI for the Cubs last season, will back up Nick Hundley in San Diego.
A few Cubs notes from Bruce Miles of the Daily Herald...
- Randy Wolf "remains a possibility" for the Cubs. Wolf should generate decent interest if he's willing to sign for one year. He probably expected more after making 33 starts for the second time in his career. A Jake Peavy deal appears unlikely by Opening Day, says Gordon Wittenmyer.
- The Cubs are unlikely to re-sign Henry Blanco, but Paul Bako remains on the radar. So far it's Koyie Hill for the Cubs' backup catcher job.
- Out of options: Rich Hill, Felix Pie, and Ronny Cedeno. Hill and Pie are good candidates to be dealt before Opening Day. Angel Guzman is also out of options, but he has a shot at cracking the team's bullpen.