Huston Street Rumors
The Padres are trying to lock up Huston Street and are expected to offer him a one-year deal with an option for 2014, according to Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com (via Twitter). The right-hander is believed to want to stay in San Diego.
Late last week, it was reported that the Padres would make Street available in trades before the deadline if they are unable to sign him to an extension. As it stands now, Street has a $9MM mutual option for the 2013 season.
With the calendar set to turn to August in less than two weeks, the Pirates continue to shock the baseball world with their sights on winning the National League Central. Winners of seven of its last ten, Pittsburgh owns the best record in baseball since June 16 thanks to the strong play of Andrew McCutchen and Pedro Alvarez. McCutchen, one of the frontrunners for league MVP, boasts a batting average of .470 during that time frame with Alvarez leading the Major Leagues with home runs over the last five weeks (h/t Jon Heyman).
Let's catch up on the latest news and headlines from around the league...
- Rangers manager Ron Washington told Jim Bowden of ESPN.com that Texas is willing to consider trading any of its prospects except for Jurickson Profar if the team looks to acquire a piece for another World Series run (Twitter link).
- Angels general manager Jerry Dipoto spoke with Bowden about the team's plans for the non-waiver trade deadline and said that he's working incredibly hard to improve his roster but that the trade market has proven to be difficult (via Twitter).
- With the Dodgers cooling on Ryan Dempster, the Braves have emerged as the favorites to land the right-hander, report Ken Rosenthal and Jon Paul Morosi of FOXSports.com. Potential suitors, including the Cardinals and Nationals, are wary of parting with better prospects for what could prove to be a rental given Dempster's status as a free agent at the end of the season.
- After signing Carlos Quentin to a multiyear deal earlier on Sunday, the Padres are in preliminary talks with Huston Street with hopes of retaining his services well into the future, writes Scott Miller of CBSSports.com.
The Rangers head into their Sunday night matchup against the Angels with an ailing starting rotation. The Rangers have scratched Roy Oswalt from his start tomorrow and Colby Lewis is scheduled to have his forearm examined tomorrow before he's given the green light to make his scheduled start on Tuesday. The Rangers don't believe Oswalt's injury is serious, but he and Lewis can both wind up on the disabled list, according to Jeff Wilson of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. Elsewhere from the AL and NL West:
- Despite their rotation woes, the Rangers' chief trade deadline goal is to add bench depth, tweets Scott Miller of CBSSports.com.
- With the signing of Carlos Quentin completed earlier today, the Padres are now turning their attention to closer Huston Street. Miller tweets talks are ongoing, but nothing is close right now.
- The Giants are not considering Rick Ankiel to fill their need for a power bat off the bench, tweets Andrew Baggarly of CSNBayArea.com. Baggarly says the Giants crave a right-handed bat at both corner infield spots and the outfield.
- Add the A's to the list of team interested in the Padres' Chase Headley, tweets ESPN's Buster Olney.
The asking price for relief help remains high, even for players nearing free agency, Joel Sherman of the New York Post writes. The Mets, of course, are looking for relievers and they’d prefer to acquire a controllable player, according to Sherman. Here are Sherman’s latest notes, starting with the Mets:
- Acquiring a controllable reliever would provide the Mets with a long-term bullpen option but, it won’t be easy to complete a deal. “The problem is those guys are so scarce, and the cost, at least at this point, is prohibitive,” a Mets official told Sherman.
- The Rays have always liked Lucas Duda, so there’s a potential match between the Mets and Rays, Sherman writes.
- The Mets privately believe that the future of pitching prospect Jeurys Familia may be in the bullpen, so they could promote him in a relief role.
- Cole Hamels could decline an extension offer that’s expected to fall in the six-year, $130MM range, but it wouldn’t be easy to do so, one team executive told Sherman. “My sense is he is comfortable in Philly, they have made the playoffs five years in a row and the $130MM says they value him, so it is going to take a heck of a reason to say no to that.”
- If the Padres’ efforts to lock Huston Street up to an extension fail, they’ll make him available in trades later this month.
- The Dodgers won't trade top pitching prospect Zach Lee for a rental player like Ryan Dempster, reports Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports (Twitter link). We heard earlier today that Los Angeles had made the Cubs an offer for Dempster.
- Though the Diamondbacks and Pirates have had trouble connecting on a trade match for Justin Upton, the outfielder remains "at or near the top" of Pittsburgh's search for a hitter, tweets Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports.
- The Diamondbacks have signed 16-year-old Dominican outfielder Ismael Pena, reports Ben Badler of Baseball America. Badler describes Pena as "a 6-foot-3, 175-pound lefty with a sound swing, a good approach and a hit-first, power-second profile. He's an average runner with a 45 to 50 arm on the 20-80 scale."
- Huston Street was "aggressively" pursued by the Mets last winter, a source tells Andy Martino of the New York Daily News (Twitter link), but through the Mets are searching for bullpen help now, they don't think the Padres will move the closer. We heard earlier today that the Padres were looking to propose long-term extensions to Street and Carlos Quentin before the trade deadline.
- Street and Chris Denorfia have drawn more trade interest than Quentin, reports Bill Center of the San Diego Union-Tribune.
- Also from Center, the Pirates and Orioles are "among the teams pushing hardest" for Chase Headley. Center added the Mariners to the long list of Headley's suitors. The third baseman himself says he has heard "between six and 10 teams" have shown interest.
The Padres are planning to offer multiyear contract extensions to Carlos Quentin and Huston Street and will likely make such proposals before the trade deadline, reports Jon Heyman of CBS Sports. Sources say that current owner John Moores and incoming owner Ron Fowler have both "given the go-ahead" to GM Josh Byrnes to try and keep the two players, who have both been frequently mentioned as trade candidates.
The sale of the team is "close" to being approved by Major League Baseball, which is perhaps why the Padres are comfortable in committing millions to the duo. Quentin can be a free agent this winter, while Street is in the last guaranteed season of a three-year, $22.5MM extension he signed with the Rockies before the 2010 season. Street's deal carries a $9MM mutual option for 2013 that will pay him a $500K buyout if the Padres decline.
It would be somewhat of a surprise if the Padres lock up either man since, as Heyman notes, the Padres have traditionally had problems in keeping their stars on long-term contracts and it's "a major step" that the club seems willing to commit to Quentin and Street. Both players have expressed an interest in remaining with the team and Quentin is a San Diego native, though it's a risky move for a small-market team to spend big on a closer (especially given the Padres' deep bullpen) and an outfielder with Quentin's injury history. The team could, of course, still explore trades if they are unable to come to agreements with Quentin or Street before July 31.
Here's the latest from around the league, courtesy of ESPN's Jim Bowden...
- The Padres have fielded offers for both Huston Street and Carlos Quentin, but they've yet to seriously debate any of them internally.
- The Tigers are seeking a second base upgrade and would like to acquire Darwin Barney from the Cubs for a mid-level prospect.
- The Indians are looking all over to acquire an outfield bat, but they are unable to take back a significant contract and are unwilling to move their best prospects.
- Meanwhile, the Royals are trying to convince the Indians or Reds to take Jeff Francoeur so they can promote Wil Myers from Triple-A.
- The Pirates are aggressively trying to land a middle of the order bat while the Orioles are seeking starting pitching and a third base upgrade.
- There have been rumors of a Mike Morse for B.J. Upton trade, according to Bowden. The Nationals are also looking to add a starter with Stephen Strasburg's innings limit approaching.
- The Giants have no plans of making a deal similar to the one they made last year, when they traded Zack Wheeler for a rental (Carlos Beltran). They are looking for a bat or two, however.
Much of the recent NL West chatter relates to Justin Upton and potential trades for Arizona's 24-year-old right fielder. The Diamondbacks will listen to offers for Upton, who’s just one year removed from a fourth-place finish in the NL MVP balloting. Here are some non-Upton related notes from the NL West...
- Padres closer Huston Street said he could “clear the air” with Mets bench coach Bob Geren if a trade sends him to New York this summer, Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com reports. "If I get to the Mets, that'll be the first bug I go squash,'' Street said. The right-hander called Geren his “least favorite person” in sports following their time with the Athletics.
- The Diamondbacks signed catcher Oswaldo Garcia, Ben Badler of Baseball America reports. Some scouts considered Garcia the top Colombian prospect available this year. The 16-year-old has a powerful bat and a strong arm.
- The Diamondbacks also signed 16-year-old Dominican shortstop Fernery Ozuna, Badler reports.
The Padres are tied for last place in the NL West with a 34-53 record, but there's lots of intrigue for Padres fans this summer. Carlos Quentin, Chase Headley and Huston Street are among the players who figure to draw interest from rival teams as the July 31st trade deadline approaches. Here's the latest on the Padres...
- The Padres have scouted the Cardinals and will watch one of St. Louis’ top minor league affiliates this week, Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch writes. Street, San Diego’s closer, could be targeted by the Cardinals in trade talks. He says he prefers to continue closing if he’s traded.
- Commissioner Bud Selig told reporters, including Scott Miller of CBSSports.com, that he doesn’t know if the Padres’ sale will be completed by the owners meetings scheduled for next month (Twitter link). "I understand they [still] have two or three weeks of work," the commissioner said.
We hear a lot of talk about buyers and sellers this time of year, but as Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports points out in his latest column, some teams will do neither this summer and other teams will do both. Here are Rosenthal’s latest notes with less than four weeks to go before July 31st:
- The Red Sox could be positioned to trade an outfielder this month if their rehabbing players return as expected. Boston figures to pursue starting depth in trades; the Red Sox aren’t considering trades involving Josh Beckett.
- The Yankees will probably not sign Josh Hamilton or Cole Hamels this offseason, since they aim to avoid the MLB luxury tax by 2014 and that means cutting back on extravagant free agent signings.
- Under GM Frank Wren the Braves won more games while spending less money than every team but the Rays from 2009-11, Rosenthal notes.
- If the Blue Jays trade players on the brink of free agency such as Edwin Encarnacion and Kelly Johnson, they’d look to acquire players who can help them win next year. And if the Blue Jays don’t like what other teams are offering, they’ll keep their potential free agents. Toronto’s not likely to overpay in a “go for it” trade, Rosenthal writes.
- The Blue Jays aren’t trading Colby Rasmus, who has become more driven, according to a team official.
- Rosenthal suggests the Athletics could look to acquire players midseason if they stay in the playoff mix. Bartolo Colon is the player the A’s are most likely to trade, Rosenthal writes.
- The Mets are actively seeking relief help, but it’s highly doubtful they’d trade for Huston Street, who publicly criticized Mets bench coach Bob Geren last year. The Mets, who insist they won’t trade top prospects, are likely to wait until the end of the month before making any trades.
- The Cardinals wouldn’t be willing to meet the Brewers’ asking price for Zack Greinke, Rosenthal notes. St. Louis is more likely to pursue a mid-rotation starter.
- The Diamondbacks believe they need a third baseman more than a starting pitcher.