Jack Hannahan Rumors

NL Notes: Padres, Minicozzi, Dodgers, Hannahan

MLB.com's Corey Brock brought readers into the dugout for some game action in an interesting read today. Receiving permission to camp out with the Padres during their game Thursday, Brock observed a number of inside snippets. For instance, infielder Stephen Carmon, who came over from minor league camp as depth and did not play, enjoyed a peaceful afternoon chatting with some veterans and sampling the wide variety of sunflower seed flavors made available. 

Here are a few notes from around baseball:

  • In another great story out of the NL West, Alex Pavloic of the San Jose Mercury News tells how 31-year-old Mark Minicozzi took an improbable path — around the world, through multiple injuries, and over multiple years — to rejoining the Giants. He left the organization after 2007, only to come back in 2012. Last year, he homered in his first Spring Training at-bat with the big club after coming over from the minor-league side for a road trip. This year, he earned his first non-roster invitation, and had his first ever start today. In his first trip to the plate, he swatted another long ball. Though Minicozzi still has many obstacles to overcome to reach a regular-season MLB game, his tale is testament to the power of perseverance and positive thinking.
  • The second base position for the Dodgers is now a "full-blown tryout camp," reports MLB.com's Ken Gurnick. Major offseason acquisition Alex Guerrero continues to try to learn second while adapting to the pace of the big league game, and Gurnick says it seems as if he'll start off in Triple-A. Though Dee Gordon is the other player that the team would like to see emerge, he too has not separated himself from a pack that includes Brendan Harris, Chone Figgins, Justin Turner, and Miguel Rojas.
  • Infielder Jack Hannahan has not yet appeared in full spring action for the Reds because he underwent offseason surgery to repair a torn labrum, reports MLB.com's Mark Sheldon. Hannahan struggled mightily last year, but was apparently playing through the injury the entire time. The 33-year-old is in the final guaranteed year of a two-year, $4MM deal that comes with a $4MM club option for next season.

Reds To Sign Jack Hannahan

10:51am: Hannahan is believed to have obtained about $4MM, Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com reports (on Twitter).

7:50am: The Reds announced that they have signed free agent infielder Jack Hannahan to a two-year contract. The deal includes a club option for 2015, according to the team (on Twitter). Hannahan, a Joe Speed client, is expected to back up Todd Frazier in Cincinnati.

Hannahan became a free agent two weeks ago when the Indians non-tendered him. Five teams had "genuine" interest, including the Yankees, Twins and White Sox. MLBTR projected a $1.5MM salary for the 32-year-old via the arbitration process, so he ends up profiting from the Indians' decision to release him.

Hannahan appeared in 105 games for the Indians in 2012, mostly at third base (he played in seven games at shortstop and another two at first base). In 318 plate appearances, he posted a .244/.312/.341 batting line with 16 doubles. The left-handed hitter has slightly better numbers against right-handed pitching for his career, making him a natural complement to the right-handed hitting Frazier.

Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports first reported the agreement and John Fay of the Cincinnati Enquirer first reported the two-year term.


Ohio Notes: Hernandez, Bourn, Mesoraco, Hannahan

The Indians are still pursuing free agent Kevin Youkilis and still trying to work out a multi-team trade involving Asdrubal Cabrera and the Diamondbacks, reports FOX Sports' Ken Rosenthal (Twitter link).  The Tribe is also looking at alternative moves in case Youkilis signs elsewhere or the complicated trade fails to materialize.  We collected the latest items about the Tribe's pursuit of Youkilis and Nick Swisher earlier today on MLBTR and yesterday looked at the latest mountain of speculation surrounding this rumored multi-team deal that also reportedly involves the Rangers, Rays, Mariners, Justin Upton, Derek Holland and a number of young players.

The Reds have generated a lot of buzz this offseason as well, so let's check in on the latest from both of Ohio's clubs…



Latest On Jack Hannahan

MLBTR projected a $1.5MM salary for third baseman Jack Hannahan if he'd gone through the arbitration process in 2013.  The Indians elected to cut the defensive-minded 32-year-old loose instead.  Suddenly, with Eric Chavez and Jeff Keppinger signing at the Winter Meetings, Hannahan has become a relatively hot commodity in a weak third base free agent market.  The latest:


Five Clubs Have “Genuine” Interest In Hannahan

12:56pm: The White Sox still have interest in Hannahan despite signing Keppinger, tweets MLB.com's Scott Merkin.

10:13am: Seven teams have met with Hannahan's agent in Nashville, and five of those clubs have "genuine" interest in the infielder, according to Jordan Bastian of MLB.com. The Indians would like to bring Hannahan back, but that seems unlikely since he'll have a chance to start or platoon elsewhere (Twitter links).

Bastian adds (via Twitter) that the Yankees' interest in Hannhan isn't considered serious, while John Fay of the Cincinnati Enquirer adds the Reds to the list of potential suitors.

Wednesday, 12:12am: Paul Hoynes of the Cleveland Plain Dealer adds that the Yankees are interested in Hannahan as well (Twitter link). The Yankees recently learned they'll be without Alex Rodriguez for as much as half of the 2013 season.

Tuesday, 11:55pm: Third baseman Jack Hannahan has interest from teams for a Major League contract, tweets Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports, with the White Sox and Marlins among the suitors.  We heard earlier today that Hannahan has a big league offer in hand from an AL Central team, and the Twins met with his agent yesterday.

Hannahan, 32, is known for his defense at the hot corner.  Faced with a projected $1.5MM salary through arbitration, the Indians chose to non-tender him last week.


Free Agent Rumors: Hannahan, Ibanez, Saito, Nakajima

We rounded up one set of free agent rumors earlier in the day, but as we approach late afternoon in Nashville, it's about time for a fresh batch….


Quick Hits: Pagan, Giants, Indians, Brewers,

A roundup of tonight's links as we have our eyes fixed on the Winter Meetings countdown clock..

  • The Phillies continue to go hard on Angel Pagan while Giants look to be short right now on average annual value in a four-year deal, tweets Buster Olney of ESPN.com.  Olney previous reported that the Phillies and Pagan have been talking for weeks.
  • Indians General Manager Chris Antonetti says he has interest in re-signing Jack Hannahan, Rafael Perez, and Chris Seddon, tweets Paul Hoynes of the Plain Dealer.  All three players were non-tendered on Friday.
  • Brewers GM Doug Melvin says that he sees a Kameron Loe-type pitcher in the newly-acquired Burke Badenhop, writes Tom Haudricourt of the Journal Sentinel.  "He's a similar pitcher to Loe," said Melvin. "He might have been a non-tender, so we put the deal together late (Friday) night. Instead of letting him go out on the market where you don't know what might happen, we thought it best to make a trade for him."

American League Non-Tenders

Here are today’s American League non-tenders. All decisions must be in by 11pm CT tonight. Be sure to track all tender decisions using MLBTR's Non-Tender Tracker. Related resources include our list of non-tender candidates, our projected arbitration salaries and our arbitration eligibles series.

Mike Axisa contributed to this post.


Players Avoiding Arbitration: Tuesday

Dozens of arbitration eligible players have agreed to deals with their respective teams today and we've been tracking all of the developments right here.  Several teams, including the Rays, Nationals, Marlins, White Sox, Blue Jays, Braves, and perhaps Astros, are known for committing to going to hearings if they get to the point of filing.  Keep track of all the madness with MLBTR's arbitration tracker, which shows settlement amounts, filing figures, and midpoints.  Today's players to avoid arbitration on deals worth less than $4MM:

(more…)


Antonetti On Brantley, Kipnis, Chisenhall

Cleveland GM Chris Antonetti has an adaptable approach to this offseason’s free agent market. Players such as Michael Brantley offer defensive versatility, so the Indians aren’t about to limit their search for position players so early in the offseason.

“We can either go left field, center field or first base,” Antonetti said. “And we have some creative ideas for other positions as well.”

The Indians feel “very comfortable” with Brantley in center field, since he played for a month and a half with a serious wrist injury but still posted a .702 OPS in 2011. Brantley will play center field or left field in 2012, depending on the rest of Cleveland’s offseason.

The Indians’ winter will revolve around the search for position players, since they have a full five-man rotation heading into Spring Training 2012. However, the Indians aren’t content with their pitching depth.

“I don’t think we’ll ever be satisfied with our pitching,” he said. “We’ll always look for opportunities to improve.” 

The Indians enter the 2011 season with Ubaldo Jimenez, Justin Masterson, Fausto Carmona, Derek Lowe and Josh Tomlin in the rotation. Since Masterson, Carmona and Lowe induce so many ground balls, the Indians intend on lining their infield with above-average defenders.

Jason Kipnis appears to be the leading candidate for the starting second base job and Antonetti says he has the chance to become an above-average defender. Jack Hannahan, a pleasant surprise in 2011, is an “elite” defender, according to Antonetti. He could start at third for Cleveland and Lonnie Chisenhall is also in the mix for regular work at the hot corner. However, the Indians aren’t going to finalize decisions before Spring Training.