Jason Frasor Rumors

Jays Acquire Jackson; Rasmus Involved?

10:44am: Money appears to be the only holdup in a trade that would send Jackson to the Cardinals and Rasmus to the Blue Jays, tweets Rosenthal.  An exchange of more than $1MM awaits approval, and of course the Cards will get more than just Jackson for Rasmus.

Jackson and Teahen are going to Toronto, tweets MLB.com's Scott Merkin.  Heyman tweets that the two-team deal is done.

10:37am: Jackson is now being told a trade is official, tweets Bob Nightengale of USA Today.  He's shaking hands with staffers, tweets Mark Gonzales of the Chicago Tribune from the White Sox clubhouse.

10:30am: The Cardinals continue to talk about Rasmus deals with the Blue Jays and other teams, tweets ESPN's Buster Olney, and the outfielder appears to be "very much available."

10:09am: Joel Sherman of the New York Post tweets that this deal is close but not complete, because the money exchange requires approval and the Jays are trying to spin Jackson to another team.  That team may be the Cardinals, based on tweets from Joe Strauss, Jon Heyman, and Sherman.  Sherman believes the Cardinals could also get a reliever and Colby Rasmus may be involved, but nothing is official.  The Blue Jays have interest in Rasmus, tweets Morosi.

Meanwhile Alejandro De Aza is starting in center field for the White Sox this afternoon, necessitating a 25-man roster move.

9:21am: The White Sox are in serious talks for a deal that would send starter Edwin Jackson and third baseman Mark Teahen to the Blue Jays for reliever Jason Frasor and a prospect, tweets Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports.  Rosenthal's colleague Jon Paul Morosi says this deal is close and money could be involved.  The rumor was first reported ten hours ago on Twitter by a fellow named Doug Seyller.

The Jays' motivation for renting Jackson for two months and taking on a bad contract in Teahen is unclear.  There doesn't appear to be a draft pick angle, as both Jackson and Frasor project as Type Bs.  Perhaps Blue Jays GM Alex Anthopoulos is considering flipping Jackson to a contender.

The White Sox were known to be seeking bullpen help, and Frasor has a club option for next year.  The Sox could also subtract a reliever, as Joel Sherman of the New York Post reports that they're talking to the Cardinals about Matt Thornton.  Maybe Kenny Williams' goal in the Jackson trade is to shed the $9.7MM left on the contracts of the two veterans, though we need to see the quality of the prospect involved.  Sox pitchers John Danks and Gavin Floyd are also on the market, according to Rosenthal.  The White Sox are currently 4.5 games out in the AL Central with another game against the Tigers tonight.


Blue Jays Likely To Keep Type B Relievers?

2:16pm: Blue Jays GM Alex Anthopoulos, who is in a lot of talks, "probably is going to keep his Type B relievers," tweets ESPN's Buster Olney.

1:08pm: The Braves "will continue to evaluate the possibility of acquiring either Jon Rauch or Jason Frasor from the Blue Jays," writes MLB.com's Mark Bowman.  Bowman notes that the Jays want a significant return for either reliever, since they both project as Type B free agents and therefore could net supplemental draft picks.  Both righties also have club options for 2012 at $3.75MM, so they're more than rentals.

The Braves' bullpen is fourth in the NL with a 3.08 ERA, but the group also ranks third with 319 innings pitched.


AL East Rumors: Frasor, Red Sox, Scott, Yankees

Here's the latest news from "The Beast"…

  • The Blue Jays and Diamondbacks have discussed a trade involving Jason Frasor, tweets Jon Paul Morosi of FOXSports.com, though the D'Backs aren't close to a deal with the Jays (or any club) for now.  We heard last week that the Jays and Snakes were talking and the two clubs seem like a good fit — Arizona wants veteran relievers and Toronto has Frasor and several other experienced bullpen arms.  Frasor has a 3.12 ERA and a 7.8 K/9 rate this season and recently became Toronto's all-time leader in pitching appearances.
  • The Red Sox have no deals coming in the near future and at the moment, "nothing likely on [the] trade front," several team sources tell The Boston Herald's Mike Silverman (Twitter link).
  • Luke Scott will miss the rest of the season with a shoulder injury and he may have played his last game with the Orioles, notes MLB.com's Brittany Ghiroli.  The O's could choose to non-tender Scott, who is entering his last year of arbitration and is due a raise from his $6.4MM 2011 salary.  Scott, for his part, says he wants to stay in Baltimore.
  • ESPN New York's Wallace Matthews thinks the Yankees should pursue another hitter before the trade deadline, rather than starting pitching.
  • The Rays aren't sure if they're sellers or buyers yet, which "is typical of a team with no room for budgetary error and plenty for restocking the cupboard," writes Yahoo's Jeff Passan.


Blue Jays Have Inquired On Padres Relievers

The Blue Jays have inquired on the Padres’ available relievers, including Heath Bell, according to Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports. It’s not clear whether the Blue Jays want to obtain a closer or are interested in flipping one of San Diego’s relievers to another team.

If they were to acquire Bell, they could offer arbitration and collect a pair of draft picks next season, presuming the free agent to be declines the offer and signs elsewhere. Mike Adams is under team control through 2012, but Padres owner Jeff Moorad told him he’s staying put.

Don’t count on the Blue Jays trading their own relievers, Rosenthal writes. Toronto has 2012 options for Jon Rauch, Jason Frasor and Octavio Dotel, who all project as Type B free agents, according to MLBTR’s reverse-engineered Elias Rankings.


D’Backs Eye Starters, Intend To Acquire Reliever

The Diamondbacks will add at least one reliever and could add a starter, too, according to Ken Rosenthal and Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports. The Giants, who lead Arizona by 3.5 games in the NL West, acquired Jeff Keppinger tonight and D'Backs GM Kevin Towers is expected to respond before long.

The D'Backs "would love" to acquire Kerry Wood, who can block any trade the Cubs propose. Arizona also has interest in Todd Coffey, Jason Isringhausen and Jason Frasor. John Gambadoro of Sports 620 KTAR reported last week that the D'Backs would consider Isringhausen, Wood and possibly Frasor.

Though the D'Backs are looking for starting pitching, Ubaldo Jimenez, Hiroki Kuroda and Aaron Harang are unlikely to be traded within the NL West. For more on what the D'Backs, Giants and other contenders are looking for, check out Tim Dierkes' analysis from earlier today.


Possible Reds Relief Targets

The Reds have had internal discussions about acquiring Jim Johnson, Koji Uehara, Jason Isringhausen, Jason Frasor, and Todd Coffey, reports Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports.  Isringhausen and Coffey have previous ties to the organization.  GM Walt Jocketty might have to go toe-to-toe with the divison rival Cardinals and Pirates on certain players, as those teams also seek bullpen help.

Morosi adds that the Reds are also focused on high-end starters, maintaining their interest in Rockies ace Ubaldo Jimenez.  The Reds are not looking for shortstop help, as they're pleased with the play of Zack Cozart in his first seven games.


Rosenthal’s Full Count Video: Yankees, Ubaldo, Jays

Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports has a new Full Count video up, so let's recap…

  • Two GMs tell Rosenthal that the Yankees are more worried about Mariano Rivera's nagging triceps injury than they're letting on. If true, they could increase their efforts to acquire a setup man, though they're hopeful Rafael Soriano will be back from his elbow injury soon after the All-Star break.
  • The Mets have called the Yankees and offered Francisco Rodriguez according to one source, but they're only interested if the Mets call them at the deadline and offer K-Rod at a minimal price.
  • The starting pitching market could soon heat up. The Rockies are getting calls about Ubaldo Jimenez and several other players, though they're not shopping their ace right-hander. Rosenthal says they'll listen on anyone besides Troy Tulowitzki and Carlos Gonzalez. Jimenez is under contract through 2014 (though he can void that option if traded) and could return a significant package of the players, so the team would give a trade serious consideration.
  • Don't be surprised if the Marlins listen on Ricky Nolasco and Anibal Sanchez. Florida will try to get back into contention, though they'll likely entertain offers for both pitchers if that doesn't happen. Nolasco is under contract though 2013, Sanchez under team control through 2012.
  • The Blue Jays offer perhaps the best value on the bullpen market. Jason Frasor, Octavio Dotel, and Jon Rauch aren't in the same class as Heath Bell, though all three could pitch better outside of the AL East and have club options for 2012. They all figure to qualify as Type-B free agents as well.

AL East Notes: Hughes, Montero, Blue Jays, Rays

Just when it seemed like the AL East standings were becoming a little less bunched up, the Red Sox dropped four straight and the Rays won seven of eight. New York, Boston, and Tampa Bay are now separated by just two games, as the Rays look for a sweep in Houston while the Sox hope to avoid one in Pittsburgh. Here are today's links from around the division:

  • The Yankees will need to add another starting pitcher if they hope to win a championship this season, writes Mike Lupica of the New York Daily News. He notes that starter doesn't necessarily have to come from outside the organization though – it could be Phil Hughes.
  • Rival evaluators have taken note of Jesus Montero's decline in offensive production this year, says ESPN.com's Buster Olney (Insider only). According to Olney, it's led to some speculation that the Yankees could push to trade Montero this season "in an effort to recoup some value."
  • Within Nick Cafardo's Sunday column for the Boston Globe, he writes that Jason Frasor may be the prize of the Blue Jays' bullpen at next month's trade deadline. Cafardo adds that teams figure to inquire on Marc Rzepczynski, but he's the one Jays' reliever who definitely "isn't going anywhere."
  • DRaysBay's Steve Slowinksi breaks down Andrew Friedman's trade history in a piece for the St. Petersburg Times. Slowinski concludes that Friedman has netted the Rays 20 extra wins while also saving a sizable chunk of salary.

AL East Notes: Yankees, Werth, Pavano, Jays, Rays

Seven years ago today, the Yankees signed Eduardo Nunez as a free agent out of the Dominican Republic. Now 23, Nunez is in the mix to be New York's utility infielder in 2011 after hitting .280/.321/.360 with more walks (three) than strikeouts (two) in his brief big league debut last season (53 PA).

Here are some more notes that have to do with the Yanks and their fellow AL East clubs…

  • Joel Sherman of The New York Post reports that the Yankees "have told their scouts to bear down on several teams they think could have starters available" in a trade this summer. The teams they are targeting include the Braves, Angels, A's, White Sox, and Cardinals according to Sherman.
  • Jayson Werth told SI.com's Jon Heyman that he had a "great" meeting with the Red Sox earlier this offseason, after which he figured they would offer six years (Twitter link). They only offered five, so he ended up with the Nationals.
  • Carl Pavano spoke to Kelsie Smith of The Pioneer Press about being pursued by the Yankees this offseason. "I don't think [the past] would be a hindrance, but there would have definitely been obstacles," said Pavano. "I'm not naïve enough to think that there wouldn't have been things I would have had to overcome, especially the trust of the fans and maybe some of the guys that were there. That's reality."
  • Richard Griffin of The Toronto Star notes (on Twitter) that four of the Blue Jays' ten highest paid players are former closers: Jason Frasor, Frank Francisco, Jon Rauch, and Octavio Dotel.
  • When asked about the payroll disparity between his Rays and other teams in the division, Joe Maddon told Ken Davidoff of Newsday that he's "never seen a dollar bill throw a strike, or hit a homer, or whatever." (Twitter link)

Blue Jays Avoid Arbitration With Jason Frasor

The Blue Jays and Jason Frasor have agreed to a one-year contract worth $3.5MM according to a press release. The deal also includes a club option for 2012 worth $3.75MM. Frasor accepted arbitration back in November rather than hit the open market as a Type-A free agent reliever. 

The 33-year-old right-hander posted a 3.68 ERA with 9.2 K/9 and 3.8 BB/9 in 63 2/3 innings last season, and over the last two years he owns a 3.12 ERA, 9.0 K/9, and 3.2 BB/9. Frasor is the incumbent in a rebuilt Toronto bullpen that lost Scott Downs and Kevin Gregg but added Carlos Villanueva, Octavio Dotel, Jon Rauch, and Frank Francisco.

Our Arbitration Tracker shows that Frasor filed for $3.73MM while the team countered with $3.25MM. The new deal essentially splits the two figures.