Jason Jennings Rumors
Jeff Wilson, writing for the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, has a few more updates on the Rangers' hot stove situation:
- Jason Jennings is still on the team's radar. His agent and GM Jon Daniels had multiple conversations last week. Jennings, 30, struggled last season before undergoing surgery to repair a torn flexor tendon. He should be ready for spring training and is likely to come cheap.
- The lines of communication remain open with free agent Ben Sheets, but there hasn't been much progress. Wilson believes that might change now that the Mets have agreed to a deal with Oliver Perez.
According to Troy Renck of the Denver Post, the Diamondbacks have interest in free agent right-hander Jason Jennings.
The D-Backs have an offer out to Braden Looper, but if that falls through Jennings could be next on the list. Jennings last pitched effectively in 2006, when he finished 9-13 with a 3.78 ERA. He lasted just 27 1/3 innings last season. Renck claims the Rangers have also expressed serious interest.
According to Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic, starter Jon Garland rejected a contract offer from the Diamondbacks. The offer is unknown, but Piecoro believes the D'Backs have about $4MM left to spend this winter.
Pedro Martinez, Ben Sheets, and Jason Jennings are also on the radar. Piecoro figures Braden Looper would make sense based on his similarity to Garland.
According to Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic, the D'Backs plan on going after many free agent starters in hopes that one of them will sign at an affordable rate. Arizona appears to have $4-5MM to spend on an arm.
The club has traditionally avoided incentive-based deals because they bring financial uncertainty, but Piecoro sees "indications the team might be willing to relax its policy." Piecoro names Ben Sheets, Pedro Martinez and Jason Jennings as possible fits for the club, but those pitchers are considered health risks, so incentive-based deals could work for them.
To Sheets's credit, he did make 31 starts last year, so he's likely to get much stronger offers than the other two.
Troy E. Renck of the Denver Post weighs in on various free agent pitchers.
- The Rockies are a long shot for Tim Redding following their Jason Marquis acquisition. The Mets and Orioles still like him; he may command $2.5-3MM.
- Josh Fogg would like to return to Colorado, but has drawn interest from other teams as well.
- The Rangers and D'Backs are interested in Jason Jennings. Jennings missed most of the season after signing with Texas for $4MM. He had surgery in May to repair a torn flexor tendon in his forearm.
- The Mets are one team with an eye on outfielder Cory Sullivan.
9:24pm: The Rangers met with Sheets and his agent, according to T.R. Sullivan. Jon Daniels said not to read too much into it.
7:13pm: Per Sherman, the Yanks met with Sheets today.
6:30pm: Free agent hurler Ben Sheets arrived in Vegas this afternoon, according to Ken Rosenthal. Sheets wouldn't comment much on the Yankees, but said he wouldn't burn the bridge leading to a possible Milwaukee return.
MLB.com reports that the Rangers would like to chat with Sheets this week (he currently lives in Dallas). They'd have to free up some cash to sign him. Jon Daniels was already planning on meeting with Sheets' agent Casey Close in regards to Jason Jennings.
11:55pm: Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News says the Rangers have interest in re-signing Bradley to a one or two-year deal, but GM Jon Daniels expects him to explore the market. Grant adds that the Rangers have interest in re-signing starter Jason Jennings to a minor league deal. The interest is known to be mutual; Jennings had elbow surgery in May.
10:05pm: According to MLB.com's T.R. Sullivan, the Rangers offered arbitration to Type B free agent Milton Bradley. It was an easy decision given his .436 OBP and .563 SLG this year. Jon Heyman wrote about a month ago that Bradley hopes to find a four-year deal worth more than $10MM per.
UPDATE, 1-16-08 at 10:39pm: ESPN's Jerry Crasnick reports that the Rangers have reached an agreement with Jennings for one year and $4MM. Another $4MM is possible in incentives. I like the price, and I wonder if this was one of those hometown discount situations.
FROM 1-11-08 at 12:09am:
According to Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News, the Rangers "appear to be closing in on" a deal with Jason Jennings. Grant says the last hurdle before a deal is struck with the 29 year-old might be a physical. Terms are not yet known. The Dallas native earned $5.5MM in 2007.
Jennings had surgery in late August to repair a torn flexor tendon in his elbow. He expects to be throwing by March 1st.
Today's smattering of random rumors and links. Question for you readers: how do you feel about the Odds and Ends posts in general? Interesting? Lame? Do you skip them, or are they worthwhile?
- Friend of MLBTR Susan Slusser quotes Shannon Stewart as saying the A's are one of several teams in the running for his services. If you browse the ol' free agent list, you'll see that the other available free agent left fielders include Barry Bonds, Luis Gonzalez, Kevin Mench, Reggie Sanders, and Brad Wilkerson.
- Chris Shelton, we hardly knew ye - the Rangers have already DFA'd him. Career OPS of .825, seems the guy deserves a decent shot somewhere. Other Rangers news, Jason Jennings seems like a lock at this point.
- The Pirates and Adam LaRoche agreed at $5MM for '08. They could still work out an extension that starts with the '09 season.
- Wondering which service to use for your fantasy league this March? I merely started the discussion at RotoAuthority, and then commenters weighed in with tons of excellent feedback.
Here are some interesting links to peruse when you get the chance...
- Alyson Footer believes the Astros and Jason Jennings are not interested in each other.
- Kazumi Saito will have surgery on his rotator cuff today. He's a Mark Prior type, a tantalizing talent who can't stay healthy. Doesn't seem like he'll be posted anytime soon.
- In case you missed it earlier, MLBTR now has a Facebook page and group. Become a fan on the page, join the group, friend me, and spread the good word of MLBTR to those who don't read it.
- Funny look at the types of signs fans hold up at games, courtesy of Joe Sports Fan.
- I did an interview over at We Should Be GMs.