Jason Lane Rumors
We'll keep track of today's minor moves here.
- Lefty pitcher Jason Lane, recently of the independent Sugar Land Skeeters, has signed with the Padres and has been assigned to Triple-A Tucson, the Skeeters announce (via the Houston Chronicle's Brian T. Smith on Twitter). This is the same Jason Lane who played outfield for the Astros (and, briefly, the Padres) from 2002 through 2007. Since then, he's bounced around Triple-A and independent baseball, both as a hitter and as a pitcher. He posted a 2.79 ERA in 99 2/3 innings with Sugar Land in 2013, with 4.3 K/9 and 1.2 BB/9.
Here are Wednesday's minor moves...
- The Rangers have signed Brandon Snyder to a minor league contract, reports Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com (on Twitter). The 26-year-old former first round pick of the Orioles hit .277/.309/.446 in 69 plate appearances with Texas last year while playing first base, third base, and both corner outfield spots.
- The Padres have re-signed Juan Oramas to a minor league deal according to MLB.com's Corey Brock (on Twitter). The 22-year-old left-hander was non-tendered last month and is recovering from Tommy John surgery.
- The Padres have also signed right-hander Sean O'Sullivan, infielder Gregorio Petit, and catcher Rene Rivera to minor league contracts, the team announced. All three players received invitations to Spring Training.
- The Twins have signed outfielder Brandon Boggs, infielder Ray Olmedo, right-hander Bryan Augenstein, first baseman Reynaldo Rodriguez, right-hander Scott Elarton, right-hander Virgil Vasquez, left-hander Mike O'Connor, and left-hander Jason Lane to minor league deals according to MLB.com's Adam Berry. Boggs, Olmedo, and Augenstein received invitations to Spring Training.
Here's some news from around the majors as we head into the end of the work week...
- Edwin Jackson tells Rick Hummel of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch that he didn't receive any interest from the Cardinals about returning to the team. "There was no involvement with the Cardinals. Pitching wasn't a department they needed help in. Their rotation is pretty much set," Jackson said. "It was a place I wouldn't have minded going back to...but, coming into the offseason, it was never a place I realistically thought I had a chance to go back to."
- Phil Mackey of 1500 ESPN Twin Cities radio details Glen Perkins' path from filing a grievance against the Twins in 2009 and seemingly being on the outs with the club to today's three-year extension that keeps the southpaw in Minnesota through 2015.
- Jason Lane talks to Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic about his attempt to return to the Major Leagues as a pitcher, and how a chance meeting with Diamondbacks GM Kevin Towers last summer led to Lane getting a minor league deal with Arizona.
- C.J. Nitkowski, who last pitched in the majors in 2005, threw a bullpen session with the Mets on Thursday, reports MLB.com's Anthony DiComo. Nitkowski pitched in Japan and Korea from 2007-2010 and, as MLB.com's Anthony Castrovince details, underwent a controversial blood-and-stem cell treatment last year. Nitkowski was the ninth overall pick of the 1994 amateur draft and pitched for eight teams in a 10-year Major League career, including a five-game stint with the Mets in 2001.
- The long-term effects of Lucas Giolito's UCL strain have yet to be determined, but Baseball America's Conor Glassey examines how the injury could impact Giolito's position in the 2012 amateur draft.
- The Mexican Baseball League has announced that Jose Canseco will not play for Quintana Roo Tigers after the slugger allegedly took a banned substance and refused to take a drug test, reports ESPN's news news services. League president Plinio Escalante told ESPN Deportes that testosterone was the banned substance. Canseco has denied the charge on his Twitter account.
Fifteen years ago today, the Astros and Tigers swung a nine-player trade. Houston received Brad Ausmus, Jose Lima, Trever Miller, C.J. Nitkowski, and Daryle Ward while Detroit imported Doug Brocail, Brian Hunter, Todd Jones, and Orlando Miller. It's not often you see a club turnover 20% of its roster in a single deal. Here are some evening links...
- Albert Pujols' new ten-year contract with the Angels will keep him with the team for another ten years after it expires. MLB.com's Alden Gonzalez reports (on Twitter) that the deal will keep him on board as a consultant to owner Arte Moreno for a decade after his playing days are over.
- In a second tweet, Gonzalez heard from C.J. Wilson that not only did the Marlins offer him a sixth guaranteed year, but they also offered him an option for a seventh year as well.
- Even after signing Rafael Furcal to a two-year, $14MM contract, Jim Bowden of MLB Network Radio reports (on Twitter) that the Cardinals remain in contact with free agent outfielder Carlos Beltran. Beltran could step in at right field and help replace some of the offense lost when Pujols left.
- "I haven't talked to anyone," said non-tender candidate and Orioles right-hander Brad Bergesen to Roch Kubatko of MASNSports.com, indicating that he doesn't know what will happen before Monday's deadline to tender contracts to players with less than six years of service time. "I have no idea. I don't know what the plan is. I don't know how they view me or if I fit in their plans. All I can do is prepare myself and be ready for whatever comes my way."
- Baseball America's Matt Eddy reports that the Diamondbacks have signed former Astros outfielder Jason Lane as a left-handed pitcher. The 34-year-old hasn't appeared in the big leagues since 2007, but he made the move to the mound this past season. Todd Dewey of the Las Vegas Journal-Review chronicled the conversion back in August.
Tobi Stoner and Jason Pridie both cleared waivers and were outrighted to the Mets' Triple-A affiliate today, reports Andy McCullough of the Star-Ledger (Twitter link). The duo were designated for assignment earlier this week.
Here are some other minor moves from around baseball today, courtesy of Kevin Goldstein of Baseball Prospectus. All contracts are minor league deals, and all links are to Goldstein's Twitter feed.
- The Yankees signed right-hander Warner Madrigal, who last pitched in the majors with Texas in 2009. Madrigal originally broke into pro ball as an outfielder, but converted to pitching in 2006. He posted a 3.73 ERA in 35 games with the Rangers' Double-A and Triple-A teams last year.
- The Blue Jays re-signed Jason Lane. Best known for his 26-homer season with Houston in 2005, Lane hasn't played in the big leagues since 2007 and has played for the Padres, Red Sox, Yankees, Blue Jays and Marlins organizations since leaving the Astros.
- The Angels signed Virgil Vasquez. The right-hander pitched in Tampa Bay's system last year. A seventh-round pick of the Tigers in the 2003 draft, Vasquez has a 6.60 ERA in 19 career Major League games (10 of them starts) with Detroit and Pittsburgh.
- The Rangers signed catcher Robinzon Diaz, who is best known for being the player to be named later that Toronto sent to Pittsburgh for Jose Bautista in 2009. Diaz had 139 plate appearances with the Bucs before being released in the offseason. He played Triple-A ball for Detroit last year.
- The Rockies signed Kala Ka'aihue. Ka'aihue was putting up minor league numbers akin to those of his older brother Kila through the 2008 season, but has struggled the last two years.
Here are a few of the noteworthy names involved in this week's minor league transactions, as compiled by Baseball America's Matt Eddy...
- Fernando Cortez was signed to his second go-around with the White Sox organization. The utilityman last played in the majors in 2007 as a member of the Royals, and has a .665 OPS in 3948 career plate appearances in the minor leagues.
- The White Sox also released Justin Fuller, best known as the minor-leaguer acquired last summer from Los Angeles in the Jim Thome trade.
- John Koronka was released by the Dodgers. The veteran southpaw made two starts for Florida in 2009 before signing with L.A. in January.
- Jason Lane was released by the Marlins. Best known for his time with Houston from 2002 to 2007, Lane's finest year came in 2005 when he hit 26 homers and posted an .815 OPS in 561 plate appearances for the Astros. He last appeared in the majors in 2007 with San Diego.
- Texas dealt right-hander Jailen Peguero to the Astros for future considerations. Peguero posted a 7.50 ERA in 25 relief appearances for the Diamondbacks in 2007-08.
- Cleveland released Josh Phelps just a few weeks after signing him to a minor-league deal.
- The Mariners signed pitcher Billy Traber. The left-hander has a 5.65 ERA in 96 career major league appearances, 28 of them starts. He appeared in one game last season, allowing five runs in 3 2/3 innings of mop-up duty for Boston.
Links for Saturday...
- Jordan Bastian of MLB.com provides his list of the top 10 prospects in Toronto's system and answers other Jays-related questions in a reader mailbag.
- MLB.com's Mark Sheldon writes that the holding pattern between Jonny Gomes and the Reds is continuing. Sheldon says that Gomes might make his decision once one of the other second-tier outfielders - guys like Garret Anderson, Cliff Floyd, Endy Chavez, or Marlon Anderson - sign with a club.
- Susan Slusser of The San Francisco Chronicle says that Tim Lincecum's contract with the Giants will have future ramifications because it'll help keep his salary down after it expires. Lincecum will still have two more years of arbitration eligibility left when this new deal expires.
- The Yankees will be serious bidders for Cuban shortstop Adeiny Hechevarria once he is "unblocked" by the Office of Foreign Assets Control, reports George A. King III of The New York Post.
- Despite signing Mike Lamb to a minor league deal, the Marlins are still on the lookout for a lefty bat off the bench, tweets MLB.com's Joe Frisaro.
- In a separate tweet, Frisaro says that the chances of the team bringing Kiko Calero back are slim, even on a minor league deal. They have concerns about his shoulder.
- Jim McLennan of AZ Snakepit posted Part Two if his interview with Diamondbacks' GM Josh Byrnes.
- John Tomase of The Boston Herald says that the Red Sox don't look like a team in transition, despite GM Theo Epstein's comments earlier this offseason.
- Here are the latest minor league transactions, courtesy of Baseball America's Matt Eddy. The Marlins signed outfielder Jason Lane to a minor league deal.
According to MLB.com's Jordan Bastian, the Blue Jays signed infielder Brandon Fahey and outfielder Jason Lane to minor league deals.
Fahey, 28 in January, isn't much with the bat. He is versatile though. Lane, 32, hit .236/.340/.447 for the Yankees' Triple A affiliate last year. His career highlight was a 26 home run season for the '05 Astros.
Some Saturday mid-day linkage:
- Hitoki Iwase was lit up in the Olympics, possibly dropping his stock as a prospect. Iwase was one of several Japanese players being scouted by Major League clubs in Beijing.
- Luis Gonzalez reminisces about his trade to the Diamondbacks ten years ago.
- Manny Ramirez is not interested in talking about those old Philadelphia rumors. I'm shocked, shocked.
- J.D. Drew's back spasms are actually a herniated disk. According to Nick Cafardo, the Red Sox would love to add another outfielder, but can't seem to lay their hands on one. No offense to Jason Lane.
- He's baaaa-aaaack: Free-agent-to-be Carl Pavano is starting tonight for the New York Yankees. Strike up the band and break out the rum punch.
- Recently traded infielder Jose Bautista was at odds with Pirates manager John Russell.
- Thomas Boswell talks about the possibility of Stephen Strasburg becoming a National next year.
Round three from the MLBiverse...
- The Red Sox have signed former Astros outfielder Jason Lane to a minor league deal.
- Troy E. Renck says that Willy Taveras could be moved this winter and speculates that the Nationals might be a good fit if Lastings Milledge is moved from center field.
- Paul Sullivan says the Cubs are not likely to make many changes this winter with only four key free agents. One of those free agents, Ryan Dempster, said that he would prefer to stay with the Cubs.
- Omar Minaya says Al Reyes turned down a major league job with another organization to take the minor league deal with the Mets.