J.D. Drew Rumors
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.
Ken Rosenthal has a new Full Count video up over at FOX Sports. Here's the highlights:
- The Red Sox wanted to use Brian Giles in right field against certain right-handers, and shift J.D. Drew over to center field for those games. Giles blocked the trade for family reasons, according to Rosenthal, despite the chance at an increased pay day and an opportunity to play in the postseason.
- Rosenthal says that while the Dodgers are under pressure to re-sign Manny Ramirez, there may be more pressure to sign Casey Blake after this season. Rosenthal points out that Blake is batting .333 in his first 16 games in Dodger blue, and the Dodgers traded away their best young third baseman in Andy LaRoche in order to get Manny. The Dodgers aren't sold on Blake DeWitt as a long-term option.
- Rosenthal feels that the Brewers are now less likely to shop Prince Fielder in the offseason, though he points out they could fetch quite a nice haul of Major-League-ready talent if they shopped Fielder as an alternative to Mark Teixeira. Rosenthal feels that J.J. Hardy is a much better bet to be shopped though, as Alcides Escobar could be used to replace him in 2009.
- Rosenthal wonders if, given Kelly Shoppach's emergence, the Indians could try to trade him for a top-end starter. Rosenthal offers two scenarios for Cleveland: Trade Shoppach and sign Jason Giambi, or keep Shoppach, sign Orlando Hudson, move Victor Martinez to first base. Both scenarios have the same goal of adding offense and allowing Matt LaPorta to remain in the outfield.
A few more minor notes from the MLBiverse...
- Marc Lancaster is reporting that Tim Beckham, the top pick of the Rule 4 draft, will be visiting Tropicana Field at the end of the week and his father believes that a deal will be in place by the end of the weekend. The rest of the first rounders could sign quickly once Beckham and the Rays set the benchmark.
- Jamey Newberg wonders if the Rangers will have a hard time making trades because their farm system is so deep. The Rays might have the same problem.
- Jeff Passan names his All-Overpaid and All-Underpaid teams.
- Could Rick Peterson reunite with Barry Zito in San Francisco?
- Dave Cameron says J.D. Drew was worth the money.
- A reader emailed in saying he saw Mets scout Jerry Krause at the White Sox-Pirates game. Krause might be the game's most publicly recognizable scout.
The Boston Globe's Nick Cafardo works his way through all the teams in anticipation of Monday's GM meetings. Here are some of the rumors we haven't seen much before.
- The Rays want a defensive-minded shortstop and veteran starter. Maybe they'll make a play for Cesar Izturis or Omar Vizquel. A rehab guy like Freddy Garcia or Randy Wolf could be interesting.
- The Indians are looking for a power bat for left field. Haven't seen them mentioned with Barry Bonds at all, could that work?
- Cafardo proposes the idea of the Cubs acquiring J.D. Drew as their OBP-minded right field acquisition. Drew has a limited no-trade clause allowing him to block two unknown teams. I imagine the Red Sox would have to eat some salary.
- Cafardo also speculates that Andy Pettitte could follow Joe Torre to L.A. Pettitte has previously talked about a Yankees or retirement stance.
- The idea of the Giants trading Tim Lincecum seemed crazy at first, right? Cafardo says they may be willing to do so for a "stud outfielder." How about Delmon Young?
- Scott Boras is already busting out mystery teams with A-Rod, who apparently would love to play for the Red Sox.
As expected, the Red Sox have some outs in case Drew's shoulder becomes a problem. Team doctors indicated that he could have shoulder issues three to five years from now, so the escape clauses are based on that assumption.
Boston officially has a murderer's row of .400 OBP/.500-.600 SLG guys in the middle of their lineup. It will be a nasty stretch for any pitcher.
The Boston Globe's Nick Cafardo has a J.D. Drew update for us. It may be that Boras does not want to revise Drew's contract given that Boras's surgeon gave Drew's shoulder the thumbs up.
More intriguing is a line at the end of the post - the Red Sox are targeting a trade for a closer and are targeting one of Chad Cordero, Brad Lidge, and Mike Gonzalez.
Just got off the phone with an informed baseball guy, and we spoke on the topic of J.D. Drew.
He tells me that Drew has seen two surgeons for his shoulder, one requested by Scott Boras and the other by the Red Sox. It appears that one of the surgeons may have been Dr. James Andrews.
The likely result? A one-year clause similar to the one the Tigers gave Magglio Ordonez. The Red Sox would be able to opt out after the first season if Drew goes on the DL because of the shoulder. In the case of Maggs, Detroit could've voided the contract after '05 if he spent 25 days on the DL for his formerly troublesome left knee. There is no sign that Drew will end up anywhere other than Boston.
Tony Massarotti of the Boston Herald reported yesterday that J.D. Drew appeared to have a problem with his physical. He indicated that an Ivan Rodriguez-like injury clause would be included. He didn't expect the deal to be killed altogether.
Additionally, Will Carroll chimes in with speculation that Drew's shoulder could be damaged to the level of Scott Rolen in 2005. That year, Rolen slugged just .383 in a lost season.
Whatever the problem, Drew will seek a second medical opinion on Monday.
It's seemed inevitable for some time; a source of Gordon Edes reports that there is "no holdup" in Boston's agreement with outfielder J.D. Drew.
Edes believes it is still a four-year, $56MM contract with an option for the fifth season.
Michael Silverman of the Boston Herald reports that J.D. Drew will receive four guaranteed years from the Red Sox at $14MM annually. The fifth year is expected to be an option.
That is a lot of money for a player with Drew's health history. The contract will take him through his age 34 season.