Jeremy Bonderman Rumors

Cafardo On Gonzalez, Pedro, Bonderman, Washburn

After all the drama that surrounded the Red Sox' acquisition of Adrian Gonzalez, it's easy to forget that the slugger, who underwent shoulder surgery in October, has been rehabbing all winter. While the team hopes Gonzalez will be good to go on Opening Day, "it seems silly to rush him if he isn’t ready," writes Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe. According to Cafardo, Boston's contingency plan could involve playing Lars Anderson for a couple weeks or even pursuing a free agent first baseman. Let's check out the other items of interest from the Globe's Sunday Baseball Notes….

  • There's a belief that Pedro Martinez could pitch the final months of the season if, as one American League GM says, he finds "the right fit." Cafardo speculates that the Phillies could be an interesting option if they end up trading Joe Blanton.
  • A National League scout says he liked the way Jeremy Bonderman was pitching toward the end of 2010. "I’m really surprised a team hasn’t jumped at him," said the scout. "But some of that is up to the player and the agent, too. If he’s asking for too much, nobody’s going to do it no matter how desperate teams are for pitching."
  • There's still a chance that Jarrod Washburn, who sat out the 2010 season, could sign somewhere. However, GMs who spoke to Cafardo are under the impression that the lefty wouldn't return unless he could land a "fairly sizable" Major League contract, which seems unlikely.

Indians Notes: LaPorta, Sizemore, Rotation, Chisenhall

Even on a day filled with football news, Paul Hoynes of the Cleveland Plain Dealer has a pair of Indians articles up filled with some information on what we can expect from the Tribe in 2011. Let's look at some highlights:

  • The upcoming season will play a large role in gauging the return that the Indians got from the C.C. Sabathia trade. Both Matt LaPorta and Michael Brantley are expected to play full seasons as part of Cleveland's rebuilding efforts. LaPorta, who recently turned 26, is fully healthy unlike 2010 when he underwent two mid-season surgeries.
  • Both Grady Sizemore and Fausto Carmona could be traded if they perform well in the first half. Sizemore is more likely, given that he's only under Cleveland's control through 2012 (the $8.5MM club option on his deal becomes a player option if he's traded). Carmona is through 2014 through a series of club options.
  • The club is still interested in both Kevin Millwood and Jeremy Bonderman, though Hoynes says the Indians haven't changed their stance on Millwood's asking price; they don't want to invest $4MM-$5MM.
  • Lonnie Chisenhall will open the season at Triple-A Columbus no matter what, according to Hoynes. He has a chance to push some current big-leaguers eventually, as do Jason Kipnis, Jared Goedert, and Cord Phelps. Keith Law recently ranked Chisenhall as the game's 39th best prospect. Kipnis placed 56th.

Indians Working To Sign Bonderman

The Indians are working to sign free agent pitcher Jeremy Bonderman, a source tells Jordan Bastian of  Cleveland GM Chris Antonetti declined comment when reached.

Bonderman lost a potential suitor earlier today when Tigers GM Dave Dombrowski said that the club will not look to bring the right-hander back to Detroit.  Last season marked the 28-year-old's first since undergoing shoulder surgery in 2008.  In 29 starts and one relief appearance, Bonderman posted a 5.53 ERA with 5.9 K/9 and 3.2 BB/9. 

Tigers Not Signing Bonderman Or Guerrero

3:23pm: The Tigers aren't signing Vladimir Guerrero, either. "There's not a fit for us," Dombrowski told Gage. "We're not involved with that at all and haven't been."

2:44pm: Tigers GM Dave Dombrowski has been open to re-signing Jeremy Bonderman throughout the offseason, but the longtime Tiger will not be returning to Detroit. "We are not signing Jeremy Bonderman," Dombrowski told Tom Gage of the Detroit News (on Twitter).

Last year Bonderman had his first full season since undergoing shoulder surgery in 2008. The 28-year-old logged 171 innings, posting a 5.53 ERA with 5.9 K/9 and 3.2 BB/9. Bonderman, who is about to begin his ninth big league season, is a free agent for the first time. Gage suggests Bonderman could be on the verge of signing with another club.

Cafardo On Sizemore, Carmona, Delcarmen, Milledge

Rocco Baldelli tells Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe that, despite having to retire at age 29, he considers himself fortunate to have had as much time as he did in the majors. "I have no regrets," Baldelli said. "I played major league baseball. I got to the big leagues and I had some moments I'll never forget." Cafardo opens this week's column by wondering what might have been, had Baldelli stayed healthy throughout his career. The Globe writer also shares a handful of hot stove notes….

  • Although recent trade rumors involving Grady Sizemore and Fausto Carmona were quickly shot down, Cafardo says if both players are healthy and playing well this year, they could be "major trade deadline chips."
  • Four teams are in discussions with agent Jim Masteralexis, regarding client Manny Delcarmen. We heard earlier this month that the Rays had interest in the ex-Red Sox, so they're likely one of the four.
  • One executive told Cafardo that he's surprised Lastings Milledge is still available. While the exec's team doesn't need another outfielder, he argued that "you just don't give up" on a talent like Milledge.
  • Scott Schoeneweis, who hopes to play this season, is being considered by the Diamondbacks.
  • Friends of Pedro Martinez say the right-hander has yet to get pitching out of his system. Pedro will turn 40 later this year, and didn't pitch in the bigs in 2010, but he had success for the Phillies in 2009, compiling a 3.63 ERA, 7.5 K/9, and 1.6 BB/9 in nine starts.
  • Cafardo speculates that Boston could be a good fit for Jeremy Bonderman on a minor league deal.

Yankees Notes: Jeter, Colon, Pettitte, Girardi

The latest on the Yankees, who signed Bartolo Colon to a minor league deal yesterday…

  • GM Brian Cashman told John Harper of the New York Daily News that he talked to Derek Jeter's agent, Casey Close, to clarify comments he made earlier in the week about a potential move to the outfield for the captain.
  • As Joel Sherman of the New York Post points out, both the Yankees and the Rangers pursued Cliff Lee aggressively, then "gambled on a former Cy Young winner who has been devastated by shoulder injuries in recent years." But Colon is a back-of-the-rotation arm, not a true alternative to Lee. Brandon Webb, the Rangers' new addition, is no sure thing either.
  • The Yankees are upbeat about the chances that Andy Pettitte returns for another season, according to Sherman. They're still considering free agents like Justin Duchscherer and Jeremy Bonderman, though.
  • The Yankees believe history is a 'pull' for Pettitte, Sherman writes. He can progress through Yankees records and add to his Hall of Fame case if he plays more.
  • Manager Joe Girardi showed the kind of sway he has with the Yankees when he voted in favor of adding Rafael Soriano, according to Sherman.

Tigers Open To Re-Signing Bonderman

The Tigers are open to re-signing Jeremy Bonderman, but not on a major league deal. GM Dave Dombrowski told Tom Gage of the Detroit News that he would consider bringing the longtime Tiger back to Detroit.

Bonderman's four-year, $38MM extension just expired, so the 28-year-old is a free agent for the first time. The eight-year veteran is coming off a season in which he posted a 5.53 ERA with 5.9 K/9 and 3.2 BB/9 in 171 innings. Bonderman had shoulder surgery in 2008 and missed most of the 2009 season as he recovered. 

The Rangers, Cardinals, Yankees, Rockies, Cubs and Pirates have been linked to Bonderman this offseason. About 17% of over 15,000 MLBTR readers say Bonderman is the best remaining free agent starter. Click here to cast your vote.

Poll: Best Remaining Free Agent Starting Pitcher

Pitchers and catchers are due to report in about three weeks, and by now all of the high-end free agents have come off the board. Heck, even second tier options have signed by now. That leaves just reclamation-type projects and players with considerable flaws, especially when it comes to pitching.

As MLBTR's Free Agent Tracker shows, starters like Kevin Millwood, Jeremy Bonderman, Freddy Garcia, Doug Davis, Rodrigo Lopez, Todd Wellemeyer and Brian Moehler remain unsigned. Andy Pettitte is clearly the best of the unsigned bunch, but it's the Yankees or retirement for him, and right now it looks like the latter is winning out. Neither Pedro Martinez, Braden Looper, or Jarrod Washburn have appeared in a big league game in over a year. John Maine, Justin Duchscherer and Jamie Moyer are coming off injuries, Tommy John surgery in Moyer's case.

There are still a number of teams looking for rotation help, including the Yankees, Orioles, Nationals, Pirates and Indians. Which of those unsigned starters represents the best option?

Cafardo’s Latest: Bonderman, Pettitte, Pavano, Bautista

Despite their impressive offseason, the Red Sox will still need some luck at a couple positions, says Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe. Cafardo leads this week's column by discussing the production the Red Sox hope to receive behind the plate and from their left-handed relievers. Here are the rest of the items of interest from the piece:

  • Jeremy Bonderman is still looking to land a spot at the back of a rotation, and is drawing "minor interest" from the Rangers and Cardinals. The Yankees, whose interest in Bonderman we heard about earlier this month, have also been in touch with the right-hander's representation.
  • Someone "close to" Andy Pettitte told Cafardo that he would be shocked if we've seen the last of the left-hander in the bigs. The longtime Yankee won't start the 2011 season with the club, but hasn't officially announced any plans to retire.
  • There has been a "strange silence" surrounding Carl Pavano's situation over the last week, but Cafardo suggests that since Pavano definitely wants to remain a Twin, there's no urgency to act quickly.
  • According to Cafardo, Jose Bautista would prefer to play right field rather than third base for the Blue Jays this season. Where Bautista ends up on the field may hinge on whether the Jays add another bat.

Quick Hits: Yankees, Bonderman, Reds, Thome

The Giants signed Aubrey Huff on this date in 2010. The first baseman hit .290/.385/.506 and the Giants won the World Series. Here are some links and news items to look through while we await the bargain signing of the 2010-11 offseason…