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Sunday night linkage..
- Tim Brown of Yahoo Sports implores the Nats to get a deal done with Bryce Harper.
- Nats pitcher Stephen Strasburg had some interesting comments to make about the club's negotiations with Harper, writes Bill Ladson of MLB.com.
- Dylan Hernandez of the Los Angeles Times (in these tweets) says that rival agents think that the Dodgers will offer first-round pick Zach Lee roughly $3MM and at least one of them thinks that will be enough to get a deal done.
- Toronto manager Cito Gaston told David Ely of MLB.com that he didn't think Ricky Romero would feel any pressure after signing a lucrative contract extension. The lefty didn't show any signs of jitters today as he allowed just one run in seven innings against the Angels.
- Boston outfielder Jeremy Hermida is making the most of his time in the minors, writes Daniel Barbarisi of The Providence Journal. Hermida was just thirty days shy of accruing enough major league time to decline a demotion when he was sent down by the Red Sox.
Links for Sunday, as Jeremy Hellickson aims for his third win in his third career start….
- Troy Glaus earned an additional $350K for making his 450th plate appearance last night, tweets Dave O'Brien of the Atlanta Journal Constitution. Glaus will earn another $350K for his 500th plate appearance.
- Jeff Zrebiec of the Baltimore Sun tells us that the Orioles are unlikely to sign a pair of pitchers: sixth and seventh round picks Dixon Anderson and Matthew Bywater. The club is still working toward a deal with #3 overall pick Manny Machado, but expect to get a deal done.
- Geoff Baker of the Seattle Times (Twitter link) hears that, although a deal is unlikely, the Braves will probably "kick the tires" on Chone Figgins. Baker reported on Friday that Atlanta had yet to ask the Mariners about Figgins.
- John Tomase of the Boston Herald argues that moving Jonathan Papelbon and making Daniel Bard the closer before 2012 would be a mistake for the Red Sox. In yesterday's MLBTR poll, only about 20% of you said the Sox should keep Papelbon past this season.
- The New York media is always tough on the Mets, but today's coverage seems especially harsh: Anthony McCarron of the New York Daily News breaks down the ways in which the Mets have wasted the last four seasons, while the New York Post's Joel Sherman says the club's future doesn't look much better.
- Talking to the Chicago Tribune's Paul Sullivan, Derrek Lee discusses his decision to veto a trade to the Angels.
- Jeremy Hermida tells Rob Bradford of WEEI that he was "kind of surprised" to be designated for assignment by the Red Sox.
- A couple updates on top draft picks: Reds' first-rounder Yasmani Grandal has already taken a physical, while the Pirates met with the agents for Jameson Taillon and Stetson Allie for nearly seven hours yesterday. MLB.com's Mark Sheldon and Chuck Finder of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette have the details.
5:11pm: WEEI.com's Alex Speier says the Red Sox will continue to explore deals for Hermida in August if he clears waivers, which Speier says is a near certainty (Twitter links). Hermida could end up back in Boston's farm system if they don't find any takers.
2:40pm: The Red Sox designated outfielder Jeremy Hermida for assignment, tweets NESN's Heidi Watney. The 26-year-old signed with the Sox as a free agent after being non-tendered by the Marlins, but hit just .203/.257/.348 in 171 plate appearances. He dealt with rib and forearm injuries from a collision with Adrian Beltre.
The key to the Rays' success so far has been their pitching staff, according to Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe, who praises Tampa Bay for playing so well despite a few slumping bats. Cafardo says that it may be hard for the club to add another piece or two before the trade deadline, since their budget is already maxed out. However, Cafardo acknowledges that with Carl Crawford and Carlos Pena facing free agency, the Rays may go all-out this year and stretch their budget a little in hopes of winning a championship. Here are some of Cafardo's other notes:
- After this season, David Ortiz is probably "done in Boston unless he takes a massive pay cut." Ortiz might have trouble catching on anywhere next year, since there's virtually no market for one-dimensional players, and he may not be willing to accept a role similar to Jason Giambi's in Colorado.
- If Ortiz and Victor Martinez continue to hit, the Red Sox are very unlikely to pursue Chris Iannetta.
- One of the winter's most disappointing new additions has been Garrett Atkins, who is homerless and sports a .221/.261/.283 slash line in 119 plate appearances. The Orioles will have to consider releasing him if he doesn't turn things around.
- The Rangers are looking for a starting pitcher and a productive right-handed bat. A Rangers official tells Cafardo that he'd still love to see Mike Lowell in Texas.
- Cafardo thinks that if the Red Sox fall out of playoff contention and become sellers, they could replenish their farm system, acquiring multiple players for Martinez, Lowell, Ortiz, Adrian Beltre, Marco Scutaro, and Jeremy Hermida. I'm less optimistic than Cafardo about the caliber of talent the Sox could land for most of those guys.
Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe would like to see the Red Sox acquire a marquee player in his prime. Let's dive in and check out the tidbits that he has for us today..
- The Red Sox will shed a great deal of payroll this offseason thanks in large part to David Ortiz and Mike Lowell coming off of the books. MLBTR's Tim Dierkes examined the team's 2011 contract issues recently, suggesting $40MM could be freed up. With that newfound breathing room, Cafardo writes that the BoSox would like to zero in on one of three elite first basemen this winter. While he anticipates Albert Pujols remaining in St. Louis, he says that Prince Fielder and Adrian Gonzalez could be acquired via in-season trades.
- If Kerry Wood can show that he's healthy, he should be able to attract a contending team as we approach the trade deadline. Wood was recalled from his rehab assignment in Akron on Friday. The 32-year-old is set to make $10.5MM this season but if a team were to trade for him they would only have to assume the prorated portion of that.
- David DeJesus is "more than available" for teams seeking a lefty outfield bat. In return, the Royals would seek bullpen help and a positional prospect. Kansas City was said to be expecting serious interest in DeJesus this winter. The 31-year-old earns $4.5MM this season with a $6MM option for next season.
- While there's still some skepticism in Houston that Lance Berkman would really leave the organization, one Astros organizational person opined that the 34-year-old would "fit Boston like a fiddle". However, considering his advanced age and his offensive struggles this season, he's an unlikely fit for the club at present. Meanwhile, Cafardo mentions the Mariners and White Sox as teams that could really use a bat like Berkman's.
- Meanwhile, Jeremy Hermida is an outfielder that would seem to fit Seattle, though it doesn't appear that the Red Sox would entertain offers for him right now.
If you're in the Northeast, here are some links to check out while you take a break from shoveling…
- ESPN's Jayson Stark ranked baseball's ten-year contracts, with Derek Jeter's soon to be completed ten-year, $189MM deal coming in as the best.
- The Marlins agreed to one-year contracts with 12 of their pre-arbitration eligible players according to MLB.com's Joe Frisaro, including Sean West, Chris Volstad, Emilio Bonifacio, and Dan Meyer.
- Brewers owner Mark Attanasio confirmed that he will be involved in long-term contract discussions with Prince Fielder, according to Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel (via Twitter). Haudricourt also tweets that Attanasio and GM Doug Melvin met today to discuss the situation and there will be no deadlines imposed on the 25-year-old.
- Rich Aurilia, who stopped by the Giants' camp today, says that while he's still looking for a job, he will retire if he doesn't have one by the end of spring, tweets Jeff Fletcher of AOL Fanhouse. The 38-year-old has a broadcasting deal in place if he is unable to find a job on the field.
- Shin-Soo Choo says that he would like to stay in Cleveland long-term, writes MLB.com's Anthony Castrovince. Choo, like Morales, cut ties with his former agent (Alan Nero) in favor of Scott Boras.
- Michael Weiner, the executive director of the players' union, confirmed that the union is participating in an investigation into alleged unauthorized withdrawals from Kendry Morales' bank account by a former employee of his former agents, Hendricks Sports Management (Bill Plunkett of the OC Register reporting). Morales recently dropped HSM and hired Scott Boras.
- Bernie Miklasz of The St. Louis Post-Dispatch provides a few quotes from Albert Pujols about his contract situation. "Do I want to do this right now and take care of this so we don't need to worry about it? Of course," said Pujols. "If it happens, it happens. But there are some things I am able to control and there are other things that are out of my hands that I can't control. And that's the truth."
- The Mariners signed righty Tom Wilhelmsen to a minor league contract, according to Geoff Baker of The Seattle Times. The 27-year-old had been out of baseball since 2005 because of substance abuse issues, though he resurfaced with an independent league team last season.
- Patrick Newman of NPB Tracker passes along a report indicating the the Orix Buffaloes are moving towards a deal with Freddie Bynum. The White Sox released Bynum last week so he could pursue opportunities in Japan.
- Meanwhile, Joe Strauss of The St. Louis Post-Dispatch says that Felipe Lopez will provide the Cardinals with a great amount of flexibility.
- Joel Sherman of The New York Post calls the contracts of Alex Rodriguez, Mark Teixeira, C.C. Sabathia and other Yankee players "time-bomb contracts."
- John Tomase of The Boston Herald says the Red Sox have a deep bench with Mike Lowell, Bill Hall, Jeremy Hermida, and Jason Varitek.
Full Story | Comments | Categories: Albert Pujols | Alex Rodriguez | Bill Hall | Boston Red Sox | C.C. Sabathia | Chris Volstad | Cleveland Indians | Dan Meyer | Derek Jeter | Emilio Bonifacio | Felipe Lopez | Freddie Bynum | Jason Varitek | Jeremy Hermida | Kendrys Morales | Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim | Mark Teixeira | Miami Marlins | Mike Lowell | Milwaukee Brewers | New York Yankees | Prince Fielder | Rich Aurilia | San Francisco Giants | Sean West | Seattle Mariners | Shin-Soo Choo | St. Louis Cardinals | Tom Wilhelmsen | Transactions
We'll round up any and all players that agree to deals today to avoid arbitration in this post, so check back in for updates…
- MLB.com's T.R. Sullivan reports (via Twitter) that the Rangers have avoided arbitration with reliever Frank Francisco by agreeing to a one-year, $3.265MM contract.
- The official Brewers Twitter site is reporting that Carlos Villanueva has agreed to a one-year contract. The deal is worth $950K according to MLB.com's Adam McCalvy (via Twitter).
- The Red Sox and Jeremy Hermida have agreed to a one-year deal for 2010 to avoid arbitration according to a team press release. Michael Silverman of The Boston Herald reports (via Twitter) that Hermida will earn $3.345MM in 2010. Theo Epstein's streak of avoiding arbitration lasts another year.
Links for Wednesday…
- The Tigers signed lefty Brad Thomas out of Korea, and Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports tweets that they paid $1MM.
- Dejan Kovacevic of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette confirmed our report of the Pirates' interest in Kelly Johnson, explaining that the Pirates view him as a corner outfield option.
- FanGraphs' Dave Cameron wonders why teams seem to undervalue Cliff Lee. In a related story, Lee's agent Darek Braunecker believes their position has been mischaracterized.
- ESPN's Buster Olney expects Jamey Carroll to choose between two-year offers from the A's and Dodgers, probably today (I mistakenly wrote the Angels earlier).
- Mentioned first on Twitter: I've heard that Coco Crisp would prefer a one-year deal with the Padres or A's.
- Boston's Mike Cameron signing was officially announced today. Michael Silverman and John Tomase of the Boston Herald have details on the two-year, $15.5MM contract. John Lackey's deal was also announced.
- WEEI's Alex Speier says the Red Sox told Jeremy Hermida they'd trade him if they re-signed Jason Bay. Speier wonders if the Cameron signing will prompt a Hermida deal.
- The Angels' one-year, $6.5MM deal with Hideki Matsui was also announced, as was John Buck's one-year, $2MM deal with Toronto and Ross Gload's two-year, $2.6MM deal with the Phillies.
- The Royals put out word they've re-signed outfielder Shane Costa to a minor league deal. Costa, 28, missed almost the entire '09 season with a leg injury.
- USA Today's Bob Nightengale tweets details on LaTroy Hawkins' two-year, $7.5MM deal with the Brewers.
- Patrick Newman of NPB Tracker examines the reports about reliever Ryota Igarashi, who might be headed to the Red Sox or Mets.
- The Mariners signed 19-year-old shortstop Pedro Okuda to a minor league deal, according to a team press release. Okuda was born and raised in Brazil but attended high school in Japan.
Full Story | Comments | Categories: Boston Red Sox | Chien-Ming Wang | Cliff Lee | Coco Crisp | Detroit Tigers | Hideki Matsui | Jamey Carroll | Jason Bay | Jeremy Hermida | John Buck | John Lackey | Kansas City Royals | Kelly Johnson | LaTroy Hawkins | Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim | Los Angeles Dodgers | Mike Cameron | Milwaukee Brewers | New York Mets | Oakland Athletics | Philadelphia Phillies | Pittsburgh Pirates | Ross Gload | Ryota Igarashi | San Diego Padres | Seattle Mariners | St. Louis Cardinals | Toronto Blue Jays
7:58pm: The deal is in the range of $15.5MM for two years, tweets Ken Rosenthal.
7:53pm: Mike Cameron has agreed to sign a two-year deal with Boston, the AP reports.
6:38pm: It is "believed" that Cameron would play left field for the BoSox, with Jacoby Ellsbury in center and J.D. Drew in right, writes Jerry Crasnick of ESPN.com. This would make recently-acquired Jeremy Hermida the team's fourth outfielder.
The Cubs and Mariners both had interest in Cameron, but shied away for different reasons. The Cubbies were waiting on a taker for Milton Bradley while the M's continue to focus on Jason Bay. The Braves also had interest, but it now it sounds as though Boston has the inside track.
Speaking of Bay, Crasnick wonders aloud (via Twitter) if this is the "final nail" in the free agent's chances of returning to Fenway.
5:40pm: Free agent outfielder Mike Cameron is in "serious talks" with the Red Sox, tweets Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports. The two sides are reportedly discussing a two-year pact.
Rosenthal adds that it is unclear whether the BoSox would place Cameron in left field or center field.