Jerry Hairston Jr. Rumors

Padres Have $5-8MM Left To Spend

A source has indicated that the Padres have about $5-8MM left to spend this offseason, according to Dan Hayes of The North County Times. The team is expected to enter 2010 with a payroll around $40MM. 

"There's no question there's good value out there," said (GM Jed) Hoyer, who declined to comment on which players the Padres have targeted. "Certainly we have money to spend. We're going to spread it around to some of our needs. There's a lot of good players."

Hayes says the club's biggest needs are a veteran pitcher, a righty hitting outfielder, a utility player, and a veteran catcher. We've already seen them connected to Mike Redmond, Ramon Castro, Brad Ausmus, Jerry Hairston Jr., Randy Winn, and Reed Johnson, while Hayes throws Josh Fogg's name into the mix.


Olney’s Latest: Chapman, A’s, Yankees, Marlins

In his blog post this morning, ESPN's Buster Olney notes that evaluators are split on Aroldis Chapman, as some see him as once in a generation talent, while others see extreme risk because of control and makeup concerns. "Where was Randy Johnson when he was that age?" asked one scout, and the answer is in A-ball walking 94 batters in 119.2 innings.

Here's the latest on Chapman, and here are the rest of Olney's rumors…

  • Olney hears that if Oakland doesn't commit to a new ballpark for the Athletics, that commissioner Bud Selig will step in and negotiate a lucrative territorial rights deal with the Giants, similar to what happened with the Orioles when the Nationals moved into town. That could result in the A's getting their long desired San Jose stadium.
  • The Yankees are in no big rush to sign a righty hitting left fielder, and are content to let the market for guys like Reed Johnson and Jonny Gomes play out. Last night we learned that the team had interest in bringing Jerry Hairston Jr. back. 
  • The Marlins continue to scour the free agent market for a closer, however Jose Valverde is too expensive and they aren't expected to bring back Kevin Gregg


Five Teams Interested In Jerry Hairston Jr.

Five teams have expressed interest in free agent utility man Jerry Hairston Jr., according to Ken Rosenthal of FoxSports.com (via Twitter). Among the interested teams are the Padres, A's (who employ his brother Scott), and the Yankees, with whom he won a World Series ring in 2009.

Rosenthal adds that Hairston would likely receive a $2-3MM salary on a one-year deal, however he's also received multi-year offers. The 34-year-old is a career .259/.328/.373 hitter, and is capable of playing pretty much anywhere on the field except pitcher and catcher. 



Odds & Ends: Red Sox, Damon, Boras, Padres

Some links for Friday…

  • Joe Haggerty of CSNNE.com reports that the Red Sox considered dealing Jason Varitek and Shea Hillenbrand for Adrian Beltre and Paul LoDuca before the 2003 season.
  • The Twins invited Mike Maroth and 13 other non-roster players to Spring Training, according to a team press release.
  • Tigers GM Dave Dombrowski tells MLB.com's Jason Beck (via Twitter) that the Tigers have no intention of adding a DH.
  • Giants GM Brian Sabean told Henry Schulman of the San Francisco Chronicle that the team is focusing on adding an outfielder, not a catcher or a starter. Sabean, who would prefer to add a left-handed hitter, did not confirm or deny interest in Johnny Damon.
  • Scott Boras would let Adrian Beltre baby-sit his kids, according to Rob Bradford of WEEI.com.
  • Boras says he approached the Red Sox about the idea of signing Adrian Beltre to a "pillow contract," according to Peter Abraham of the Boston Globe. Boras likes that Beltre will likely attract lots of attention in Boston.
  • Boras tells Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch that he's starting to have "a lot of conversation" about Rick Ankiel. He also suggests Joe Crede could be a fit for the Cards.
  • Geoff Baker of the Seattle Times tweets that the Franklin Gutierrez extension should become official today.
  • ESPN.com's Jerry Crasnick tweets that Hideki Matsui's one-year $6MM deal with the Angels set the market for other DH-types like Vladimir Guerrero.
  • As MLB.com's Corey Brock notes (via Twitter), the Royals' pending deal with Scott Podsednik could influence the offers the Padres make to Jerry Hairston Jr. and Randy Winn.
  • The Nippon Ham Fighters acquired former Blue Jay reliever Brian Wolfe, according to the Kyodo News.
  • Carlos Delgado hit a homer in the Puerto Rican Winter League yesterday, according to Rhett Bollinger of MLB.com.
  • Jason Giambi is open to returning to the Rockies if he doesn't find a DH job, according to Troy Renck of the Denver Post.
  • The St. Louis Post-Dispatch totals up the Cardinals' payroll and finds that the club has $7.4MM to spend on four players – an outfielder, an infielder, a reliever and a starter.

Padres Free Agent Targets

As you might expect, new Padres GM Jed Hoyer is searching for bargains on the free agent market.  MLB.com's Corey Brock names names.

The Padres' first goal is to add a veteran catcher to back up Nick HundleyMike Redmond and Ramon Castro are on the radar, Brad Ausmus less so.  Castro has shown pretty good power for a catcher, with a .415 career SLG.

Outfield targets include Jerry Hairston Jr., Randy Winn, and Reed Johnson.  Hairston, of course, can handle the infield as well.  These players figure to land contracts of $2MM or less, in my opinion.


Yankees Considering Affordable Left Fielders

After talking to a Yankees official, Anthony McCarron of the New York Daily News hammers home some points reported yesterday in our Yankees Search For Left Fielder post.

We're not going to get crazy and underline it, but here's McCarron quoting the official:

"No chance on Matt Holliday, no chance on Jason Bay.  Zero. None. Underline it."

Also, McCarron talked to two Yankees officials who say they have no interest in Jermaine DyeVarious reports had previously suggested otherwise.

The Yankees have a couple million to play with, though they could free up a few more million by trading Chad Gaudin and/or Sergio Mitre.  McCarron's official named Reed Johnson and Jerry Hairston Jr. as considerations for the left field vacancy. 


Odds & Ends: Yanks, Reds, Orioles, Mets

Another day removed from Christmas, let's hope we see a few more signs of life today from the hot stove. In the meantime, let's check out a handful of links….

  • Chad Jennings examines the decision the Yankees are facing, as they decide whether Phil Hughes or Joba Chamberlain is their fifth starter. Jennings feels that the best decision is for Hughes to start, with Joba being bumped back to the bullpen, for now. He feels both should be starters in the long run.
  • The Reds shouldn't trade away any of their starting pitching, writes Hal McCoy of the Dayton Daily News.
  • Roch Kubatko of MASN Sports answers some frequently asked Orioles-related questions in his latest piece.
  • The Baltimore Sun's Dan Connolly writes that the Orioles have made significant strides in scouting and signing international players over the last couple years.
  • After parting ways with Curtis Granderson, the Tigers are searching for a player to take over their leadoff spot, according to the Detroit Free Press.
  • Newsday's Ken Davidoff (subscription required) tells Mets fans to relax, arguing that the team's offseason hasn't been too bad so far, and that there's still plenty of winter to come.
  • Joseph Pawlikowski at River Ave. Blues wonders if Jerry Hairston Jr. will fit into the Yankees' 2010 plans.

2009 Elias Rankings Released

The 2009 Elias Rankings have been released, and Ed Price of AOL FanHouse has a full list of the Type-A and B free agents.

Our 2010 MLB Free Agent list has been updated, and below is a summary of differences between the official rankings, and those projected by Eddie Bajek.

  • Chone Figgins qualifies as a Type-A, not a Type-B as projected.
  • Vladimir Guerrero qualifies as a Type-B, not a Type-A as projected.
  • Gregg Zaun goes from no compensation to Type-B.
  • Jerry Hairston Jr. goes from Type-B to no compensation.
  • Hideki Matsui goes from Type-B to no compensation.
  • Aubrey Huff goes from Type-B to no compensation.

If you're not sure how free agent compensation works, or if you just forgot, make sure you check out our primer.


Discussion: What Late Additions Could Have Big Playoff Impact?

With the 2009 postseason picture nearly in place, it's time to identify some of the late-season pickups that can make a huge splash in this year's playoffs. 

In 2002, the Angels may not have won the championship without the help of a young pitcher by the name of Francisco Rodriguez.  Because of multiple injuries to their bullpen, the Angels called up the 22-year-old in mid-September.  Rodriguez was able to pitch in just five regular season games for the club before being thrown into the postseason fire.  The hard-throwing righty responded to the pressure beautifully, posting an ERA of 1.93 and fanning 28 batters in just 18.2 innings. 

Here are some of the key late-season additions by playoff-bound squads:

What other playoff-bound players added to the big league roster after the trade deadline could be poised to have a memorable postseason?


Yankees Acquire Jerry Hairston Jr.

The Yankees acquired Jerry Hairston Jr. from the Reds, according to Joel Sherman of the New York Post.  Ken Davidoff of Newsday (via Twitter) says the Reds will receive minor league catcher Chase Weems.