Jerry Hairston Jr. Rumors
Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com weighed in with five likes and dislikes for the 2013 Mariners today. Heyman is a fan of the M's improved offense thanks in particular to the additions of Mike Morse and Kendrys Morales. On top of that, less-heralded pickups like Raul Ibanez, Jason Bay, and Kelly Shoppach could also help Seattle put more runs on the board this season. Here's more out of the AL and NL West..
- Dodgers manager Don Mattingly says that Jerry Hairston Jr. might have a future as a coach or a manager, writes Mark Saxon of ESPNLosAngeles.com. However, the 36-year-old first has to decide when he's going to retire. Hairston will serve as the backup in left field, right field, and third base this year and assess his future after the season.
- Todd Helton's teammates say that the veteran can be a significant contributor in what will likely be his final season, writes Patrick Saunders of the Denver Post. Even Helton, who will earn $5MM in the final year of his deal, acknowledges that this is likely the end of the road.
- If Rangers execs Nolan Ryan and Jon Daniels can't coexist, then Ryan should be the one to go, opines Tim Cowlishaw of the Dallas Morning News. Ryan is reportedly unhappy with the idea of ceding power to the newly promoted GM.
The Dodgers signed Roberto Clemente on this date in 1954, beating out a number of interested clubs in the process. The Dodgers would lose the future Hall of Famer in the following Rule 5 draft and he'd spend his entire 18-year career with the Pirates. Here are the latest AL-West related links...
- Jerry Hairston Jr. won't necessarily retire if the Dodgers win the 2013 World Series, Dylan Hernandez of the LA Times reports. “It’s February. A lot can happen, really, in a year,” he said. The 36-year-old utility player previously indicated he would retire at the end of the season if the Dodgers won it all.
- The Rockies continue challenging conventional wisdom while constructing their roster. The team is considering the idea of using eight relievers at home and seven relievers on the road, Troy Renck of the Denver Post reports. Director of Major League operations Bill Geivett said "it's a fluid situation" but acknowledged the approach could be used to limit scoring at hitter-friendly Coors Field.
- Tony Campana hasn't produced much as an MLB hitter, but as Dave Cameron of FanGraphs explains those shortcomings don't prevent the speedy outfielder from adding value. Cameron suggests Campana might be able to add one win of value as a pinch runner, especially now that offense has dropped off across MLB. The Diamondbacks acquired Campana from the Cubs for Erick Leal and Jesus Castillo yesterday.
- Grantland's Jonah Keri wonders if the Diamondbacks lost leverage in Justin Upton trade negotiations after their deal with the Mariners fell through. Keri also examines several trades from the past 30 years in which a well-regarded player who had fallen out of favor with the franchise was traded.
- The Rangers are "keeping the lines of communication open" when it comes to free agent Michael Bourn and trade candidate Justin Upton, tweets Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports. If either's price comes down to the liking of GM Jon Daniels, Texas is prepared to take action.
- Jerry Hairston Jr. is in the final year of a two-year, $6MM contract, and he told Dylan Hernandez of the Los Angeles Times that he'll retire if the Dodgers win the World Series this season. Hairston already has one World Series ring, having been a part of the 2009 Yankees and says "you can't get any better" than retiring after a World Series win.
- Roger Clemens sat down with CSN Houston's Steve Bunin to discuss his 2013 role with the Astros and confirmed again that he will not pitch next season. Clemens said he would've had to start training in November to make a serious run at a comeback. Instead, he'll help Houston by mentoring their young arms in Spring Training. For the time being, he's not interested in a full-time role with the organization, however.
- Wendy Thurm of Fangraphs takes a look at a potential Posey extension and notes the risk involved in doling out a massive contract for a player whose career only includes 1255 plate appearances to date.
The Dodgers have signed Jerry Hairston Jr. to a two-year deal worth $6MM plus incentives, reports Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports (on Twitter). The 35-year-old has passed his physical. Dylan Hernandez of the Los Angeles Times reports that the contract will pay Hairston $2.25MM in 2012 and $3.75MM in 2013.
Hairston hit .270/.344/.383 in 376 plate appearances for the Brewers and Nationals in 2011. His production was remarkably consistent before and after the Nats moved him at the trade deadline -- he had a .727 OPS for both teams. The Brewers and Giants were among the other clubs interested in signing Hairston.
MLB Network's Jon Heyman first reported that Hairston and the Dodgers were getting close to a two-year deal.
Bruce Bochy spoke to reporters this afternoon, including John Shea of the San Francisco Chronicle, Jim Bowden of MLB Network Radio, and Andrew Baggarly of the San Jose Mercury News. Here's what the skipper had to say, along with the rest of the latest Giants notes:
- The Giants are happy with their roster as it stands right now, which is not to say that they're not talking about bringing in other players (Twitter link).
- San Francisco has talked to Carlos Beltran and other hitters, but the club has limited budgetary flexibility to attempt to sign them (Twitter link).
- Baggarly hears that Cody Ross doesn't have interest in returning to San Francisco on a one-year deal. If Ross can't find a multiyear offer, he'd like to move to a hitter-friendly location (Twitter link).
- The Giants are no longer pursuing Jerry Hairston Jr., tweets Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports.
The Dodgers are in talks with Jerry Hairston Jr. about a multiyear contract, tweets SI.com's Jon Heyman. Heyman cautions that nothing is done yet, but says the two sides are discussing a two-year deal for about $6MM (Twitter link).
The free agent market has been very kind to infielders so far, and now it sounds like Jerry Hairston Jr. is poised to cash in. Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports that the Dodgers, Giants, and Brewers all have interest in the utility man, and Milwaukee has already offered him a one-year deal.
Hairston, 35, hit .270/.344/.383 in 376 plate appearances for the Nationals and Brewers last season, and he was Milwaukee's regular third baseman in the playoffs. He has significant experience at every position on the field other than pitcher, catcher, and first base, and has shown enough offensive ability to play everyday for periods of time. The Giants and Brewers need middle infield help, and the Dodgers could use him all over the field.
Mark Ellis ($8.75MM), Clint Barmes ($10.5MM), Aaron Hill ($11MM), Willie Bloomquist ($3.8MM), and Jamey Carroll ($6.75MM) have all signed two-year deals this offseason, essentially setting for the market for Hairston. He's coming off three straight one-year deals worth $2MM+.
This week's GM meetings are being held in Milwaukee, so let's round up some news from the local team...
- GM Doug Melvin confirmed to MLB.com's Adam McCalvy that they will not extend an offer to Prince Fielder during this week's GM meetings. “We won’t do that here,” said Melvin, who is open to meeting with Fielder's agent, Scott Boras.
- Melvin told McCalvy that he has not decided if he will make more phone calls or have a face-to-face meeting with Jose Reyes' agent, Peter Greenberg. “[We've made] one phone call ... No numbers," said the GM.
- The Brewers declined Yuniesky Betancourt's $6MM option for 2012, but Melvin told Tom Haudricourt of the Journal Sentinel that he's "very interested" in bringing the shortstop back at a lower salary.
- Melvin has also spoken to Jerry Hairston Jr.'s agent about returning, according to Haudricourt (on Twitter).
The Brewers’ season is over and while GM Doug Melvin wishes his club were in the World Series, he’s proud of its accomplishments. "There's just too many good things that happened this year for me to be hanging my head,” he said, according to Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Here are more details from today’s press conference via Haudricourt:
- Melvin and Brewers owner Mark Attanasio will meet in early November to discuss what kind of offer they can make free agent first baseman Prince Fielder.
- The Brewers aren’t concerned about Shaun Marcum’s health, though the right-hander struggled in the postseason.
- Melvin said Yuniesky Betancourt was “a better player than what his critics said.” The Brewers have a $6MM option ($2MM buyout) for the shortstop in 2012 and Melvin declined to say whether they'll pick it up.
- Melvin explained that he would like to improve defensively without sacrificing on offense.
- He said the Brewers will seriously consider giving Mat Gamel a chance to make an impact in the Major Leagues if an opportunity emerges (i.e. Fielder signs elsewhere).
- The Brewers haven’t talked about moving Corey Hart to first base.
- Melvin said he’ll check in with free agents LaTroy Hawkins and Takashi Saito. Francisco Rodriguez is likely to sign elsewhere, probably as a closer.
- Melvin said Casey McGehee can still be a good player, despite his disappointing 2011 campaign.
- Craig Counsell hasn’t told the Brewers whether he intends to play again next year, but it sounds as though Melvin would have some interest in re-signing him. Melvin also expects to speak to Jerry Hairston Jr. and his representative.
- Mitch Stetter, Manny Parra and Josh Wilson are non-tender candidates, as MLBTR's Tim Dierkes explained this week.
Hairston, 35, gives the Brewers additional depth at second base in the wake of Rickie Weeks' injury, as well as an occasional option for third base and shortstop. He's hitting .268/.342/.385 in 238 plate appearances on the season and has $670K remaining on his contract, plus performance bonuses.