Jerry Hairston Jr. Rumors
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 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.
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.
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 Hundley. Mike 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.
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."
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.
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.
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.
- 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.
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:
- Scott Kazmir has posted an ERA of 1.73 since being acquired by the Angels in late August. The 25-year-old southpaw is slated to start the third game of the ALDS against Boston.
- The Yankees acquired pitcher Chad Gaudin from the Padres in August. Gaudin proved to be a valuable addition as he posted a 3.43 ERA in 42 IP as both a reliever and a starter. If Gaudin makes the playoff roster, it will be as a reliever. Along with deadline acquisition Jerry Hairston Jr., Gaudin will have to wait until Wednesday for confirmation that he will be on the postseason roster.
- When the Cardinals claimed John Smoltz off of waivers in August, no one was sure if the future-hall-of-famer had much to offer after an unsuccessful stint in Boston in which he posted an ERA over 8. However, Smoltz appears to be turning things around in St. Louis as he has posted a 4.26 ERA, 2.1 BB/9 and 9.5 K/9 in seven starts for the NL Central division champs.
- Alex Gonzalez has given a boost to the Red Sox after coming over from Cincinnati in an August trade, as he has played well in the field while posting a slash line of .285/.318/.438 in 43 games.
- Jason Giambi has thrived in his new role as a pinch hitter for the Rockies, who signed the slugger on August 23rd. In 18 games with Colorado, Giambi hit .350/.519/.700. It's safe to say that this year's NL wild-card winners will carry Giambi on the playoff roster.
- The Dodgers acquired pitcher Jon Garland via an intra-divisional trade on August 31st. Prior to that, they signed Rangers-castoff Vincente Padilla to fill-in for Hiroki Kuroda after a comebacker to the mound took him out of action. It is probable that both Padilla and Garland will find themselves on the Dodgers' playoff roster. One or both could land themselves a start in the NLDS with Kuroda shelved once-again - this time to recover from a neck injury.
- Speaking of the Dodgers, late-season acquisitions Jim Thome and Ronnie Belliard should find themselves on the playoff roster.
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.
Some more links as the trading heats up...
- Buster Posey and Clay Buchholz are two of the better-known players on the list of untouchable players compiled by John Manuel of Baseball America.
- Mike Timlin worked out at Coors Field and the relief-starved Rockies may offer him a minor league contract, according to Troy Renck of the Denver Post.
- Dave Cameron of FanGraphs implores Andrew Friedman and the Rays to go all out and trade for Cliff Lee.
- John Fay of the Cincinnati Enquirer adds Jerry Hairston Jr. to the list of Reds trade candidates and says he'd be "stunned" if they deal Brandon Phillips.
- Check out this NBC Sports clip for my take on Roy Halladay, Matt Holliday and others.
- I'll be talking trades on The Big 1070 at 4:15 CST and here's a clip from an appearance earlier in the week on the Sports Show Live.