Jim Edmonds Rumors

NL Links: Padres, Haren, Giambi, Ross, Phillies

Ken Davidoff of The New York Post ranked the top 30 free agents by value, with Michael Bourn topping the list. Davidoff predicts the outfielder will sign a five-year, $85MM deal with the Nationals. Here's the latest from the only league Bourn has known as a big leaguer, the NL…

  • “Attractive and realistic … Guys we want and think we can get. We went through a list of 40 pitchers to come up with 8-10 we’re really trying to get," said Padres GM Josh Byrnes to Bill Center of The San Diego Union-Tribune. San Diego figures to focus on arms this winter, and Center believes Dan Haren is near the top of that list.
  • Jason Giambi will still deciding whether to play or manage next season, reports Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com (on Twitter). The Rockies are only considering him as a manager, however.
  • Jim Salisbury of CSNPhilly.com looked at Cody Ross as a potential free agent target for the Phillies. In our Offseason Outlook, Ben Nicholson-Smith noted that the Fightin's figure to seek outfield help this winter.
  • The Cardinals have had discussions about expanding Jim Edmonds' role in the organization, reports Joe Strauss of The St. Louis Post-Dispatch (on Twitter). That could mean more time in Spring Training or something else for the team's long-time center fielder, who currently serves as a special instructor.

A Look At Notable Moves Of August 2010

August transactions don't boast the same excitement as their July counterparts, but they can still have ramifications for contenders and non-contenders alike. Teams readying for the postseason will often fine-tune their rosters by adding a specialty piece — a LOOGY or power bat off the bench, for example — and ones looking ahead to next year will look to shed payroll.

There's still a few days left before September arrives, and prominent players such as the Rays' B.J. Upton was claimed as recently as Friday. But in the meanwhile, here's a look back at some of the bigger names who were on the move — whether by trade or waiver claim — in August 2010, and the subsequent fallout (for the complete list, check out MLBTR's Transaction Tracker):

  • Mike Sweeney, acquired by the Phillies from the Mariners on Aug. 4: Seattle sent the right-handed-hitting veteran and what remained of his $650K salary to Philly, where he hit .231/.310/.385 down the regular season's stretch and went 1-for-1 in his lone postseason at-bat. The M's later received cash from the Phils for Sweeney, who signed a one-day contract with the Royals in March and retired.
  • Jim Edmonds, acquired by the Reds from the Brewers on Aug. 9: Cincinnati added Edmonds for its postseason push, sending Chris Dickerson back to Milwaukee in exchange. Edmonds didn't do much, hitting .207/.281/.586 in the regular season before being left off the Reds' postseason roster due to an Achilles injury. He retired this spring after signing a minor league deal with the Cards, while Dickerson was traded in March to the Yankees for Sergio Mitre.
  • Mike Fontenot, acquired by the Giants from the Cubs on Aug. 11: The Lads scooped up Fontenot for infield depth during their run to the World Series in exchange for minor league outfielder Evan Crawford. Fontenot remains in San Francisco is under team control for through 2013, though he could be a non-tender candidate this offseason, as he was last.
  • Derrek Lee, acquired by the Braves from the Cubs on Aug. 18: Lee joined Atlanta after his long tenure in Chicago, the Cubs acquiring three prospects in return. Lee was one of the better acquisitions of this period, posting a fine .287/.384/.465 line for the Braves to help them reach the postseason, though he went just 2-for-16 in their NLDS loss to the Giants. He signed with the Orioles before this season.
  • Pedro Feliz, acquired by the Cardinals from the Astros on Aug. 19: St. Louis sent David Carpenter and cash to Houston in exchange for Feliz, who was added to help out at the hot corner when David Freese was injured. Feliz's already declining bat didn't improve for the Redbirds, who missed the postseason. Feliz signed a minor league deal with the Padres this month, while Carpenter is currently in the Astros' bullpen.
  • Cody Ross, acquired by the Giants from the Marlins on waiver claim on Aug. 22: The Giants added an eventual World Series hero in acquiring Ross from the Marlins, who had little interest in retaining Ross, as he was becoming expensive with his final year of arbitration-eligibility looming.
  • Brian Fuentes, acquired by the Twins from the Angels on Aug. 27: Minnesota added Fuentes to bolster its bullpen, and the lefty threw 9 2/3 shutout innings in the regular season and 2 2/3 shutout innings in the postseason before signing with the Athletics this offseason. The Angels acquired Loek Van Mil from the Twins as a player to be named.
  • Manny Ramirez, acquired by the White Sox on a waiver claim from the Dodgers on Aug. 29: This was arguably the most notable move of the August post-deadline period, but it didn't amount to much for either teams or the player. The White Sox missed the postseason, the cash-strapped Dodgers got some salary relief, and Manny hit a quiet .261/.420/.319 before signing with the Rays this offseason (and eventually retiring). 
  • Manny Delcarmen, acquired by the Rockies from the Red Sox on Aug. 31: The Rox, still in contention for the wild card, needed bullpen depth, so they sent Chris Balcom-Miller to Boston for Delcarmen. The righty didn't pan out in Colorado, posting a 6.48 ERA in 8 1/3 innings for a team that missed the playoffs before being non-tendered this offseason. He's kicked around since then.
  • Jeff Francoeur, acquired by the Rangers from the Mets on Aug. 31: Texas sent Joaquin Arias to the Mets for Frenchy, who played well in his brief time in Texas, hitting .340/.357/.491 down the stretch and seeing playing time during the postseason. Arias was waived by the Mets, while Francoeur signed the Royals this offseason and recently inked a two-year extension.

NL Notes: Kroon, Edmonds, Dodgers, Padres

Links for Saturday, as Ichiro Suzuki will attempt to pick up the one hit he needs to tie Edgar Martinez for the most in Mariners history (2,247)…

  • Giants pitcher Marc Kroon confirmed (via Twitter) that he has decided to remain with the Giants and report to Triple-A Fresno.  The right-handed reliever said at various points this offseason that he would not accept a demotion to the minors.
  • John Fay of the Cincinnati Enquirer wasn't shocked by Edmonds' recent comments regarding the Reds.
  • MLB.com's Mark Sheldon passes along a quote from Jim Edmonds, who blasted the Reds in a recent radio interview. "The worst thing I did was accept that trade for [Reds GM] Walt Jocketty," said Edmonds, who went from the Brewers to the Reds last summer. "I should have shut it down and went home. I would be healthy right now and probably playing." He also criticized the Reds' medical staff.
  • ESPN's Tim Kurkjian listed 11 stories to watch in 2011, including the impending free agencies of Albert Pujols and Prince Fielder.
  • Dylan Hernandez of The Los Angeles Times reports that the Dodgers opened the season with a payroll exceeding $95MM, up from $83MM last year. The team also owes $15MM in salary deferments from previous seasons.
  • Tim Sullivan of The San Diego Union-Tribune explains why a recent Forbes report indicating that the Padres had a $37.2MM operating income in 2010 could be misinterpreted.

Jim Edmonds Retires

Jim Edmonds has retired, the Cardinals have announced (on Twitter). The 40-year-old, who agreed to a minor league deal with St. Louis earlier in the month, is still bothered by his right Achilles, so his playing days are over.

Edmonds retires with a .284/.376/.527 line and 393 career homers. The eight-time Gold Glover and four-time All-Star played for the Cardinals, Angels, Padres, Reds, Cubs and Brewers over the course of a career that began in 1993. An elite hitter in his prime, Edmonds was also a standout defender who became known for highlight reel catches in center field.

The 17-year veteran spent eight seasons with the Cardinals from 2000-07. He hit .285/.393/.555 for the Cards and was a member of the 2006 World Champions. After missing the 2009 season, Edmonds returned last year and posted a .276/.342/.504 line for the Reds and Brewers, adding 11 homers and 23 doubles.

Rick Hummel of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch first reported Edmonds' decision.

Quick Hits: Duchscherer, Ramirez, Marmol, Broxton

Links for Saturday..

Cardinals To Sign Jim Edmonds

Jim Edmonds is returning to St. Louis after a three-year absence. The Cardinals announced that they agreed to sign Edmonds to a minor league deal with an invitation to Spring Training, (Twitter link).

It appeared likely that Edmonds would retire last weekend, but the 40-year-old is returning for an 18th season in the major leagues. Eight of those seasons came in St. Louis, where Edmonds hit .285/.393/.555 from 2000-07 and was a key player on the '06 World Champions.

Edmonds appeared in just 86 games last year after sitting out the 2009 season, but he can still play. He posted a .276/.342/.504 line for the Reds and Brewers, adding 11 homers and 23 doubles. The eight-time Gold Glove winner played first base and all three outfield positions.

Quick Hits: Ohlendorf, Izzy, Edmonds, Flores

On this day in 2006, Frank Thomas officially parted ways with the White Sox, signing a free agent contract with the Athletics.  The Big Hurt left Chicago after suffering through two injury-plagued years, a dispute with GM Kenny Williams and virtually no role in the team's run to the 2005 World Series title.  Thomas had a huge bounce-back year with the A's, posting a .926 OPS to help lead Oakland to the ALCS.

Some news to wrap up a busy Monday night…

  • Both Ross Ohlendorf and the Pirates would prefer to avoid an arbitration hearing, but "each party [is] hesitant to budge too much" from the $625K gap in proposed salaries, writes MLB.com's Jenifer Langosch.  The Bucs don't want Ohlendorf's price driven up for future arb years, though Ohlendorf is only asking for $2.025MM in 2011.  As the Arbtracker tells us, Ohlendorf is Pittsburgh's last remaining arbitration-eligible player without a contract.
  • Jason Isringhausen had a throwing session for Reds pitching coach Bryan Price today and "threw the ball fine," Price told MLB.com's Mark Sheldon.  Cincinnati GM Walt Jocketty was non-committal about the chances of Isringhausen rejoining the Reds organization on a minor league deal.  "We're not sure if we will pursue it or not," Jocketty said.  "We'll discuss it in the next few days. We have quite a bit of right-handed pitching."
  • Jim Edmonds' agent tells Jon Heyman of SI.com (Twitter link) that Edmonds will "probably" know by early next week if he'll retire or try to come back in 2011.  Walt Jocketty recently opined that Edmonds would retire. 
  • If Jesus Flores proves he's healthy during Spring Training, MLB.com's Bill Ladson thinks the Nationals might try to trade him to a catcher-needy team.
  • The Orioles had no shortage of needs this offseason, but Dan Connolly of the Baltimore Sun points out that the O's have "at least theoretically, filled each of the roster's gaping holes that loomed in October."
  • The Twins and Royals both appear to be finished their winter additions.  MLB.com's Kelly Thesier says Minnesota is out of payroll space, and Dayton Moore tells Terez A. Paylor of the Kansas City Star that the Royals are done shopping "unless something comes up that we’re not expecting."  Moore wouldn't comment on rumors that K.C. is looking at Kevin Millwood.

Jim Edmonds Likely To Retire

Jim Edmonds is probably going to retire, according to Reds GM Walt Jocketty, blogs John Fay of the Cincinnati Enquirer.

Edmonds has been contemplating whether he'd return in 2011 after playing well (.276/.342/.504) in 86 games with the Brewers and Reds in 2010. Unsatisfied with contract offers after the 2008 season, he sat out all of 2009.

Despite Edmond's surprisingly solid effort in 2010, it's unlikely that his retirement will have much of a ripple effect on any rosters. He might only have gotten a minor-league deal this offseason, anyway, as he did last offseason from the Brewers.

If this is the end for Edmonds, it will have been a heck of a career. In 17 seasons, he's hit .284/.376/.527, claimed eight Gold Gloves and won a World Series with the Cardinals in 2006.

Odds & Ends: Berkman, Edmonds, De La Rosa

On this date in 1998, the Orioles signed Albert Belle to a five-year, $65MM deal. He batted .289/.374/.509 with Baltimore, but didn't play at all after the 2000 season. Here are today's links…

  • Stop by at 2pm CDT for this week's chat.
  • Oakland’s immediate goal is to sign Lance Berkman, according to Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports. The A's met with Berkman and Adam Dunn yesterday.
  • Rosenthal suggests the A’s likely want to hear back from Scott Boras and Adrian Beltre about the five-year, $64MM offer they reportedly made in November.
  • Yahoo's Jeff Passan asks Bud Selig to leave the playoffs alone and suggests the commissioner could improve the game by introducing more instant replay and asking major TV networks to show a more diverse selection of teams.
  • Jim Edmonds is contemplating playing one more season, according to Jon Heyman of SI.com (on Twitter).
  • The Phillies are more likely to pursue free agent left-handers who don't cost a draft pick, according to ESPN.com's Buster Olney (on Twitter). In other words, they'd rather not give up a pick to sign Scott Downs.
  • Speaking of relievers, Dan Connolly of the Baltimore Sun explains that the Orioles have interest in any competent veteran reliever and will kick the tires on most.
  • The Mets re-signed former big leaguer Mike O'Connor according to Anthony DiComo of MLB.com (on Twitter). The 30-year-old left-hander last pitched in the majors for the 2008 Nationals, but he appeared in 51 games at Triple-A Buffalo in 2010, posting 8.9 K/9 and 2.2 BB/9 for the top Mets affiliate.
  • The Pirates made a competitive offer for Jorge de la Rosa before he agreed to a deal with the Rockies, according to Dejan Kovacevic of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (on Twitter). 
  • De La Rosa's agents approached the Padres about a potential deal, according to Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports. San Diego couldn't afford the lefty, though they were interested.

Odds & Ends: Hahn, Daniels, Edmonds

Links for Wednesday, in the lull before the Yankees and Rangers face off in Texas on Friday…

  • White Sox assistant GM Rick Hahn interviewed for the Mets GM position yesterday, and Kenny Williams told Dan Martin of the New York Post, "I know I'm gonna lose him, and it's gonna be a heavy blow."  Williams explained that Hahn has been picky with previous opportunities.  Josh Byrnes was scheduled to interview for the Mets job today.
  • The Mets won't be plucking Jon Daniels from the Rangers.  Owner Chuck Greenberg told Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports, "He's not going anywhere" (Twitter links).  Greenberg also spoke to ESPN's Richard Durrett about his desire to retain Cliff Lee, after the lefty's dominant start last night gave the Rangers their first playoff series win.
  • Jim Edmonds told Rick Hummel of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, "I'm kind of in wait-and-see mode right now" in terms of playing next year.  Edmonds expressed his desire to land a backup first baseman gig for 2011.
  • Talking about his next contract, Jose Bautista told Morgan Campbell of the Toronto Star, "The differences of $50,000 or $100,000 may not seem huge but it’s actually really stressful when you’re about to commit."  For much more on Bautista's arbitration case, check out Ben Nicholson-Smith's article from earlier today.
  • RotoAuthority explains why Homer Bailey is a fantasy baseball sleeper for next year.