Jimmy Rollins Rumors

Jimmy Rollins Rumors: Tuesday

The latest on free agent shortstop Jimmy Rollins

Jimmy Rollins Rumors: Monday

The latest on free agent shortstop Jimmy Rollins

  • Philadelphia's reported interest in Ramirez may be a way of showing Rollins that they have a backup plan, with the goal of pushing him to accept a shorter deal according to Danny Knobler of CBS Sports. Some of Knobler's sources believe Amaro could be pushed to compromise at four years. Knobler says Philly's "overwhelming desire" is to have Rollins back.
  • The Phillies and Lozano hope to meet again tonight, tweets ESPN.com's Jayson Stark. CBS Sports' Danny Knobler tweets that most people still believe Rollins will return to Philadelphia, even though their earlier meeting wasn't a huge success.
  • Brewers manager Ron Roenicke didn't deny his team's interest in Rollins today, writes David Murphy of the Philadelphia Daily News. The skipper was "highly complimentary" when discussing Rollins with reporters.
  • Amaro's recent meeting with Rollins' agent Dan Lozano "did not go all that well," hears Jim Salisbury of CSNPhilly.com.  Rollins is not backing off his desire for a five-year deal, which led the Phillies to inquire about Aramis Ramirez.  Yahoo's Steve Henson also hears Lozano and the Phillies are not on the same page about Rollins.
  • Phillies GM Ruben Amaro Jr. has already met with Lozano at the Winter Meetings, tweets ESPN's Buster Olney.  Olney says it appears now that the Phillies' greatest competition for the shortstop could be the Brewers and Cardinals, but his colleague Jerry Crasnick tweets that the Cardinals are saying they have no plans to pursue Rollins —  even if they fail to re-sign Albert Pujols.

More East Links: Red Sox, Hamels, Reyes, Nix

Another batch of links surrounding the Eastern divisions, less than 12 hours after the Marlins and Jose Reyes agreed to terms on a six-year, $106MM contract:

Central Notes: Royals, Tigers, White Sox, Garza

Here's a look at some items concerning the AL and NL Central..

  • Several Royals officials have told Bob Dutton of the Kansas City Star (via Twitter) that any major roster upgrades will come through trades rather than the free agent market.
  • There's nothing serious between the Tigers and Aramis Ramirez at the moment, a source told Jon Paul Morosi of FOXSports.com (via Twitter).
  • In a deal for John Danks, the White Sox told the Yankees that they want Manny Banuelos and Jesus Montero from the Yankees, tweets Jon Heyman of SI.  Heyman writes that the Sox are obviously not serious about dealing Danks just yet.
  • The Tigers looking harder at the market for No. 5 starters than had been anticipated when the offseason began, tweets Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports.  The club is after a reliever as well.
  • The Cubs told at least one team that it would take an overwhelming offer to even consider trading Matt Garza, tweets Jon Heyman of SI.
  • The Brewers are interested in hearing what it'll take to sign Jimmy Rollins, tweets Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.
  • There's lots of skepticism over Albert Pujols' claim that he is 31 years old, tweets Jon Heyman of SI.  Heyman writes that the slugger may not be able to top the Cardinals' nine-year, $200MM offer if he cannot produce a birth certificate.  
  • Jim Riggleman will accept the Reds' offer to manage their Double-A affiliate, writes Adam Kilgore of The Washington Post.  Earlier today, Heyman reported that Riggleman was offered the position and was likely to accept.

Brewers Looking For Bullpen, Infield Help

The Brewers stand to lose both Takashi Saito and Francisco Rodriguez to free agency this winter, and GM Doug Melvin told Tom Haudricourt of the Journal Sentinel that he plans to talk to agents and look for bullpen help at the Winter Meetings next week (all Twitter links). Furthermore, the club is also looking to add infield help, though the only player they are actively trying to sign right now is Jerry Hairston Jr.

Jimmy Rollins, Alex Gonzalez, Rafael Furcal, and 2011 Brewer Yuniesky Betancourt are among the shortstops the club has checked in on. Melvin said he plans to meet with Betancourt's agent next week. Last week we heard that Milwaukee has already offered Hairston a one-year deal, but several other teams are interested as well. Melvin also confirmed that he does not have any offers out to free agent relievers at the moment.

Olney On Rollins, Fielder, Red Sox

Between his ESPN.com blog and his Twitter feed, Buster Olney has a few hot stove notes to share this morning. Let's check them out….

  • Jimmy Rollins, who turns 33 today, is seeking a five-year deal this winter, and the Phillies may have to commit that many years if they want to bring their longtime shortstop back. "I'm not sure if Rollins will get five years," said an NL evaluator. "But he's a safer bet for me than any starting pitcher on the free agent market — and some of those (or at least C.J. Wilson) will get five years…. He will get paid. The only question is whether it will be four years or five years."
  • An AL evaluator believes that, "while he's not the force at the plate that he used to be," Rollins is one of the more underrated defensive shortstops in the game.
  • Olney tweets that neither Prince Fielder nor Albert Pujols is an ideal long-term target for the Cubs, noting that Fielder makes the most sense for an AL club that could move him to DH for the back half of a long-term contract.
  • The Red Sox have narrowed their managerial search to two finalists, Bobby Valentine and Gene Lamont. Olney says some of GM Ben Cherington's peers (with other teams) are wondering if Cherington prefers Lamont while his bosses prefer Valentine, and, if so, whether it's worth it for the GM to fight ownership for his choice.

Poll: Next Big Name Free Agent To Sign

Two big name free agents came off the board within the first three weeks of the offseason, as CC Sabathia signed an extension with the Yankees and Jonathan Papelbon joined the Phillies. The two power-hitting first baseman are still on the market (Albert Pujols and Prince Fielder), as are the high-end shortstops (Jimmy Rollins and Jose Reyes) and left-handed starters (Mark Buehrle and C.J. Wilson). Looking for pure offense? There’s also Carlos Beltran and David Ortiz.

The Thanksgiving weekend has traditionally been a slow few days for the baseball hot stove, but think of it as the calm before the storm. The winter meetings are just over a week away, and clubs want to start patching the major holes on their rosters before the calendar flips to January. A full list of unsigned free agents can be found with our Free Agent Tracker, but only a select few qualify as big names. Which of those guys do you think will be the next to sign?

List Of Free Agents Who Will Cost Draft Picks

In case the fine distinction between Type A and Type B free agents wasn't confusing enough, MLB has added a new level of complexity to this offseason's class of ranked free agents. This year's Type A free agents have been divided into three groups and teams will only have to surrender draft choices for signing players from one of the the sub-groups. You can read about the details here and follow the arbitration offers with MLBTR's tracker, but if you're only concerned with the bottom line, look no further. Here are the six remaining players for whom teams will have to surrender a top draft pick this offseason:

Also note that the Phillies will surrender a draft pick for signing Jonathan Papelbon earlier in the offseason. No other free agents, even those who obtained offers of arbitration, will cost draft picks. This means fewer obstacles exist for teams wary of losing draft choices and more opportunities exist for ranked free agents looking to sign their next contracts. Middle relievers and second-tier position players are no doubt pleased that the MLBPA bargained for these changes.

National League Free Agent Arbitration Offers

10 National League teams have free agent arbitration offer decisions to make today, and we'll update them in this post in advance of the 11pm central time deadline.  For a fantastic customizable chart with all 57 Type A/B free agents and their teams' decisions in real-time, click here.  

Updated team decisions:

Teams with automatic decisions only:

Phillies Links: Rollins, Ibanez, CBA

Earlier tonight, the Phillies acquired Ty Wigginton from the Rockies. Here are a batch of links regarding the 2011 NL East champs, as well as an interesting tidbit on the Phils' previous history with Wiggy …

  • Having signed Jonathan Papelbon and traded for Wigginton, the Phillies' primary focus is now filling shortstop, according to Jim Salisbury of CSNPhilly.com. The Phils are "in negotiations" with Rollins, Salisbury reports, as well as other free-agent shortstops. GM Ruben Amaro Jr. characterized talks with Rollins as "slow" and said that he doesn't expect to have a shortstop signed by the outset of the Winter Meetings on Dec. 5.
  • The Phils remain in search of an outfielder, according to Salisbury, so it's possible that they could still sign Michael Cuddyer, although it'd probably have to be on team-friendly terms.
  • Finally, Salisbury notes the Phillies have long coveted Wigginton and tried to acquire him in 2010, when he was with the Orioles.
  • Bob Brookover of the Philadelphia Inquirer suggests that the Phils should re-sign Raul Ibanez, a favorite of both fans and Amaro, for something like one year and $4MM, as he could be useful as a platoonmate with the right-handed-hitting John Mayberry Jr. in left field.
  • Matt Gelb of the Philadelphia Inquirer examines the various ways the new CBA may affect the Phillies. One interesting possibility put forth by Gelb is that the Phils could become the first NL team in history to go over the luxury tax, which will be frozen at $178MM in 2012 under the new CBA rather than being increased by the usual $8MM anually.