Jorge de la Rosa Rumors
On this date 20 years ago, a 26-year-old Barry Bonds took home his first National League MVP Award thanks to a .301/.406/.565 season with the Pirates. He went on to win the award again in 1992, his final season in Pittsburgh, and then five more times with the Giants. The latter part of Bonds' career was clouded by PED allegations, but he did hit .301/.424/.566 in his final three seasons with the Pirates and .305/.438/.600 with far more unintentional walks (825) than strikeouts (685) from 1990-1998, age 26-34. Barry could have retired at that point and waltzed into the Hall of Fame on the first ballot.
Here's a look at the best the baseball blogosphere had to offer this week...
- We Should Be GMs celebrates Omar Vizquel, the last remaining active player from the 1980's.
- Capitol Avenue Club wonders what's next for the Braves following the Dan Uggla trade.
- Pittsburgh Lumber Co. contemplates Jorge de la Rosa.
- Meanwhile, Pine Tar And Pocket Protectors pieces together Pittsburgh's 2011 rotation.
- Baseball Analysts looks at Japanese pitchers and the hot stove.
- Crashburn Alley says that right now is a prime opportunity for the Phillies to sign Jimmy Rollins to a contract extension.
- Fenway Faithful Reports thinks that Victor Martinez is destined to sign with the Tigers.
- Splashing Pumpkins breaks down some shortstop options for the Giants.
- Baseball Time In Arlington explains the regression that the Rangers could experience.
- FanSpeak believes the Nationals should go all-in to acquire Justin Upton.
- Boston Sports Pulse provides a blueprint for the Red Sox offseason.
- Phoul Ballz looks at Matt Rizzotti, a Phillies' farmhand that will be eligible for this year's Rule 5 Draft.
- The Sports Banter finds some interesting minor league free agents.
- Cubs Billy Goat Blog lists some minor moves that could have a big impact on the Cubs.
- SPANdemonium muses about why teams have to wait a year before trading drafted players.
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5:30pm: The Nationals, Pirates, and Orioles have been the most aggressive De La Rosa suitors, tweets Renck, while the Brewers are no longer in the mix.
4:22pm: The Nationals met today with Jorge de la Rosa's agent Bobby Barad, tweets ESPN's Jerry Crasnick. Barad told SI's Jon Heyman earlier that seven or eight teams are in on his client. From previous reports, it appears that the Rockies, Orioles, Pirates, Rangers, Yankees, and Brewers comprise most of those clubs. The Nationals have also been linked to Carl Pavano and Brandon Webb this offseason as they look to upgrade their rotation.
De La Rosa, a Type A free agent, will net the Rockies a pair of draft picks if he turns down an arbitration offer. His Elias score is 74.422, so the Rockies won't necessarily receive a first-rounder from another club. Also working against them is the fact that the first-round picks of the Pirates, Orioles, Nationals, and Brewers are protected.
The Rockies have drawn the line at a three-year deal for free agent lefty Jorge de la Rosa, reports Troy E. Renck of the Denver Post. Competition for De La Rosa appears heavy; Renck adds the Orioles to a list of suitors that already included the Pirates, Nationals, Rangers, Yankees, and Brewers. Since three of those clubs are eyeing higher profile lefty Cliff Lee, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports feels that De La Rosa may wait until he signs, though Renck does not agree.
With Jake Westbrook and Hiroki Kuroda off the board, Renck believes that Carl Pavano is now a stronger possibility for Colorado. Renck also names Javier Vazquez, and I imagine they might take a look at Jon Garland.
Renck also notes that Melvin Mora is looking to sign a contract soon. The Rockies aren't ready to commit, so he may sign elsewhere.
Links on a busy Tuesday as the first day of the GM Meetings wraps up...
- Paul Hoynes of The Cleveland Plain Dealer says (via Twitter) the Indians "kicked the tires" on Jake Westbrook, but never formally offered him a contract before he re-signed with the Cardinals.
- FoxSports.com's Ken Rosenthal tweets that the market for Jorge de la Rosa won't take shape until Cliff Lee signs. He's a fallback option for several teams.
- Former Orioles reliever Dennis Sarfate is in talks to join the Hiroshima Carp according to MASNSports.com's Roch Kubatko.
- ESPN's Jerry Crasnick tweets that the Giants are currently in on just two players: Aubrey Huff and Juan Uribe.
- Bob Brookover of The Philadelphia Inquirer says that Phillies GM Ruben Amaro offered a lot of "no comments" when asked about the team's interest in retaining Chad Durbin.
- SI.com's Jon Heyman says (via Twitter) the trade market for Jonathan Papelbon is "very weak," but the Red Sox are willing to pay part of what will surely be a sizable 2011 salary.
- SI.com's Jon Heyman hears that the Yankees will bid at least three years to keep Derek Jeter (Twitter link). Owner Hal Steinbrenner added that "things are going well."
- Chad Jennings of The Journal News has a quote from Yanks GM Brian Cashman: “I’ve got a small player move that I’m working on that might get done at some point this week ... But it’s small.”
- Meanwhile, ESPN's Buster Olney tweets that the Yanks are still waiting to hear whether Mariano Rivera wants a one or two-year deal.
- Troy Renck of The Denver Post tweets that the Athletics are not moving Conor Jackson, though he remains a non-tender candidate.
- Twins GM Bill Smith said it's "not at all" a question when asked if the team would tender Matt Capps a contract, according to Adam Kilgore of The Washington Post (Twitter link).
- John Fay of The Cincinnati Enquirer says that Reds GM Walt Jocketty has talked to Arthur Rhodes' agent and plans to do the same with Miguel Cairo's, but he has yet to talk to any other free agents.
- SI.com's Tom Verducci lists players available on the "secondary market" that could have a big impact, starting with Jack Cust.
- Roy Halladay's Cy Young Award netted him $250K in bonus money, tweets Matt Gelb of The Philadelphia Inquirer. The bonus was negotiated into his original contract with Toronto.
- In the wake of Justin Upton being made available, FanGraphs' Dave Cameron examines his trade value.
Links for Tuesday, as the GM Meetings commence in Orlando and we await the announcement of the NL Cy Young winner...
- The Pirates' top free agent target is Jorge de la Rosa, tweets Rob Biertempfel of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. The Brewers, Rangers, Nationals, Yankees, and Rockies have also been linked to the lefty. Correct me if I'm wrong, Pirates fans, but aside from Yoslan Herrera it seems the team's last multiyear free agent pitcher signing was Pete Schourek in December of 1998.
- The Mariners are expected to be limited to bargain bin shopping this winter, tweets ESPN's Buster Olney. They've got plenty of needs, but expensive free agents don't make sense until they're closer to contention.
- Meanwhile the Softbank Hawks are working on signing Marcus Thames, according to a Sponichi report passed along by NPB Tracker's Patrick Newman on Twitter. Thames, 34 in March, was productive in a part-time role for the Yankees this year.
- Brandon Backe intends to pitch in 2011, his agent told Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports (Twitter link). He's recovering from a rotator cuff injury.
- The Rockies will keep an eye on Bartolo Colon in the Dominican Republic, GM Dan O'Dowd told Troy E. Renck of the Denver Post, but Renck finds a signing a long shot (Twitter link). MLBTR's Nick Collias filled us in on Colon yesterday.
- The Chiba Lotte Marines re-signed pitchers Hayden Penn and Bill Murphy, tweets Jason Coskrey of the Japan Times.
- Yankees GM Brian Cashman ruled out Leo Mazzone but not Rick Peterson for the team's new pitching coach, reports Marc Carig of the Newark Star-Ledger.
- Joel Sherman of the New York Post muses on how the Mets should handle well-paid veterans Oliver Perez, Luis Castillo, Carlos Beltran, and Jose Reyes.
Rockies GM Dan O’Dowd told Jim Armstrong of the Denver Post that he’s looking for the "right player" this offseason, not the "best player." As Armstrong explains, that could be bad news for the Rockies fans hoping to see Victor Martinez in Denver:
- The Rockies aren’t likely to make the winning bid on Martinez, though he caught the team’s attention as a potential free agent target.
- Colorado would pursue an innings eater if Jorge de la Rosa proves too expensive to re-sign. The lefty is drawing interest from multiple teams, including the Yankees and Nationals.
- Joe Beimel could return to Colorado, but the Rockies have other left-handed relievers including Matt Reynolds and Franklin Morales, so their need for Beimel isn’t pressing.
- Adding a right-handed hitter is a priority for the Rockies. Their list of candidates includes Conor Jackson, Ty Wigginton and Jermaine Dye. Jackson is a non-tender candidate and may join Wigginton and Dye on the free agent market within a few weeks. The Rockies have already contacted Dye about a potential deal.
Happy 133rd birthday to Archie "Moonlight" Graham. Arguably baseball's most famous one-game player (Eddie Gaedel also has a great case for this distinction), Moonlight Graham's only taste of the majors was one half-inning as a defensive replacement for the 1905 New York Giants. That half-inning grew into immortality thanks to his characterization in W.P. Kinsella's novel Shoeless Joe and its film adaptation Field Of Dreams. Graham, who passed away in 1965, went on to become a doctor in Chisholm, Minnesota following his brief playing career.
Onto some news items...
- Dayton Moore tells Bob Dutton of the Kansas City Star that the David DeJesus trade won't deepen the Royals' interest in the free agent market. “It’s not cost effective at this time for us to be real aggressive with major-league free agents,” Moore said.
- Even if Aubrey Huff re-signs with the Giants, CSNBayArea.com's Mychael Urban thinks the team should look into signing Carlos Pena.
- Fanhouse's Tom Krasovic looks at the pros and cons of Sandy Alderson's tenure as CEO of the Padres and what Mets fans might expect from their new general manager.
- Add the Brewers, Pirates and Rangers to the list of teams believed to be interested in Jorge de la Rosa, tweets Troy Renck of the Denver Post. We know that list already includes the Nationals, Rockies and Yankees.
- If San Francisco really has soured on Pablo Sandoval due to the Panda's conditioning issues, Fangraphs' Matt Klassen thinks other teams should be contacting the Giants about a buy-low trade.
- During the season, an American League executive told Danny Knobler of CBSSports.com that Adam Dunn will stay in the NL since he genuinely wants to keep playing in the field. However, this executive predicted "Dunn will consider AL teams at least long enough to try to use them as leverage."
- The Mets will interview Jose Oquendo about the manager's job on Monday, tweets ESPNNewYork.com's Adam Rubin.
- Chad Durbin is receiving interest from teams as both a bullpen and rotation option, tweets ESPN.com's Jerry Crasnick. Durbin has made 75 starts in his career, but none since 2007.
- Most of the free agent catching crop will wait until "the lead domino" (Victor Martinez) signs before they look at joining new teams, says Newsday's Ken Davidoff. (Twitter link)
- Chris Coghlan will move to third base next year, reports MLB.com's Joe Frisaro. You can tentatively cross the Marlins off the list of teams exploring the free agent market for help at the hot corner, though it's possible Coghlan could be needed to play second if Florida trades Dan Uggla.
Like the Yankees, the Nationals are pursuing both of the winter’s top free agent left-handers. Not only is Washington eyeing Cliff Lee, the front office is interested in Jorge de la Rosa, according to MLB.com’s Bill Ladson.
When Nationals GM Mike Rizzo was Arizona’s scouting director, he signed De La Rosa to his first pro contract. Twelve years later, the Nationals are looking for front of the rotation starters and De La Rosa is available. Another pitcher with ties to Rizzo, Brandon Webb, is on the Nationals’ radar this winter.
The Yankees and Rockies are among the teams known to have interest in De La Rosa. Assuming Colorado offers arbitration, signing the lefty will cost a top draft pick since he's a Type A free agent. The 29-year-old battled finger injuries in 2010, but still posted a 4.22 ERA with 8.4 K/9 and 4.1 BB/9 in 121 2/3 innings.
Two years ago today the Athletics acquired Matt Holliday from the Rockies in exchange for Carlos Gonzalez, Huston Street, and Greg Smith. Holliday hit .286/.378/.454 in exactly 400 plate appearances with Oakland before being dealt to the Cardinals for a package led by Brett Wallace at the 2009 trade deadline.
Street has battled injuries but has been solid when on the mound for Colorado, pitching to a 3.30 ERA with 9.5 K/9 and 2.0 BB/9 in 109 innings. Smith has appeared in just eight games for the Rox (all starts), putting up a 6.23 ERA. The real get was CarGo, who will certainly be in the MVP mix after a .336/.376/.598 season with 34 doubles, 34 homers, 26 stolen bases, and a batting title.
The hot stove league will certainly bring us more blockbuster trades, but for now you'll have to settle for this long collection of links, the best the blogosphere had to offer this week...
- SPANdemonium interviews Twins prospect Niko Goodrum.
- M.C. Antil reflects on Bobby Cox's time as a GM and manager (part one, part two).
- We Should Be GMs lists the longest tenured player on all 30 teams.
- Sabernomics dispels some hot stove myths.
- U.S.S. Mariner lays out their plan for Seattle's offseason.
- FanSpeak does the same, just for the Baltimore Orioles.
- Meanwhile, Prospect Insider comes up with some trade ideas for the Mariners.
- Baseball Time In Arlington examines the idea of the Rangers signing Carl Crawford.
- Meet The Mess looks at some potential free agent targets for the Mets.
- Royals Review wonders who the "real get" in the David DeJesus trade is.
- At Home Plate thinks the DeJesus deal shows that Kansas City wants to win.
- Drunk Jays Fans chimes in on Zack Greinke and the Blue Jays as only they can.
- The Process Report explains why trading B.J. Upton now makes sense for the Rays.
- Ivy Report believes the Cubs need to strike fast and trade for Adrian Gonzalez.
- SD Sports Net lists some outfielders that could help the Padres next year.
- Athletics Nation provides a scouting report on Hisashi Iwakuma with some help from PitchFX.
- Mike Scioscia's Tragic Illness looks at Tsuyoshi Nishioka as a second base option for the Dodgers.
- Red Sox Beacon muses about Boston picking up David Ortiz's option.
- Wahoo Blues looks at some backup plans for the Indians in case Carlos Santana has a setback from his knee injury.
- Examiner wonders if a Prince Fielder for Edwin Jackson trade makes sense.
- Analyze This looks at Jorge de la Rosa as a dark horse free agent.
- Yankeeist examines some designated hitter options for the Yankees.
- Baseball Analytics breaks down Ryan Howard's fall from grace.
- Redleg Nation wants to discuss how valuable Jay Bruce is.
- True Grich rants about the Angels and their offseason.
- Crashburn Alley reflects on Jamie Moyer's playing career.
- Mets Gazette provided part one of their top 50 free agents list with predictions. Here's Tim Dierkes' list for comparison.
- Fantasy Rundown compiles links for all of the various prospect lists out there.
- Last, but certainly not least, Pine Tar And Pocket Protectors provides your 2011 Montreal Expos roster.
If you have a suggestion for this feature, Mike can be reached here.
Cliff Lee isn't the only free agent left-hander who's drawing interest from the Yankees. The Bronx Bombers have expressed interest in Jorge de la Rosa, according to Mark Feinsand and Peter Botte of the New York Daily News. GM Brian Cashman did not confirm the club’s interest in De La Rosa, but he did acknowledge that he has made “a lot of phone calls” to free agents.
Cashman told Feinsand that he is impressed with Lee's demeanor and postseason experience, but has not yet made the left-hander an offer. Lee and De La Rosa are both Type A free agents, so signing either player will cost a top pick, assuming both receive offers of arbitration from their former clubs.