Jose Tabata Rumors
This one will be a bit lengthy, which can be expected as the deadline approaches. Here's a review of some of the major moves and rumors of the last week:
- The Yankees acquired Xavier Nady and Damaso Marte from the Pirates for OF Jose Tabata, RHP Ross Ohlendorf, RHP Dan McCutchen and RHP Jeff Karstens . I agree with Tim that Ian Kennedy would've been a better centerpiece, but Tabata is pretty highly-touted himself. Kennedy would have made a more immediate impact, while Tabata is only 19 years old.
- The Dodgers acquired Casey Blake for minor league RHP Jon Meloan and C Carlos Santana. The Dodgers get a nice boost to their lineup without giving up too much, although Santana's putting together a very impressive season in Class-A ball.
- The Nationals sent Jon Rauch to the Diamondbacks in exchange for minor league 2B Emilio Bonifacio. Rauch adds to a strong bullpen for Arizona, while Bonaficio could become a very solid leadoff hitter in the future for Washington. They may have been able to get more for Rauch, but I personally like the move, regardless.
- The Brewers acquired Ray Durham from the Giants for minor leaguers Darren Ford and Steve Hammond. Rickie Weeks has been a disappointment to an otherwise red-hot club. Can Durham provide a bit more stability? The power's gone, but he can still get on base.
- The Astros acquired Randy Wolf from the Padres for minor league pitcher Chad Reineke. This one confuses me a little bit; with all due respect, did the Astros forget they were 12.5 games out? I don't see the logic in buying on a pitcher.
- The Cardinals traded Anthony Reyes to the Indians for minor league pitcher Luis Perdoma. I don't get this one either. I feel like the Cardinals could have gotten more, despite Reyes' struggles in the past. The Indians could make this one look like a steal, in my opinion.
- The Yankees are in deep discussion with the Mariners about acquiring Jarrod Washburn. Tim cites Buster Olney and Ken Rosenthal in saying that the Mariners want a top prospect in addition to the salary dump, but the Yankees are only offering a marginal prospect. Can't say I blame them. A top prospect for an mediocre pitchers who's due an additional $14MM? Sounds like Seattle's getting greedy...
- A new, and surprising name surfaced in trade talks: Manny Ramirez. Manny has said he would waive his no-trade clause, and based on interviews, has basically said that 2008 will be his last season in Boston. I can't see Boston trading their (arguably) best hitter in the middle of a pennant race, however. I'd bet on him finishing out the season.
- Speaking of corner outfielders, the Mets need one, and they know it. Having missed out on Nady and Blake, they will likely zero in on Raul Ibanez. Ibanez makes great sense for them, and the Mariners would obviously like to rebuild. I expect this one to get done.
- There was a report that Roy Halladay came out and told the Blue Jays that he is unhappy in Toronto, which has provoked the Jays to explore their potential options. Halladay's price would have to be astronomical, I'd think. He's signed through 2010 and pitching like it's 2003 all over again. Personal speculation: I think Halladay to the Cardinals with a Colby Rasums centerpiece would make sense.
- Crisitan Guzman signed a two-year, $16MM contract extension. Guzman has revived his career after surgery following an awful 2005. I like the signing for the Nats.
- Jorge Posada could be out for the season. The Yankees are looking for catchers. In addition to the names mentioned there, they could take a shot at signing Johnny Estrada, who was DFA'ed by Washington this week. Estrada was terrible in Washington, but has put up solid offensive numbers for a catcher throughout his career.
- Brian Fuentes, Huston Street, and George Sherrill are all still potential trade pieces. Fuentes is the most likely to go, I'd say, although the Rockies are asking for quite a bit.
- Tim updated the left-handed reliever and left field markets.
Dejan Kovacevic brings us the state of the Pirates in a nice piece in the Pittsburgh Post Gazette:
- As we know, the Pirates don't want to trade Jason Bay. Kovacevic writes, "'We'll need to be blown away," one team source said, referring to Bay." The Braves, Mets, Phillies, and A's are the latest to inquire.
- If the Pirates don't make any more deals, they will of course revisit the possibility in the offseason. Still, any of Bay, Jack Wilson, or John Grabow could remain long-term if the Pirates aren't offered enough any time between now and next season, or if the Pirates don't appear to be "legitimately competitive" in the first half next year.
- The Xavier Nady/Damaso Marte deal was initially reported to revolve around Phil Coke and George Kontos; however, one of those was diagnosed with a damaged labrum, seemingly Coke.
- Ross Ohlendorf is expected to join the Bucs rotation after three or four starts in Triple-A.
- A fun fact from Kovacevic: "If the Pirates could have traded Nady and Marte straight up for Jose Tabata last winter, Huntington said, 'We would have done it in a heartbeat.'"
Update 1:05 pm: Several sources are reporting that once Ohlendorf and Tabata cleared physicals, the Pirates had a list of players to choose from.
The LoHud Yankees Blog reports the Xavier Nady, Damaso Marte deal has been reconfigured:
The Yankees are sending RHP Dan McCutchen, RHP Jeff Karstens, OF Jose Tabata and RHP Ross Ohlendorf to Pittsburgh for Xavier Nady and Damaso Marte.
LHP Phil Coke and RHP George Kontos are not in the deal.
Alejandro A. Leal writes for UmpBump.com. Comments? Rumors? alexo05 [at] umpbump [daught] com.
7:25pm: Ken Rosenthal confirms it: minor leaguers Ohlendorf, Coke, Kontos, and Tabata. My impression at first glance: the return is not terribly impressive for Nady and Marte. I don't like the idea of the Bucs taking Tabata as the centerpiece - there is too much projection involved with him. If Ohlendorf and Ian Kennedy could've been had, I would've opted for that.
Rosenthal also says the Yankees' talks for Jarrod Washburn are still ongoing.
7:17pm: Baseball Digest Daily says the Pirates will receive Jose Tabata, Ross Ohlendorf, and two other minor leaguers (perhaps Phil Coke and George Kontos, based on rumors). SI.com's Jon Heyman is on board with that.
A separate Pirates rumor was squashed tonight - they are not close to trading Jason Bay to the Braves.
6:32pm: Xavier Nady was pulled from the Pirates' lineup tonight after one inning. No known injury.
UPDATE, 12-3-07 at 12:02am: Not only will Johan veto any midseason deal, he'll veto any deal to a team other than the Yankees or Red Sox.
UPDATE, 12-2-07 at 8:30pm: Hank weighs in, reiterating the deadline. He says the third player actually isn't the sticking point. Thanks Hank!
UPDATE, 12-2-07 at 7:30pm: The Yanks' deadline on their offer, which no one is taking seriously, is for end of day Monday. Brian Cashman has given Bill Smith a list of possibilities for the third player in the deal.
UPDATE, 12-2-07 at 6:15pm: Ken Rosenthal says Santana told the Twins he won't waive his no-trade clause during the season. It's now or never. The packages the Yankees and Red Sox are offering are definitely better than two draft picks, especially since there's no guarantee one of them will be a first-round pick. I'd be surprised if he's not moved this week.
UPDATE, 12-2-07 at 1:30pm: Buster Olney is reporting that the Sox will include Ellsbury in their offer, but pull Lester out of it. Basically the Twins can have one or the other. Olney doesn't say whether Buchholz/Ellsbury is possible, but I imagine it's not. The Twins are expected to choose an offer from Boston or New York soon.
FROM 12-2-07 at 8:45am:
When we left off last night, the Twins and Yankees were still haggling over the third player in a Johan Santana trade. The Twins wanted Alan Horne or Austin Jackson, according to Jon Heyman. Now comes word from Tyler Kepner that those two are considered untouchable in the deal by the Yanks. Dellin Betances, Ian Kennedy, and Jose Tabata round out the five that they will not include as the third player.
It's said that the Yankees will turn to Dan Haren if they don't reach an agreement with the Twins today or tomorrow. The Twins still like Jacoby Ellsbury more than Phil Hughes, so they're trying to get the Red Sox to replace Coco Crisp with him in their offer.