Josh Anderson Rumors
It had been known that Wade was pursuing relief help. He created a bit of a void by trading Brad Lidge, not that Villarreal fills that. The 'Stros currently have an offer out to Scott Linebrink, and have expressed interest in Jeremy Affeldt, Francisco Cordero, and Troy Percival as well. Villarreal is not a closer type, so look for Wade to sign one of Linebrink, Cordero, or Percival to handle the ninth inning. Chad Qualls would then take the eighth.
Villarreal has been a respectable reliever when healthy. The 26 year-old righty has a 3.71 career ERA. I imagine the Astros view him as their seventh inning guy. Wade was able to part with Anderson because he has a better version in Michael Bourn. Wade also oddly gave a Major League deal to a defensive-minded minor league free agent center fielder named Yordany Ramirez. Quite a commitment.
The 25 year-old Anderson is a burner who doesn't hit much. Most view him as a future fourth outfielder. I imagine the Braves acquired him to use a stopgap solution in center field for a year or two.
I'd give a slight edge to Wade here, as we're going to see teams locking in relievers similar to Villarreal for three years and $10MM+.
I'm going to start up a catch-all Odds and Ends post for smaller rumors and notes today. Refresh to see it grow.
- A reader emailed me to tell me that Buster Olney said on XM Radio recently that there are talks of the Twins going after Scott Rolen. These reports can be tough to confirm, but there you go. UPDATE: Joe Christensen squashes this one.
- Mark Feinsand doesn't think Epstein is keen on giving Mike Lowell even a three-year contract. He might get five on the open market. UPDATE: The Red Sox apparently have a three-year offer out to him, and he's still mulling it over.
- The White Sox inquired about Bill Hall, but Kenny Williams and Doug Melvin couldn't find a match.
- Baseball America weighs in on the Brad Lidge trade. BP's Nate Silver gives his opinion here and here. He thinks the Phillies made a mistake.
- The Astros have contacted Jeremy Affeldt's agent. Also, Jim Molony speculates in this piece that speedy Josh Anderson could be expendable because of the Michael Bourn addition.
- Back to where it all began: the Dodgers have signed Chan Ho Park. No need for more starters now!
- Andy Pettitte hopes to tell the Yankees whether he'll play by the New Year. Also, Ken Davidoff notes that the Yanks would prefer to trade Hideki Matsui over Johnny Damon, but Godzilla's full no-trade clause would be the problem.
- Theo Epstein let Scott Boras pitch his entire client list last night, A-Rod included. There's a very slight chance the Red Sox sign Eric Gagne, and a contract extension for Jason Varitek may have been discussed. Also I hear Boras did the hard sell on Bruce Chen. Just kidding. UPDATE: That slight chance for Gagne just went away, as he'll be closing according to Boras.
- Mark Shapiro is preparing a contract extension offer for C.C. Sabathia; he'll have to run it by the Dolans first. No surprise there. Paul Hoynes notes that Sabathia gets an extra $2MM for '08 if he wins the '07 Cy Young. Shapiro, by the way, would listen to offers on any player. I get the feeling the Indians could come from out of nowhere and do something big this winter.
- Could the Tigers send Placido Polanco to the Mets? Mark Healey suggests it.
- The Giants included a vesting option for 2009 in Omar Vizquel's deal. McCovey Chronicles weighs in.