Josh Fogg Rumors
Troy E. Renck of the Denver Post says to expect outfielder Willy Taveras to join the free agent market:
The Nationals' unwillingness to take Taveras and Juan Morillo for Tim Redding — a deal Colorado thought was done — will lead the Rockies to non-tender the center fielder today, making him a free agent.
Tracy Ringolsby of the Rocky Mountain News agrees he'll be non-tendered, noting the Yankees, Red Sox, Reds, Marlins, and White Sox also had trade discussions for Taveras.
Renck adds that Glendon Rusch has a minor league offer for $750K in hand, and is weighing offers from four other clubs. Rusch would be the Rockies' second lefty behind newly signed Alan Embree.
A few more notes: the Rockies have mild interest in bringing back Josh Fogg...they're the favorite for Redding if he's non-tendered too...the Rox will make a non-guaranteed offer to Scott Podsednik...Joey Gathright would be of interest if non-tendered.
Troy E. Renck of the Denver Post takes a break from his vacation to bring us a few Rockies rumors.
- About a dozen teams, three of them serious, have expressed interest in Rockies center fielder Cory Sullivan. Sullivan is known for his defense, but the plus/minus system puts him slightly below average. He's in his arbitration years.
- The Rockies have not been aggressive going after lefthanded relievers, even though they seem to be dropping off the board quickly.
- Renck speaks of "chatter" the Rockies might go after free agent second baseman Orlando Hudson. Renck is skeptical of the rumor.
- The Rockies haven't expressed interest in Josh Fogg yet.
According to Tracy Ringolsby of the Rocky Mountain News back on August 1st, the Rockies tried to acquire Cincinnati starter Josh Fogg but the Reds asked for outfielder Ryan Spilborghs in return. Troy E. Renck does not believe Fogg will clear waivers this month.
Fogg, 31, has a 7.57 ERA in 54.2 innings for the Reds this year. He's been a bit better since returning from a long DL stint for back spasms. Fogg had to wait around until February to sign a one-year, $1MM deal with the Reds, which he probably regrets. Fogg apparently turned down a preliminary one-year offer from the Rockies soon after the World Series.
Spilborghs, 29 in September, is hitting .314/.420/.497 in 224 plate appearances this year. He crushes lefties. However, he has not played since July 8th due to an oblique strain. Spilborghs is under team control for quite a while. He's worth much more than Fogg, even with teams getting desperate for starters.
9:52pm: ESPN's Peter Gammons has a blog post contradicting a piece of info from Ringolsby. Gammons says the Mets did not put in a waiver claim on Hernandez. They prefer in-house options.
4:04pm: Ken Rosenthal says Livan is now officially a Rockie. The Rockies will pay the rest of his contract. August is a fine time for teams to unload millions owed to mediocre veteran pitchers.
WEDNESDAY, 9:52am: Some additional information from Tracy Ringolsby of the Rocky Mountain News: the Rockies will make a waiver claim on Josh Fogg in the unlikely event the Twins pull Hernandez back. The Twins might be trying to wrangle a player out of the Rockies in addition to the salary relief.
Ringoslby says the Mets and possibly the Cardinals also made claims on Hernandez.
TUESDAY: According to Ken Rosenthal, the Rockies won their waiver claim on Livan Hernandez. Apparently the Rox beat out another NL team with a better record. Apparently no American League team put in a claim.
At the least, the Twins will dump off Hernandez just to be free of his contract. At most, they might be able to snag some kind of fringe prospect. Hernandez is owed another $1.5MM, plus incentives.
The Rockies and Pirates were in discussions about starter Ian Snell before the non-waiver trade deadline, but Pittsburgh's asking price of Franklin Morales was to high for the Rox to match, effectively killing the deal.
After another bad outing from one of their starters this week, however, and knowing they will look for a fifth starter via the waiver wire, the Rockies may have to revisit the Snell talks, as Troy E. Renck of the Denver Post thinks he would've been a "tantalizing option;" Renck also mentions Josh Fogg as an alternative for the Rox.
Alejandro A. Leal writes for UmpBump.com. Post-deadline rumors? Comments? alexo05 [at] umpbump [daught] com.
1:38pm: Jayson Stark says Fuentes is staying put. A little more than an hour left til the deadline.
9:33am: Mark Zuckerman of the Washington Times says the Nationals are leaning toward keeping Redding, and have even had preliminary extension talks with him. Trades of Paul Lo Duca, Odalis Perez, and Felipe Lopez are also unlikely.
THURSDAY, 8:31am: Troy E. Renck of the Denver Post indicates the Rockies want to keep Fuentes. He says they're looking at starters such as Tim Redding, Josh Fogg, and Paul Byrd. Redding's stock dropped last night with an ugly start.
WEDNESDAY, 9:12pm: On Sunday, Rockies GM Dan O'Dowd termed a Brian Fuentes trade "highly unlikely." However, ESPN's Jayson Stark says the Rockies will decide late tonight whether to put Fuentes on the market. The Mets, Phillies, and Rays are out given the high asking price.
Ken Rosenthal wrote earlier that the Rockies were "poking around" with interested parties, still asking for a young MLB starting pitcher or two good prospects.
6:41pm: Dan Graziano says the Yankees aren't looking at other starters. They're waiting to see if the Mariners will drop their price on Washburn. They may try to acquire him in August.
11:17am: SI.com's Jon Heyman says the Ms are asking for quite a bit for Washburn - two of one NL team's top prospects, for example. Meanwhile, Buster Olney talked to one exec who speculated that Washburn might make sense for the Mets.
9:42am: I spoke too soon - the Rockies are indeed interested in Washburn. Tim Redding and Josh Fogg are a couple other names on the radar.
Ken Rosenthal characterizes the Fogg interest as legit, but feels that the Ms are just trying to stir Colorado's interest in Washburn.
9:29am: According to Ken Davidoff of Newsday, the Yankees' trade talks for Jarrod Washburn are dead. The Yanks will turn to Ian Kennedy, Phil Hughes, and maybe Freddy Garcia. They can also rekindle the Washburn talks in August if they think he will clear waivers (most do).
I am surprised other teams aren't looking more seriously at Washburn given the weak market for starting pitching. The Rockies, White Sox, and Mets would all make sense.
SI.com's Jon Heyman spoke to Rockies GM Dan O'Dowd, who now says a trade of Matt Holliday or Brian Fuentes is "highly unlikely." He talked to multiple teams about both players, but hasn't found a match. Holliday could instead be shopped in the offseason.
The Rockies are in buying mode, hoping to land a back-end starter. Heyman mentions Josh Fogg and Paul Byrd. We've also seen Justin Duchscherer and Bronson Arroyo named in reports.
8:12pm: The Rockies have strong interest in Tavarez, and Troy Renck thinks a deal could be reached within a couple of days. The Red Sox are just trying to get some kind of prospect out of it.
2:07pm: The Red Sox have designated Tavarez for assignment. Nick Cafardo says trade talks with the Rockies and at least two other teams didn't lead anywhere, even when the Sox offered to eat most of the contract. The Red Sox asked for a pitching prospect from the Rockies but couldn't get it.
MONDAY, 9:57am: Troy E. Renck of the Denver Post says the Rockies' talks for Tavarez are dead. His guess is that the Rockies will end up with Josh Fogg and won't have to give up anyone.
SUNDAY: On May 8th, Rob Bradford of the Boston Herald reported that the Rockies remained interested in trading for Julian Tavarez, but no advancements had been made in the talks. On May 9th, Rockies owner Dick Monfort said the team had no plans to acquire a fifth starter. First, the Rox wanted to try 22 year-old rookie Greg Reynolds. Today in his big league debut Reynolds allowed four runs in 5.2 innings to the woeful San Diego offense. Franklin Morales could return to the team in a couple of weeks; he tossed five no-hit innings in Triple A today.
This evening, Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe learned that the Rockies' talks for Tavarez are ongoing. The Red Sox already traded Bryan Corey; Tavarez could be next. Bartolo Colon could join Boston's rotation before month's end.
Tavarez, 35, pitched in 51 games for the Rockies in 2000. He set a career high with 11 wins that year. His groundballing style sounds like a decent fit in Coors. He has about $2.9MM left on his contract this year.
FRIDAY: Rockies owner Dick Monfort says the Rockies aren't looking to acquire a starter at this time. As of yesterday Rob Bradford of the Boston Herald said the Rox remained interested in Tavarez but that no advancements had been made.
THURSDAY: On Tuesday we found out that the Rockies have been looking into a number of trade options for their starting rotation. The two most common names in the conversation are Josh Fogg and Julian Tavarez, both former Rox. Fogg has given up over a run an inning for the last place Reds, and could be DFA if the team opts to go with youngster Homer Bailey, who has a 2.72 ERA in AAA. Tavarez might be expendable for the Sox, though that would mean depending on David Aardsma.
Today, Jack Etkin of the Rocky Mountain News tells us that the Rox have inquired on Cardinals pitcher Anthony Reyes. We've heard the rumor that the Cardinals are shopping the former USC star, though they are looking for "an upper echelon prospect back, plus another piece." Any Rox fans want to toss out names of trade candidates? Could Brian Fuentes be the other piece?
After a poor major league showing in 2007, Reyes broke camp with the Cardinals this year as a reliever. He didn't fare very well, allowing eight runs in 13.2 IP, though of course that's a measly sample size. He's since been optioned to AAA, where he'll be showcased as a starter. He has yet to make an appearance.
Etkin further notes that the Rox have had no substantial talks with the A's about Joe Blanton or Rich Harden, nor the Rangers about Kevin Millwood. It's unlikely any of that crop will be traded until much later in the season, if at all. The Boston Herald confirms the team's interest in Tavarez, and as Tim noted, Walt Jocketty didn't deny the Fogg rumors.