Justin Masterson Rumors
Jon Heyman of SI.com calls Toronto's team the "Blew Jays" because he believes GM J.P. Ricciardi blew the Roy Halladay trade talks. Here are the details and a couple other rumors:
- Heyman says too much talk, too much candor and an overly steep price prevented Ricciardi from making a deal.
- Heyman hears that Halladay would have approved trades to a variety of teams in the East and Midwest.
- The Jays never agreed on prospects with the Rangers, but would have sent $5MM to Texas in a possible Halladay deal.
- One executive says the Jays "overplayed their hand."
- The Padres wanted more than Clay Buchholz, Justin Masterson and Jed Lowrie for Adrian Gonzalez.
- GM Kevin Towers had a deal more or less in place to send Jake Peavy to Atlanta last offseason before the righty told the Padres he didn't want to go to Atlanta.
You thought the Jake Peavy deal was a surprise? The Red Sox, Mariners and Padres discussed a trade that would have made the Peavy acquisition look like the Jason Hirsh deal, according to Geoff Baker of the Seattle Times. Baker hears that the Red Sox gave the Mariners the chance to choose five of the following players in exchange for Felix Hernandez:
- Clay Buchholz
- Daniel Bard
- Justin Masterson
- Nick Hagadone
- Michael Bowden
- Felix Doubront
- Josh Reddick
- Yamaico Navarro
1:55pm: From Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports: the Dodgers are making a run at Gonzalez and Bell (separately or together); they could send James Loney to San Diego in such a deal.
12:26pm: A Jayson Stark source says the asking price for Gonzalez is "astronomical, three times the asking price on Halladay."
12:04pm: SI's Jon Heyman hears the Red Sox are still in talks for Gonzalez. Buchholz, Lowrie, and Masterson are "in the mix" with the Padres asking for Westmoreland and Anderson. Heyman adds, "However, the sides are still pretty far apart, and Boston is still in the mix for Martinez." Heyman also says Bell's name has come up in these talks.
11:35am: MLB.com's Jonathan Mayo via Twitter: "I'm hearing odds of Padres dealing Gonzalez are very low at this point." Bonus: Mayo's Twitter background has a Magic Eye effect.
10:22am: ESPN's Jayson Stark says the Red Sox still "have pokers in the fire" on Gonzalez, Martinez, and Roy Halladay. Stark continues to suggest the Sox may try to include a third team to faciliate one of these deals.
6:45am: Mark Feinsand and Bill Madden of the New York Daily News say the Red Sox are in "full pursuit" of Gonzalez, and believe Boston could get Heath Bell too if they're willing to include pitcher Daniel Bard. Also, Sean McAdam of the Boston Herald confirms that the Red Sox are more interested in Gonzalez than Victor Martinez.
12:51am: We heard yesterday that the Padres and Red Sox spoke at length Wednesday night about a possible Adrian Gonzalez trade. However, there was no indication the talks had developed by the end of the day. Not only are the Red Sox discussing a three-way deal with the Indians and another club, they're involved on the Gonzalez front as well. Here's the latest:
- Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe reports that there are indications the talks were active late last night and will likely peak today.
- It would be surprising if this were not the case, but Kevin Towers is asking for "a ton" in return for Gonzalez, according to Cafardo's source.
- The teams are discussing Clay Buchholz, Lars Anderson, Jed Lowrie, Ryan Westmoreland, Justin Masterson and others.
- A rival executive told Jon Heyman of SI.com he believes the Red Sox prefer Gonzalez to Victor Martinez.
1:38pm: Done deal, says Yahoo's Gordon Edes. MLB Network's Tom Verducci says pitcher Bryan Price is the third hurler going to Cleveland in the trade.
1:35pm: MLB.com's Jonathan Mayo says (via Twitter) pitchers Nick Hagadone and Justin Masterson are in the deal (ESPN's Peter Gammons agrees). Gut reaction: nice haul. Mayo also says the two clubs are looking at additional names to add for Cleveland.
1:27pm: FOX now says Clay Buchholz and Daniel Bard are not in this deal.
12:55pm: USA Today's Bob Nightengale via Twitter: the Red Sox are about to acquire first baseman/catcher Victor Martinez from the Indians. Ed Price of AOL Fanhouse, trying to confirm, says it "looks good." FOX Sports agrees, and notes a lack of a third team involved. They also believe this kills the Adrian Gonzalez talks.
5:07pm: Ricciardi tells Ed Price of AOL FanHouse that he's not ruling out a trade. "We're waiting 'til 4 o'clock tomorrow," Ricciardi said.
4:23pm: Jack Curry of the New York Times has additional comments from Ricciardi on Halladay:
"We've got nothing going on. We expect him to be with us."
The Phillies are out, and the other suitors failed to wow Ricciardi.
3:19pm: Rosenthal and Morosi say the Dodgers have enough in their system to make a competitive offer for Halladay, even after acquiring Sherrill. And for Evan Grant's thoughts on the Rangers and Halladay, click here.
However, in another entry Rosenthal and Morosi talk to J.P. Ricciardi and label the Halladay sweepstakes "all but over." Ricciardi's comments indicate the same. Toronto's GM seems intent on keeping Scott Rolen, Marco Scutaro, and others if Doc stays.
2:23pm: Morosi says Halladay is looking unlikely for the Angels, who shot down a Toronto proposal that included Joe Saunders, Erick Aybar, and Brandon Wood.
The Halos are also looking for bullpen help, with names such as Heath Bell and George Sherrill in play (their offer for Mike Wuertz fell short).
1:26pm: Rosenthal and Morosi have a source saying things are "very quiet" on the Halladay front. Still, the Dodgers, Angels, Rangers, Rays, and Red Sox remain interested.
1:14pm: Yahoo's Tim Brown sees the Dodgers and Red Sox as the frontrunners for Doc in what is shaping up as a two-team race. Brown says the only Major Leaguer in the Dodgers' offer is James McDonald, while the Sox will part with Clay Buchholz, one of Justin Masterson, Michael Bowden, and Lars Anderson, and some lesser prospects. My guess is that the Red Sox find a way to get this done, given the quality they're already offering. ESPN's Jayson Stark says one Dodgers prospect who is off-limits is shortstop Devaris Gordon.
Meanwhile, Lynn Henning of the Detroit News says the Jays wanted Rick Porcello, Ryan Perry, and Casey Crosby from the Tigers for Halladay. Henning says the Tigers bowed out upon that request. Henning adds that the Tigers would consider adding Adam Dunn or Josh Willingham but the price is steep on the sluggers as well.
12:59pm: A Rosenthal/Morosi source with knowledge of the Jays' thinking discusses a package of Dodgers minor leaguers that could catch Toronto's attention in a Halladay deal.
12:21pm: Joe McDonald of the Providence Journal sees the Dodgers in the lead for Halladay, with the Rangers in the mix and talks with Boston calming down.
9:09am: Tony Massarotti of the Boston Globe feels the chances of the Red Sox acquiring Halladay are "remote," and believes that Boston has yet to increase their initial offer for him. And in an earlier column, Sean McAdam of the Boston Herald said the Blue Jays and Red Sox have not been in contact over the last three days.
7:55am: We'll start with a review of yesterday's Roy Halladay rumors. The Phillies acquired Cliff Lee instead, cutting into J.P. Ricciardi's leverage for Doc. Ricciardi now has the Red Sox, Yankees, Rangers, Dodgers, and possibly Angels and Rays to work with. The Blue Jays' GM is thinking about keeping Halladay for 2010, based on his comments to Joel Sherman of the New York Post. On to a few new links...
- Ken Rosenthal and Jon Paul Morosi at FOX Sports say the Jays are not requiring the Dodgers to include Clayton Kershaw or Chad Billingsley. Instead, they'd just take five or six of the team's top prospects.
- Mark Feinsand and Bill Madden of the New York Daily News say Ricciardi is trying to get the Yankees and Red Sox into a bidding war. Kind of cliche, J.P. The authors imply the Yanks may be more focused Jarrod Washburn, who obviously wouldn't require as big a bounty.
- Halladay's plan for today, according to Jim Salisbury of the Philadelphia Inquirer - lock himself in his hotel room. Might want to unplug the TV and disable the Internet. Doc is understandably drained from pitching last night amid all the rumors.
In his latest piece for The Boston Globe, Nick Cafardo reports that the Indians turned down an offer of Clay Buchholz for Victor Martinez according to an NL scout. The Red Sox then countered with a package of Michael Bowden, Justin Masterson, and an outfield prospect, but the Indians turned that down as well.
Let's round up the rest of Cafardo's rumors...
- In addition to Boston, the Indians are also fielding offers from the Rays and Giants for Martinez, but aren't inclined to make a deal unless a team's best prospects are involved.
- Cafardo runs through the list of other pitchers that "could be pried away," including Scott Kazmir, Cliff Lee, Erik Bedard, Jarrod Washburn, and George Sherrill. He says it'll take "a blockbuster package" to land Lee.
- Aubrey Huff and Kevin Millar are also available.
- The Red Sox will "dip in the (Roy) Halladay sweepstakes" if the price comes down, but otherwise will look for a righthanded bat that can play the outfield.
- Cafardo says it will be interesting to see if the Yankees, Phillies and Dodgers are aggressive at the deadline or take a pass, considering all three clubs are playing well right now.
- The White Sox could pull off something big because GM Kenny Williams "has a bit of gambler in him."
- It'll be interesting to see if the Giants' plans to add a bat are put on hold after the sudden death of principal owner Sue Burns.
- Twins GM Bill Smith may add a middle infielder and/or a reliever before the deadline. Last night we learned that they were "deep into talks and talking composition of a deal" with the A's about Orlando Cabrera. The team might be able to stretch it's normal payroll with Target Field opening next year.
- Cafardo proposes a "swap of underachieving Scott Boras clients," J.D. Drew and Magglio Ordonez.
- While there is some uneasiness about there not being any substantive talks between the Nationals and Stephen Strasburg, those kind of deals can come together quickly. The signing deadline is August 17th.
- The Rangers are unable to add payroll, which will hamstring their efforts that the trade deadline.
Jon Heyman of SI.com says the Red Sox will come calling if the Indians are willing to part with Victor Martinez. And take this for what it's worth, but the Indians were scouting Boston's best prospects this week. Here are details on those two clubs and the rest of Heyman's rumors:
- Clay Buchholz, Justin Masterson and Michael Bowden are just the sort of MLB-ready pitchers the Indians seek.
- Still, the Indians would require a stunning amount in return for Martinez or Cliff Lee, since both players can be part of a contending Indians club for affordable 2010 options.
- Generally speaking, the Red Sox are reluctant to deal their top young pitching.
- The Indians are relatively deep at catcher, with Kelly Shoppach and prospect Carlos Santana.
- Red Sox first base prospect Lars Anderson could also appeal to the Indians.
- The Pirates initially asked for Craig Stammen or Garret Mock in their recent deal with the Nats, but Mike Rizzo wasn't willing to deal them.
- The Phillies discussed Pedro Martinez, since there are few good fits for them on the trade market now.
- Heyman says Doug Davis makes sense for the Brewers.
- A D'Backs person says "[Dan] Haren stays," even though many of his teammates are believed to be available.
- Heyman names the Yankees as the early favorites to sign Aroldis Chapman.
With the exception of Jon Lester, who's expected to sign at any moment, the Red Sox have agreed to 2009 contracts with every player on their 40-man roster. (Information courtesy of Sean McAdam with the Boston Herald).
Jacoby Ellsbury, Justin Masterson, Jed Lowrie, Clay Buchholz and Wes Littleton have finalized contracts in recent days. Ellsbury will make $449.5K in '09. Masterson will earn $441K. These are guys with zero to three years of MLB service time.
9:59pm: Ian Browne of MLB.com weighs in on Bard. He discusses the catching situation, and in particular, how the Red Sox will use Bard if free-agent Jason Varitek returns to the franchise.
SI.com points out Penny's Interleague numbers: 7-11 with a 5.08 ERA in 24 appearances against American League opponents. Penny has spent his entire career in the National League.
8:41pm: Rob Bradford of WEEI.com spoke with Brad Penny, who confirmed his deal with the Boston Red Sox.
“There were a lot of teams involved,” said Penny in a phone conversation. “But I wanted to go somewhere where I knew we had a great chance at winning, and Boston is that place.”
Bradford adds that Penny will be in Boston on Jan. 7 to take his physical and will begin his throwing program next week.
Bradford also updates the status of Red Sox pitcher Josh Beckett, who has started exercises on his throwing shoulder, which is earlier than in years past. Bradford's post states that the injury that plagued Beckett at the end of the 2008 season has subsided. The injury centered around the intercostal muscles near the ribs and not the oblique as previously thought.
The Bard agreement is a nonguaranteed major-league deal worth $1.6MM. According to McAdam, Bard is viewed as a backup, but he could see more time depending upon what Boston decides to do at catcher.
Bard, 31 in March, spent seven games with the Red Sox in 2006 before Boston traded him to the Padres. He hit .202 in 57 games with San Diego in 2008.
McAdam has more on the Brad Penny deal, too. The agreement, a one-year deal with a base salary of $5MM, will be finalized Monday. Incentives and performance bonuses can increase the total deal another $3MM if Penny pitches more than 160 innings, McAdam reports.
Penny, 31 in May, went 6-9 with a 6.27 ERA in 17 starts and two relief appearances in 2008 with the Los Angeles Dodgers. The right-hander played 4.5 seasons for the Dodgers. He played with the Florida Marlins from 2000 until he was traded in 2004.
With the addition of Penny, the Boston rotation now consists of Penny, Josh Beckett, Tim Wakefield, Daisuke Matsuzaka and Jon Lester.
The move also allows righty Justin Masterson to remain in a setup role for closer Jonathan Papelbon.
Links for Saturday...
- Jason Michaels is confused by the lack of interest from the Pirates, who have said they want him back.
- Khalil Greene says he's frustrated to have let the Padres down and Tim Sullivan writes that it wasn't for lack of intensity. The Padres still won't be dropping their grievance against Greene.
- Buster Olney expects Mark Prior to sign a minor-league deal with the Padres.
- Jason Beck writes that the Tigers could afford to trade either Jeff Larish or Matt Joyce in a deal for Jack Wilson. Detroit has other weaknesses to address though, so Beck thinks they could hold onto their trade chips and sign a player like Adam Everett.
- Arbitration could work for both Jason Varitek and the Red Sox, suggests Sean McAdam.
- Tony Massarotti has five reasons to keep Justin Masterson in the bullpen.
- The Angels signed South Korean righty Pil Joon Jang to a minor league contract.
- Jay Jaffe plays Yankees GM at Baseball Prospectus.
- MLB.com's Jonathan Mayo ranks the best Rule 5 Draft selections since 1990.
- Tom Verducci looks back at the career Greg Maddux had.