- Mariners Prospect Victor Sanchez Dies
- Mets, Lucas Duda Discussing Extension
- Nate Schierholtz Opts Out Of Deal With Rangers
- Cubs Release Felix Doubront
- Rangers Acquire Sam Freeman From Cardinals
- Mike Pelfrey Would Welcome Trade
- Angels Release Matt Lindstrom
- Twins’ Lewis Thorpe To Have Tommy John Surgery
- White Sox Claim Kyle Drabek
- Brady Aiken Undergoes Tommy John Surgery
Trade Rumors Apps
- Trade Rumors iOS App
- Trade Rumors Android App
- MLBTR Podcast
- 2014-15 MLB Free Agent Tracker
- 2015 MLB Free Agent List
- 2015 Arbitration Tracker
- Projected Arbitration Salaries For 2015
- Free Agent Contest Leaderboard
- Reverse Standings
- 2016 MLB Free Agent List
- Transaction Tracker
- DFA Tracker
- Agency Database
- Hot Stove Glossary
- MLBTR On Facebook
- MLBTR On Twitter
- Team Twitter/RSS Feeds
- Team Facebook Pages
- Hoops Rumors
- Pro Football Rumors
- Quick Hits: Semien, DeShields, Astros
- Twins Have Inquired On Rafael Soriano
- Mariners Prospect Victor Sanchez Dies
- NL Notes: Ichiro, Melvin, Rollins
- AL Notes: Rangers, Diamond, Rays, Orioles
- Minor Moves: Roberts, Baez, D-Backs, Putkonen
- NL Notes: Bryant, Garcia, Villanueva, Nats, Mets
- Rangers Release Juan Carlos Oviedo
- Mets, Lucas Duda Discussing Extension
- Nate Schierholtz Opts Out Of Deal With Rangers
- Rosenthal’s Latest: Rays, Utley, D-Backs, Matusz
- Cubs Release Felix Doubront
- Rangers Acquire Sam Freeman From Cardinals
- Central Notes: Hicks, Pirates, Madson
- Mike Pelfrey Would Welcome Trade
MLBTR Mailing List
Rumors by team
- Angels Rumors
- Astros Rumors
- Athletics Rumors
- Blue Jays Rumors
- Braves Rumors
- Brewers Rumors
- Cardinals Rumors
- Cubs Rumors
- Diamondbacks Rumors
- Dodgers Rumors
- Giants Rumors
- Indians Rumors
- Mariners Rumors
- Marlins Rumors
- Mets Rumors
- Nationals Rumors
- Orioles Rumors
- Padres Rumors
- Phillies Rumors
- Pirates Rumors
- Rangers Rumors
- Rays Rumors
- Red Sox Rumors
- Reds Rumors
- Rockies Rumors
- Royals Rumors
- Tigers Rumors
- Twins Rumors
- White Sox Rumors
- Yankees Rumors
Kansas City Royals Rumors
Though Alex Gordon is entering his last guaranteed year under contract with the Royals, the outfielder tells Sam Mellinger of the Kansas City Star that “not one bit” of talks have taken place about an extension. “I love it here. This is where I want to play,” Gordon said. “But you have to realize the situation. Maybe it won’t happen, maybe it will.”
Gordon has a $13.25MM player option for 2016 that he was originally intending to exercise as of last summer, though he said last month that he wasn’t sure if he would pick his option up. If Gordon has a good 2015 season, declining the option would put him in line for an expensive multi-year contract on the free agent market.
Mellinger’s piece outlines the pros and cons of extending Gordon from the Royals’ perspective. On the pro side, Gordon has been a productive player, they have no ready-made replacement for his bat or outstanding left field glove, and the popular Gordon has been a “face of the franchise” for the last decade. On the con side, a Gordon extension would surely be the most expensive contract in Royals history and they may not want to spend that much on a player who will be entering his age-32 season in 2016.
Gordon did undergo wrist surgery in December and has yet to appear in any Spring Training action, so it could be that the Royals simply want to make sure that he’s recovered before discussing a new deal. Still, I agree with Mellinger that it’s rather surprising that Kansas City hasn’t at least broached the subject of an extension with Gordon or his representatives at Excel Sports Management. Most players don’t want to negotiate new contracts once the season begins, so even if no agreement is reached now, K.C. could at least lay some groundwork for further talks after the season.
WEDNESDAY: Furcal will receive $1.25MM if he’s in the Majors, plus $250K in incentives, Jon Heyman of CBS Sports tweets.
MONDAY: The Royals and infielder Rafael Furcal have agreed to a minor league contract, per Andy McCullough of the Kansas City Star (on Twitter). Furcal, a client of the Kinzer Management Group, isn’t with the team in big league camp and is instead rehabbing in minor league camp, McCullough adds.
The 37-year-old Furcal signed a one-year deal with the Marlins last offseason with the expectation that he could play second base for them, but hamstring injuries cost him all but nine games of the 2014 season. Furcal, who missed the 2013 season due to Tommy John surgery hit just .171/.216/.229 in 37 PAs with the Fish last season. His last regular action came with the Cardinals in 2012 when he batted .264/.325/.346 with five homers and a dozen steals.
Furcal re-tore his problematic hamstring this offseason and missed the playoffs in the Dominican Winter League, so he’ll need to rehab from that injury before receiving a chance to crack Kansas City’s roster. The signing makes some degree of sense, however, as Omar Infante is battling elbow issues and struggled in 2014 anyhow. Indeed, MLBTR’s Tim Dierkes noted back in December (via Twitter) that Furcal could be a fit for Kansas City, especially since he came up through the Braves organization back when Royals GM Dayton Moore was working in Atlanta’s scouting and player development departments.
Spring Training will always involve unfortunate news of injuries, but it also represents an opportunity for players making a comeback — whether from injury or otherwise — to reestablish themselves. In addition to restoring their own career trajectories (Scott Kazmir, anyone?), such players can deliver immense value to the teams that give them another chance.
Let’s take a look at a few situations from around the league, focusing on pitchers:
- When lefty Clayton Richard signed a minor league deal with the Pirates, everyone’s first thoughts went to the hurlers whose careers have recently been revived in Pittsburgh. (A.J. Burnett, Francisco Liriano, and Edinson Volquez being the prime examples.) As Travis Sawchik of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reports, that is essentially what Richard was thinking about, too. “I was able to talk to [Volquez] a little bit and see what he thought of the organization,” said Richard. “It was positive. Just in talking with [GM] Neal [Huntington], [manager] Clint [Hurdle], and [pitching coach] Ray [Searage], I got a good feel of what they are all about. it made sense for me that this was the place.” The non-roster invitee is said to be hitting the gun in the low-nineties, where he previously has worked, and says he is “loosening up my entire body through my delivery” after having seen his motion limited in the past by shoulder troubles.
- After good vibes at the opening of Red Sox camp, Justin Masterson had a less-than-promising outing yesterday, as Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe writes. A scout called Masterson’s work “awful,” while manager John Farrell said the righty “started to flash some better stuff into the fourth inning” but lacked “late action” on his pitches from “inconsistencies and when the velocity drops.” That group of issues — i.e., mechanical struggles and waning fastball velocity — were perhaps the two most-cited underlying difficulties that led Masterson to fall from his early perch near the top of this year’s free agent class to a one-year, $9.5MM deal with Boston. Of course, there is still plenty of time for Masterson to rebound this season.
- Brandon Morrow of the Padres also signed a make-good, one-year deal but was guaranteed much less than Masterson. But he is off to a strong opening to his year, having posted nine innings with one earned run and seven strikeouts against two free passes thus far. In post-game comments today to his counterpart, Cubs skipper Joe Maddon said that Morrow showed “real stuff” in his four scoreless frames, as MLB.com’s Alyson Footer tweets. It seems at this point that the fifth starter’s role is Morrow’s to lose.
- Royals reliever Luke Hochevar made his way back to competitive action today, throwing a clean inning, as Andy McCullough of the Kansas City Star reports (Twitter links). Working his way back from Tommy John surgery, Hochevar nevertheless landed a $10MM guarantee (over two years) to return to Kansas City. He was throwing in the 92 to 93 mph range in his work today, but despite that successful first appearance still seems likely to start the regular season on the DL.
Indians right-hander Gavin Floyd, who re-fractured his right olecranon last week, is set to have surgery on Tuesday, tweets Paul Hoynes of the Cleveland Plain Dealer. Floyd, who has pitched sparingly over the past two seasons due to Tommy John surgery and the original olecranon fracture in his right elbow, was expected to serve as a veteran presence in a largely inexperienced Indians rotation after signing a one-year, $4MM deal. Now, however, Cleveland is unlikely to receive any contribution from Floyd this year.
Here’s more from the game’s Central divisions…
- Reds left-hander Tony Cingrani is being shifted from the rotation to the bullpen, tweets John Fay of the Cincinnati Enquirer. The move comes as somewhat of a surprise, as most figured the left-hander would step into the rotation following the trades of Mat Latos and Alfredo Simon. Cingrani has worked as a starter in the past and racked up excellent strikeout numbers, but he’s had shoulder issues as well, so perhaps the team feels this will keep him healthier. Cuban right-hander Raisel Igesias, meanwhile, will be stretched out to work as a starting pitcher.
- Franklin Morales is building a strong case to take the injured Tim Collins‘ spot as a left-hander in the Royals‘ bullpen, writes Andy McCullough of the Kansas City Star. Morales has fired six scoreless innings and impressed Kansas City decision-makers. Brandon Finnegan is a well-regarded prospect and could have a shot at making the team, but the team still would like to develop him as a starter and he also hasn’t pitched as well this spring. No final decisions have been made on the situation, writes McCullough.
- The Tigers added another player to camp yesterday when they reportedly signed Jiwan James, and another addition may on the horizon as well. SB Nation’s Chris Cotillo tweets that the team may add veteran infielder Brendan Harris, presumably on a minor league deal. The 34-year-old Harris is a career .256/.314/.381 hitter in the Majors, with his best seasons coming between the Twins and Rays in 2007-08. Harris hasn’t played in the Majors much since 2010, however, receiving just 117 plate appearances with the Angels and hitting .206/.252/.355.
Let’s have a look at a few American League notes to round out the day’s news:
- Royals second baseman Omar Infante is considering offseason elbow surgery — next offseason, that is — as he tells Jeffrey Flanagan of MLB.com (Twitter link). Infante recently took a cortisone shot to help reduce inflammation in his right arm, which has kept him out of game action thus far this spring. His ability to play through the difficulties in 2015, and rebound from a tough 2014 campaign, will be important to Kansas City’s ability to return to the postseason.
- The Angels will finally get a look at major offseason international free agent signee Roberto Baldoquin, MLB.com’s Alden Gonzalez reports. Baldoquin, a twenty-year-old infielder out of Cuba, signed for $8MM but was kept out of camp by visa issues.
- Righty Mike Pelfrey is vying to make good on the two-year, $11MM deal he signed with the Twins last year by battling his way into the fifth starter role, as Rhett Bollinger of MLB.com reports. Last year was a wash for Pelfrey and Minnesota, as he struggled mightily before going down to elbow surgery. Pelfrey says he still believes in his ability to succeed as a starter, but is willing to throw from the pen if that’s what the team needs.
The Royals snapped a 28-year postseason drought with quite a bit of flair, enjoying a dramatic comeback win over the A’s in the AL Wild Card game. The victory kicked off an eight-game win streak that brought them to the World Series, where they fell just shy of the ultimate prize in a seven-game classic with the Giants. They’ll look to return to the playoffs in 2014, but they’ll do so with a fairly different cast of characters following an active winter.
Major League Signings
- Edinson Volquez, SP: Two years, $20MM with a $10MM mutual option ($3MM buyout)
- Kendrys Morales, DH: Two years, $17MM with an $11MM mutual option ($1.5MM buyout)
- Alex Rios, OF: One year, $11MM with a $12.5MM mutual option ($1.5MM buyout)
- Luke Hochevar, RP: Two years, $10MM
- Kris Medlen, SP: Two years, $8.5MM with a $10MM mutual option ($1MM buyout regardless of which side declines)
- Jason Frasor, RP: One year, $1.25MM with a $2MM mutual option ($550K buyout)
- Chris Young, SP/RP: One year, $675K
- Yohan Pino, SP: One year, unknown amount (presumably at or near league minimum)
- Total Spend: $68.425MM
Trades and Claims
- Acquired LHP Brian Flynn and minor league RHP Reid Redman from the Marlins in exchange for RHP Aaron Crow
- Acquired minor league OF Reymond Fuentes from the Padres in exchange for minor league LHP Kyle Bartsch
- Acquired INF Ryan Jackson from Dodgers in exchange for cash considerations (Jackson was eventually outrighted to Triple-A Omaha)
- Acquired minor league RHP Brian Broderick from the Angels in exchange for 2B Johnny Giavotella
Notable Minor League Signings
- Joe Paterson, Ryan Roberts, Ryan Madson, Alex Liddi, Roman Colon, Brandon Jacobs, Franklin Morales, Casey Kotchman
The Royals entered the 2014-15 offseason with two key free agents — James Shields and Nori Aoki — and a decision to make on Billy Butler’s $12.5MM option. The decision was made to buy out Butler’s option for $1MM, essentially signaling that the Royals didn’t feel he was worth $11.5MM on a one-year deal. As for Shields and Aoki, both were allowed to test the waters of the free agent market, and both signed in the NL West (San Diego and San Francisco, respectively).
Now with three critical spots to fill — right field, DH and a starting pitcher — the Royals opted to diversify their risk by spreading out their offseason budget over the course of several one- and two-year deals. Mutual options — which are almost never exercised by both parties — were used as an apparent accounting tactic by GM Dayton Moore and his staff, as the team handed out five such options, likely in order to defer some money rather than commit to spending the entire $68MM+ over the next two years. The glut of mutual options comes with $7.55MM worth of buyouts that can obviously be delayed until after the 2016 season, somewhat lessening the immediate financial ramifications of Kansas City’s spending.
Structure wasn’t the only similar thread running throughout Kansas City’s offseason contracts, however. The Royals also employed a similar philosophy with many of these contracts. That is to say, they bought low on a surprising number of players. Kendrys Morales and Alex Rios both performed poorly in 2014, while Kris Medlen and Luke Hochevar didn’t throw so much as a pitch in the Majors due to spring Tommy John surgeries.
A healthy Hochevar would both replace and likely outperform the departed Aaron Crow, if Hochevar is able to pitch anywhere near the level he did in 2013. Jason Frasor’s bullpen spot was filled by none other than Jason Frasor, who re-signed and will again contribute to what should be a very strong relief group.
Volquez was signed to fill Shields’ rotation spot, though not necessarily his production. However, it’s worth noting that both rWAR and RA9-WAR value Volquez and Shields similarly, as both produced excellent bottom-line results in 2014. Clearly, Volquez lacks the track record of Shields, and his peripheral stats are far more concerning. However, while Volquez detractors who point out that much of his success was due to Pittsburgh’s excellent defense and expansive home park may have a point, those same claims can be made about the Royals. It’s not unreasonable, then, to think that Volquez could produce another solid ERA mark, if his newfound control can be repeated.
The addition of Pino on a Major League deal was a surprise, and perhaps the Royals wouldn’t have extended that offer had they known that Young would be available for $675K some four months later, but there’s little financial commitment here, and the pair gives Kansas City some rotation depth and a pair of candidates for long relief in the event of an injury to a starter. Cheap rotation depth is never a bad thing, and in Young’s case, the same caveats that applied to Volquez’s success apply to his own 2014 triumphs; it’s difficult to imagine a decisively better landing spot than Kansas City for a fly-ball pitcher with questionable peripherals.
But, perhaps the best lottery ticket purchased by Moore and his staff this offseason was Medlen, who could be ready to join the rotation (or bullpen) by midseason, which gives the Royals an excellent contingency plan in the event that a starter falls to injury. Moreover, with Jeremy Guthrie set to hit the open market following this season, Medlen will have a rotation spot open for him in 2016, when he is presumably back to full strength. A healthy Medlen is one of the more underrated pitchers in baseball — career 2.95 ERA, 3.23 FIP, 3.39 xFIP in 512 2/3 innings — and Kansas City’s stellar defense and spacious park should offset the transition from the NL to the AL.
The extensions for Hosmer and Herrera didn’t buy out any free agent years, and both will still be arbitration eligible after those deals are finished, but the club did spare itself some negotiation time next winter and attain a degree of cost certainty, which could be significant if Hosmer puts together a big season.
For all of the work the Royals did, there are still plenty of question marks surrounding this team. As noted above, the Royals bought low on a number of players, but they did so by paying a higher price than one might typically expect for bounceback candidates. Morales was one of baseball’s worst hitters in 2014, and while his contract could look like a bargain if he returns to his 2013 form, it could also look disastrous — particularly for a payroll-conscious team like Kansas City — if he cannot improve upon last year’s lack of production. (Also of note on the Morales deal, it’s worth pointing out that despite a putrid 2014 season, he will earn about $24.5MM from 2014-16 — a sum that is not wildly lower than the three-year, $30MM which he was criticized for rejecting in July 2013).
Rios was plagued by a thumb injury in 2014 that may have contributed to the disappearance of his power. Jumping to Kauffman Stadium doesn’t figure to boost his power numbers any, though better health may allow him to reach double-digit homers. Even if his bat bounces back, Ultimate Zone Rating gave him a negative mark in right field last year, and Defensive Runs Saved has given him negative marks in both of the past two seasons. Obviously, his defense could rebound, but Rios is also at the age where it wouldn’t be a surprise to see his glove-work begin to deteriorate.
The Royals will also be counting on a rebound from Omar Infante in the second season of his four-year contract, as the 32-year-old’s .252/.295/.337 batting line was his worst since 2005. On the other side of the diamond will be the confounding Mike Moustakas — an elite defender with notable power but feeble numbers versus lefties and a proclivity for infield flies. Moustakas would seem, on the surface, to have the tools of a star-level player, but he’s never hit consistently in the Majors. The same is true, albeit to a lesser extent, with Hosmer, who has shown flashes of the elite hitter he was projected to be but has never sustained that production for a full season. The fate of the 2015 Royals lies largely in the hands of their talented but inconsistent corner infielders.
The bullpen, of course, is among the game’s best, thanks to the late-inning triumvirate of Greg Holland, Wade Davis and Kelvin Herrera. A return to form for Hochevar would only strengthen that group, and bringing Frasor back was a strong low-cost move. However, the Royals will be without their top lefty, as Tim Collins is out for the year following Tommy John surgery. It’s possible that the injury will open a door for Brandon Finnegan, who was a force out of the bullpen in 2014. However, Finnegan, their top pick from last year’s draft, is viewed as a starter long-term, so the role may yet be given to Brian Flynn or a non-roster invitee like Franklin Morales or Joe Paterson.
Looking to the rotation, there’s no question that the loss of Shields will hurt, and Guthrie’s peripheral stats have indicated that a collapse could be imminent for years (though 2014 was his best season in quite some time). Whether or not Yordano Ventura and Danny Duffy can take steps forward will be a critical component for this team.
Deals of Note
For all of the transactions made by Moore and the Royals this winter, the first one they made strikes me as the most curious. Declining Butler’s option seemed understandable from a statistical standpoint, given a two-year offensive decline and lack of defensive value. However, the fact that he signed a three-year, $30MM contract with the A’s seems to suggest that Butler likely would have had some legitimate trade value at one year and $12.5MM.
Oakland’s winning bid indicates that at least one other team had to be willing to pay somewhere in that neighborhood, and his option was valued at just $2.5MM higher than his eventual AAV, but with two fewer years of risk. Perhaps the Royals would only have gotten something of nominal value in return — similar to their own acquisition of Ervin Santana in exchange for Robert Fish two offseasons ago — but it does appear that there may have been an opportunity there.
As is the case in any offseason, it’s admittedly unfair to look back with the benefit of hindsight, but I can’t help but point out that the Royals spent $11MM on Rios when Aoki signed in San Francisco for a total of $4.7MM on a one-year deal. And, the ~$69MM total spent this offseason is just $6MM shy of the figure for which Shields signed in San Diego.
Clearly, there’s merit to spreading out the risk and shortening its length, as Kansas City did, but the club’s detractors will no doubt wonder if the team would have been better served spending about $80MM to retain Aoki and Shields than rolling the dice on so many uncertainties. While that path may have necessitated taking a minor league flier at the DH position, one could argue that there’s greater upside in taking that type of gamble on Ryan Ludwick or Juan Francisco than in giving Morales $17MM.
But, the risk of the Morales investment is somewhat of a microcosm of the entire Royals offseason. Diversified risk and deferred spending (in the form of backloaded deals and mutual options) characterize this past offseason, and Medlen’s contract in particular was one of the best low-risk signings of the winter in my eyes. If even a couple of the short-term deals issued by the reigning AL Champs pan out, they’ll be well-positioned in what should be a competitive AL Central.
Royals southpaw Tim Collins underwent Tommy John surgery yesterday and will miss the 2015 season, tweets the Kansas City Star’s Andy McCullough. The operation was a known possibility after an MRI last week revealed damage to his ulnar collateral ligament.
The 25-year-old Collins has been a fixture in the Royals’ bullpen over the past four years since being acquired in a trade that sent Rick Ankiel and Kyle Farnsworth to the Braves. In 211 career innings — all with Kansas City — Collins has a 3.54 ERA with 9.4 K/9 and 5.2 BB/9. Though he’s struggled with his control, clearly, he’s also held opponents to a .226 average in his career and been reasonably effective against both right- and left-handed batters. Collins also missed much of the 2014 season with a strained flexor tendon in his throwing elbow.
The loss of Collins for the year likely opens an opportunity for a non-roster invitee or perhaps top prospect Brandon Finnegan to earn a slot in manager Ned Yost’s bullpen. The Royals may want to continue developing Finnegan, their first-round pick from 2014, as a starter in the Minors, but he did surface as a strong bullpen option for Yost late last season and into the playoffs.
Franklin Morales, Joe Paterson and Chris Dwyer are all non-roster options that are in camp with the Royals. Of that group, Morales has far and away the most big league experience, though Paterson does have 40 Major League innings to his credit. Other options that are already on the 40-man roster include Brian Flynn, who was acquired in the Aaron Crow trade with the Marlins this winter, and former top prospect John Lamb. Both Lamb and Flynn are typically deployed as starters, though that certainly doesn’t preclude them from being converted to the bullpen.
- As has been reported, Chris Young‘s contract with the Royals has a $675K base and can reach $6MM via incentives. Per Heyman, Young has $1MM available in roster bonuses, $2.25MM available for games started (capping at 29 starts) and $2.075MM available for total innings pitched (which run up to 140 innings).
- Everth Cabrera‘s deal with the Orioles, which pays him $2.4MM and can reach $3MM in total, awards him $75K for reaching each of 250, 300, 350, 400, 425, 450, 475 and 500 plate appearances, according to Heyman.
- Dustin McGowan signed a Major League deal with the Dodgers that guarantees him just the MLB minimum ($507.5K), but per Heyman, he’ll receive a $1MM roster bonus for spending as little as one day on the active roster. As was previously reported, he can earn $1.5MM worth of incentives via appearances and innings pitched, maxing out at 60 appearances and 60 innings.
While early word on Yasmany Tomas‘ work at third base was positive, Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports now hears from scouts that Tomas isn’t cutting it at the hot corner (Twitter links). The result, then, could end up a significant outfield logjam featuring Tomas, A.J. Pollock, Mark Trumbo, David Peralta, Cody Ross and Ender Inciarte. Scouts feel that Tomas’ arm is accurate at third base, Passan adds, but are concerned with his lack of lateral quickness and athleticism. Manager Chip Hale told reporters, including MLB.com’s Steve Gilbert (Twitter links), that Tomas “needs to be better,” but he believes part of the problem is a lack of focus on Tomas’ behalf. It should be noted that the opinion of rival scouts doesn’t mean the D-Backs won’t use Tomas at third; most scouts think there’s no chance that powerful prospect Peter O’Brien can remain at catcher, but the D-Backs believe he can stick at the position so strongly that they forwent adding other catching options outside of Gerald Laird and Rule 5 pick Oscar Hernandez this offseason.
Here’s more from the NL West…
- The D-Backs announced today that Hernandez was removed from today’s Spring Training game due to soreness in his left wrist (Twitter link). While the team labeled the move precautionary, a significant injury to Hernandez would thin out the team’s paper-thin catching situation even more and could lead to Hernandez being returned to the Rays.
- Giants right-hander Jake Peavy received interest from at least six other teams before signing his deal to return to San Francisco, reports Jon Heyman of CBS Sports. The Rangers, Brewers, Twins, Royals, Marlins and Braves all had interest in the 34-year-old veteran, per Heyman, but the bond formed over a World Series victory was too strong to sign elsewhere, Peavy said: “When you’re World Series teammates, it takes you to another level relationship-wise.” The Giants engaged Peavy after missing out on Jon Lester and being spurned by James Shields in December, at a time when Peavy was giving consideration to both Miami and Atlanta.
- Pablo Sandoval recently said that he felt the Giants disrespected him and agent Gustavo Vasquez when negotiating an extension last spring, but Giants assistant GM Bobby Evans tells Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe that the team offered a four-year extension with a vesting option worth just under $85MM in Spring Training 2014. Assuming the $85MM figure includes the vesting option, that’s $10MM and one year less than Sandoval was guaranteed on his five-year, $95MM deal with the Red Sox. It’s possible, however, that Sandoval was turned off by the Giants’ initial conversation-starter, which was said last April to be a three-year, $40MM offer. Evans adds that the Giants’ first offseason offer to Sandoval came the day after the World Series parade, though he didn’t disclose any details on that offer.
- Heyman also tweets that the Dodgers‘ new front office has been highly impressed by manager Don Mattingly thus far in Spring Training. Mattingly is under contract through the 2016 season, but it’s not uncharacteristic for new-look front offices to bring in a hand-picked manager, regardless of the contractual status of the incumbent.
- For those who didn’t see, earlier tonight it was reported that the Padres are considering making an offer worth “upwards of $50MM” to Cuban second baseman/third baseman Hector Olivera.