Kevin Correia Rumors

Kevin Correia Requests Trade

6:38pm: The Pirates have put a high price tag on Correia, according to Jon Heyman of CBS Sports (on Twitter).

5:40pm: Right-hander Kevin Correia, who lost his rotation spot to the newly acquired Wandy Rodriguez, has asked the Pirates for a trade, according to Rob Biertempfel of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review.

The 31-year-old Correia has pitched to a 4.24 ERA with 4.2 K/9, 2.5 BB/9 and a solid 51 percent ground-ball rate entering play today. Correia is making $3MM in the final season of a two-year, $8MM deal that he signed with the Pirates in December of 2010.

General manager Neal Huntington said that the plan for Correia is to work out of the bullpen for now, but he predicts Correia will be used for some spot starts down the line. Huntington did acknowledge that a move to the bullpen could damage Correia's free agent value this offseason. Huntington went on record as saying the team is open to trading Correia, but only if it makes the Major League team better.

Biertempfel writes that the Pirates are still looking for an upgrade at a corner outfield spot, first base, or shortstop as well as bench help. Several teams are searching for starting pitching, including the Orioles and Braves, although it's not clear that buyers would view Correia as an upgrade to their current options. Correia made his first relief appearance today and allowed four runs on five hits and a walk in just two innings, which certainly doesn't make him any more attractive to other teams.


NL Central Notes: Correia, Greinke, Hart, Ramirez

Here’s the latest out of the NL Central as we keep a close eye on the latest Zack Greinke rumors..

  • The Pirates have moved Kevin Correia to the bullpen to make room for Wandy Rodriguez in the rotation and Correia isn't thrilled about it, tweets Rob Biertempfel of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review.  The Angels could be interested in acquiring the California native, who says that he hopes to get back to being a starter.
  • As it stands now, Greinke is scheduled to pitch against the Nationals on Sunday, but Nats skipper Davey Johnson doesn't expect to see the right-hander on the hill, writes Amanda Comak of the Washington Times.  "I'd be real surprised," Johnson said. "I know in the past if a ballclub's intent on making a move, you're not going to pitch him two days before the deadline."
  • Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com handicaps the most likely destinations for Greinke and the Rangers top the list with 9-5 odds.  The Red Sox are categorized as a longshot with 100-1 odds.
  • Jerry Crasnick of ESPN.com (via Twitter) believes that someone will bite on the Pirates' Kevin Correia as he is owed just $1MM for the rest of the year.  The Bucs are reportedly sending signals that they could part with Correia after acquiring Wandy Rodriguez.
  • Teams have expressed interest in Corey Hart and Aramis Ramirez, Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports. However, the Brewers would be have to be overwhelmed to trade either player.
  • Brewers relievers Francisco Rodriguez, Jose Veras, Manny Parra and Kameron Loe had been drawing interest, but their value “tanked” following a poor showing in Philadelphia this week, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports (on Twitter).
  • Astros GM Jeff Luhnow suggested to Rosenthal that absorbing salary can help Houston obtain better prospects in trades. “In this environment, you’re limited in how much money you can spend on the draft, how much you can spend internationally,” Luhnow said, referring to the rules regulating amateur spending in baseball’s new collective bargaining agreement.
  • Pitching prospect Shelby Miller is available in trade talks, yet the Cardinals don't appear anxious to make an impact deal, Joe Strauss of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports (on Twitter).

Zach Links contributed to this post.


Stark On Marlins, Phillies, Dodgers, Garza, Twins

Here's the latest from ESPN's Jayson Stark

  • One official who spoke with the Marlins brass estimates that the odds Josh Johnson remains with Miami are "95 percent." The Red Sox, Angels, Rangers, White Sox, Blue Jays, and Royals have all checked in.
  • Carlos Lee, Ricky Nolasco, Heath Bell, and Gaby Sanchez are all very available. Other than Johnson, Giancarlo Stanton will be the toughest player to pry away from the Fish.
  • The Phillies have talked about trading Cliff Lee following the Cole Hamels extension and they haven't discouraged other teams from inquiring, but their game plan right now is to keep their trio of aces intact.
  • Shane Victorino and Joe Blanton are good bets to be dealt and the Phillies will listen on Hunter Pence. They want multiple young big leaguers to plug holes at third base, in the outfield, and in the bullpen in return.
  • The Dodgers are in on a number of starting pitchers, including Nolasco, Blanton, Kevin Millwood, and Jason Vargas in addition to Ryan Dempster and Matt Garza. They've also checked in on outfield and first base help, including Victorino and Justin Morneau.
  • Clubs have not been assured by the Cubs that Garza will make another start before the trade deadline due to his triceps issue. He's more likely to be dealt in the offseason.
  • In the wake of acquiring Wandy Rodriguez, the Pirates are sending signals that they could trade away a starter like Jeff Karstens or Kevin Correia.
  • The Twins' asking prices for Morneau ("pricey"), Denard Span ("more pricey"), and Josh Willingham ("it made me laugh") are high. Minnesota insists they will listen on anyone and Stark says Morneau is the bat they're most likely to move. Francisco Liriano is "nearly 100 percent" likely to be traded.
  • The Orioles continue to look for pitching, someone they consider a number three starter or better. Garza and Vargas have their eye but Dylan Bundy and Manny Machado are off the table. They've gotten hits on Jake Arrieta but won't move him unless they get a similar young arm with several years of team control remaining in return.
  • The Brewers will trade Randy Wolf "for nothing if you take the money," according to one official. 
  • The Rays have "got a big market" for Wade Davis


Morosi On Nationals, Angels, Pirates, White Sox

The Nationals will win the NL East this year, Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports writes. Bryce Harper appears to have solved the team's center field dilemma in the short term and the team's run prevention has been tremendous. General manager Mike Rizzo says his team's first half success isn't a fluke. “I’m very pleased with it — don’t get me wrong — but I’m not shocked by it," he told Morosi. Here are more of Morosi’s notes from around MLB:


Quick Hits: Braves, Pirates, Rockies, Nationals

The Marlins ended their franchise record offensive draught of scoring five runs or less for 25 consecutive games in their 9-0 win over the Blue Jays. And, for good measure, the nine runs were a season-high for the Marlins, who ended their six-game losing streak. Here's the latest news from around baseball.

  • The Braves could make starting pitching a priority at the trade deadline because of the growing pains of Mike Minor and Randall Delgado and the uncertainty surrounding Jair Jurrjens, tweets Mark Bowman of MLB.com.
  • The Pirates need to create an opening in their starting rotation when Jeff Karstens returns from the disabled list this week and Rob Biertempfel of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review thinks a trade could create that opening (via Sulia). Biertempfel reported yesterday the Pirates are shopping Kevin Correia.
  • With the Pirates looking for offensive help, the Denver Post's Troy Renck notes the Rockies have players available, including Marco Scutaro. In the same piece, Renck offers his suggestions on who the Rockies should play the rest of the way in 2012, so as to best prepare for 2013.
  • The Nationals are not willing to pay a fine in order to exceed their draft bonus pool, writes Adam Kilgore of the Washington Post. This is a corection to a story Kilgore wrote yesterday. Kilgore writes this stance will lower the amount the Nationals will be able to offer their first round draft pick Lucas Giolito.
  • Condolences to the friends of family of Padres' bullpen coach Darrel Akerfelds, who lost his battle with pancreatic cancer today.  He was 50.

Pirates Shopping Kevin Correia

The Pirates‬ have let teams know that pitcher Kevin Correia is available, tweets Rob Biertempfel of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review.  The right-hander is making $3MM this season on the backend of a two-year, $8MM pact.

Correia, 31, has a 4.12 ERA with 3.3 K/9 and 2.7 BB/9 through 13 starts this season.  It seems likely that Pittsburgh will look to use their pitching surplus, which includes Correia, to net some offense via trade.  The Bucs' pitching has been banged up recently but will be replenished with the returns of Jeff Karstens and Chris Leroux.


Cafardo On Suzuki, Oswalt, Correia, Zimmermann

In today's column, Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe argues that two best players at catcher and shortstop positions in camp with the Red Sox organization are Ryan Lavarnway and Jose Iglesias and believes that they absolutely should be on the final 25-man roster.  There could be disagreement from different factions of the club about what to do with the two players and it'll be interesting to see how it all turns out.  Here's more from Cafardo..

  • The Rays have been trying hard to get A's catcher Kurt Suzuki but Oakland isn’t crazy about getting Wade Davis or Jeff Niemann in return.  One National League GM points out that those are the type of pitchers that Billy Beane winds up trading and would want a higher grade of pitcher. Right now, the Rays aren’t willing to pay that price.
  • The idea that Roy Oswalt wants to play in the Midwest or South can be overcome with money, according to a major league source.  To get him, Cafardo writes that the Red Sox have to loosen their purse strings.
  • Major league sources say that the Pirates would entertain a deal for right-hander Kevin Correia.
  • The Angels asked the Nationals about Jordan Zimmermann, but there’s no chance unless they part with someone like Mike Trout, and that’s not happening. 
  • Red Sox outfielder Darnell McDonald could get some bites if he gets squeezed out in Boston.  The Indians, Giants, and Braves are all looking for a righthanded-hitting outfielder.
  • The Yankees are being a little careful about trading their pitching depth, but it appears Freddy Garcia would be available at the right price, which may be high.
  • White Sox pitchers Gavin Floyd and John Danks are both available in the right deal, but according to one GM, Kenny Williams will want at least "two A-level prospects and a third that’s a notch below, and that might not get it done."

Players Who Cannot Be Offered Arbitration

Last offseason, agents negotiated four contracts known to include the bonus of prohibiting the team from offering arbitration if the player received Type A status.  Aside from Orlando Hudson, none of the four came close to Type A (Hudson was a B).  In general, none of the 14 Type As who were offered arbitration in November saw their market adversely affected, though Jason Frasor and Frank Francisco played it safe and accepted.  It was thought that Grant Balfour might have a hard time finding a deal, but the Athletics inked him for two years and $8.1MM.

Three contracts signed this winter prevent the team from offering arbitration if the player is a Type A at the end of the term:

  • Javier Vazquez, ACES.  The Yankees may have been counting on snagging a draft pick upon Vazquez's departure, but he slipped to Type B with a lousy 2010.  If Vazquez pushes himself back to A status with a strong season for the Marlins, they won't be able to offer arbitration.
  • Kevin Correia, Lapa/Leventhal.  This agency snagged the "no arbitration offer" clause for Justin Duchscherer last offseason as well.  Correia signed a two-year deal with the Pirates, so this clause applies to the 2012-13 offseason.  More importantly, Correia has a million bucks in incentives for '12.
  • Carl Pavano, O'Connell Sports Management.  As a Type B after the '09 season, Pavano accepted the Twins' arbitration offer and took the one-year deal.  He moved up to a Type A this winter, and the draft pick cost possibly did give a few teams pause.  After the '12 season, Pavano will not be saddled with that cost.
  • The contract was negotiated six years ago, but Scott Boras client Carlos Beltran can't be offered arbitration after '11.  Beltran was pretty close to Type A for 2009-10 despite playing in only 145 games over that span.  Given his $18.5MM salary the arbitration offer question is probably moot for the Mets anyway.

Contract Details: Bruce, Lee, Jenks, Pirates, Gomez

Here are some recent updates on contracts from around the majors:


Pirates Sign Kevin Correia

The Pirates officially signed Kevin Correia to a two-year, $8MM deal.  He can earn another $1MM in performance bonuses; Dejan Kovacevic of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette has the contract breakdown.  The team announced the deal, with this quote from GM Neal Huntington:

"Kevin Correia is a solid major league starting pitcher and a strong addition to our rotation.  We feel he is poised for a return to his 2009 form where he gave his club a chance to win nearly every start while carrying a significant innings pitched workload."

ESPN.com's Jerry Crasnick broke news of the agreement.  Correia will join Paul Maholm, James McDonald, Ross Ohlendorf and possibly Scott Olsen in the Pirates' rotation. 

Aside from Yoslan Herrera, it has been 12 years since the Pirates last gave a free agent pitcher a multiyear deal – Cam Bonifay signed Pete Schourek to a two-year, $4MM deal in '98.  Back on November 10th, two MLBTR writers predicted Correia would sign with the Pirates.

Correia posted a 5.40 ERA with 7.1 K/9 and 4.0 BB/9 in 145 innings for the Padres in 2010. The 30-year-old missed time in May after his younger brother died in a tragic accident. He lost his rotation spot to Tim Stauffer after a trio of poor starts in late August. Agents Scott Leventhal and Damon Lapa did much better than I expected them to when I looked ahead to Correia's free agency this fall.

Correia’s walk rate jumped from 2.9 BB/9 to 4.0 BB/9 in 2010, but some of his stats reflect more favorably on his performance. Despite the righty's 5.40 ERA, defense-independent pitching stats suggest he was unlucky. Nearly 15% of fly balls hit off of Correia left the yard, so homers inflated his ERA. He induces ground balls and is just one year removed from a season in which he posted a 3.91 ERA in 33 starts, which likely contributed to GM Neal Huntington's willingness to make an $8MM guarantee.

The Padres offered Correia arbitration, so they'll obtain a supplementary first round pick in the 2011 draft for losing the Type B free agent.