Laynce Nix Rumors
Laynce Nix has cleared waivers, refused an outright assignment and become a free agent, according to MLB.com's Mark Sheldon (on Twitter). The 30-year-old batted .291/.350/.455 in 182 plate appearances this year after the Reds signed him to a minor league deal.
Nix played all three outfield positions for the second consecutive season, spending most of his time in left field. However, he missed weeks with a sprained left ankle in August and September and saw his homer total drop from 15 to four. The left-handed hitter has handled righties (.738 OPS) much better than lefties (.521 OPS) over the course of his eight-year MLB career.
Links for Saturday....
- With Rafael Furcal returning to the Dodgers, the out-of-options Nick Green is a candidate for demotion, writes Evan Drellich of MLB.com.
- Roy Oswalt told Houston owner Drayton McLane that he wouldn't mind coming back and finishing his career with the organization, tweets Alyson Footer of the Astros.
- More on Oswalt: Footer (via Twitter) is skeptical about the Mets' chances of acquiring Houston's ace. Meanwhile, manager Brad Mills doesn't expect Oswalt's trade request to be a clubhouse distraction, according to MLB.com's Brian McTaggart.
- At MLB.com, Peter Gammons takes a look at a few underachieving teams who are under pressure to make changes.
- Scott Olsen has been placed on the disabled list, but Stephen Strasburg won't be the pitcher called up to take his roster spot, tweets Bill Ladson of MLB.com.
- Jack Curry of the YES Network (via Twitter) asked Mets GM Omar Minaya if Jerry Manuel is managing to save his job. Minaya answered, "I don't want to say that. I wouldn't say that's the case."
- Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle tweets that Chad Gaudin received and turned down a minor league assignment offer from the A's.
- Mike Lowell told Scott Lauber of The Boston Herald that he has no regrets about passing on a four year, $37.5MM contract offer from the Phillies after the 2007 season.
- Jayson Werth said he's "played [his] entire career for this year," according to David Murphy of The Philadelphia Inquirer. Werth, of course, is referring to his contract year and impending free agent payday.
- Chris Iannetta remains the one who got away for the Red Sox, who almost drafted the catcher back in 2004 according to WEEI.com's Alex Speier.
- Joe Christensen of The Star Tribune analyzed the Carlos Gomez-J.J. Hardy trade now that we're six months out.
- John Fay of The Cincinnati Enquirer notes that the Reds have gotten tremendous production out of their bargain basement left field combo of Jonny Gomes and Laynce Nix ($1.4MM combined salary).
The Reds agreed to sign Laynce Nix to a minor league deal, tweets John Fay of the Cincinnati Enquirer. Nix became a free agent about a month ago, but the Reds stayed in contact with him and ultimately brought him back. Nix set a career high with 15 homers this year, hitting .239/.291/.476 in 337 plate appearances for the Reds.
Some Reds notes courtesy of John Fay of the Cincinnati Enquirer, who spoke to GM Walt Jocketty...
- Jocketty says the club is "open" to bringing back recently non-tendered Jonny Gomes. Talking to Gomes last night, Jocketty told the outfielder that they would like to "make it work," but didn't want to be locked in by arbitration.
- The GM continues to chat with Laynce Nix's agent and says something is "pretty close" to getting done. Nix elected free agency after being outrighted by the Reds in November.
- Fay mentioned the name of Alfredo Amezaga, who was non-tendered by the Marlins last night. While Jocketty noted that he is a good athlete, he mentioned that he has trouble staying healthy.
Links for Monday, the first day of the Winter Meetings in Indianapolis...
- The Padres have been linked to Reed Johnson, writes Bill Center of the San Diego Union-Tribune.
- The Reds are trying to re-sign Laynce Nix, according to MLB.com's Mark Sheldon.
- The Brewers hope to have a decision one way or another on Craig Counsell by week's end, says Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel. Also, the Brewers learned that reliever Mark DiFelice needs shoulder surgery, creating a stronger bullpen need (MLB.com's Adam McCalvy reporting).
- The Marlins would listen on arbitration-eligible starter Anibal Sanchez, reports MLB.com's Joe Frisaro.
- Chad Jennings of the LoHud Journal notes that Yanks GM Brian Cashman hitched a ride to Indianapolis with the Levinson brothers, so of course Jason Marquis came up.
- Yahoo's Tim Brown has some petty sniping from Scott Boras' camp toward Whitey Herzog for his comments about Matt Holliday.
- Victor Martinez's agent Alan Nero talked to WEEI's Alex Speier about the prospect of his client reaching free agency.
- The Orioles will meet with the Hendricks brothers about Aroldis Chapman before the Winter Meetings end, according to MASN's Roch Kubatko. ESPN's Jorge Arangure Jr. is hearing Chapman might not get much more than $20MM. Tyler Kepner of the New York Times tweets that the Yankees have interest at $15MM or less.
- Peter Schmuck of the Baltimore Sun learned that Orioles outfielder Felix Pie is drawing strong trade interest.
- Chien-Ming Wang will be ready by May 1st, his agent told Mark Feinsand of the New York Daily News. It'd still be surprising to see Wang tendered a contract on Saturday.
- Dave Sheinin of the Washington Post talked to John Smoltz's agent Keith Grunewald about his client's interest in the Nationals.
- Nationals manager Jim Riggleman suggested to WEEI's Alex Speier that the team would have to be overwhelmed to move Josh Willingham.
- ESPN's Keith Law explains why the Meetings are in Indy and suggests improvements to avoid the cold weather and other issues.
- The Cardinals expect Mark DeRosa to decline their arbitration offer today, according to Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. DeRosa's agent will meet with Yankees GM Brian Cashman this week, tweets Marc Carig of the Newark Star-Ledger.
- Tigers manager Jim Leyland assured John Tomase of the Boston Herald that his team is not having a fire sale.
John Fay of the Cincinnati Enquirer gathered a few bits of information Saturday from Reds general manager Walt Jocketty:
- The Reds have made an offer to Laynce Nix, who was outrighted off the 40-man roster this week and elected free agency. Jocketty believes he "may take it" but first wants to "see what's out there."
- Jocketty believes the Reds will be able to "get something done" with arbitration-eligible outfielder Jonny Gomes, who hit .267/.338/.541 in 2009 with 20 home runs and 51 RBI. It's not clear if the two sides are talking about a multi-year deal, but that would make some sense.
- Jocketty also had some nice things to say about the prospects that the Reds added to their 40-man roster on Friday, protecting them from December's Rule 5 Draft.
To track the Reds throughout the offseason, check out MLBTR's team archive.
Outfielder Laynce Nix has been outrighted by the Reds and elected free agency, according to MLB.com's Mark Sheldon. Nix was considered a non-tender candidate, as the Reds have plenty of outfielders already. In a few weeks they must decide whether to tender Jonny Gomes a contract (seems like a good idea to me).
Nix, 29, received the most playing time of his career since 2004 this year. He hit .239/.291/.476 in 337 plate appearances, knocking 15 home runs and playing left field. Reds manager Dusty Baker shielded him from left-handed pitching most of the year.
MLB.com's Mark Sheldon cleaned out his inbox and answered a few questions from Reds fans today. Here are some of the more pertinent details...
- The team would like to move Willy Taveras if they could, but there are very few takers for a player who posted a .240/.275/.285 line in 2009 and is due to make $4MM next season. Given his limited abilities and how Shelton feels that Taveras wouldn't be happy on the bench, the Reds have to consider cutting their losses with Taveras and releasing him.
- Micah Owings will likely not be used as trade bait, given that he is expected to compete for the fifth spot in the rotation and is also valuable out of the bullpen or as a pinch-hitter.
- Sheldon thinks that between Jonny Gomes and Laynce Nix, Gomes has "the better chance" of being tendered a contract.
- If neither man is brought back, Cincinnati will turn to a variety of in-house options for the left field job, including Wladimir Balentien, Chris Dickerson or prospects Juan Francisco, Chris Heisey and Todd Frazier.
- Sheldon believes Joey Votto "has earned the right" to remain as Cincinnati's everyday first baseman, and the Reds would only consider moving their young slugger to left field if prospect Yonder Alonso proved he was ready for the major leagues.
- No surprise here, but Shelton confirms that the Reds don't have the payroll to go after major free agents like Matt Holliday or Jason Bay.
The latest from Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports...
- Rosenthal praises Blue Jays GM J.P. Ricciardi for all the successful home-grown pitching this year. Surprisingly, the Jays are second in the AL with a 3.85 ERA despite losing most of last year's rotation.
- Why no extension for Rays manager Joe Maddon? He's unsigned beyond this year.
- Rosenthal gives props to Reds left fielder Laynce Nix, one of the best minor league signees so far.
- The Around The Horn section of the column is packed with amusing tidbits; be sure to check it out.
A minor move to start the day - the Reds have signed outfielder Laynce Nix to a minor league deal, according to John Fay of the Cincinnati Enquirer. Ken Rosenthal says Nix will earn $600K if he makes the Reds' roster, with incentives that could push the total to $1.1MM. Nix, 28, hit .284/.348/.539 in 103 Triple A games this year in the Brewers organization. He came to Milwaukee in the big Carlos Lee deal of '06. The Reds are short on outfield depth, and Nix might help.