Lou Marson Rumors

Reds Sign Shelley Duncan, Lou Marson

The Reds have signed first baseman/outfielder Shelley Duncan and catcher Lou Marson to minor league deals, tweets Baseball America’s Matt Eddy. As Eddy points out, each was released by other organizations in Spring Training (Marson by the Phillies, Duncan by the D’Backs).

Duncan, 34, appeared in 20 games for the Rays in 2014, totaling 64 plate appearances and a .182/.297/.309 batting line with a pair of homers. The brother of former Cardinals slugger Chris Duncan and son of renowned pitching coach Dave Duncan, Shelley has seen action in parts of seven big league seasons with the Yankees, Indians and Rays. He was a very useful bench bat for the Tribe in 2010-11 and hit exactly 11 Major League homers in three consecutive seasons from 2010-12.

Marson, 27, was Cleveland’s backup catcher for much of the time that Duncan was filling a reserve role there. He’s a career .219/.309/.299 hitter that has been excellent at throwing out base-stealers in his career (31 percent) but struggled in terms of pitch framing. The former fourth-round pick was once one of the Phillies’ top prospects and one of the Top 100 in the game, per Baseball America — a standing which Philadelphia leveraged when it included Marson as one of four players sent to Cleveland in the 2009 Cliff Lee trade.


Phillies Release Lou Marson

The Phillies announced their next wave of cuts this morning, and among the casualties was catcher Lou Marson, who was released by the team. Philadelphia optioned/reassigned eight more players to minor league camp, but Marson was the only release or outright.

Marson, a former Top 100 prospect (per Baseball America), returned to the organization that originally drafted him on a minor league deal this offseason. The 2004 fourth-round pick was dealt to the Indians back in 2009's Cliff Lee deal and spent parts of four seasons as the Indians' primary backup catcher. However, a right shoulder injury cost him nearly all of the 2013 season and helped open the door for Yan Gomes to take over as the Tribe's top catching option.

Marson received just three plate appearances in official games with the Phillies this spring. Known more for his defense than his bat, the 27-year-old Marson is a career .219/.309/.299 hitter with five homers in 882 Major League plate appearances.


Phillies Sign O’Sullivan, Sappelt, Gwynn, Marson

The Phillies announced that they've signed right-hander Sean O'Sullivan, outfielders Dave Sappelt and Tony Gwynn Jr. and catcher Lou Marson to minor league deals with invitations to Spring Training.

O'Sullivan, 26, posted a 3.96 ERA in 25 innings (three starts, four relief appearances) for the Padres last season. However, the former Angel and Royal also walked more batters (14) than he struck out (12) in that time. O'Sullivan has struggled overall at the Major League level, pitching to a 5.89 ERA with 4.2 K/9 and 3.5 BB/9 in 218 2/3 innings. The former third-round pick has a 4.40 ERA with 6.1 K/9 and 2.7 BB/9 in 486 1/3 career innings at Triple-A.

Sappelt, 27 in January, batted .240/.269/.280 in 78 plate appearances for the Cubs in 2013. One of three players acquired by Chicago in the trade that sent Sean Marshall to the Reds (the others were Travis Wood and Ronald Torreyes), Sappelt is a career .251/.301/.343 hitter in 274 big league plate appearances. He's been much better at Triple-A, batting .279/.332/.402 in 1356 PAs.

Gwynn spent the bulk of the 2013 campaign with the Dodgers' Triple-A affiliate, where he batted .300/.393/.384 with a pair of homers and 12 steals in 391 plate appearances. The 31-year-old is an outstanding defender in center field, making him a nice depth piece for the Phils.

Marson, 27, was drafted by the Phillies in the fourth round of the 2004 draft. Philly traded him to the Indians along with Jason Knapp (who is attempting a comeback), Carlos Carrasco and Jason Donald in the 2008 blockbuster that netted Cliff Lee. Marson spent most of the 2013 season on the disabled list with right shoulder inflammation. Yan Gomes' breakout with the Indians displaced Marson as the team's backup catcher. He is a .219/.309/.299 career hitter in 882 Major League PAs.



American League Non-Tenders

Major League clubs have until 11pm CT tonight to tender contracts to players for the 2014 season. We'll run down the list of American League non-tenders here. Remember that you can track all of the action using MLBTR's Non-Tender tracker, and we offer a full list of non-tender candidates as well. Also of use will be our Arbitration Eligibles series, which includes Matt Swartz's projected 2014 salaries for all arbitration eligible players.

  • The Orioles announced they've non-tendered outfielder Jason Pridie and minor league starter Eddie Gamboa.
  • The Rays will non-tender reliever Wesley Wright, tweets Roger Mooney of the Tampa Tribune.
  • The Red Sox announced that they have non-tendered outfielder Ryan Kalish, Mike Salk of WEEI.com tweets.
  • The White Sox will not tender a contract to pitcher Dylan Axelrod, tweets Colleen Kane of the Chicago Tribune.
  • The Angels will non-tender pitcher Jerome Williams, tweets  Mike DiGiovanna of the Los Angeles Times. The club will also non-tender righty Tommy Hanson and third baseman Chris Nelson, tweets DiGiovanna. J.C. Gutierrez will also be non-tendered, tweets Alden Gonzalez of MLB.com, though that seemed a given since that he had already been designated for assignment.
  • The Indians have non-tendered outfielder Matt Carson, pitcher Tyler Cloyd, and catcher Lou Marson, the club announced.
  • The Rays are non-tendering outfielder Sam Fuld, a source tells Jerry Crasnick of ESPN.com (Twitter link). Fuld, who will turn 32 in a few weeks, could be a lefty-swinging bench piece for another club, though he slashed only .199/.270/.267 last year in 200 plate appearances for Tampa.
  • GM Brian Cashman says that the Yankees will non-tender infielder Jayson Nix, tweets Anthony McCarron of the New York Daily News. The 31-year-old veteran appeared in 87 games for New York last season, putting up a .236/.308/.311 line in 303 plate appearances. The club will also non-tender reliever Matt Daley and infielder David Adams. New York confirmed the moves via press release.
  • The Royals announced that they have non-tendered second baseman Chris Getz. The 30-year-old Getz has tried to hold down Kansas City's keystone spot for several years now but produced just a .246/.299/.314 batting line from 2012-13. Swartz had pegged Getz for a $1.3MM salary in 2014.

Players Avoiding Arbitration: Friday

Dozens of players will agree to terms with their respective teams today and avoid arbitration. We'll have detailed posts on the top earners around MLB, and we'll track more modest agreements — those worth less than $4MM — right here. MLBTR's Arbitration Tracker will have all of the details.

Teams had until 12pm CDT today to exchange filing numbers with their arbitration eligible players. Generally speaking the deadline creates lots of discussion and leads to early deals. Plus, for ‘file and trial’ teams this marks the final chance for negotiations in advance of a hearing. Here are the latest agreements from around MLB…

  • The Padres announced that they have avoided arbitration with Edinson Volquez.  Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
  • The Red Sox announced that they avoided arbitration with Andrew Bailey ($4.1MM), Daniel Bard ($1.8625MM), Andrew Miller ($1.475MM), and Franklin Morales ($1.4875MM).  Terms courtesy of WEEI.com's Rob Bradford.
  • The Mets and Bobby Parnell avoided arb with a $1.7MM deal, Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com reports (on Twitter).
  • The Red Sox avoided arbitration with Alfredo Aceves, agreeing to a deal worth $2.65MM plus incentives, according to O'Connell Sports Management, Aceves' agency (on Twitter via Jon Heyman).
  • The Cubs avoided arbitration with James Russell and Jeff Samardzija, Jesse Rogers of ESPNChicago.com reports (on Twitter). Samardzija obtains $2.64MM while Russell gets $1.075MM, Bruce Levine of ESPNChicago.com reports (on Twitter).
  • The Diamondbacks announced that they avoided arbitration with Chris Johnson ($2.2875MM). The team also avoided arbitration with Brad Ziegler ($3.15MM), agreeing to a one-year deal, ESPN.com's Jayson Stark reports (on Twitter).  Terms courtesy of Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic (on Twitter).
  • The Nationals announced that they agreed to terms with Tyler Clippard, avoiding arbitration (via Amanda Comak on Twitter). The Nationals avoided arbitration with Ian Desmond, agreeing to a one-year, $3.8MM deal, Amanda Comak of the Washington Times reports (on Twitter). The Nationals also avoided arb with Roger Bernadina according to the outfielder's agent, James Wagner of the Washington Post reports (on Twitter). The Nationals and Ross Detwiler agreed to a one-year, $2.3375MM contract, according to CAA (via Twitter).
  • Brennan Boesch and Phil Coke avoided arbitration, agreeing to one-year deals with the Tigers, Jason Beck of MLB.com reports (on Twitter). Boesch will earn $2.3MM while Coke will earn $1.85MM. The Tigers also avoided arbitration with Alex Avila, agreeing to a one-year, $2.95MM deal, Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com reports (all Twitter links). Austin Jackson agreed to a deal worth $3.5MM for 2013, Heyman reports. Doug Fister obtained a one-year, $4MM deal from Detroit, Heyman reports.
  • The Dodgers and A.J. Ellis avoided arbitration, agreeing to a one-year, $2MM deal, Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com reports (on Twitter). Ronald Belisario agreed to a one-year, $1.45MM deal, MLB.com's Ken Gurnick reports (on Twitter).
  • The Mariners announced that they avoided arbitration with Kendrys Morales and Brendan Ryan on one-year agreements for 2013. Morales will obtain $5.25MM plus performance bonuses, Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com reports (on Twitter). Ryan obtained $3.25MM, Heyman reports (on Twitter).
  • The Rockies avoided arb with Tyler Colvin, agreeing to a one-year deal, the team announced (on Twitter). Colvin will earn $2.275MM, Troy Renck of the Denver Post writes (on Twitter).
  • The Braves avoided arbitration with Cristhian Martinez, agreeing to a one-year deal, MLB.com's Mark Bowman reports (on Twitter). The Braves avoided arb with Kris Medlen, David O'Brien of the Atlanta Journal Constitution reports (on Twitter). Medlen will earn $2.6MM in 2013. They also avoided arb with Jason Heyward, agreeing to a one-year, $3.65MM deal, Bowman reports (onTwitter). The Braves agreed with another young player, avoiding arb with Jonny Venters, O'Brien reports (on Twitter). It's a $1.625MM deal. Earlier today the Braves agreed to a one-year deal with Eric O'Flaherty, avoiding arbitration, Bowman reported (on Twitter). He'll earn $4.32MM plus awards bonuses, Bowman adds.
  • The Athletics announced they avoided arb with Jerry Blevins and Brandon Moss, agreeing to one-year deals for 2013.
  • The Cardinals avoided arb with Mitchell Boggs and Edward Mujica, B.J. Rains of FOX Sports MidWest reports (on Twitter).
  • The Indians announced that they avoided arb with Matt Albers and Justin Masterson. Albers will earn $1.75MM in 2013, MLB.com's Jordan Bastian reports (on Twitter). Masterson will earn $5.6875MM according to Bastian (on Twitter). The Indians and Joe Smith avoided arbitration with a one-year, $3.15MM deal, Bastian reported earlier today (on Twitter). The Indians also avoided arbitration with Lou Marson, Bastian reports (Twitter links). The catcher will earn $1MM on a one-year deal in 2013.
  • The Astros avoided arb with Wesley Wright, agreeing to a one-year deal, MLB.com's Brian McTaggart reports (on Twitter).  Wright will earn $1.025MM, according to Heyman (on Twitter). Earlier today the Astros and Bud Norris avoided arb with a one-year, $3MM deal, McTaggart reports (on Twitter). The Astros and Jed Lowrie avoided arbitration with a one-year, $2.4MM deal with awards bonuses, according to his representatives at CAA Baseball (on Twitter).
  • The White Sox announced that they avoided arbitration with Alejandro De Aza, agreeing to a $2.075MM deal for 2013. The White Sox also avoided arb with Gordon Beckham, agreeing to a one-year deal worth $2.925MM for 2013, MLBTR has learned.
  • The Orioles announced that they avoided arb with Chris Davis and Brian Matusz (Twitter link). Matusz gets a base salary of $1.6MM while Davis gets $3.3MM, Dan Connolly of the Baltimore Sun reports (Twitter links). The Orioles also avoided arbitration with Troy Patton. The sides agreed to a one-year, $815K deal, his agency, CAA Sports, announced on Twitter
  • The Brewers avoided arb with right-hander Marco Estrada and reliever Burke Badenhop, Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports (Twitter links). Estrada will earn $1.955MM while Badenhop will earn $1.55MM, Haudricourt reports.
  • The Rays avoided arbitration with Matthew Joyce and Ryan Roberts, Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports (on Twitter). Joyce will earn $2.45MM and Roberts will earn $2.95MM plus incentives, the Rays announced. The Rays also avoided arbitration with Sam Fuld, agreeing to a one-year, $725K deal, Topkin reported (on Twitter). Earlier today the Rays avoided arbitration with Jeff Niemann. The sides agreed to a one-year, $3MM deal, Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com reports (on Twitter).
  • The Royals announced that they avoided arbitration with Luke Hochevar, agreeing to a one-year deal for 2013. Hochevar will earn $4.56MM plus performance bonuses, Pete Grathoff of the Kansas City Star reports (on Twitter).
  • The Yankees avoided arb with Boone Logan, agreeing to a one-year, $3.15MM deal (via CAA Sports on Twitter).
  • The Padres avoided arb with John Baker, agreeing to a $930K deal (via CAA Sports on Twitter).
  • The Twins and Brian Duensing avoided arb with a $1.3MM deal for 2013 (via CAA Sports on Twitter).
  • The Marlins avoided arbitration with Ryan Webb, agreeing to a $975K deal, Clark Spencer of the Miami Herald reports (on Twitter).
  • The Blue Jays announced that they avoided arbitration with Emilio Bonifacio by agreeing to a one-year, $2.6MM deal. The Blue Jays also announced that they avoided arbitration with J.A. Happ, agreeing to a one-year, $3.7MM deal for 2013.
  • The Angels and Tommy Hanson avoided arbitration with a one-year, $3.725MM deal, Jeff Fletcher of the Orange County Register reports. 
  • The Giants avoided arb with Gregor Blanco, agreeing to a one-year, $1.35MM deal, Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com reports (on Twitter).
  • The Phillies announced that they avoided arbitration with Antonio Bastardo with a $1.4MM contract for 2013.
  • Gaby Sanchez and the Pirates have reached agreement on a one-year, $1.75MM deal plus bonuses to avoid arbitration, according to the Beverly Hills Sports Council (on Twitter).

Full Story | Comments | Categories: A.J. Ellis | Alejandro De Aza | Alex Avila | Alfredo Aceves | Andrew Bailey | Andrew Miller | Antonio Bastardo | Arizona Diamondbacks | Atlanta Braves | Austin Jackson | Baltimore Orioles | Bobby Parnell | Boone Logan | Boston Red Sox | Brad Ziegler | Brandon Moss | Brennan Boesch | Brian Duensing | Brian Matusz | Bud Norris | Burke Badenhop | Chicago Cubs | Chicago White Sox | Chris Davis | Chris Johnson | Cleveland Indians | Colorado Rockies | Cristhian Martinez | Daniel Bard | Detroit Tigers | Doug Fister | Edinson Volquez | Edward Mujica | Emilio Bonifacio | Eric O'Flaherty | Franklin Morales | Gaby Sanchez | Gordon Beckham | Gregor Blanco | Houston Astros | Ian Desmond | J.A. Happ | Jason Heyward | Jed Lowrie | Jeff Niemann | Jeff Samardzija | Jerry Blevins | Joe Smith | Josh Thole | Justin Masterson | Kansas City Royals | Kendrys Morales | Kris Medlen | Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim | Los Angeles Dodgers | Lou Marson | Luke Hochevar | Matt Albers | Matt Joyce | Miami Marlins | Milwaukee Brewers | Minnesota Twins | Mitchell Boggs | New York Mets | New York Yankees | Oakland Athletics | Phil Coke | Philadelphia Phillies | Pittsburgh Pirates | Roger Bernadina | Ronald Belisario | Ross Detwiler | Ryan Roberts | Sam Fuld | San Diego Padres | San Francisco Giants | Seattle Mariners | St. Louis Cardinals | Tampa Bay Rays | Tommy Hanson | Toronto Blue Jays | Transactions | Troy Patton | Tyler Clippard | Tyler Colvin | Washington Nationals

Quick Hits: Cespedes, Pierzynski, Molina, Selig

A few news items to wrap up a busy Monday…

  • The Cubs, Marlins and Tigers are the three teams most actively targeting Yoenis Cespedes, reports FOX Sports' Ken Rosenthal (Twitter link).  Last week, Cespedes said the Cubs were his most ardent suitor, with the Marlins, Tigers, Orioles, White Sox and Indians also showing "more interest" in him.
  • White Sox catcher A.J. Pierzynski tells MLB.com's Scott Merkin that he plans to continue playing after 2012.  Pierzynski, 35, has spent the last seven years with the Sox and is a free agent after this season.
  • Yadier Molina's future with the Cardinals is debated in a St. Louis Post-Dispatch roundtable.
  • Bud Selig's two-year contract extension was officially finalized and announced today, Major League Baseball announced.  Selig will remain commissioner through the 2014 season.  The extension was approved by a unanimous 30-0 vote amongst team owners.
  • Derrek Lee could retire if he doesn't find "a perfect situation," tweets Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com.  Yesterday, Joel Sherman of the New York Post said Lee could be in for a Jermaine Dye-esque "forced retirement" since no team would be willing to meet his desired price.
  • The Rays reportedly have interest in Edgar Renteria for a bench spot, writes Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times.
  • The Astros will consider uniform changes and even possibly a name change for 2013, new club owner Jim Crane announced at a press conference today (passed on by Zachary Levine of the Houston Chronicle).
  • Indians catcher Lou Marson could see a lot of playing time against left-handed pitching, writes MLB.com's Jordan Bastian.  Regular catcher Carlos Santana could play at first base on the days the strong-armed Marson (who threw out 33.3% of baserunners last year) is behind the plate.  The right-handed hitting Marson has a .285/.367/.395 career line against southpaws and would add balance to an Indians lineup that is very heavy on left-handed bats.

Cafardo’s Latest: Felix Hernandez, Red Sox

Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe has his Sunday column up. Let's have a look.

  • Cafardo expects the Red Sox to make another push for Felix Hernandez in the offseason. Hernandez's price tag could prove too high for Seattle to retain him; however, they are open to extending him. Before the deadline, the Red Sox reportedly offered a 5-for-1 deal for the ace that Seattle turned down.
  • The Indians have yet to see dividends pay for the players they received for Cliff Lee. Cafardo writes, "Righty Carlos Carrasco is 0-2 with a 9.64 ERA (six homers in 14 innings); catcher Lou Marson is hitting .154; shortstop Jason Donald went on the disabled list in Triple A; and righty Jason Knapp underwent surgery to remove fragments from his shoulder."
  • Cafardo wonders if the Nats would've dealt Cristian Guzman had they known Ian Desmond would emerge as their shortstop of the future.
  • Chiming in on the Jason Bay or Matt Holliday discussion, Cafardo quotes scouts who seem to have him leaning toward Holliday as the better option, particularly for Boston.

Odds And Ends: Colon, Lee, Bedard, Ligtenberg

More links for the afternoon…


Stark On Peavy, Oswalt, Phillies, DeRosa, Giants

Let's take a look at the latest Rumblings and Grumblings column from ESPN's Jayson Stark.

  • The Padres' recent winning streak has not changed their intention of trading Jake Peavy.  The Dodgers and Cubs are in Peavy's first tier of choices, follwed by the Giants, Cardinals, and Astros.  The Angels would be the one AL team he'd consider.  The East Coast is a long shot.  Also, Peavy will want his 2011-13 partial no-trade clause to become a full no-trade.  Peavy's friend Roy Oswalt has been unsuccessful in lobbying Astros owner Drayton McLane, as the 'Stros can't take on Peavy's contract.  As for the Dodgers, GM Ned Colletti told the L.A. Times he hasn't talked to the Padres about Peavy since the pitcher vetoed the White Sox deal.
  • Stark talked to scouts who believe Oswalt has "lost his edge" and needs a change of scenery.  The Phillies have inquired on him, but they've asked about everyone: Peavy, Brandon Webb, Roy Halladay, Doug Davis, Erik Bedard, Cliff Lee, Aaron Harang, Brad Penny, Chris Young and Jason Marquis.  Popular Phillies trade targets include Lou Marson, Jason Donald, Carlos Carrasco, Travis D'Arnaud, Freddy Galvis, Kyle Drabek, Dominic Brown, and Antonio Bastardo.
  • The Braves are interested in bringing Mark DeRosa back to Atlanta.  He came up with them and was non-tendered in '04 after tearing his ACL.  But to deal young arms, the Braves would want an impact bat.  Stark says they're "mostly listening" rather than shopping Jeff Francoeur.  His trade value is difficult to gauge.
  • The Mets seem content to wait out the first base trade market.
  • The Giants seek a middle-of-the-order bat, and Jonathan Sanchez is being dangled.  Three targets they haven't had success on are Dan Uggla, Jorge Cantu, and possibly Carlos Lee.  Lee, according to one Stark source, doesn't intend to waive his no-trade for anyone.

Odds and Ends: Hudson, Cano, Mariners GM

Links for Wednesday…

  • ESPN’s Jayson Stark reminds us that Manny Ramirez could’ve been traded to the Phillies in July.  But the Phils wouldn’t offer Lou Marson, didn’t like the idea of Manny in right field, and were concerned about Ramirez’s hustle.
  • Matthew Cerrone of MetsBlog gives his early sense of the team’s offseason approach.  He doesn’t seem them splurging on one of the big free agent names.
  • MLB.com’s Marty Noble heard Orlando Hudson "yearns to play for the Mets" (hat tip to MetsBlog).
  • Jamey Newberg believes in the Rangers’ plan.
  • Joel Sherman of the New York Post doesn’t believe Robinson Cano will be traded, because the Yankees are valuing him as if 2008 did not occur.  He names Fausto Carmona as an example of a pitcher the Yanks would not accept for Cano.
  • Sherman also notes that Bobby Abreu and the ivy-covered brick wall at Wrigley might not be the best match.
  • The Mariners will interview five people for their GM vacancy this week: Peter Woodfork (D’Backs), Jerry DiPoto (D’Backs), Tony Bernazard (Mets), Kim Ng (Dodgers), and Tony LaCava (Blue Jays).
  • The Angels signed Korean pitcher Jang Pil-Joong, who just finished serving in the army.
  • I did a couple of interviews recently: over the phone with MLB Interviews and over email with Pinstripes Published.