Luis Ayala Rumors


Six Teams Pursuing Luis Ayala

There are six teams in on free agent reliever Luis Ayala, tweets Jim Bowden of ESPN XM radio, including the Mets, Yankees, Rays, Blue Jays, Angels and Red Sox.

Ayala was an excellent value signing for the Yankees in 2011 after inking a minor league contract in February. The right-hander, who did not appear in the Majors in 2010, posted a 2.09 ERA in 56 innings last season and could land a Major League contract this trip through free agency.

Of the clubs listed here, the Mets, Jays and Rays, in particular, have several openings in their respective bullpens, while Ayala could simply provide depth for a team like the Yankees or Red Sox.



Red Sox, Rays Have Checked In On Luis Ayala

The Yankees got solid work out of several players they signed to minor league contracts last season, including reliever Luis Ayala. Now, a pair of their division rivals have interest in the right-hander. Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports reports (on Twitter) that the Red Sox and Rays have checked in on Ayala this offseason.

Ayala, 34 in January, posted a 2.09 ERA in 56 innings for the Yankees last year, getting a ground ball 50% of the time. He struck out 6.27 batters for every nine innings pitched and walked 3.21 per nine. Ayala did not appear in the big leagues at all in 2010, and in 2009 he pitched to an ugly 5.63 ERA in 40 innings for the Twins and Marlins. His performance in New York figures to land him a guaranteed Major League contract this winter.



Yankees To Sign Luis Ayala

The Yankees agreed to sign reliever Luis Ayala to a minor league deal, according to Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports (Twitter links). The right-hander a career ERA of 3.67 with 5.9 K/9 and 2.1 BB/9 in parts of six major league seasons.

Ayala last appeared in the majors in 2009, but he has been pitching recently. The 33-year-old closed for Mexico in the Caribbean Series, according to Morosi. Another Mexican right-hander, former Yankee Alfredo Aceves, signed with the Red Sox yesterday.

Ayala will presumably compete for a spot at the back of the Yankees' bullpen with the likes of Buddy Carlyle, Neal Cotts and Mark Prior. There doesn't appear to be much room for competition in the Yankees' restocked 'pen, but spots could open up because of injuries or ineffectiveness.



Rockies Sign Luis Ayala

The Rockies signed reliever Luis Ayala and assigned him to Triple A, according to the transactions page for the Pacific Coast League. The right-hander has not pitched in the majors this year, though he did pitch 1.2 scoreless innings for Colorado Springs over the weekend.

Ayala, 32, last appeared in the majors last year when he posted a 5.63 ERA with 6.3 K/9 and 3.2 BB/9 for the Twins and Marlins. He posted similar numbers at Triple A in the Dodgers and D'Backs organizations this summer, before signing in Colorado. The Rockies continue to look for relievers, according to Jon Heyman of SI.com.



D'Backs Sign Luis Ayala

The D'Backs signed Luis Ayala to a minor league deal, according to Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports (via Twitter). D'Backs relievers have combined for a 7.90 ERA this year, so GM Josh Byrnes added a low-risk arm to his 'pen. The club added Saul Rivera earlier in the week, only to see him surrender five runs in his first appearance.

Ayala signed with the Dodgers this winter and appeared in 14 Triple A games this year, where he posted a 4.50 ERA with 6.4 K/9 and 4.5 BB/9. As Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic notes (via Twitter), the 32-year-old right-hander was recently released. 

Ayala posted a 5.68 ERA with four major league clubs over the course of the last two seasons. Last year, he mixed a low 90s fastball with sliders and the occasional change to strike out about twice as many batters as he walked. Ayala has had much more success against right-handed batters over the course of his career.



Odds & Ends: Storen, Duchscherer, Johnson

Links for Sunday, as we wait to see if the Dodgers can extend their six-game winning streak....



Dodgers Sign Luis Ayala

Dylan Hernandez of the LA Times reports (via Twitter) that the Dodgers have signed Luis Ayala to a minor league contract with an invite to spring training.  Hernandez added that should Ayala make L.A.'s major league roster, the reliever will earn $750K, and can earn another $100K based on appearances.

We learned last week that the Dodgers and Rockies were both looking to sign the free agent right-hander to a minor league deal.  Ayala posted a 5.62 ERA in 38 appearances with the Twins and Marlins in 2009, and has a career ERA of 3.64 and a career K:BB ratio of 2.77 over six seasons in the bigs.



Dodgers, Rockies Possible For Luis Ayala

TUESDAY: Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports tweets that we should expect Ayala to ink a minor league deal with the Dodgers or Rockies.

THURSDAY: Dylan Hernandez of The LA Times tweets that the Dodgers are in discussions with free agent reliever Luis Ayala about a minor league contract.

Ayala, 32 in January, posted a 5.62 ERA in 40 innings in 2009, mostly for the Twins but some for the Marlins. Over the last two seasons, he's posted a 5.68 ERA in 115.2 innings.



Odds & Ends: Orioles, Ayala, Kata, Nationals

Another round of links on me...

  • Peter Schmuck of The Baltimore Sun says it's time for Andy MacPhail to use some of his minor league inventory to land the Orioles a middle of the order hitter, while possibly gambling on a high quality free agent pitcher with an injury history. Personally, I don't think making moves like that will do much to improve the O's chances of competing in the AL East. They're on the right track now, with an impressive core of young talent highlighted by Nick Markakis, Adam Jones, Matt Wieters, Nolan Reimold, Brian Matusz, and Chris Tillman. Patience.
  • According to Juan C. Rodriguez of The Sun Sentinel, veteran reliever Luis Ayala has elected to become a free agent. The Marlins designated him for assignment last week.
  • MLB.com's Brian McTaggart tweets that the Astros outrighted infielder Matt Kata off the 40-man roster. I sure hope he wasn't waiting on that September callup.
  • The Nationals have fired director of player development Bobby Williams, reports Chico Harlan of The Washinton Post. Williams had a long standing relationship with previous GM Jim Bowden, and his firing represents the first significant front office move made by new permanent GM Mike Rizzo.
  • Are you a draft nut like me, but struggling to find ways to pass the time until next June? Then check out this NPB Draft projection by Patrick at NPB Tracker. High school pitcher Yusei Kikuchi, who has drawn interest from several MLB clubs, is the consensus top talent this year. 



Odds & Ends: Diamond, Penny, Pelekoudas

Links for Tuesday...

  • Chat today, 2pm CST.
  • The Rangers designated pitcher Thomas Diamond for assignment, according to MLB.com's T.R. Sullivan.  Diamond was the 10th overall pick in the 2004 draft.  He was considered the #52 prospect in the game by Baseball America in '05, but he had Tommy John surgery in '07 and dealt with shoulder soreness this year.
  • ESPN's Buster Olney says the Angels were in on Brad Penny, with a bullpen role in mind.
  • Stephen Strasburg has a few things to learn about dealing with media attention, says John Feinstein of the Washington Post.
  • Mariners Associate GM Lee Pelekoudas has resigned to pursue other career opportunities, according to a team press release.  Pelekoudas was the Ms' interim GM before Jack Zduriencik was hired.  He spent 30 years in the organization. 
  • USA Today's Paul White writes about the stigma of a college degree for ballplayers.
  • Sam Mellinger of the Kansas City Star suggests newly-extended GM Dayton Moore, and not the Glass family, is accountable for the Royals' future performance.
  • Reliever Luis Ayala, recently designated for assignment by the Marlins after pitching badly, was upset by the team's "lack of respect" (Juan C. Rodriguez of the South Florida Sun-Sentinel reporting).  Ayala earned $1.3MM for his 5.63 ERA this year in 40 innings.









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