Martin Prado Rumors

Justin Upton Rumors: Wednesday

The Diamondbacks are willing to listen to offers for Justin Upton, but they’re not looking for prospects. "We're still in win mode,” GM Kevin Towers told Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic. We’ll track the latest rumors on Upton here with the most recent updates up top.

  • Olney suggests the Braves could be a fit for Upton (Twitter links). Atlanta could build a deal around third baseman/outfielder Martin Prado and pitching prospects, Olney writes. Upton would balance the Braves' lineup and provide the team with cost certainty going forward, Olney adds.
  • The Diamondbacks believe they could obtain a package of perhaps three players for Upton, Piecoro writes. Towers said he’s not shopping the right fielder, but will listen in case an enticing offer emerges. “Clubs have asked; I've said, 'Hey, tell me what you would do.' We could either say yes or say no," the GM told Piecoro.
  • The Rangers could make sense as a suitor for Upton, ESPN.com’s Buster Olney suggests (all Twitter links). The Diamondbacks could be interested in third base prospect Mike Olt and the Rangers could like the idea of adding outfield depth with Josh Hamilton headed toward free agency.
  • Upton has no-trade protection that allows him to block deals to some big-market teams, including the Yankees, according to Olney.

Quick Hits: Draft Pools, Young, Jurrjens, Prado, Pudge

The city of Montreal will pay tribute to former Expos great Gary Carter by naming a street or other public place in his honor, reports Linda Gyulai of the Montreal Gazette.  City officials will consult with the Carter family to find an "appropriate" location to bear the Hall of Famer catcher's name.  Carter passed away last Thursday after a lengthy battle with brain cancer.

Some news from around the majors….

  • Jim Callis of Baseball America breaks down how much each team will have to spend in the first 10 rounds of the 2012 draft. The Twins top the list, able to spend as much as $12.37MM to sign their 13 picks over the initial 10 rounds, while the Angels ($1.645MM) have the least to spend on their eight picks over the same stretch.
  • The draft pool totals will shift if Derrek Lee — the last free agent with compensation attached to him — signs a Major League deal with a new team.  As Callis notes, however, it's pretty unlikely that Lee will find such a deal at this point.
  • The Pirates and Phillies both passed on signing Dmitri Young after working him out in Florida this months, reports MLB.com's Matthew Leach. Even if Young's baseball comeback falls short, he says the real victory is his improved health, having lost over 70 pounds.
  • Jair Jurrjens and Martin Prado are both pleased to still be Braves after a long winter of trade rumors surrounding both men, reports MLB.com's Mark Bowman.
  • Ivan Rodriguez isn't prepared to retire and is keeping in shape for a possible job this season, he tells the Associated Press. "It has been a tough market for veterans," Rodriguez said. "There are a lot of guys who have won championships and have playoff experience to offer teams with no jobs. It's hard to believe.''

Braves Avoid Arbitration With Martin Prado

The Braves have agreed to a one-year, $4.75MM contract with Martin Prado, avoiding arbitration with the infielder, reports MLB.com's Mark Bowman (both Twitter links).  The $4.75MM figure was slightly higher than the $4.4MM projected by MLBTR contributor Matt Swartz as Prado's 2012 salary.  Prado, a client of Peter E. Greenberg & Associates, was going through the arb process for the second time.

Prado is coming off a disappointing .260/.302/.385 season for Atlanta, but he has been the subject of several trade rumors this winter, with the Rockies, Orioles, and Royals just a few of the clubs attached to the versatile 28-year-old.  Prado played mostly left field in 2011, but has experience all over the infield, particularly at second (before the Braves acquired Dan Uggla) and third (where Prado proved valuable as a fill-in for Chipper Jones last year).  Atlanta GM Frank Wren, however, said last week that he believed Prado would still be a Brave by the start of Spring Training.

With Prado's contract settled, the Braves still have three remaining arb-eligible players — Michael Bourn, Jair Jurrjens and Eric O'Flaherty.  You can track all of this winter's arb cases on the MLBTR Arbitration Tracker.



Quick Hits: Manny, Braves, Oliver, Tejada

Some links as Thursday turns into Friday…


Rockies Notes: Prado, Jurrjens, Spilborghs, Ross

Troy Renck of the Denver Post shared a number of Rockies tidbits with his Twitter followers this afternoon.  Here are a few of the hot stove-related highlights…


Braves, Orioles Discussed Jones, Pitchers

The Braves and Orioles discussed a possible Adam Jones trade recently, but talks didn’t progress far, ESPN.com’s Jerry Crasnick reports (all Twitter links). The Orioles wanted Jair Jurrjens, Martin Prado and at least two of Brandon Beachy, Mike Minor, Julio Teheran, Arodys Vizcaino and Randall Delgado. The Braves weren’t interested at that price, Crasnick writes.

Conflicting reports about the Braves’ interest level in Jones emerged yesterday, but it appears some preliminary discussions occurred. Orioles GM Dan Duquette joined Jim Bowden and Casey Stern on MLB Network Radio this week and explained that the Orioles are trying to "build around" Jones. "When you have some good players, other teams are interested," he said. "We're not marketing Adam Jones." However, he stopped short of guaranteeing that Jones would stay put.


O’s Turned Down Braves’ Offer For Adam Jones?

The Braves made a run at Orioles outfielder Adam Jones earlier this month, according to Dan Connolly of the Baltimore Sun. Connolly reports that Atlanta offered Jair Jurrjens, Martin Prado, and a pitching prospect for Jones, but the O's "didn't bite," indicating how much they value their center fielder.

However, a source familiar with the negotiations tells Mark Bowman of MLB.com that the Braves merely expressed interest in Jones and did not offer any particular package. The O's told the Braves that Jones was unavailable, Bowman adds, then got back to the Braves later and asked for Jurrjens, Prado and "two other premium guys," which the Braves declined.

It was reported earlier in the month that the Orioles and Braves talked about Jurrjens and Prado, though it hadn't been confirmed that Jones was also discussed. Here are the rest of this morning's Orioles notes:

  • Connolly and Roch Kubatko of MASNSports.com both address a report indicating the Orioles are in on Prince Fielder, concluding that Fielder coming to Baltimore is an extreme long-shot unless his asking price drops significantly.
  • Although the Orioles are looking for starting pitching and Roy Oswalt is reportedly willing to accept a one-year contract, the righty probably isn't a realistic target for Baltimore. The O's play in the wrong ballpark and wrong division for Oswalt to boost his stock on a make-good deal, says Connolly.
  • Connolly adds that the Orioles continue to discuss Wei-Yin Chen internally and externally.

NL East Notes: DeRosa, Hamels, Martinez, Prado

Ed Wade is heading back to the NL East after four years in Houston. Here are more links from the division, starting with Wade’s longtime team…

  • Mark DeRosa says he's interested in playing for the Nationals, according to MLB.com's Bill Ladson (Twitter links). However, other teams are interested and DeRosa is not close to making a decision.
  • Phillies GM Ruben Amaro Jr. says he's comfortable heading into Spring Training with the team he has, according to Paul Hagen of MLB.com. The Phillies have already made major free agent signings, added complementary players such as Laynce Nix, Jim Thome and Dontrelle Willis and signed players to minor league deals, as our Free Agent Tracker shows.
  • Those who know Cole Hamels doubt he would give the Phillies much of a discount on a potential extension, according to Tyler Kepner of the New York Times. The 27-year-old John Boggs & Associates client posted a 2.79 ERA with 8.1 K/9, 1.8 BB/9 and a 52.3% ground ball rate in 215 innings this past season. He's set to hit free agency after the 2012 season (MLBTR contributor Matt Swartz projects a $14MM salary for Hamels in his final season of arbitration eligibility).
  • Adam Rubin of ESPNNewYork.com shows that the Mets already have a projected payroll in the $90MM range. GM Sandy Alderson has suggested the team's payroll could be less than $100MM, so the Mets may not have much offseason shopping remaining.
  • The Mets are interested in catcher Luis Martinez, who was designated for assignment by the Padres on Sunday, according to Mike Puma of the New York Post (on Twitter). The 26-year-old hit .203/.309/.305 in 68 plate appearances with the Padres this past season.
  • The Braves and Rockies have continued discussing a possible deal that would send Seth Smith to Atlanta for Martin Prado, according to MLB.com's Thomas Harding. The Braves appear to be seeing what they can get for Jair Jurrjens first, however. Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports examined possible suitors for Smith earlier today, including the Braves despite their preference for a right-handed hitter. 

Orioles, Braves Discussed Trade For Jurrjens, Prado

The Orioles and Braves have discussed a deal that included both righty Jair Jurrjens and infielder/outfielder Martin Prado, reported Ken Rosenthal and Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports yesterday.  However, the FOX writers find it unlikely that the Braves would package both chips in one trade.

Jurrjens, 25, posted a 2.96 ERA, 5.3 K/9, 2.6 BB/9, 0.83 HR/9, and 42% groundball rate in 152 innings this year, missing time with oblique and knee injuries.  His skills continue to suggest an ERA around 4.40, and he's only reached 190 innings once, but sub-3.00 ERAs in '09 and '11 may have allowed Jurrjens' reputation as a front-end starter to persist.  The Orioles don't seem to be in a position to move significant young players for two years of Jurrjens, despite their current rotation uncertainty.


Quick Hits: Varitek, A’s, Braves, Cordero, Lee, Pujols

Some links as Tuesday turns into Wednesday…