Mason Williams Rumors

Sherman’s Latest: Dickey, Wright, Hunter, Upton

Here's the latest from Joel Sherman of The New York Post…

  • The Mets are making progress, albeit slowly, in contract talks with David Wright and R.A. Dickey. The impression is that there is still a substantial gap in talks with Dickey, and they've been gauging his trade value during the GM Meetings. They are not doing the same with Wright, however.
  • The Yankees would not do a two-year deal worth $20MM or so for Torii Hunter since they want to get under the luxury tax threshold next year. They are fixated on one-year contracts this offseason and could fill their right field hole with a low-cost platoon.
  • "The Yankees are not on him," said a source about Justin Upton, in part because they're unsure if he's a good fit for New York (Twitter link). The Rangers and Rays are strongest early players for Upton, and Sherman gets the sense that the D'Backs want to act quickly (Twitter links).
  • The Diamondbacks want high-end, MLB ready players in return for Upton and would love to get Jurickson Profar or (more likely) Elvis Andrus from the Rangers. They don't love Mike Olt, however (Twitter links). GM Kevin Towers likes Yankees prospect Mason Williams, but he is several years away from the show and unlikely to be enough to headline a trade package (all Twitter links).
  • Next year's crop of free agent starting pitchers is weak, which could benefit Zack Greinke since teams won't be able to find a stopgap and reassess next year. Josh Johnson and Tim Lincecum highlight next winter's pitching crop, and both come with question marks.
  • The Mariners, who have young pitching, are said to be talking to the Royals and Twins, who have young hitting. Seattle would love to pry Wil Myers, Aaron Hicks, and/or Ben Revere loose.
  • Jason Bay didn't produce with the Mets, but he lived up to his billing as a hard worker and good teammate. Sherman expects the outfielder to take a low-salary, change of scenery deal (Twitter link).
  • Mets officials think Scott Hairston will get a two-year deal worth between $8-10MM this winter.

AL West Notes: Rangers, Trumbo, Morales, Mariners

Here's the latest from the AL West…

  • The Rangers may be trying to trade Koji Uehara to clear payroll space for not necessarily Roy Oswalt, but rather a left-handed reliever like Mike Gonzalez, tweets FOX Sports' Ken Rosenthal.  We heard last month that Texas was interested in Gonzalez.  Both Uehara and Gonzalez were acquired by Texas in separate trades with the Orioles last summer, but while Gonzalez pitched for the Rangers throughout their playoff run, Uehara struggled in the ALDS and ALCS and was left off the World Series roster.  Uehara, who has a limited no-trade clause, already rejected one deal that would've sent him to the Blue Jays.
  • MLB.com's Alden Gonzalez looks at various scenarios facing the Angels surrounding Mark Trumbo's ability to play third base and Kendrys Morales' health.
  • The Mariners have two players on their 40-man roster who are out of options: Mike Carp and Cesar Jimenez.  As MLB.com's Greg Johns explains, Luis Rodriguez is also out of options but, as a non-roster invitee to Spring Training, he isn't on Seattle's 40-man roster.
  • Also from Johns' mailbag piece, he doesn't think the Mariners need to sign a veteran DH like Johnny Damon or Vladimir Guerrero, arguing that the playing time is better served for young players like Carp, Jesus Montero and Casper Wells.
  • The Mariners inquired about Yankees prospect Mason Williams during the Michael Pineda trade talks, reports Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com (via Twitter).  Williams, a 20-year-old center fielder, enjoyed a breakout campaign at low Class-A Staten Island last season, hitting .349/.395/.468 in just his second year of pro ball.  Heyman is "hearing raves" about Williams' potential.

New York Notes: Mets, Izzy, Williams, Murphy

Some New York links for you die-hards/insomniacs/early-risers on the East coast…

  • Newsday's Ken Davidoff feels that public relations needs to stop being such a factor in the Mets' thinking. His plan for 2012 consists of keeping Angel Pagan and Mike Pelfrey, and signing Frank Francisco to close. If and when they're out of it in July, Davidoff feels Pagan and Pelfrey, along with a solid bullpen arm like Francisco and a revitalized David Wright would fetch a plentiful bounty.
  • The Mets' lengthy shopping list consists of a closer, setup man, utility infielder, two backup outfielders, and a catcher, according to Jon Heyman of the MLB Network (on Twitter). Heyman says the largest expenditure for the Amazins will be the closer.
  • On a related note, Heyman tweets that the Mets will speak with Jason Isringhausen, though their offer won't be overwhelming.
  • In his latest article, Joel Sherman of the New York Post says that some within the Yankees organization feel that 20-year-old center fielder Mason Williams has emerged as their top prospect. While he's yet to even reach High-A ball, Mason possess five tools and the Yankees expect him to develop quickly.
  • Sherman also notes that of the three teams that inquired on Daniel Murphy earlier today, the Tigers are the most interested. They view Murphy as a potential third base replacement for Brandon Inge.