Michael Cuddyer Rumors

Rockies Notes: Cuddyer, Hernandez, Spilborghs

It's been a busy day for the Rockies, who agreed to terms with Kevin Slowey on a 2012 contract, non-tendered Ryan Spilborghs and Cole Garner and officially announced their deal with Ramon Hernandez. Here are more details on the team:

  • GM Dan O’Dowd told Jim Bowden on MLB Network Radio that the Rockies have not made Michael Cuddyer an official offer (Twitter link). The Rockies appeared to be pushing for the versatile free agent earlier today. They expect they'll have to surpass the Twins’ three-year, $25MM offer to obtain him, Troy Renck of the Denver Post reports (on Twitter).
  • Hernandez will earn $3.2MM in 2012 and the same amount in 2013, Renck tweets. The contract doesn’t include a signing bonus, but does have “standard” incentive clauses.
  • O'Dowd has interest in re-signing Spilborghs for less than he would have made through arbitration, according to Renck (Twitter link). MLBTR had projected a $2MM salary for the outfielder.

Rockies Making Aggressive Push For Cuddyer

The Rockies are making an aggressive push for Michael Cuddyer, tweets Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports.  Cuddyer is believed to be seeking a three-year, $30MM deal, and the Twins remain in the mix.  Cuddyer does not appear to be close to a decision, tweets Scott Miller of CBS Sports.

Cuddyer, 32, hit .284/.346/.459 with 20 home runs in 584 plate appearances this year.  Cuddyer's versatility would be useful to the Rockies, as he's able to play the infield corners, second base, and right field.


Quick Hits: Aoki, Cuddyer, Buerhle, Sherrill, Quentin

Some links to check out as we await tomorrow night's non-tender deadline..

  • As expected, the Yakult Swallows filed posting paperwork on outfielder Norichika Aoki Monday morning in Japan, tweets Jon Paul Morosi of FOXSports.com.
  • Free agent Michael Cuddyer's decision will be huge news and could happen soon, tweets Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports.  Morosi adds that the decision will have a big impact on the Twins' and Rockies' plans.
  • Chuck Garfien of CSNChicago.com spoke with Mark Buerhle who said that he hopes to return to the White Sox in some capacity after his four-year deal with Miami is through.  The veteran also said that the Sox didn't make him an offer after the Marlins put their deal on the table.
  • Free agent left-hander George Sherrill is drawing interest from the Royals, Phillies, Blue Jays, and Mariners, a source tells Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports (via Twitter).  The Rockies were also said to be targeting the veteran last week.
  • Even though the two sides were reportedly talking on Tuesday, the Red Sox aren't discussing a deal for Carlos Quentin with the White Sox, tweets Michael Silverman of the Boston Herald.  Earlier today we learned that Quentin has come up in talks with the Blue Jays, though those discussions have apparently cooled.
  • The Indians are in on all "non-[Prince] Fielder" bats, including Josh Willingham, but don't have much financial flexibility, tweets Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports.  The Tribe is after a right-handed bat and the club has been linked to Derrek Lee, Andruw Jones, and Mike Cameron among others.
  • Troy Renck of The Denver Post (via Twitter) doesn't see catcher Eliezer Alfonzo returning to the Rockies but could see the club going after someone like Jeff Mathis if he is non-tendered.  Mathis, 28, was shipped from the Angels to the Blue Jays on December 3rd for left-hander Brad Mills.
  • Craig Breslow, who was traded to the Diamondbacks along with starter Trevor Cahill on Friday, first heard of the deal via Twitter, not the A's front office, writes Katie Dowd of the San Francisco Chronicle.
  • Former Mets General Manager Steve Phillips likes the Astros' hire of Jeff Luhnow as GM and believes that he understands how to operate a small market team, writes Stephen Goff of Examiner.com.


Willingham Market Hinges On Cuddyer

1:36pm: The Rockies are focused on Cuddyer, tweets Troy Renck of the Denver Post. Should they lose out on the long-time Twinkie, they'll turn that focus to Willingham.

1:24pm: MLB Network's Jon Heyman adds the Rockies to the list of teams still eyeing Willingham, but doesn't go as far as calling them a "finalist" as Camino did with the Indians and Twins (Twitter link). Meanwhile, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports tweets that the Willingham market hinges on Michael Cuddyer, because the Twins view Willingham as their top alternative. Rosenthal also mentions the Rockies as a player for Willingham.

SUNDAY, 11:57am: The Mariners are out of the running for Willingham, tweets Nick Camino of WTAM 1100. The outfielder's choice is down to the Indians and Twins, according to Camino.

SATURDAY, 10:32pm: The Mariners and Indians appear to be the front-runners for free agent outfielder Josh Willingham, reports Jim Bowden of MLB Network Radio (on Twitter). MLB.com's Jordan Bastian says (on Twitter) that other teams remain in the mix though, including the Indians. Cleveland has not yet made an offer though. The Rockies, Twins, Rays were also in the mix at one point.

Willingham, 32, hit .246/.332/.477 with a career-high 29 home runs in 2011. The right-handed hitter tallied 829 1/3 innings in left field, and also has experience in right field in 2009. First base and designated hitter could be options as well. Willingham's agent Matt Sosnick guessed in October that his client would sign a three-year deal.


Quick Hits: Felix, Cuddyer, Dotel, Phillies

A round-up of news from around the majors….

  • The Mariners will be hard-pressed to contend with AL West superpowers like the Rangers and Angels, but Larry Stone of the Seattle Times argues the club shouldn't think about trading Felix Hernandez.  Stone thinks such a deal would cause a "backlash" among M's fans and "there's still plenty of time to consider a Hernandez trade down the road if the Mariners' situation gets more dire."
  • Michael Cuddyer was frustrated by the negativity surrounding the Twins last season and isn't sure if the team will be able to contend in the near future, reports Phil Mackey of ESPN 1500 Radio.  The Twins have had a three-year, $24-$25MM offer on the table to Cuddyer for the last few days and the Rockies may also be willing to go to three years for the veteran.  Mackey speculates the Cardinals could check in on Cuddyer to help fill the void left by Albert Pujols.
  • Octavio Dotel tells MLB.com's Jason Beck that his choice of teams came down to the Tigers and the Brewers.  Dotel says the Padres were also interested in signing him as a setup man. 
  • MLB.com's Todd Zolecki has contract details for a number of new Phillies, most notably Jonathan Papelbon.
  • Carlos Beltran hasn't gotten much attention this winter, and Fangraphs' Eric Seidman names seven teams who could be a fit for the free agent outfielder.
  • Nick Punto is "at or near [the] top" of the Braves' list of backup infield options, reports David O'Brien of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution (via Twitter).
  • A rival executive tells FOX Sports' Jon Paul Morosi (Twitter link) that the Mets won't trade David Wright.  "He’s more valuable to them than he would be to any other team," the exec says.

Rockies Considering Three-Year Offer To Cuddyer

The Rockies' willingness to consider a three-year offer to free agent right fielder Michael Cuddyer makes them a serious suitor, writes Troy E. Renck of the Denver Post.  The Rockies freed up $7MM in yesterday's Huston Street trade.  They have mild interest in Cody Ross as a complementary piece and are not pursuing Josh Willingham, writes Renck.

The Twins reportedly have a three-year offer worth $24-25MM on the table for Cuddyer.  GM Terry Ryan told MLB.com's Rhett Bollinger he still thinks they have a chance.  Ryan would like to get something done sooner than later.  Cuddyer's wife just gave birth to twin girls, however, so Cuddyer may be occupied with diaper duty.


NL West Notes: Rockies, Stewart, Dodgers

Earlier today we saw a rare trade between division rivals when the Rockies sent Huston Street to the Padres for a player to be named later and cash. Let's take a look at some other news and rumors from the NL West…


Latest On Placido Polanco

8:20pm: The Rockies are no longer interested in Polanco because they don't feel he can play second base, tweets Rosenthal.

TUESDAY, 12:16pm: The Phillies are not shopping Polanco and are only interested in trading him if they can't re-sign Jimmy Rollins, reports ESPN's Jayson Stark.  The Phillies refer to keep Rollins and Polanco on the left side of their infield, but they could add someone like Aramis Ramirez if Rollins leaves.  Stark says the Phillies are willing to eat about a third of Polanco's contract, which equates to $2.4MM.

MONDAY, 11:50am: The Phillies are actively trying to trade third baseman Placido Polanco, a rival executive tells Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports.  That'd open up third base for free agent Aramis Ramirez, for whom the Phillies are reportedly strong players.  Polanco, 36, is owed $7.25MM through 2012.

The Phillies have cooled on free agent Michael Cuddyer, Rosenthal reported earlier today.


Twins Made Three-Year Offer To Cuddyer

3:23pm: The Twins are meeting with Cuddyer's agent today, tweets Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports, and seek resolution on their offer.

10:25am: The Twins offered Michael Cuddyer a three-year, $25MM deal, tweets Jon Heyman of MLB Network.  Josh Willingham is viewed as a back-up plan.


Heyman On Royals, Cuddyer, Andruw, Astros

Congratulations to national baseball writer Jon Heyman, who has a new job with CBSSports.com starting Monday.  As usual, Heyman is tweeting up a storm; here's his latest from the Winter Meetings (all links go to Twitter):

  • The Royals are talking trades for starters and are in on Oakland's Gio Gonzalez.
  • Everyone wants bullpen help but few want it more than the Padres, Brewers, and Red Sox.
  • The Phillies haven't completely ruled out Michael Cuddyer, but the Twins are still trying to bring him back as well. The Giants and Red Sox are other logical destinations, in Heyman's estimation.
  • The Yankees would love to bring back Andruw Jones for his right-handed pop and strong clubhouse presence.
  • Former Reds executive Scott Nethery is in the mix for the Astros GM opening. Andrew Friedman is still their top choice, Bill Geivett and Jeff Luhnow are also in the mix.
  • The Astros will also eat most of Carlos Lee's contract to facilitate a trade. They still expect a good return for Wandy Rodriguez and something decent for Brett Myers in any trade.
  • Heyman also said this morning that the Angels are looking for a closer and the Pirates are talking to Derrek Lee.