Michael Bowden Rumors
The latest from Ken Rosenthal...
- Rosenthal suggests the Brewers trade Prince Fielder for "premium pitching" and then sign Adam Dunn to replace him. Which begs the question, why wouldn't the team giving up this premium pitching just sign Dunn instead?
- Despite signing John Smoltz, the Red Sox still are not willing to trade Clay Buchholz for Jarrod Saltalamacchia. The Sox may be willing to move Michael Bowden or especially Daniel Bard for Salty.
- The Yankees' interest in Mike Cameron "seems to be waning."
- Despite Jon Heyman's report, the Phillies, Angels, and Brewers deny interest in Derek Lowe. Rosenthal says the market for Oliver Perez is even worse.
- Rosenthal suggests veterans such as Nomar Garciaparra, Frank Thomas, and Jim Edmonds could go the Kenny Lofton route. Lofton, a capable player, sat out the 2008 season when his salary demands weren't met. As I mentioned yesterday, we'll soon see which former stars are willing to play for a pittance (if you consider more than $500K a pittance).
- The Orioles have Edmonds on the radar as a first base candidate.
- Suitors for lefty reliever Dennys Reyes: the A's, Mets, and Dodgers. The Tigers and Rangers are also known to be on the lookout for a southpaw in the pen.
The latest blog post from ESPN's Peter Gammons is up.
- Gammons talked to a source close to Mark Teixeira who says Tex and the Red Sox are not that far apart.
- The Yankees backed off on the Mike Cameron trade because Melky Cabrera is showing improved plate discipline in winter ball (his walk rate is up, though it's only 15 games). Additionally, Brett Gardner has believers in the organization.
- The Diamondbacks were unwilling to trade catcher Miguel Montero to the Red Sox for Daniel Bard, while the Sox wouldn't part with Michael Bowden. Gammons says it hasn't been seriously discussed but wonders if the Red Sox would eat the $22MM owed to Eric Byrnes to get Montero.
- One part of the post that is getting attention is when Gammons names a bunch of things "we don't know," implying that he suspects these things are possible. For example: "We don't know whether the Red Sox will decide not to pony up and sign Teixeira or whether there really might be a three-way deal among the White Sox, Angels and Reds that would put Jermaine Dye in Cincinnati, Joey Votto in Anaheim and Chone Figgins in Chicago." So, not quite a trade rumor here. The Reds would, of course, want more for Votto if he's even available. When this semi-rumor makes the rounds it must be discussed in the proper context - the paragraph's theme was things we don't know are accurate.
According to Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic, the D'Backs are progressing towards a one-year deal with Tony Clark, though GM Josh Byrnes says they're "not all the way there" yet. Piecoro expects Clark to re-sign for less than $1MM.
Piecoro also found that Byrnes isn't likely to trade Miguel Montero. The D'Backs GM said that "nothing in trade exceeds the value of keeping both" Montero and Chris Snyder, so he'll hold onto them.
Arizona had considered dealing Montero to the Red Sox for Michael Bowden, but the Red Sox decided against the deal.
9:01pm: WEEI's Alex Speier says the D'Backs offered Montero to the Red Sox for Michael Bowden and were turned down.
6:48pm: According to Ed Price, the D'Backs are telling people they plan to keep catchers Chris Snyder and Miguel Montero. They did not like the way the market was shaping up.
- The interest shown in Kevin Millwood and Vicente Padilla has been "tentative at best."
- Rangers GM Jon Daniels wants Clay Buchholz from the Red Sox for one of his catchers, but Sullivan says the Sox made it clear Buchholz is not available under any circumstances. Sullivan suggests the Sox might be more inclined to trade Justin Masterson or Michael Bowden if they bolster their minor league pitching depth by signing Junichi Tazawa.
- Sullivan wonders if swapping John Mayberry Jr. for Greg Golson gives the Rangers the outfield depth to trade Marlon Byrd (perhaps because Golson is capable of playing center field).
- A club official told Sullivan it's "doubtful" that the Rangers would be interested in Jose Valverde.
- Wes Littleton has drawn trade interest; he was designated for assignment last week.
Let's take a look at Peter Gammons' Saturday blog post.
- Gammons indicates that Brad Penny is working hard this offseason, and teams such as the Cardinals, Red Sox, Rangers, and Blue Jays "appreciate" his past success.
- The Mets are apparently worried about Bobby Jenks' declining strikeout rate, a sentiment echoed by Joel Sherman. Sherman talked to a Mets official who said the chances of acquiring Jenks are "close to zero."
- The Rangers apparently wanted Clay Buchholz or two of Justin Masterson/Nick Hagadone/Michael Bowden for Jarrod Saltalamacchia. The Red Sox aren't biting.
- The Rangers would probably have to trade Hank Blalock ($6.2MM) to make room for Kerry Wood.
Next up we'll dig into the latest Rangers rumors, courtesy of Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News.
- The Rangers are expected to pick up their $6.2MM option on Hank Blalock today. It doesn't seem that Blalock will spend much time at third base if he's with the Rangers in 2009. Instead, he'd play first and DH. Of course, a trade is possible.
- The Rangers may look at outside options for third base, and they've been in touch with Casey Blake's agent. The Rangers have an eye on defense, which might rule out Garrett Atkins. Grant finds Joe Crede questionable, though he might be a decent fit given his glovework.
- The focus of the GM meetings for Texas has been shopping catching for pitching. The main suitors are the Red Sox and Marlins, with the Tigers a fallback. Names in the mix could include Scott Olsen, Clay Buchholz, Michael Bowden, and Justin Masterson. Over at the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Jeff Wilson profiles the Rangers' four catchers.
Collecting today's Red Sox rumors and links...
- Nick Cafardo says the Red Sox did not meet with C.C. Sabathia's agent and he doesn't appear to be in their plans.
- The Sox are eyeing southpaw reliever Billy Traber, according to WEEI's Alex Speier.
- Scott Boras believes Derek Lowe would be a good fit in Boston or New York. Nick Cafardo says Lowe would like to return to Boston, maybe even at a slight discount.
- Jason Bay's agents say he's loving Boston and is open to a contract extension.
- When asked about the possibility of Manny Ramirez signing with the Yankees, Red Sox GM Theo Epstein basically said it's not his concern.
- Otherwise, the theme of Epstein's comments was flexibility. Justin Masterson could be a starter or reliever, and Epstein won't get hung up on acquiring any one player.
- Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe says the Red Sox are heavily involved on Junichi Tazawa, though the Braves and Mariners are after him as well. The Sox also like Kenshin Kawakami and may have interest in Paul Byrd and Javier Vazquez.
- Cafardo believes the Mets and White Sox have interest in Julio Lugo. It would have to be a bad contract swap. Cafardo adds that the Red Sox view Jacoby Ellsbury as their starting center fielder, and there has been trade interest in Coco Crisp.
- Boston's luxury tax threshold for 2009 is $160.5MM.
- By tomorrow the Red Sox should receive the Jason Varitek book compiled by the Boras corporation. Boras gave a ridiculous Varitek pitch to the media; click the link for quotes. Epstein will meet with Boras today to discuss his clients.
- The Red Sox plan to talk to the Rangers, with Taylor Teagarden, Jarrod Saltalamacchia, and Gerald Laird as possibilities. For Teagarden, the Red Sox would probably have to give up Clay Buchholz or Michael Bowden.
The Red Sox could make a pitch for Jake Peavy, according to Sean McAdam of the Boston Herald.
"It stands to reason the Padres would want two of the team’s three best young arms - Clay Buchholz, Michael Bowden and Justin Masterson - plus another position player.
If the Sox were to include highly regarded first baseman Lars Anderson in a package with two of their best pitching prospects, talks between the clubs would certainly become interesting. But officials with other clubs believe the Sox consider Anderson to be virtually untouchable."
Beyond the names mentioned above, Sox prospects Ryan Kalish and Josh Reddick need more seasoning before they can be considered "near major league ready." The Red Sox didn't let go of their prospects for Johan Santana so I'm not sure they'd do so for Peavy, unless they've lost any confidence in Clay Buchholz.
Here's the latest blog post from ESPN's Peter Gammons...
- Takashi Saito is mentioned as a free agent this winter, but I believe it's a situation where he can only re-sign, return to Japan, or retire.
- Gammons heard talk that Russell Martin could be switched permanently to third base. In that scenario, the Dodgers would sign a pitching-oriented catcher such as Jason Varitek. Would that be a good move?
- Adam Dunn knows it's cliche, but he intends to prioritize winning over money when he hits free agency.
- The D'Backs were asking a lot for Carlos Quentin last winter, with the White Sox, Red Sox, and Indians interested. Josh Byrnes was not able to get Michael Bowden, Jed Lowrie, or Cliff Lee. Arizona ended up getting Chris Carter from Chicago and flipping him to Oakland in the Dan Haren deal. Carter mashed 39 home runs in A ball this year. You can't say the Diamondbacks gave Quentin away for nothing, since they acquired a crucial component for the Haren trade.
- A year ago, Yankees GM Brian Cashman asked Joe Torre and his coaches their opinion on a Robinson Cano for Orlando Hudson swap. Don Mattingly and Larry Bowa were heavily in favor of keeping Cano.