Miguel Cairo Rumors

Miguel Cairo Joins Reds Front Office

Veteran infielder Miguel Cairo has joined the Reds front office in a role that apparently ends his playing career. The Reds announced that Cairo has become a special assistant to general manager Walt Jocketty (Twitter link).

Cairo, 38, spent the 2010-12 seasons with the Reds, contributing in a utility role. In a 17-year career that includes stints with nine teams, he has a .264/.314/.361 batting line. Cairo earned approximately $10MM as a player, including $1MM per season for 2011-12.

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Notes from the NL Central…

Reds Sign Miguel Cairo To Two-Year Deal

The Reds signed Miguel Cairo to a two-year deal worth $2MM. Cairo, 36, hit .290/.353/.410 in 226 plate appearances for the Reds, playing mostly at the infield corners.  Cairo is represented by ACES.

MLB.com's Mark Sheldon reported the agreement (on Twitter), Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports first reported that the sides were close to a deal (Twitter link) and ESPN.com's Buster Olney reported the terms (Twitter link). 

Reds Close To Deal With Miguel Cairo

Miguel Cairo is close to returning to the Reds, tweets Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports.

Cairo, 36, hit .290/.353/.410 in 226 plate appearances for the Reds, playing mostly at the infield corners.

Reds Rumors: Bruce, Votto, Rhodes, Cairo, Arroyo

The Reds have had preliminary extension talks with the agents for Jay Bruce and Joey Votto, and those aren't the only players GM Walt Jocketty is thinking of extending. Here are the details, from John Fay of the Cincinnati Enquirer:

  • Jocketty says the extension Troy Tulowitzki signed will probably figure into discussions with Votto "to some extent."
  • Free agent deals have been more lucrative than Jocketty expected so far this offseason. 
  • The Reds continue to talk to Arthur Rhodes, who's a Philadelphia target, and Miguel Cairo. Jocketty says he expects to reach a deal with Cairo.
  • The Reds are also making progress on an extension with Bronson Arroyo. Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe hears (on Twitter) that the talks are hovering around three years and $35MM with some deferred money. Arroyo, writes Cafardo, is "not biting yet."

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Links on a busy Tuesday as the first day of the GM Meetings wraps up…

Nationals Interested In Bloomquist, Miles, Cairo

The Nationals are interested in Willie Bloomquist, Aaron Miles and Miguel Cairo, according to MLB.com's Bill Ladson (on Twitter). GM Mike Rizzo is apparently looking to add versatility to his bench.

Bloomquist, 33 this month, said at the end of the season that he wanted to play every day in 2011. He batted .267/.299/.380, so it seems doubtful that teams would see him as a regular. Instead, clubs will presumably ask Bloomquist to move all around the diamond as he did last year, when he played all four infield positions and all three outfield positions.

Miles, 33, batted .281/.311/.317 for the Cardinals last year. He played short, second and third and even pitched two scoreless innings (lowering his career ERA to 3.60).

The Reds have had preliminary talks about re-signing Cairo, who batted .290/.353/.410 in 226 plate appearances last year. The 15-year veteran played five positions for Cincinnati.

Reds Rumors: Cairo, Hernandez, Rhodes, Arroyo

Reds GM Walt Jocketty told John Fay of the Cincinnati Enquirer that he doesn’t expect to sign a big name free agent this winter. Carl Crawford and Cliff Lee will likely be playing elsewhere next year, though the Reds will boost payroll in 2011.

“I’m always trying to do something, but [signing a top free agent] would be pretty tough,” Jocketty said.

The Reds have had preliminary talks with the agents for Miguel Cairo, Ramon Hernandez and Arthur Rhodes, but Jocketty says he hasn’t yet exchanged potential salaries. The Reds have not spoken to Bronson Arroyo about an extension since picking up his option last week and they are not currently discussing long-term deals with Joey Votto or Jay Bruce.

Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports wrote yesterday that he expected the Reds to complete a two-year extension with Arroyo this week. Jocketty has said he'd like to reach a deal before the 2011 season begins, but the potential contract may not become a priority until later this offseason.

5 Minor League Deals That Shaped The Pennant Race

Most MLBTR readers said R.A. Dickey was the best minor league signing of the year when we voted earlier in the month, but the Mets fell out of contention long ago, so Dickey didn't have much of an impact on this year's pennant race. The five minor league deals below had lasting effects on the 2010 pennant race:

  • Rays sign Joaquin Benoit – The reliever has a 1.39 ERA in 61 games with 11.1 K/9 and 1.7 BB/9. Amazingly, Benoit has allowed just 28 hits in 58.1 innings.
  • Reds sign Miguel Cairo – There are bigger stars on the Reds, but Cairo has batted .289/.352/.411 and played all four infield positions. Cincinnati GM Walt Jocketty deserves credit for this find.
  • Yankees sign Marcus Thames – Thames has hit .287/.352/.500 this year with 12 homers in 227 plate appearances.
  • Giants sign Pat Burrell – GM Brian Sabean bought low on Burrell, who has responded with 17 homers and an .869 OPS in San Francisco. Burrell is playing the way he did in 2008 and without that kind of production, the Giants probably wouldn't be leading the NL West.
  • Padres sign Chris Denorfia – Denorfia has hit .264/.332/.435 in 302 plate appearances for the Padres, who have seen outfielders Tony Gwynn and Kyle Blanks miss significant time with injuries.

Minor League Transactions: Mench, Perez, Cairo

A 25 homer hitter, a former first rounder and a 14-year veteran signed this week. Baseball America's Matt Eddy has the details on those transactions and more. Here are some highlights from January 25th-31st:

  • The Nationals signed Kevin Mench. The 32-year-old didn't play in the majors last year, but he hit 25 homers as recently as 2005. He has a career .900 OPS against lefties.
  • The Blue Jays signed Wade Townsend. The Rays released the 2005 first rounder last summer, but the Jays are giving him a chance. 
  • The Reds signed Miguel Cairo. The 14-year-veteran posted a .705 OPS for the Phillies last year in 47 plate appearances. 
  • The White Sox signed Daniel Cabrera. The 6'7'' right-hander led the American League in walks and earned runs allowed when he logged over 200 innings for the Orioles in 2007. He split time with the D'Backs and Nationals last year, struggling with both clubs.  
  • The Dodgers signed Timo Perez out of the Can-Am League. The 34-year-old surfaced as a rookie for the Mets in the 2000 Subway Series. 
  • The Phillies signed Freddy Guzman. 
  • The Mets signed Val Pascucci, who has 193 minor league homers to his name.