Mike Jacobs Rumors
MLB.com's Dick Kaegel takes a look at the Royals' two contract option decisions, which are due ten days after the World Series.
Kaegel believes the Royals will consider Coco Crisp's $500K buyout an easy choice over his $8MM option. However, Kaegel wonders if the Royals will then offer Crisp a new incentive-laden deal. Crisp said in August, "I don't know. It'd be nice to stay for a while. I like it here." The 29-year-old center fielder had rotator cuff surgery on both shoulders this summer. The weak free agent market for center fielders should work in his favor.
Catcher Miguel Olivo has a $3.3MM mutual option; both Kaegel and Royals GM Dayton Moore believe he'll test the free agent market. Catchers are also in short supply this year. While Olivo slugged 23 home runs this year, his OBP was just .292.
Don't forget the Royals' two primary non-tender candidates: first baseman Mike Jacobs and catcher John Buck. Kaegel says the Royals intend to "re-cast" their catching situation, so Buck is probably destined for free agency. It doesn't make sense to tender a contract to Jacobs, who earned $3.25MM this year and hit just .228/.297/.401 in 478 plate appearances. Between Jacobs, Buck, and Olivo, the Royals had 1,096 plate appearances of sub-.300 OBP.
Royals GM Dayton Moore tells Sam Mellinger of the Kansas City Star that he plans on improving his team's defense this offseason. Moore expects to have about $70MM to work with this winter, but, as Mellinger points out, that doesn't leave the Royals with much flexibility. Here are the details:
- The Royals figure to look for an everyday outfielder, a catcher and relief help.
- They will probably have to non-tender some players to stay within their budget.
- Mellinger assumes the Royals will buy Coco Crisp out for $500k, rather than pick up his $8MM option.
- Mike Jacobs is a prime non-tender candidate. He has a .692 OPS, but he's making $3.275MM this year and would be in line for at least $2.6MM if the Royals offer him arbitration.
- Miguel Olivo is likely to pursue free agency. The Royals may need another catcher if they decide that the $3MM or so John Buck would earn through arbitration is too much.
- Club officials say there's "no chance" they non-tender Mark Teahen.
Here's some links to start off a gorgeous Sunday (at least around these parts)...
- After calling out teammate Hanley Ramirez, Bill Shaikin of The LA Times wonders if Dan Uggla might get a ticket out of Florida. If so, he says Uggla could be a fit for the Dodgers, who he says "are not expected to engage in a bidding war to retain second baseman Orlando Hudson."
- Sam Mellinger of The KC Star presents a few ways to improve the Royals for 2010. In addition to not handing out albatross contracts to players like Kyle Farnsworth and Jose Guillen, Mellinger suggests the team trade Alberto Callaspo, nontender Mike Jacobs, and resign Coco Crisp.
- Joel Sherman of The NY Post rates which teams "succeeded and failed in bringing new blood to their organizations" over the last year. The Yankees take home top honors thanks to additions of CC Sabathia, A.J. Burnett, Mark Teixeira, and Nick Swisher. The Mets ... well they come in last.
- Make sure you follow MLBTR on Twitter for the fastest rumor updates around.
ESPN.com's Jerry Crasnick explores many of the disappointing elements of the Royals' 2009 season and turns up some rumors along the way. Here they are:
- GM Dayton Moore says he tried to build a winner and holds himself accountable for the team's failure.
- Now he wants to build through scouting and player development. The Royals' system has improved as the team has spent more, but there's not an abundance of talent in the upper minors.
- Crasnick says the Royals need a "major overhaul" but suggests no one on the team's roster other than Zack Greinke or Joakim Soria would fetch much in a trade.
- Some believe the Royals would be better off shopping Soria for two or three young players. Moore says he'll be open-minded to that sort of deal if it helps the Royals long-term.
- One AL scout says the Royals rushed Alex Gordon and prevented him from developing fully.
- The Royals may not offer contracts to John Buck and Mike Jacobs after the season.
Links for Friday afternoon...
- SI.com's Tom Verducci heard one GM argue that the Padres should trade Jake Peavy and Adrian Gonzalez to re-stock the farm system.
- MLB.com's Jonathan Mayo breaks down what will happen after Stephen Strasburg's drafted by the Nationals. He predicts that eight or nine college arms could go in the first 20 picks, if you count redrafts like Aaron Crow and Tanner Scheppers.
- According to Mike Rutsey of the Toronto Sun, Travis Snider was sent to Triple A by the Blue Jays. Snider was hitting .242/.292/.394, with 25 strikeouts in 99 at bats.
- According to Patrick Newman of NPB Tracker, Shingo Takatsu auditioned in front of the D'Backs and Giants. He threw as hard as 86 mph and impressed scouts with his breaking balls. If the name sounds familiar it's because the 40-year-old sidearmer used to close for the White Sox.
- Steve Melewski of MASN wonders if Nolan Reimold has seen the last of the minor leagues. After a slow start, the left fielder is seven for his last 18, including a homer off Mariano Rviera.
- Via Twitter, Keith Law suggests pitcher Sonny Gray would go in the top three picks of this year's draft if he were eligible.
- Live to Play suggests the list of suitors for Miguel Angel Sano will soon "thin out to the very serious contenders" for the 16-year-old shortstop prospect.
- Sam Mellinger of the Kansas City Star writes that the ideal trade for the Royals might be Mike Jacobs or Jose Guillen for a "capable shortstop."
According to the Denver Post's Troy Renck, the Royals have agreed to a one-year, $3.25MM deal with first baseman Mike Jacobs.
Jacobs can make an additional $25K if he lands on the American League All-Star team. The 28-year-old hit .247/.299/.514 last season with 32 home runs and 93 RBI. He was acquired this offseason from the Marlins for reliever Leo Nunez.
According to Sam Mellinger, the Royals avoided arbitration with John Buck and Joel Peralta ($640K) by signing both for 2009. The cases of Brian Bannister, Zack Greinke, Mike Jacobs, and Mark Teahen remain unresolved. Dayton Moore has yet to go to a hearing as Royals GM.
Links for Wednesday...
- Richard Justice says the Astros should offer Andy Pettitte $7-8MM to come back.
- Joe Christensen doesn't see Huston Street landing in Minnesota.
- Larry Beinfest dismissed a "cyberspace rumor" that the Marlins are planning a run at Manny Ramirez.
- Gordon Wittenmyer says the Cubs could fit both Jake Peavy and Ryan Dempster into the payroll, and that the Peavy situation will be resolved first.
- Today is the deadline for MLB.com's Free Agent Frenzy. You have until 4pm CST to submit your picks for 15 free agents. Here are my predictions from November 3rd...I would change the Furcal and Sheets ones for starters.
- Who had the Matt Holliday scoop? SI.com's Jon Heyman broke the story, while Yahoo's Tim Brown was the first to name the players involved.
- Holliday figures to be a three to six month rental for the A's. Over at FanGraphs, Dave Cameron takes a closer look at Carlos Gonzalez and Greg Smith. ESPN's Keith Law says the Rockies received a "fair return" for Holliday.
- Athletics Nation suggests the A's sign Derek Lowe.
- Ken Davidoff looks at the Yankees' seesawing philosophy.
- Japanese southpaw Ken Takahashi intends to sign with an MLB club, and the Mets may be interested. Nikkan Sports says the Cubs, Padres, and Giants are also in on him.
- River Ave. Blues looks ahead to Derek Jeter's next contract.
- Andrew Baggarly reminds us that Tim Lincecum intends to go year to year.
- ESPN's Buster Olney talked to one GM who expects "a whole lot of bargains" in late January, given the nation's economy.
- Rany Jazayerli didn't like the Royals' acquisition of Mike Jacobs, but doesn't think it's the end of the world.
- Braves GM Frank Wren on Jeff Francoeur: "We haven’t talked about him at all. It’s not to say that we wouldn’t."
Sports Radio 810 in Kansas City talked to Royals GM Dayton Moore recently.
- Moore hopes to sign Zack Greinke long-term. Greinke, however, is comfortable going year to year to maximize his earnings.
- Moore named three free agent bats he ranked above Mike Jacobs: Mark Teixeira, Manny Ramirez, and Bobby Abreu. He implied those three are out of the Royals' price range. Moore feels that Jacobs will continue to improve.
- Moore says he has flexibility to extend payroll toward $70MM or even higher. He notes that last year the Royals tried to sign Jose Guillen and Torii Hunter, which would've pushed payroll to that range.
- Moore lists his needs as speed, OBP, a starting pitcher, and bullpen help.
- Mike Aviles could be shifted to second base if the Royals can acquire a "proven everyday shortstop." Royals Authority says: don't move him!
Links for Monday...
- Even after signing LaTroy Hawkins, the Astros would like to re-sign Doug Brocail. They already chose a $250K buyout over his $3.25MM option. Further complicating matters, Brocail is a Type A free agent.
- The Royals signed pitcher Brandon Duckworth and then outrighted him to Triple A.
- Yahoo's Jeff Passan ranks all the free agents, from C.C. Sabathia at #1 to Vance Wilson at #183.
- The Giants seem likely to hit the free agent market for a reliever.
- Pat Burrell hasn't heard from the Phillies yet.
- John Brattain battles Scott Boras on his Manny Ramirez claims.
- Aaron Gleeman suggests the Twins would be better off platooning Brian Buscher and Brendan Harris at third base than acquiring Garrett Atkins.
- Joe Posnanski continues to find the Royals' Mike Jacobs acquisition baffling. Jacobs seems to be aiming for a .320 OBP.
- Free agent pitcher Kenshin Kawakami still hasn't decided whether to jump over to MLB.
- Outfielder Saburo Ohmura seems to have changed his mind - he's likely to remain in Japan.