Mike Pelfrey Rumors


Rob Antony Talks Twins' Offseason, Future

For the fourth straight year, Twins assistant general manager Rob Antony sat down with Jesse Lund of SB Nation's Twinkie Town to discuss the state of affairs with his team. Antony and Lund discussed the Twins' offseason at length, ranging from the trades of Denard Span and Ben Revere to the Twins' pursuit of starting pitching. Here's a look at some of the highlights, but bear in mind that entire piece is well worth your time...

  • The Twins never intended to trade both Revere and Span, but the Phillies' offer of Trevor May and Vance Worley was too strong not to pull the trigger. Antony identifies May as someone who could get a September call-up in 2013 if he enjoys a strong season.
  • The Twins had conversations with both Scott Baker and Francisco Liriano, but were unable to agree to terms with either one. In particular, the Twins sought a club option for Baker, who wanted strictly a one-year deal. Antony said they didn't want 2013 to "be a donation" to Baker in the event that he wasn't healthy and effective for most of the season. That decision looks wise, with Baker on the 60-day disabled list for the Cubs.
  • Mike Pelfrey identified the Twins as a team he wanted to pitch for and was aggressive in working out a deal, according to Antony. The Twins did quite a bit of homework on Pelfrey's recovery from Tommy John surgery in order to ascertain that the right-hander would indeed be ready for Opening Day, as he promised.
  • The Twins made several "competitive offers" to free agent starting pitchers, in some cases making better offers than the ones those pitchers ultimately took. The Twins had conversations with nearly every free agent starting pitcher and spoke with around 15 agents for pitchers at the Winter Meetings in December.
  • Following the Span trade, most teams didn't believe that the team would also trade Revere. Antony says four teams were in the mix for Revere, but the Phillies were the most aggressive and ultimately landed him with the aforementioned offer.
  • The Twins were willing to do a one-for-one swap of Span and Alex Meyer because they believe Meyer is a legitimate front-of-the-rotation candidate who can be a "dominant" strikeout pitcher.
  • The decision to bring Aaron Hicks north as the team's Opening Day center fielder was a result of Hicks' strong play in Spring Training and his poise off the field. The Twins' front office was never overly concerned with delaying Hicks' free agency by a season: "If he's that good of a player we're going to do what we can to sign him long term and none of that's going to matter."
  • Antony, GM Terry Ryan and the rest of the front office prefer to gradually expose their top prospects to the Major Leagues so as not to field a team of all rookies. Additionally, that line of thinking prevents mass arbitration and free agency issues: "If you can bring a couple guys, a couple rookies in each year, it helps infuse that and it helps to spread it out so that not everybody becomes arbitration eligible at the same time or free agents at the same time, all that stuff."
  • The Twins "admire" the Royals' bullpen of power arms and would like to build a similar bullpen. The team prioritized power arms in the 2012 Draft, selecting a number of hard-throwing college relievers.
  • Antony offered a definitive "No," when asked if the team had interest in Aaron Harang prior to his trade to the Mariners. The Twins feel they have a number of similar arms in the organization already.
  • There's been no contact between the Twins and Jim Thome for "a couple of months," and the two were never on the same page. Minnesota had interest in Thome, but they were far apart in discussions.
  • "It would be great if he could be a Twin for life," Antony said of Justin Morneau. "He's a guy who's meant a lot for this organization and we'd love it if he were to play his entire career here, but you just don't know how things are going to work out in the end."
  • Antony feels that too much has been made of the decision not to extend Ron Gardenhire prior to this season. Many have speculated that Gardenhire is on the hot seat following a pair of 90-loss seasons, but Antony said it was intended to be an organization-wide message that they're looking to get better from top to bottom. He adds that he hopes Gardenhire is the Twins' manager for years to come, and that in three years people are surprised there was even a debate.



Twins Sign Mike Pelfrey

The Twins announced that they have signed right-hander Mike Pelfrey to a one-year, $4MM contract. The former Wichita State star can also earn up to $1.5MM in incentives, according to CBSSports.com's Jon Heyman, who first reported the agreement (Twitter links). 

According to those familiar with Pelfrey's status, the starter has been throwing well and is expected to be ready by Opening Day. Even with this signing, the Twins are expected to continue to pursue starters to bolster their work-in-progress rotation of Vance Worley, Kevin CorreiaScott Diamond, Brian Duensing, and Liam Hendriks.

Pelfrey, 29 in January, heads to Minnesota after undergoing Tommy John surgery early May while with the Mets. New York non-tendered the veteran in November after he spent the entirety of his career with the organization. During his tenure with the Mets, Pelfrey posted a 4.36 ERA with 3.2 BB/9 and 5.1 K/9. Heyman reported earlier this month (via Twitter) that the Scott Boras client was receiving interest from a series of teams including the Mariners, Indians and Pirates. 



Latest On Mike Pelfrey

Free agent righty Mike Pelfrey is getting a lot of play, tweets Jon Heyman of CBS Sports, with the Mariners, Indians, Twins, and others in the mix.  The Pirates were connected to Pelfrey earlier.

Pelfrey, 29 in January, had Tommy John surgery in early May and was non-tendered by the Mets last week.



Latest From The NL Central

A few NL Central free agent targets were identified today, as the Brewers and Cubs are in on Jason Grilli among other relievers, the Pirates have expressed interest in John Lannan, and the Cardinals are in the mix for Scott Hairston.  More from the division...

Earlier updates:



Free Agent Rumors: Oswalt, Delmon, Sizemore, Ross, Ludwick

Here's the latest from the Winter Meetings on a handful of free agents:

Earlier updates:



Blanton, Correia, Myers On Twins' Radar

While the top options on the free agent market may be out of the Twins' price range the club's search for pitching has Minnesota eyeing Joe Blanton as a "prime target," according to ESPN.com's Jerry Crasnick. Kevin Correia and Brett Myers are also on the team's radar, Crasnick reports.

In addition to those three names, recently non-tendered pitchers like Mike Pelfrey, John Lannan, and others could interest the Twins, according to Crasnick. Vicente Padilla has also drawn a little interest from Minnesota.

Although the Twins seem to be looking at plenty of pitching options in free agency, the team has also been more active in trade talks than expected, says Crasnick. Teams with pitchers on the block have approached the Twins about both Ben Revere and Josh Willingham.



Quick Hits: Figgins, Pelfrey, Twins, Willingham

The Phillies, who have openings at third base and in the outfield, checked in with the recently released Chone Figgins, tweets Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports.  However, the extent of the club's interest is unclear at this time.  More from around baseball..

  • No less than seven teams have interest in right-hander Mike Pelfrey, tweets Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com.  The Mets non-tendered Pelfrey last week but they still have interest in re-signing him for less than the $5.875MM he earned last season.
  • The Twins don't want to trade Josh Willingham but there are multiple teams interested in the leftfielder, according to Phil Mackey of 1500 ESPN (via Twitter).  An AL executive recently told Mackey that the club might not get much more than a No. 4 starter for Willingham, despite his team-friendly contract.  Willingham is owed $14MM through 2014.
  • Rays GM Andrew Friedman figures to be a popular man during the meetings as he may dangle James Shields or Jeremy Hellickson to acquire offense, Morosi writes.
  • The Mariners need to increase their risk tolerance if they hope to take a major step forward at this week's meetings, opines Geoff Baker of the Seattle Times.  For the M's, that could mean spending a lot more money on payroll or trading away young prospects for proven players.
  • One exec tells Morosi (via Twitter) that this year's Rule 5 draft class is one of the best that he has seen.  The draft will take place on Thursday.



National League Non-Tenders

Here are today’s National League non-tenders. All decisions must be in by 11pm CT tonight. Be sure to track all tender decisions using MLBTR's Non-Tender Tracker. Related resources include our list of non-tender candidates, our projected arbitration salaries and our arbitration eligibles series.

Mike Axisa contributed to this post.



Mets To Non-Tender Pelfrey, Acosta, Torres

The Mets plan to non-tender Mike Pelfrey, Manny Acosta and Andres Torres this week, Adam Rubin of ESPNNewYork.com reports. Barring an unexpected trade or change in plans, the Mets will decline to offer the players arbitration, and they'll become free agents.

The Mets remain open to re-signing Pelfrey for less than the $5.875MM he earned this past season. However, agent Scott Boras may look to place Pelfrey in a starting role as he continues his recovery from Tommy John surgery, and the Mets' rotation seems full.

All three players appeared on Tim Dierkes' list of non-tender candidates. Pelfrey projected to earn $5.7MM if tendered a contract; Torres projected to earn $3.2MM; Acosta projected to earn $1.1MM. Be sure to follow Friday's tender decisions using MLBTR's Non-Tender Tracker.



Mets To Non-Tender Pelfrey, Maybe Torres

As expected, the Mets will non-tender right-hander Mike Pelfrey, a person with the team told Mike Puma of the New York Post (Twitter links). The Mets still want to sign Pelfrey as a free agent, Puma reports. 

Pelfrey, 28, earned $5.68MM this past season though he underwent Tommy John surgery after just three starts. For the Mets to retain him through the arbitration process they'd have to offer him a salary in the $5-6MM range -- a considerable amount for a pitcher recovering from a serious injury.

The future of non-tender candidate Andres Torres remains “up in the air,” according to Puma. Torres, 34, posted a .230/.327/.337 batting line in 434 plate appearances this past season. He earned $2.7MM in 2012 and could also be cut loose this offseason.









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