Nick Hagadone Rumors

Nick Hagadone Out Six To Nine Months Following Elbow Surgery

Indians left-hander Nick Hagadone underwent an elbow procedure that is being termed “internal fixation of his left elbow medial epicondyle” today, via MLB.com’s Jordan Bastian (Twitter link). Dr. James Andrews, who performed the operation, estimated a recovery time of six to nine months.

While epicondyle injuries aren’t exactly commonplace, this marks the second time this season that an Indians pitcher has incurred such an injury. Gavin Floyd, who signed a one-year, $4MM contract this offseason, fractured the epicondyle in his right elbow for a second straight season and was unable to throw a pitch for Cleveland during the regular season.

Hagadone’s injury will bring his 2015 season to a close, and it least raises the possibility that it’ll bring his Indians career to a close as well. The 29-year-old entered the season with two years, 56 days of service time under his belt, so he’ll reach three years of service and therefore qualify for arbitration following the season. While his price tag won’t be exorbitant due to the injury-shortened year and his so-so career marks, Cleveland will be forced to decide whether to give him his first bump above the general vicinity of the league minimum (he’s earning $517K this season) or non-tender him. Of course, even if they’re not comfortable with a raise, Cleveland could non-tender Hagadone and re-sign him for a smaller amount or on a minor league deal.

Originally acquired from the Red Sox in the Victor Martinez trade back in 2009, Hagadone has spent parts of the past five seasons in the Cleveland bullpen. While he produced unspectacular results for much of that period, he’s been better since Opening Day 2014, notching a 3.55 ERA (a near-mirror image of his 3.53 FIP) with 9.8 K/9 against 3.2 BB/9 in 50 2/3 innings. Hagadone’s career ERA is a less inspiring 4.72. He’s never struggled to miss bats (9.3 K/9), but he’s battled control issues (4.6 BB/9) and has had some issues against right-handed hitters. While lefties have a career .210/.293/.327 slash line against Hagadone, righties have hit him at a .257/.354/.410 clip.


AL Central Notes: White Sox, Hagadone, Twins

The White Sox haven’t made any determinations on which direction they’ll take as the trade deadline nears, GM Rick Hahn told reporters, including the Chicago Tribune’s Colleen Kane. As Kane notes, the South Siders closed out the first half on a 9-3 run, giving the club a bit more optimism about its chances. “Certainly if I did it from an emotional or fan standpoint, we want to be aggressive we want to add,” said Hahn prior to yesterday’s double-header versus the Royals (the two sides came away from the twin bill with an even split). “However, it’s part of the responsibility of this position to be objective and look at the long-term benefit of the club and do what makes the most sense objectively given the situation that we’ve played ourselves in.” Jeff Samardzija‘s name, at present, is the most commonly mentioned as a possible trade chip for Chicago.

Here’s more from the AL Central…

  • Indians left-hander Nick Hagadone suffered what appears to be a serious elbow injury when pitching in a rehab assignment for Class-A Mahoning Valley this week, writes Cleveland.com’s Zack Meisel. Hagadone, who was rehabbing from a minor back injury that landed him on the DL, had Tommy John surgery in 2008. “It looks like he did it again,” Cleveland skipper Terry Francona told Meisel. “…This isn’t something that’s [just] a week with no throwing.” Hagadone will seek a second opinion on his elbow before any determination is made, though the present outlook certainly appears to be grim.
  • Twins general manager Terry Ryan expressed disappointment that the team wasn’t able to reach an agreement with second-round pick Kyle Cody, who will return to Kentucky for his senior season, writes MLB.com’s Rhett Bollinger. There’s been some speculation that health concerns impacted the negotiation, but Ryan said otherwise: “That wasn’t the most important thing. We just couldn’t come to a conclusion, is all. He’s healthy. It’s not a factor.”
  • Also from Bollinger, Twins right-hander Ricky Nolasco underwent his ankle surgery as planned on Monday during the All-Star break. Nolasco has a bone fragment removed from his right ankle and will be fitted with a walking boot. The team won’t know until the boot is removed whether or not Nolasco will be able to pitch again in 2015, and Bollinger characterized that evaluation as “weeks away.” Whether he pitches again this season or not, 2015 will mark a second straight disappointing season for Nolasco, who signed a four-year, $49MM contract with Minnesota prior to the 2014 season.

AL Central Links: Ryan, Royals, Indians, Martinez

Twins general manager Terry Ryan was released from the hospital today after undergoing surgery to treat cancer discovered in his neck, the team announced. He'll spend the next several days at home recuperating as the Twins get their 2014 Spring Training underway. Here's more out of the AL Central…

  • Sam Mellinger of the Kansas City Star looks at the Royals' payroll in an effort to correct critics that mocked GM Dayton Moore calling the 2014 payroll a "gamble." Those critics pointed to the additional $25MM in revenue teams are receiving from national TV revenue, but Mellinger spoke with Forbes Sports senior editor Kurt Badenhausen who explained that the $25MM number is a myth. The Royals' increase (after MLB takes its share) is more like $5-10MM, he explaines. Mellinger writes that while owner David Glass and Moore have each had their failures, the success or failure of the past seven years will ultimately be determined by the 2014 Royals' on-field results.
  • Indians left-hander Nick Hagadone and GM Chris Antonetti both are relieved to have the long-standing grievance between the two sides resolved, Paul Hoynes of the Cleveland Plain Dealer writes. Antonetti said he and the rest of management feel Hagadone can be a big part of the bullpen going forward, and Hagadone said he was happy with the grievance's outcome: "In the end, I thought it was very fair. I’m happy with the outcome. I’m happy I can just concentrate on baseball."
  • MLB.com's Jordan Bastian writes that the Indians and right-hander Josh Tomlin tried to settle their pending arbitration case but were unable to do so before today's hearing. Announcement of a result can be expected in the near future. Within that piece, Antonetti says he is still hopeful of avoiding a hearing with ace Justin Masterson.
  • The Tigers are planning on getting Victor Martinez some occasional time behind the plate in 2014, writes MLive.com's Chris Iott. In reference to interleague games in National League parks, manager Brad Ausmus told Iott: "We can't not have Victor play for five straight games." Martinez says that he's excited to get back into some games at catcher. Additionally, Miguel Cabrera could still work some games at third base, with Martinez handling first base Iott writes. Both will work on those positions in Spring Training.


Nick Hagadone, Indians Resolve Grievance

11:43am: Bastian tweets some clarification, noting that Hagadone didn't "win" his grievance, but rather the involved parties worked out an agreement to resolve the pending grievance.

9:57am: Indians left-hander Nick Hagadone has won the grievance filed on his behalf by the Major League Baseball Players Association, reports MLB.com's Jordan Bastian. The deal is highly significant for both sides, as Hagadone gains a hefty 94 days of service time (jumping from 1.033 to 1.127), and the Indians will gain another option on Hagadone. He'd previously been out of options but can now be sent to the minor leagues in 2014 (All links to Twitter).

The source of Hagadone's grievance was a self-inflicted hand injury following a poor outing back in July 2012. Hagadone was subsequently optioned to the minor leagues and placed on the disqualified list rather than placed on the Major League disabled list with his injury. In doing so, the Indians assured that he would not be paid while missing time due to his injury and also would not accumulate service time. As Bastian reports above, he will now be compensated for that time on the DQ list after winning the grievance.

As Bastian further notes (on Twitter), Hagadone is one of six left-handers vying for a spot in Cleveland's bullpen. A quick glance at the most recent Super Two cutoff shows that this additional service time is crucial to Hagadone. The 28-year-old can now potentially qualify as a Super Two player and be eligible for arbitration following the season, should he make the Opening Day roster and stick in the Majors all year.

Hagadone was excellent for the Indians in Triple-A last season, posting a 2.51 ERA with 12.8 K/9 and 4.7 BB/9 in 32 1/3 innings. However, his control problems were magnified in the Majors (6.0 BB/9), and his strikeout rate dropped (8.6 K/9), and the result was an unsightly 5.46 ERA in 31 1/3 innings for Cleveland. Those trends aren't exactly new for the lefty, who has a 5.59 ERA in 67 2/3 Major League innings despite excellent minor league numbers.

Hagadone was originally acquired by the Indians along with Justin Masterson and Bryan Price in the trade that sent Victor Martinez to the Red Sox. Boston picked Hagadone 55th overall in the 2007 draft as compensation for the loss of free agent Alex Gonzalez.


Quick Hits: Quentin, Hagadone, A’s, Uribe

A few stray links to pass along as the NL All-Stars celebrate their third consecutive victory over the AL …

  • The Indians are trying to acquire Carlos Quentin from the Padres, but the sides "don't have much common ground right now," according to Terry Pluto of the Cleveland Plain Dealer. Quentin is an impending free agent and figures to be dealt, as the Friars are unlikely to extend him with their ownership situation still in flux.
  • The MLB Players Association is considering filing a grievance on behalf of Indians reliever Nick Hagadone, who was placed on the minor league disqualified list after injuring himself in a fit of frustration following a recent poor outing, according to Paul Hoynes of the Cleveland Plain Dealer. Indians GM Chris Antonetti said Hagadone was angry that he pitched poorly and not because he had been informed he'd been optioned to the minor leagues. Players do not receive salary or accrue service time while on the disqualified list.
  • The odds of the Athletics moving to Sacramento, as was recently proposed by the city's mayor, former NBA star Kevin Johnson, is highly unlikely, according to the Contra Costa Times. The A's, meanwhile, remain in stadium limbo.
  • The Dodgers may be in an active-roster bind with the impending returns of outfielders Matt Kemp and Andre Ethier from the disabled list, and though they could possibly cut ties with oft-injured and ineffective infielder Juan Uribe, that move remains unlikely, writes Steve Dilbeck of the Los Angeles Times. The balance of the $12MM owed to Uribe over the next season-plus would be tough for the Dodgers to swallow, Dilbeck explains.

Quick Hits: Red Sox, Indians

A couple notes regarding the Red Sox and Indians, who both won on Saturday night (in Boston's case, twice) …


Tomase’s Latest: Felix, Hawpe, Rays

John Tomase from the Boston Herald has some notes about several Major League topics in his latest article:

  • Tomase reminds us that at the 2009 deadline, the Red Sox reportedly offered the Mariners any five of the following prospects in exchange for Felix Hernandez: Clay Buchholz, Daniel Bard, Michael Bowden, Josh Reddick, Yamaico Navarro, Nick Hagadone, Felix Doubront, and Justin Masterson. While a Boston official disputed the specific names, Tomase says the reports were in the ballpark.
  • Regarding a trade though, Tomase quotes King Felix himself as saying that he wants to stay in Seattle: "I don’t know what’s going to happen. I’m not trying to think about it. I’d love to stay here (with the Mariners). I’m part of Seattle now and I’d like to be in Seattle."
  • San Diego's Anthony Rizzo, acquired in the Adrian Gonzalez trade, is off to a blazing start at Triple-A. Rizzo has posted a monstrous line of .400/.471/.744 with seven homers, eight doubles, and a triple through 102 PAs, but despite that production the Padres aren't giving up on Brad Hawpe yet. Manager Bud Black cites Hawpe's career success, but it'll be hard to ignore his .149/.194/.194 line much longer.
  • Manny Ramirez's abrupt retirement had many questioning a Rays' lineup that was struggling to score runs, but as Tomase points out, the Rays have gone 14-5 since Manny called it quits. The Rays were 0-6 with Manny on board.

Tomase's article also features several more quotes from Felix on his appreciation for Seattle as well and is a good read all-around.


Antonetti On Masterson, Hagadone, Martinez

Indians GM Chris Antonetti told Alex Speier of WEEI.com that Carlos Santana has fully recovered from last year’s knee injury and shouldn't face any limitations this season. He sure looked good when he dove to start a triple play over the weekend. Here are some highlights from Antonetti’s conversation with Speier:

  • The Indians expect Justin Masterson to build on last year’s success and become a reliable major league starter.
  • Nick Hagadone and Bryan Price, the prospects Cleveland acquired in the Victor Martinez deal “have a chance to contribute to [the Indians’] major league pitching staff in the near future,” Antonetti said.
  • Dealing Martinez wasn’t easy, but Antonetti knows difficult trades are part of the game. “Nearly every team faces the reality that it can’t retain every player it values,” he said.  “Inevitably some players will leave via free agency and some players will be traded prior to reaching that point. 
  • Antonetti says the Indians are on their way to becoming a championship caliber club. “The timing of our success will largely depend upon how quickly this group transitions from a collection of young players with potential to a championship caliber team that consistently produces at the Major League level,” Antonetti said.

Boston’s Roy Halladay Offer

5:29pm: ESPN's Peter Gammons echoes Heyman's report, and adds that Josh Reddick is the positional prospect that would have gone to Toronto.

MONDAY, 3:01pm: So what did the Red Sox actually offer for Halladay?  SI's Jon Heyman heard Buchholz, Masterson, Bowden, Hagadone, and a positional prospect.  Should Ricciardi have pulled the trigger on this 5-for-1 blockbuster?

SUNDAY, 1:12pm: Amalie Benjamin of the Boston Globe reports that Epstein has denied the rumors. When asked if there was any truth to the rumored offer for Halladay, Epstein responded with a simple "Nope."

10:14am: Last month, Theo Epstein said Boston aggressively pursued Roy Halladay at the deadline and that their final offer was "probably the best offer [J.P. Ricciardi] received." According to Bob Elliott of the Toronto Sun, that  may have been a 6-for-1 offer of Clay Buchholz, Justin Masterson, Daniel Bard, Michael Bowden, Felix Doubront, and Nick Hagadone.

One National League scout is quoted having "zero idea why they didn't take the Boston offer." Elliott cites a Toronto scout who says the Jays didn't take the offer for two reasons: 1) They weren't confident Masterson would succeed as a starter, and 2) they were afraid of Halladay beating them in 2010.

The same scout is quoted, "We don't have a quality arm like Halladay," said the scout, "but I've seen four of those (Red Sox) arms and they're quality. Hit on three of six and you'd be fertile for a long time."

What do you think? Does this seem uncharacteristic of Theo Epstein?


Heyman On Red Sox, Davis, Padilla

Jon Heyman of SI.com says the Red Sox are "thought to have offered a five-prospect package of [Clay] Buchholz, Michael Bowden, Justin Masterson, Nick Hagadone and a position player" for Roy Halladay. The club apparently offered the Mariners an even better deal for Felix Hernandez. Here are the rest of Heyman's rumors:

  • The Brewers offered nothing more than salary relief for Doug Davis, so the D'Backs held on.
  • There's a decent chance the Blue Jays will find a new GM. As one exec points out, no one gets to rebuild twice without making the playoffs.  
  • The Rangers gave up on Vicente Padilla because they consider him a bad teammate.