Nolan Reimold Rumors
MLBTR's Mark Polishuk examined the market for Kyle Lohse and wrote it would be very surprising to see the Royals make a move for him. Bob Dutton of the Kansas City Star agrees, even if a rash of injuries were to hit their starters, because the Royals are $10MM over their projected break-even point in payroll. Dutton adds James Shields, Ervin Santana, Jeremy Guthrie, and Wade Davis can't pitch poorly enough this spring to lose their spots in the rotation. Elsewhere around the American League:
- The Yankees will not let the way Alex Rodriguez's ten-year, $275MM contract has panned out affect their negotiations with Robinson Cano, GM Brian Cashman told ESPN Radio's Ian O'Connor (transcript courtesy of ESPNNewYork.com). "There's only so much you can spend, but we'll look at Robbie as an individual, not as it relates to whatever we're doing with Alex Rodriguez and our commitment and the regression we have experienced with Alex," said Cashman.
- The Yankees announced Curtis Granderson will miss the next ten weeks with a fractured right forearm after being hit with a pitch during today's Spring Training game. Non-roster invitees Matt Diaz and Juan Rivera plus minor leaguers Melky Mesa and Zoilo Almonte are the in-house candidates to replace the Yankees' leading home run hitter from a year ago, tweets the YES Network's Jack Curry.
- If the Yankees do go outside the organization to replace Granderson, they can find a better option toward the end of camp, tweets Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com.
- A deal for Alfonso Soriano could make sense for the Yankees and the Cubs have made it clear to the industry they would be willing to pay much of the $36MM owed Soriano for the next two years, according to ESPN's Buster Olney (Twitter links).
- Alden Gonzalez of MLB.com asked if the Yankees turn to Vernon Wells to replace Granderson. If so, the Angels would still have to eat a majority of the $42MM due Wells over the next two years (Twitter links).
- Orioles manager Buck Showalter told reporters, including CSNBaltimore.com's Rich Dubroff, he's satisfied with the DH candidates already in camp and will not scour the free agent market. "We’re answering the questions here,” Showalter said. “We’re going to find it right here. We spent a lot of time getting this group in. We’re going to look in our backyard." Wilson Betemit is the main candidate to DH against right-handers while Russ Canzler and Danny Valencia are the favorites against left-handers. Dubroff also sees Nolan Reimold in the mix as well as regulars whom Showalter wants to give a breather.
6:28pm: Dan Connolly of The Baltimore Sun reports (on Twitter) that Reimold received $1MM, exactly as Swartz's model projected.
5:58pm: The Orioles have avoided arbitration with Nolan Reimold, the team announced. The ACES client received a one-year contract. Financial terms are unknown, but Matt Swartz projected the outfielder to earn $1MM in 2013.
Reimold, 29, hit .313/.333/.627 with five homers in 69 plate appearances last year, though his season ended in late-April due to a neck injury that required surgery. He's a .261/.338/.455 career hitter in 916 plate appearances, with most of his playing time coming in 2009 and 2011.
The Orioles have eight unsigned arbitration-eligible players, as our Arbitration Tracker shows: Chris Davis Jason Hammel, Tommy Hunter, Jim Johnson, Brian Matusz, Darren O'Day, Troy Patton, and Matt Wieters.
It'll be interesting to see how the Rays look to improve this winter given their limited financial flexibility, writes Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times. The Rays, who were last in the majors in attendance, will save more than $22.5MM with Carlos Peña, B.J. Upton, Luke Scott, and Kyle Farnsworth off the books. However, built-in and projected arbitration increases will cost them around $50MM to keep 17 players. After opening the season with a higher-than-planned $64MM payroll, the club is expected to try and scale back the payroll this year, leaving them with limited room. Here's more out of the AL East..
- Yankees President Randy Levine appeared on ESPN 98.7 FM's Sunday Morning with Ian O'Connor (partial transcript courtesy of ESPNNewYork.com's Matt Ehalt) and did not commit to Alex Rodriguez remaining in pinstripes for the duration of his contract through the 2017 season. "That's like one of those questions: Where's the stock market going to be in 2017, who's going to be president on Nov. 15?" Levine said. "If I had crystal ball to predict all of that stuff, I'd be a lot smarter than I am. I'm not going to go there. That's stuff for people to speculate on your show and elsewhere, but it's irresponsible for me to do so."
- Orioles manager Buck Showalter says that he isn't ready to start thinking about a contract extension despite the fact that he enjoys being in Baltimore. Roch Kubatko of MASNsports.com wonders aloud if the skipper has his eye on becoming a General Manager somewhere. Showalter was interested in running the O's front office before Dan Duquette was brought in as executive vice president.
- The Yankees should have passed on giving Alex Rodriguez a ten-year, $275MM contract following the 2007 season, opines Mike Lupica of the New York Daily News. Lupica notes that the Cardinals made a shrewd business decision by letting Albert Pujols sign a $200MM+ contract elsewhere last winter and now find themselves in the championship hunt.
- With Curtis Granderson struggling, the trade that sent Austin Jackson to Detroit for him no longer seems like a smart move, writes Bill Madden of the New York Daily News. Last year it seemed like both the Tigers and the Yanks came out as winners in that trade, but Madden believes that the W now goes squarely in the Tigers' column.
- The Orioles will likely be forced to make a decision between Nate McLouth and Nolan Reimold as to which ballplayer will be called upon to man left field next season, writes MASNsports.com's Steve Melewski. While Reimold got off to a strong start to the season before succumbing to injury, McLouth proved to be a valuable asset for Baltimore towards the end of the year and playoffs.
Edward Creech and Daniel Seco contributed to this post.
The Marlins recently asked the Orioles about outfielder Nolan Reimold, ESPN.com's Jerry Crasnick reports (Twitter links). However, Reimold projects as Baltimore's leadoff hitter and left fielder and isn't going anywhere.
Reimold posted a .247/.328/.453 line with 13 home runs in 305 plate appearances last year. The 28-year-old has spent most of his big league career in left field, though he has some experience in right. He'll be arbitration eligible for the first time following the 2012 season. The right-handed hitting Reimold would have provided the Marlins with another corner outfield option behind Giancarlo Stanton and Logan Morrison and might have pushed Austin Kearns off of the Miami roster.
5:13pm: The Orioles are moving on to other targets, according to ESPN.com's Jayson Stark (on Twitter). Those alternatives include trade candidates Brendan Ryan, J.J. Hardy and free agent Orlando Cabrera.
4:48pm: Reimold is off the table, according to Jeff Zrebiec of the Baltimore Sun (on Twitter). He isn't going to Tampa and he's probably staying put.
4:13pm: The trade is "not happening," a source tells ESPN.com's Jayson Stark (on Twitter).
3:37pm: There will be no deal today, according to Ghiroli (on Twitter). The sides are close, but a trade now seems less likely than it did earlier.
1:26pm: The Rays are talking with the Orioles about Bartlett, and it's for more than Reimold, tweets Marc Topkin of the St. Petersburg Times.
11:49am: A possible deal sending Rays shortstop Jason Bartlett to the Orioles for outfielder/first baseman Nolan Reimold is heating up, tweets Dan Connolly of the Baltimore Sun. He has one source who expects the trade to happen today.
The Rays are one of few teams with a shortstop surplus, and Bartlett may earn over $5MM in his last year before free agency. Reimold had a strong rookie season for Baltimore in '09 but had a lost 2010.
Let's round up the latest from Charm City, courtesy of The Baltimore Sun's Jeff Zrebiec...
- Scott Boras' asking price for Carlos Pena remains "really high." The first baseman does have interest in Baltimore.
- Zrebiec hears that Andy MacPhail has made several calls to teams with starting pitching depth. Both he and manager Buck Showalter would feel more comfortable with another veteran arm behind Jeremy Guthrie.
- The Orioles aren't shopping Nolan Reimold, but they have at least gauged his value around the league. Reimold hit just .207/.282/.328 in 131 plate appearances last season before being demoted to the minors, and Zrebiec notes that they'd be selling low.
- The Orioles are "pretty interested" in Kevin Gregg, and they have an offer out to at least one free agent reliever besides Koji Uehara.
- The team is hoping to meet with the representatives for former Oriole George Sherrill during the winter meetings. "I had a horrendous year. I couldn’t get my mechanics right now matter what I tried," said Sherrill, who had a 6.69 ERA in 2010. "I’m ready to bounce back and help somebody no matter my role."
- Jesse Crain is said to be seeking a two or three-year deal similar to Joaquin Benoit's.
- Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports wants to know what the Orioles are going to do this offseason.
Orioles president of baseball operations Andy MacPhail is on the verge of making roster changes to shake up his struggling offense, according to Jeff Zrebiec of the Baltimore Sun. The Orioles dropped to 7-21 today, and their lineup hasn't lived up to expectations this season.
"There is going to come a time where we’re going to be obligated to keep making changes in terms of offensive personnel," MacPhail said. "I would say there isn’t a great deal of time left before they have to start doing more than what they’re doing now. I’m not staying with them forever. It’s not a suicide pact. They either have to start performing or they’ll go to [Triple-A] Norfolk."
Seattle GM Jack Zduriencik talked this week about a similar need for offensive production, but while Zduriencik's Mariners are hoping to be buyers, the Orioles, already 13 games out of first place, are more likely to be sellers. Still, MacPhail's comments suggest that if the club elects to make changes, it will probably mean players being demoted rather than traded.
Sunday night links..
- While other clubs did some last minute tinkering today, Brewers GM Doug Melvin decided to stand pat with his lineup, writes Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel.
- For the first time in three years, the Marlins won't have the lowest payroll in baseball on Opening Day, writes Clark Spencer of the Miami Herald. Florida's payroll of $46MM ranks ahead of the Padres and Pirates.
- Gordon Edes of ESPNBoston.com (via Twitter) didn't expect Scott Schoeneweis to make the BoSox roster after being released by the Brewers. Edes adds that he expects Alan Embree to make his way to the big league squad after he puts in more work in the minors.
- The Mets have demoted reliever Kiko Calero to their Triple-A affiliate, according to Adam Rubin of ESPNNewYork.com (via Twitter). Calero's deal - which he signed in early March - does not allow Calero to opt-out upon being assigned to the minors.
- Jeff Zrebiec and Dan Connolly of The Baltimore Sun write that O's outfielder Nolan Reimold took ground balls at first base yesterday. Orioles GM Andy MacPhail told the Sun not to read too much into it, as they were only seeking to increase the 26-year-old's versatility. However, an item on ESPN's rumor page wonders aloud if the fielding practice could be about the club's future plans at the position without Luke Scott and Garrett Atkins.
- A major league insider told Jordan Bastian of MLB.com that the extension given to Adam Lind is a good deal for both parties. The Blue Jays signed Lind to a four-year, $18MM pact yesterday morning.
- Ken Gurnick of MLB.com points out that Carlos Monasterios is just the fourth Rule 5 draftee to make a Dodgers Opening Day roster.
The Orioles aren't expected to be major players on the free-agent market this winter, but if the team does make a move, it will likely be to acquire a veteran presence at first and/or third base.
Speaking to MASN Sports' Steve Melewski, Baltimore team president Andy MacPhail said that given the Orioles' young outfield and second-year catcher Matt Wieters, he would "like to put more proven bats" in the lineup to compliment the team's young stars. The O's have prospects Brandon Snyder and Josh Bell in the pipeline at first and third, respectively, but since MacPhail said he doesn't see either making the leap to the majors in 2010, the experienced hitters that MacPhail wants will have to come at the corner infield spots.
Baltimore already has Luke Scott (a team-leading 25 homers in 2009) penciled in at either first base or DH, and utilityman Ty Wigginton is available to play third. Prospect Michael Aubrey (an .826 OPS in 95 plate appearances last season) is also in the 1B mix, possibly in a lefty-righty platoon with Wigginton that would lock Scott into a DH/LF split with Nolan Reimold and would then leave third base open for either a free agent or a player to be acquired in a trade. The Baltimore Sun's Dan Connolly predicted the O's would sign Pedro Feliz, while there has been some speculation that the Orioles will make a trade with Florida for Dan Uggla and then move Uggla from second to third base.
In his Offseason Outlook series entry about Baltimore, Tim Dierkes listed names like Adrian Beltre, Carlos Delgado and Nick Johnson as possible targets for the Orioles. These players would fit the "short-term" designation that MacPhail mentioned, but since MacPhail didn't rule out the possibility of "the right deal for the right player, even if it was a longer-term deal," would there be any other bigger-name corner infielders that you could realistically see Baltimore signing?