Omar Quintanilla Rumors
Here are some minor transactions from the past week, courtesy of Baseball America's Matt Eddy...
- The Rangers signed two former first-round draft picks in left-hander Zach Jackson and utility infielder Omar Quintanilla. Jackson, picked 32nd overall by the Blue Jays in the 2004 draft, has a 5.81 ERA in 22 career major league games (17 of them starts) with the Brewers and Indians since 2006. Jackson spent 2010 pitching for Toronto's Triple-A affiliate in Las Vegas. Quintanilla was taken with the 33rd pick of the 2003 draft by Oakland, and then dealt to the Rockies in 2005 as part of the Eric Byrnes trade. Quintanilla posted a .567 OPS in 559 plate appearances with Colorado between 2005 and 2009.
- The Twins signed catchers Steve Holm and Rene Rivera to minor league contracts. A 17th-round pick of the Giants in the 2001 draft, Holm has spent his entire 10-year pro career with in the San Francisco system, racking up 107 major league plate appearances in 2008 and 2009. Rivera last played in the majors as a member of the Mariners in 2006, and has since played in the Dodgers, Mets and Yankees' systems.
- The Nationals signed right-hander Harvey Garcia and catcher Carlos Maldonado. Garcia had an eight-game cup of coffee with Florida in 2007 and has since pitched in the Pirates and Dodgers' systems. Eddy says Garcia may have earned a contract due to his solid work this year in the Venezuelan League. Maldonado, 31, was designated for assignment by Washington in September and then granted free agency after the season. Maldonado has been in pro ball since 1996 and has 4226 career minor league plate appearances (a .687 OPS) but only 62 PAs in the bigs.
Following Troy Tulowitzki's wrist injury, the Rockies are considering their next move, hoping to stay in contention in a competitive NL West. Troy Renck of the Denver Post has a few tidbits on their potential plans, in a series of tweets:
- After Tulowitzki got hurt, we heard that the Rockies might pursue infield depth. Renck writes that the club is "monitoring" the infield market, specifically naming Dan Uggla and Ty Wigginton as two players they'll watch. FOX Sports' Tracy Ringolsby also mentioned Wigginton as a possibility for Colorado earlier today.
- The Red Sox and Rangers could have interest in Chris Iannetta, with the Rangers focusing on him for this season and the Sox looking ahead to next year. Boston's current catcher, Victor Martinez, faces free agency at season's end, while Iannetta's contract runs through 2012.
- Prior to the trading deadline, the Rockies may also make minor deals involving players like Omar Quintanilla and Jay Payton. The Astros have been interested in Quintanilla before.
8:42 PM: The Denver Post's Troy Renck has an update on the contract details.
6:25 PM: The Rockies re-signed relievers Matt Belisle and Randy Flores to one-year contracts on Thursday. Terms of the deals weren't announced, though both pitchers were eligible for salary arbitration. Belisle, a right-hander, posted a 5.52 ERA but a strong 4.4:1 strikeout-to-walk ratio in 24 appearances last year with Colorado after spending his first five big-league seasons in Cincinnati. Southpaw Flores appeared in 27 games for the Rockies last season, recording a strong 10.5 K/9.
Tracy Ringolsby believes that with Belisle and Flores back in the fold, Joe Beimel is the odd man out in the Rockies' bullpen. Beimel had a 4.02 ERA in 26 games with Colorado after being acquired from Washington at the trade deadline, but Ringolsby thinks that Colorado will stick with Flores and Franklin Morales as their main left-handed relief options.
In other Rockies news from Thursday, the club outrighted reliever Joel Peralta and infielder Omar Quintanilla, Peralta (who is now a free agent) is still being pursued for a minor-league contract while Quintanilla is on the Triple-A Colorado Springs roster.