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Here are today’s minor moves from around the league…
- The Brewers announced earlier this week that utility player Elian Herrera has been outrighted to Triple-A and will be in Major League Spring Training as a non-roster invite. Herrera was designated for assignment after the Brewers added Neal Cotts on a one-year deal. The 30-year-old batted .274/.288/.341 in 140 plate appearances with the Brew Crew in 2014.
- The Giants released the recently designated Chris Dominguez, according to the team’s transactions page. Designated to clear a roster spot for Ryan Vogelsong, the 28-year-old Dominguez made his big league debut in 2014, collecting one hit in 17 at-bats, although the one hit was memorable — a two-run homer. Dominguez hit .274/.307/.460 with 21 homers in Triple-A last season.
- The Phillies signed lefty Anthony Vasquez, Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com reports on Twitter. Vasquez is still trying to work his way back to the big leagues after remarkably surviving a ruptured blood vessel in his brain that required emergency surgery. He spent last year in the upper minors with the Orioles, working to a 4.95 ERA over 123 2/3 frames (including 19 starts) with 6.7 K/9 against 2.9 BB/9.
- Southpaw reliever Pedro Feliciano is nearing a minor league deal with the Cubs that would include a spring invite and a $700K salary if he makes the big league team, Jon Morosi of FOX Sports reports on Twitter. Heyman adds on Twitter that the deal is done, noting that it includes some incentives. The 38-year-old led the league in appearances for three straight years with the Mets (2008-10), but rotator cuff issues ensued and Feliciano has only tossed 11 1/3 big league frames since. He struggled with preventing runs last year at Triple-A with the Cardinals organization, though he still was able to generate better than eight strikeouts per nine innings.
An earlier version of this post incorrectly cited Heyman as reporting that Vasquez had received a big league camp invite.
The Pirates have claimed infielder Pedro Florimon off waivers from the Nationals, Washington announced today.
Florimon, 28 next month, is a switch-hitting shortstop with a questionable bat and outstanding glove. He saw the lion’s share of playing time at shortstop for a last-place Twins club in 2013 and batted .221/.281/.330, hitting a somewhat surprising nine homers and swiping 15 bases. That offense certainly isn’t much to look at, but combined with his glove, he generated 1.8 rWAR and 1.3 fWAR. Defensive Runs Saved pegs Florimon as 21 runs above average over the course of 1700 big league innings at short.
Here are today’s minor moves …
- The Tigers inked right-hander Shawn Hill to a minor league deal today, as James Wagner of the Toledo Blade reports on Twitter. Hill, 33, has seen mostly scattered MLB action since taking 28 starts for the Nationals over the 2007-08 seasons. He has a 4.87 ERA through 105 1/3 innings (4.7 K/9 against 2.2 BB/9) in the upper minors this year with the White Sox and Blue Jays organizations.
- The Phillies have outrighted Sean O’Sullivan to Triple-A, according to the International League transactions page. The righty accepted a previous outright assignment earlier this year, but will once again have the right to elect free agency instead.
- Rays prospect Josh Sale has been hit with a 50-game suspension for recreational drug use, MLB announced today. This is hardly the first brush with trouble for the 23-year-old former first-round pick, who came into the 2013 season rated Tampa’s 24th-best prospect by Baseball America. After a previous drug-related suspension, Sale missed all of last year when the team banned him for inappropriate conduct. He had slashed .238/.313/.344 over 361 plate appearances on the year at the High-A level.
- After reporting earlier today that Matt Daley has accepted an outright assignment from the Yankees, MLB Daily Dish’s Chris Cotillo tweets that Daley has actually been optioned by the club. The righty still occupies a 40-man spot.
- Catcher Chris Gimenez has accepted an outright assignment from the Rangers rather than electing free agency, tweets John Blake, the club’s executive VP of communications. The 31-year-old was designated for assignment five days ago, and apparently has not found a better opportunity with another organization.
- The Phillies have released outfielder Clete Thomas, Cotillo tweets. The 30-year-old has seen 794 MLB plate appearances in parts of four seasons, but had not been elevated by Philadelphia this season. Over 226 minor league plate appearances, he carries a .247/.345/.335 slash.
Baseball America’s Matt Eddy has posted his weekly look at minor league transactions from around the league from the past seven days. We’ll highlight a couple of the (relatively) notable names that were missed in the past week:
- Eddy reports that the Cardinals have released southpaw Pedro Feliciano from his minor league deal. The 37-year-old, once an excellent setup man with the Mets, pitched to a 5.57 ERA with 8.1 K/9 and 3.4 BB/9 in 21 frames with Triple-A Memphis this season.
- The Reds have released left-hander Scott Maine, Eddy reports. The former Cub was inked to a minor league deal in June after pitching well for the independent Atlantic League’s Bridgeport Bluefish, but he posted a 6.10 ERA in 10 1/3 innings with the Reds organization.
- The Athletics have released first baseman/third baseman B.A. Vollmuth, tweets Eddy. Vollmuth, a third-rounder as recently as 2011, batted just .207/.278/.341 this season at Class A Beloit. The 24-year-old has yet to move above the Class-A Advanced level and a has a .702 OPS in his pro career.
Full Story | 8 Comments | Categories: Chris Gimenez | Cincinnati Reds | Clete Thomas | Detroit Tigers | Josh Sale | Matt Daley | New York Yankees | Oakland Athletics | Pedro Feliciano | Philadelphia Phillies | Scott Maine | Sean O'Sullivan | Shawn Hill | St. Louis Cardinals | Tampa Bay Rays | Texas Rangers | Transactions
Here are Sunday’s minor moves from around MLB:
- The Cardinals have agreed to sign lefty Pedro Feliciano to a minor-league deal, Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch tweets. MLB Daily Dish’s Chris Cotillo tweeted last week that the two sides were close to a deal. Feliciano, 37, served as a LOOGY for the Mets during part of the 2013 season, pitching 25 appearances but only 11 1/3 innings and striking out nine batters while walking six. He has only pitched for the Mets in a big-league career that spans parts of nine seasons.
- The Brewers have purchased the contract of infielder Irving Falu and optioned pitcher Jimmy Nelson to Class AAA Nashville, Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel writes. After outrighting Jeff Bianchi to make room for Nelson yesterday, the Brewers wanted another infielder for their bench. Falu, 30, signed with the Brewers in December as a minor-league free agent. He has a career .337/.366/.427 line in 95 career big-league plate appearances, all with the Royals. He was hitting .288/.349/.341 in 156 plate appearances for Nashville.
- The Rays have released right-hander Juan Sandoval, tweets Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times. Sandoval, who is completely blind in his right eye, has appeared in 14 games (1 start) for Triple-A Durham this year pitching to a 3.12 ERA, 5.2 K/9, and 4.8 BB/9 in 26 innings. The 33-year-old has yet to reach the Majors.
- The Blue Jays have acquired catcher Hector Gimenez from the White Sox, according to the International League transactions page. Gimenez has struggled in Triple-A this season slashing .109/.234/.182 in 64 plate appearances for Charlotte. The 31-year-old saw his most extensive MLB action last year appearing in 26 games for the White Sox batting .191/.275/.338 in 80 plate appearances.
- Per MLBTR’s DFA Tracker, a pair of Pirates (Wandy Rodriguez and Phil Irwin) and a pair of Padres (Billy Buckner and Blaine Boyer) remain in DFA limbo.
Charlie Wilmoth contributed to this post.
Saul Katz is denying reports that he wants to share his stake in the Mets but a baseball exec tells Josh Kosman of the New York Post that he wanted to do even more. Katz, according to the exec, tried to get Fred Wilpon to join in so that they could sell majority control. Wilpon said no in part because he wants to turn the team over to his son, Jeff. Here’s more from around the league..
- The Cardinals are close to a minor league deal with free agent left-hander Pedro Feliciano, a source tells Chris Cotillo of MLBDailyDish.com (on Twitter). Steve Nations of KSDK Sports reported yesterday that St. Louis was giving the 37-year-old a hard look. Feliciano has seen time in nine MLB campaigns, returning to the bigs for 25 appearances (but just 11 1/3 innings) with the Mets last year, putting up a 3.97 ERA. His career mark stands at 3.33 earned per nine over 383 2/3 innings.
- Signing Stephen Drew would help the Red Sox‘s cause, writes John Tomase of the Boston Herald. Drew, he argues, would give Boston some much needed competition by moving Xander Boegarts over to third where he’d fight Will Middlebrooks for playing time. The Red Sox are the one team that can sign Drew without surrendering a draft pick, but that window closes once the draft begins on June 5.
- Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times looks back to reassess the Rays‘ offseason decisions. The three-team deal that brought Ryan Hanigan to Tampa Bay was still worthwhile, Topkin argues, despite having to eat the $5.5MM owed to Heath Bell. Meanwhile, the deal sending left-hander Alex Torres and right-hander Jesse Hahn to San Diego doesn’t look as good right now.
Three clubs were willing to offer major league deals to Kyle Farnsworth, tweets Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com. Farnsworth chose the Astros in part because he could see high leverage chances and due to his relationship with manager Bo Porter. Here are some notes on a few other players who are still looking for their next professional opportunity:
- Brian Burres, who has been throwing well this year in the independent Atlantic League, has recently received interest from a few clubs, MLBTR has learned. The 33-year-old southpaw carries a 1.80 ERA through 20 innings, striking out 6.3 and walking 1.8 batters per nine. Burress has 358 1/3 MLB innings under his belt; he last saw MLB time in 2011 with the Pirates.
- The Yankees and Mariners are two of the five finalists to sign Cuban outfielder Daniel Carbonell, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports on Twitter. The Twins attended Carbonell’s most recent showcase, tweets Darren Wolfson of 1500 ESPN, and are “monitoring” him. Carbonell, 23, was declared a free agent back in April.
- The Phillies are in on Todd Coffey, a source tells Chris Cotillo of MLBDailyDish (via Twitter). The Orioles, meanwhile, are likely out on Coffey after signing Heath Bell (link). Coffey has multiple offers in hand and could decide soon, according to sources.
- Lefty Pedro Feliciano is getting a hard look from the Cardinals, according to Steve Nations of KSDK Sports. Feliciano threw live BP to Cards minor leaguers yesterday, and will appear in a simulated game today in hopes of convincing the St. Louis brass to give him a minor league deal. The 37-year-old has seen time in nine MLB campaigns, returning to the bigs for 25 appearances (but just 11 1/3 innings) with the Mets last year, putting up a 3.97 ERA. His career mark stands at 3.33 earned per nine over 383 2/3 frames.
In the aftermath of today's shooting at the Washington Navy Yard, the Nationals have rightly postponed tonight's matchup against the Braves. Needless to say, our thoughts are with those affected by this tragedy. As anyone who has ever attended a game at Nationals Park knows, the neighboring naval facility plays a big role at the ballpark, with the team playing a submarine horn to celebrate home runs and honoring service men and women at every contest. Today, the stadium's parking lots have served as a somber meeting point for family members waiting to learn more about their loved ones.
Shortly after the recent Boston Marathon attack, Sports Illustrated's Tom Verducci wrote that baseball, "unlike any other sport, is there for us virtually every day." There is no ballgame in D.C. today, but they'll play two tomorrow. We hope that baseball will bring some small comfort to the Navy Yard community, as it has done for so many others.
- For those interested in learning more about the Nationals' reactions to today's events, the Washington Times' Amanda Comak has the latest. Meanwhile, David O'Brien of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports on things from the Braves side. According to third baseman Chris Johnson, the Nats' and Braves' player representatives jointly notified the MLBPA that the players felt it would be inappropriate to play.
- Mets reliever LaTroy Hawkins is keenly aware that he doesn't have much time left in the bigs, writes Brian Giuffra of The Record (NorthJersey.com), but says he's still "not at the end of [his] career." Still capable of touching the mid-90's in his age-40 season, the righty has been effective: in 65 2/3 innings, he has a 3.15 ERA, 10 saves, 7.1 K/9, and 1.4 BB/9. "Certainly, if he wants to come back … it would be nice to have him around," said Mets manager Terry Collins, who explained that Hawkins is a beneficial presence for the club's younger arms.
- Fellow Mets reliever Pedro Feliciano says that he, too, hopes to return next year at age 37. He tells Clayton Collier of MetsmerizedOnline.com that he hopes to "retire from here." The lefty specialist has never thrown a pitch for another big league club, though he did spend a year in Japan and also collected $8MM from the cross-town Yanks for two injury-riddled seasons. Since returning to Queens, Feliciano has tossed 9 1/3 innings of 4.82 ERA ball. Much of the damage has come from the twelve right-handed hitters he's pitched to in 2013, however, as they have a collective .714/.833/1.143 line against him. Of the 32 lefties that Feliciano has faced this year, as many have struck out as have managed a hit (six).
- Marlins president of baseball operations Larry Beinfest is once again facing public speculation that he could lose his post. Beinfest deserves better, says FOX Sports' Ken Rosenthal, who reports that the long-time executive recently approached owner Jeffrey Loria and asked him to decide whether or not Beinfest would stay on in Miami. Loria has thus far stayed quiet on the status of Beinfest, who is under contract through 2015. Rosenthal reports that the two key Marlins figures have repeatedly clashed over baseball decisions ranging from promotions to the saga of hitting coach Tino Martinez.
One day after learning that ace Matt Harvey has a torn UCL in his right elbow, ESPNNewYork.com's Adam Rubin reports that the Mets are poised to be active on the trade front in the final days of August. According to Rubin, five players have been placed on revocable trade waivers, and at least one trade is likely in the next 24 to 48 hours.
Marlon Byrd, John Buck and Pedro Feliciano are three of the players to hit waivers, and the Mets have already recalled lefty Robert Carson, catcher Anthony Recker and outfielder Matt den Dekker from Triple-A Las Vegas. Obviously, that trio of minor leaguers could serve as replacements for the three known players on waivers.
Byrd, who turns 36 on Friday, is having a surprising career year despite his age. He drew significant interest prior to the July 31 non-waiver deadline, but the Mets opted to hang onto him. In 464 plate appearances, he's batting .285/.330/.518. His 21 homers and 136 OPS+ are both career-bests. Byrd is no longer a regular center fielder (just two games there in 2013), but his defense in right field grades out to a solid +6.6 UZR/150, and The Fielding Bible pegs him at nine runs saved. As Rubin notes, just $130K remains on Byrd's 2013 salary, making him a highly affordable trade chip.
Buck, 33, has cooled off considerably following a meteoric start that saw him club 10 homers in his first 25 games (23 starts). Since May 1, he's hitting just .206/.290/.302 with six homers, limiting his value. However, Travis d'Arnaud is now drawing the majority of the time behind the plate, so the Mets would likely welcome the opportunity to clear the remaining $1.1MM of Buck's salary.
Feliciano, 37, returned to the Majors for the first time since 2010 on Aug. 2 and has allowed a pair of runs in 5 1/3 innings since. His health woes in recent years likely leave him without high trade value, but he'd be a nice alternative to Javier Lopez, whom the Giants reportedly aren't likely to trade even though he's been claimed on waivers. Opposing lefties are just 3-for-17 against Feliciano this season, and all four of his strikeouts have come against left-handed batters.
Rubin also writes that in addition to Byrd, Buck and Feliciano, the Mets are considering dealing Major League talent that is under control beyond the 2013 season.
It's been 731 days since the Mets traded Carlos Beltran to the Giants in exchange for Zack Wheeler, and while that trade looks brilliant now, it also represents the last July trade that involved the Amazin's. Here's more on New York's National League club…
- Tim Byrdak's contract contains a clause that allows him to leave the Mets should another team offer him a Major League roster spot, MLBTR has learned. After being contacted by an interested team, the Mets would have 48 hours to add Byrdak to their own big league roster. If they chose not to do so, Byrdak would be free to join the new team, and the Mets would receive no compensation. The clause is similar to the one that allowed Jason Grilli to leave the Phillies and join the Pirates in 2011. Byrdak currently has a 2.45 ERA and 11-to-3 K/BB ratio in 11 innings at High-A St. Lucie as he works his way back from shoulder and knee surgeries in late 2012.
- A Mets executive told Mike Puma of the New York Post that he would be surprised if manager Terry Collins were replaced after the season. The Mets are happy with the job that Collins has done, and the executive says the team is doing a good job of "sprinting to the finish line" with Collins at the helm (Twitter links). Collins still only under contract through the 2013 season.
- Puma's colleague, Joel Sherman, tweets that left-handed relief is in such high demand, the Mets actually received calls checking in on how Byrdak and Pedro Feliciano were progressing in their rehab.
- Nothing has changed on the Marlon Byrd and Bobby Parnell front, according to Sherman (on Twitter). The Mets have received nibbles on both, but not nearly enough to make a deal likely.
- The Mets are seeking a "Wheeler type" top prospect in exchange for Parnell, according to Jon Heyman of CBS Sports (on Twitter). Given that exborbitant price tag, it's no surprise that interest hasn't picked up much.
- Sherman adds that the Mets had hoped to see interest in Daniel Murphy, John Buck and Eric Young Jr., but to this point they haven't received calls on that group. As such, they're likely to simply try to win as many games as they can with the current group in the season's second half.
Acquiring Andre Ethier "would be a solid gamble" for the Mets, Metsblog.com's Matthew Cerrone opines. Ethier could be forced out of the Dodgers outfield by Yasiel Puig and Scott Van Slyke, making him expendable at a discount price since it is believed the Dodgers would have to absorb at least half of the roughly $80MM remaining on Ethier's contract. The Mets would be paying around $10MM per season to a player Cerrone sees as "a nice compliment to Lucas Duda in left field," but it would be the first step in the Mets upgrading their outfield now and this winter in the free agent market.
Here's some more on the Amazins from ESPN New York's Adam Rubin, who covered a number of topics during a live chat with readers today…
- Ike Davis could be a trade candidate if the Mets thought he wouldn't be worth his growing salary over his arbitration years. A Rubin source on another team projects Davis to earn $6.1MM in his second year of arbitration eligibility this winter, "assuming his production normalizes somewhat the rest of the way." This could be a big if, as Davis has managed only a .509 OPS through 201 PA this season. Davis signed a one-year, $3.125MM deal last winter in his first taste of arb-eligibility.
- Rubin isn't sure if the Mets see Daniel Murphy as an extension candidate since "a New York team doesn't normally have to be consumed with locking up a player's arbitration years." Murphy signed a one-year, $2.925MM deal last winter and is arbitration-eligible for the second time this winter. The second baseman has been a bright spot for the Mets this season, hitting .290/.323/.439 and tying for the NL lead with 19 doubles.
- Pedro Feliciano has been on the minor league disabled list since May 9 with a "very serious" type of food poisoning that "can affect the person off and on for years." The southpaw hasn't pitched in the Majors since 2010 after suffering a variety of arm injuries as a member of the Yankees in 2011-12. Feliciano signed a minor league deal with the Mets in January.