Pedro Feliz Rumors
August transactions don't boast the same excitement as their July counterparts, but they can still have ramifications for contenders and non-contenders alike. Teams readying for the postseason will often fine-tune their rosters by adding a specialty piece -- a LOOGY or power bat off the bench, for example -- and ones looking ahead to next year will look to shed payroll.
There's still a few days left before September arrives, and prominent players such as the Rays' B.J. Upton was claimed as recently as Friday. But in the meanwhile, here's a look back at some of the bigger names who were on the move -- whether by trade or waiver claim -- in August 2010, and the subsequent fallout (for the complete list, check out MLBTR's Transaction Tracker):
- Mike Sweeney, acquired by the Phillies from the Mariners on Aug. 4: Seattle sent the right-handed-hitting veteran and what remained of his $650K salary to Philly, where he hit .231/.310/.385 down the regular season's stretch and went 1-for-1 in his lone postseason at-bat. The M's later received cash from the Phils for Sweeney, who signed a one-day contract with the Royals in March and retired.
- Jim Edmonds, acquired by the Reds from the Brewers on Aug. 9: Cincinnati added Edmonds for its postseason push, sending Chris Dickerson back to Milwaukee in exchange. Edmonds didn't do much, hitting .207/.281/.586 in the regular season before being left off the Reds' postseason roster due to an Achilles injury. He retired this spring after signing a minor league deal with the Cards, while Dickerson was traded in March to the Yankees for Sergio Mitre.
- Mike Fontenot, acquired by the Giants from the Cubs on Aug. 11: The Lads scooped up Fontenot for infield depth during their run to the World Series in exchange for minor league outfielder Evan Crawford. Fontenot remains in San Francisco is under team control for through 2013, though he could be a non-tender candidate this offseason, as he was last.
- Derrek Lee, acquired by the Braves from the Cubs on Aug. 18: Lee joined Atlanta after his long tenure in Chicago, the Cubs acquiring three prospects in return. Lee was one of the better acquisitions of this period, posting a fine .287/.384/.465 line for the Braves to help them reach the postseason, though he went just 2-for-16 in their NLDS loss to the Giants. He signed with the Orioles before this season.
- Pedro Feliz, acquired by the Cardinals from the Astros on Aug. 19: St. Louis sent David Carpenter and cash to Houston in exchange for Feliz, who was added to help out at the hot corner when David Freese was injured. Feliz's already declining bat didn't improve for the Redbirds, who missed the postseason. Feliz signed a minor league deal with the Padres this month, while Carpenter is currently in the Astros' bullpen.
- Cody Ross, acquired by the Giants from the Marlins on waiver claim on Aug. 22: The Giants added an eventual World Series hero in acquiring Ross from the Marlins, who had little interest in retaining Ross, as he was becoming expensive with his final year of arbitration-eligibility looming.
- Brian Fuentes, acquired by the Twins from the Angels on Aug. 27: Minnesota added Fuentes to bolster its bullpen, and the lefty threw 9 2/3 shutout innings in the regular season and 2 2/3 shutout innings in the postseason before signing with the Athletics this offseason. The Angels acquired Loek Van Mil from the Twins as a player to be named.
- Manny Ramirez, acquired by the White Sox on a waiver claim from the Dodgers on Aug. 29: This was arguably the most notable move of the August post-deadline period, but it didn't amount to much for either teams or the player. The White Sox missed the postseason, the cash-strapped Dodgers got some salary relief, and Manny hit a quiet .261/.420/.319 before signing with the Rays this offseason (and eventually retiring).
- Manny Delcarmen, acquired by the Rockies from the Red Sox on Aug. 31: The Rox, still in contention for the wild card, needed bullpen depth, so they sent Chris Balcom-Miller to Boston for Delcarmen. The righty didn't pan out in Colorado, posting a 6.48 ERA in 8 1/3 innings for a team that missed the playoffs before being non-tendered this offseason. He's kicked around since then.
- Jeff Francoeur, acquired by the Rangers from the Mets on Aug. 31: Texas sent Joaquin Arias to the Mets for Frenchy, who played well in his brief time in Texas, hitting .340/.357/.491 down the stretch and seeing playing time during the postseason. Arias was waived by the Mets, while Francoeur signed the Royals this offseason and recently inked a two-year extension.
The Padres have agreed to sign Pedro Feliz to a minor league deal, according to Enrique Rojas of ESPN Deportes. Feliz joined the Camden Riversharks of the Atlantic League after the Royals released him in Spring Training and will report to the Padres' Triple-A affiliate on Friday.
Feliz hit .218/.240/.293 in 429 plate appearances for the Astros and Cardinals last year before signing with the Royals last offseason. The 11-year veteran has a .298 average with 11 homers and 15 doubles in 275 at bats since joining the Riversharks in May, according to Rojas.
Major league veteran Pedro Feliz has officially signed with the Camden Riversharks of the Atlantic League, according to Mike Ashmore of the Hunterdon County Democrat (via Twitter). Feliz, 36, has played 11 seasons in MLB with four different clubs.
Feliz appeared in 137 games for the Astros and Cardinals last season, posting a slash line of .218/.240/.293. The Royals signed him to a minor league deal back in February, but the two sides parted ways in late March when it was apparent that he wouldn't make the big league club.
9:32pm: Juan C. Rodriguez of The Sun Sentinel hears from a source that Feliz to the Marlins "probably won't happen" despite his sudden availability (Twitter link).
8:59pm: The Royals have granted Pedro Feliz his release according to Bob Dutton of The Kansas City Star (on Twitter). The veteran third baseman could have opted out of his contract tomorrow if he didn't make the club.
Feliz, 36 next month, hit .167/.286/.375 in 24 at-bats this spring after hitting just .218/.240/.293 in 429 plate appearances for the Astros and Cardinals last season. It's been speculated that he could be a fit for the Marlins now that top prospect Matt Dominguez will begin the season in the minors, but we've heard that they're not sure Feliz represents an upgrade over their internal options.
The Marlins demoted third baseman Matt Dominguez today, so the slick-fielding prospect will start the season in the minor leagues, where he can work to improve his offense. The move opens up competition at third base and suggests the Marlins could look outside the organization for temporary help at the hot corner. Here's the latest:
- A team source tells MLB.com's Joe Frisaro that the Marlins are not initiating trade talk about third base options with other clubs. Frisaro hears that the Marlins don't have any interest in Michael Young, though they did explore a possible deal earlier in the winter.
- Manager Edwin Rodriguez repeated that Omar Infante will remain at second base, according to MLB.com's Joe Frisaro. Donnie Murphy and Emilio Bonifacio will get the most playing time at third, though Wes Helms and Greg Dobbs also have experience there.
- The Marlins aren't sure that Royals third baseman Pedro Feliz is an upgrade over their internal options, according to Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports (on Twitter). The Marlins can absorb Feliz's $800K salary, according to Rosenthal.
- The Marlins have not contacted the Royals about Feliz, according to ESPN.com's Buster Olney (on Twitter).
- Felipe Lopez, Eric Chavez and free agent Garrett Atkins are also potential options, according to Clark Spencer of the Miami Herald.
- ESPN.com's Jayson Stark reported last night that the Marlins are one of the teams monitoring Young, though they can't afford his annual salary of $16MM.
Some thoughts and details on contracts around the game...
- Some executives in baseball wonder if the Tigers will try to make Miguel Cabrera's contract non-guaranteed, according to ESPN.com's Buster Olney (Twitter links). The first baseman, who was arrested and charged with driving under the influence last night, has five years and $106MM remaining on his long-term deal with the Tigers. The Mets unsuccessfully attempted to convert Francisco Rodriguez's contract into a non-guaranteed deal after his legal trouble in 2010.
- Pedro Feliz can opt out of his deal and become a free agent if he isn't on the Royals' Opening Day roster, according to Bob Dutton of the Kansas City Star. Alternatively, he can go to the minors for $75K.
- Russell Branyan has a similar clause in his deal with the Diamondbacks, according to Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic (Twitter link).
The Royals signed Pedro Feliz to a minor league deal that includes an invitation to Spring Training, the team announced. Enrique Rojas of ESPNDeportes.com reports (on Twitter) that Feliz will earn $800K if he makes the team and will have the chance to earn $200K more in incentives.
The Astros signed Feliz to a $4.5MM deal last winter, then traded him to the Cardinals midseason. He didn't hit for either team, posting a .218/.240/.293 line in 429 plate appearances for the two NL Central clubs. Feliz, 35, has seen his slugging percentage and isolated power drop in each of the past four seasons. He once had 20-homer power, but it seems to have disappeared; his homer totals keep dropping and he hit just five long balls last year.
Feliz has a history of hitting lefties better than righties and a reputation as a strong defender, though he posted a below-average -4.9 UZR/150 last year. He'll join Mike Aviles and the surprising Wilson Betemit at the hot corner this spring.
On this date two years ago, umpires agreed to the use of instant replay to help determine boundary calls, such as fair or foul, on home runs. Expanded use of instant replay remains a hot topic in baseball, and even though Commissioner Bud Selig continues to dance around the subject, more replay feels inevitable at this point.
Here are a bunch of links from around the baseball blogosphere...
- Mike Ashmore's Thunder Thoughts interviews players and team personnel about minor league life, touching on everything from salary to housing to food, the whole nine. It's a long, but truly great read.
- Capitol Avenue Club analyzes the Derrek Lee trade.
- Pine Tar and Pocket Protectors says that Pedro Feliz is not the answer for the Cardinals.
- Beyond The Box Score looks at which teams are building the best bullpens on the cheap.
- Amazin' Avenue tries to figure out who should close for the Mets with Francisco Rodriguez out for the season.
- Royals Review questions whether or not Kansas City has something in Bryan Bullington.
- The Few, The Proud, The Brave looks ahead to Atlanta's offseason as well as the 2011 season.
- Pittsburgh Lumber Co. tries to figure out if the Pirates should start spending this offseason.
- The Process Report lists the Rays' farmhands eligible for this year's Rule 5 Draft.
- SD Sports Net wonders if the Padres whiffed by failing to sign first rounder Karsten Whitson.
- Mike Scioscia's Tragic Illness uses Ricky Romero's new contract as a basis for a Clayton Kershaw contract extension.
- Baseball Time In Arlington examines the hidden value of Cliff Lee.
- Camden Crazies wonders if Brad Bergesen is back to being an effective pitcher.
- 1 Blue Jays Way introduces us to Toronto's prospects.
The Cardinals acquired Pedro Feliz and cash from the Astros for pitcher David Carpenter, according to Astros director of social media Alyson Footer (on Twitter). Feliz, 35, has a .221/.243/.311 line this season with four homers in 304 plate appearances. He hasn't hit much in recent years, but has a reputation as a strong defender. UZR suggests that Feliz's defense has been excellent throughout his career (though he has a -7.9 rating in 530 innings so far in 2010).
The Cardinals acquired Feliz to help out at third base, since an injury to David Freese and a Felipe Lopez slump have left St. Louis thin at the hot corner. The Cardinals intensified their search for infielders this week, showing interest in multiple third basemen. Feliz makes a total of $4.5MM in 2010 (he has yet to receive about $1.1MM of that) before becoming a free agent this winter.
Carpenter, 25, was the closer for the Cards' Florida State League (High A) affiliate. He has 20 saves this year with a 2.36 ERA, 8.4 K/9 and 2.5 BB/9. The Cards drafted Carpenter in the 12th round of the 2006 draft as a catcher. Astros GM Ed Wade describes the right-hander as a "power arm" who could become a major league contributor.
7:30pm: According to MLB.com's Bill Ladson, the Phillies haven't talked to the Nationals about Kennedy.
1:31pm: The Phillies learned today that Chase Utley will be out for several weeks due to thumb surgery, and Ken Rosenthal of FoxSports.com chimes in with some possible replacement options. He notes that the replacement doesn't necessary have to be a second baseman (Twitter link), because the team can use Placido Polanco at that position once he's healthy. That opens up the possibility of a trade for a third baseman.
Rosenthal says that former Phillie Pedro Feliz is an unlikely target, citing a scout who says his bat speed is "gone." Feliz has hit just .229/.255/.317 in 255 plate appearances this year, and his trademark defense has declined back to a -4.3 UZR this season. The Fox Sports scribe throws the names of Miguel Tejada, Ty Wigginton, Jhonny Peralta, Adam Kennedy, and Jose Lopez into the mix (Twitter links). The Mariners are actively trying to move Lopez, according to Rosenthal.
For the now, Philadelphia will try to tread water with the combination of Wilson Valdez and Greg Dobbs at second and third, respectively. They've combined to hit just .222/.252/.338 in 222 plate appearances this season, and Jack Moore at FanGraphs chronicled just how big of a downgrade this is for the Phillies.