Pedro Feliz Rumors
8:18pm: Philadelphia's search for a right-handed bat continues. Alden Gonzalez adds an update on MLB.com.
Names the Phillies have been linked to in that regard include Nomar Garciaparra, Ty Wigginton, Moises Alou, Rich Aurilia, Mark Grudzielanek and Kevin Millar, Gonzalez wrote.
Phillies general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. told Gonzalez that the addition does "not necessarily" need to be an infielder, though a little insurance while Pedro Feliz and Chase Utley recover from offseason surgeries wouldn't hurt.
"We're looking for a guy that has a bit of that versatility that's needed in the National League," Amaro told Gonzalez.
Jan. 23: Jim Salisbury of the Philadelphia Inquirer has the latest on the Phillies' pursuit of a right-handed bench bat. Names of interest: Nomar Garciaparra, Moises Alou, Mark Grudzielanek, Rich Aurilia, and Kevin Millar.
Salisbury says Garciaparra is the team's first choice, but Ruben Amaro Jr. remarked, "We can't be held hostage by Nomar, though he'd be a guy we'd like to bring in." Salisbury's source says the Phils are going "pretty hard" after Alou, who will attempt to re-establish his health in the World Baseball Classic. Two issues there: Alou's playing time expectations may be too high, and he reportedly prefers the AL where he can DH.
Some random links for the day...
- I have created a Fantasy Baseball Closers page at RotoAuthority. With the help of readers it will be constantly updated with current closers and the pecking order of each team.
- Kris Benson will throw for teams again, probably a week from now. The Phillies will again be in attendance. Benson may only get a minor league deal this time around. I remember when he set the standard with his three-year, $21MM deal. Also, the Phils could look to move Wes Helms or Greg Dobbs now that they've signed Pedro Feliz.
- The Red Sox had their eye on Reed Johnson, perhaps thinking he would be non-tendered. He wasn't, and Joe McDonald says Bobby Kielty and Eric Hinske will probably sign elsewhere as well. That leaves Brandon Moss for the bench job, unless the Sox sign Tony Clark, Sean Casey, or Brad Wilkerson.
UPDATE, 1-28-08 at 8:47pm: Feliz gets a guaranteed $8.5MM over two years. With a third year option and incentives, the deal could reach $15MM over three. Feliz left the Giants with some bad blood, turning down what may have been a better offer. We all know Feliz has his flaws, but he is what he is. I agree that the Phils improved themselves here, and I'm not sure if I saw a better alternative.
FROM 1-28-08 at 3:06pm:
According to ESPN's Jayson Stark, the Phillies have signed third baseman Pedro Feliz to a two-year deal (pending a physical).
Feliz, 33 in April, has a career line of .252/.288/.433. The average NL third baseman hit .280/.348/.456 in '07, so Feliz is definitely subpar offensively. On the flip side, the Fielding Bible's panel of experts ranked him the best defensive third baseman in baseball for 2007. Sum it up and you have a player worth roughly three wins above replacement, an improvement over what the Phillies had. Kyle Kendrick may be most appreciative of Feliz's defense, as he is the staff's lead groundballer.
Feliz was a Type B free agent, so the Giants get a sandwich pick for their loss.
We learned earlier today that Pedro Feliz rejected the Giants two-year offer. The team plans to look internally for a solution at third base. Andrew Baggarly of the Mercury News comes in with the possible leading candidate: Kevin Frandsen.
He hasn't manned the hot corner regularly since college, but his performance in just under 300 plate appearances last year has earned him a legitimate shot at the starting gig. He played third base for 55 innings last year. Most of his time was spent at second base, which figures to be occupied by Ray Durham in 2008.
Frandsen is a better option than Feliz, but the Giants still might bring in veteran competition in the form of Morgan Ensberg or Joe Crede. Baggarly's club source said there's a "good chance" of acquiring Crede if his back is healthy this spring. Noah Lowry would be too much; Brad Hennessey maybe?
Joe would like to remind you, just this once, that he writes for River Ave. Blues, a Peter Gammons-approved Yanks blog. Tim also contributed to this post.
All sorts of odds and ends to discuss this morning.
- I will be appearing on Rutgers Student Radio this morning at 8:40am CST. You can go here and click the "listen" link to hear it live.
- Keith Foulke threw for the majority of teams in baseball last week, topping out around 84. The D'Backs may make an offer. I don't believe they have signed a free agent yet.
- The New York Times says Jose Canseco has apparently dragged Magglio Ordonez into the steroid mess, with the FBI getting involved on possible extortion. I have to admit, I am going to read Canseco's new book. The first one was interesting but poorly written.
- The Giants' two-year offer to Pedro Feliz was rejected, and they seem inclined to fill third base internally. Joe Crede is not out of the question though.
- Seems that the Reds might be talking about a long-term deal with Brandon Phillips.
- Rewriting history: the Padres almost acquired Mark McGwire in 1995. Speaking of Kevin Towers, here's a quick look at his trading record. It's good.
- Team payroll data for '07 is out; it's not terribly surprising.
The Brewers have no interest in Pedro Feliz, according to Tom Haudricourt. Not a big surprise; why would they trade Bill Hall to sign Feliz? Hall seems likely to stay put, though it'd be surprising if Dave Bush, Claudio Vargas, and Chris Capuano all do.
Ken Rosenthal checks in with a new column of hot stove material.
- Rosenthal says some suitors are popping up for third baseman Pedro Feliz: the Dodgers, Brewers, Phillies, and Giants. Phillies Assistant GM Ruben Amaro Jr. confirmed interest today in an MLB.com chat. Rosenthal admits that the Dodgers don't seem like a great fit. He says Bill Hall would have to be traded to make room for Feliz, though Tom Haudricourt implied today that Hall would stay put. It was said Wednesday that the Giants' talks with Feliz were stalling over his three-year demand.
- Rosenthal suggests Mark Ellis would be a nice fit for Colorado, though keep in mind that the San Francisco Chronicle's Susan Slusser told us that he was the best bet among veterans to remain with Oakland for 2008. The Rockies' current plan is to go with Jayson Nix and keep Marcus Giles around as another option. I'd be surprised if either pans out.
- Instead of the four or even five-year demands we were hearing about for Kyle Lohse, Rosenthal says three years with a vesting option for the fourth would now be acceptable. He believes Lohse's salary could near $12MM. Lohse recently said he's down to about three suitors.
- Rosenthal still expects the A's to sign a free agent outfielder, with possible target Mike Cameron headed to Milwaukee. Take a look at our newly updated free agent list to see who's out there.
- Amaro admits that the Phils are still considering upgrading at third base. They've had discussions about Pedro Feliz as one such option, while Morgan Ensberg is not on the radar.
- It's unlikely that the Phillies re-sign Jose Mesa.
- Also unlikely would be a Bartolo Colon signing. On the other hand, discussions with Scott Boras about Kyle Lohse are ongoing.
We know Brewers GM Doug Melvin has interest in Mike Cameron, Luis Gonzalez, and Kenny Lofton. Tom Haudricourt spoke to Melvin today, and learned of some additional free agent options on the radar.
The other possibilities: Shawn Green, Brad Wilkerson, and Pedro Feliz. Kind of a smattering of uninspiring veterans. Acquiring Green or Wilkerson would mean Ryan Braun and Bill Hall staying in their current positions. None of these acquisitions are a slam dunk, even for us armchair GMs. Melvin told Haudricourt he'd like to resolve the situation soon.
According to Henry Schulman of the San Francisco Chronicle, talks between the Giants and free agent third baseman Pedro Feliz are stalling. The parties have now passed a Giants-imposed deadline, apparently because the Giants wouldn't go three years on him. Even a two-year offer would be a mistake. Bringing him back in general seems an odd idea.
Schulman suggests that Scott Rolen or Joe Crede could now become trade targets for Brian Sabean. What is this team's direction?