Ramon Ramirez Rumors
Here are some minor moves to pass on ...
- The Mariners announced three minor league signings that come with MLB Spring Training invites. Outfielder Cole Gillespie, along with righties Matt Palmer and Ramon Ramirez, will try to impress the Seattle brass in Peoria, AZ. All three players have seen MLB action, though only Ramirez (3.42 ERA in 433 2/3 innings as a reliever) has a history as a big league regular.
- Angels minor league backstop Carlos Ramirez has received a 100 game ban for his third positive test for a "drug of abuse," MLB announced. The 25-year-old has yet to see time above Double-A, and has largely failed to hit in three stints at that level.
- Two former big leaguers experienced status changes in December with regard to their current careers in Japan. Southpaw Travis Blackley reached terms on a one-year deal with the Rakuten Golden Eagles after spending most of last year in the Astros pen, while outfielder Nyjer Morgan has become a free agent after a productive first season with the Yokohama Bay Stars. (All information courtesy of Nikkan Sports, via Yakyu Baka.)
- You can keep track of any players currently in DFA limbo via MLBTR's DFA Tracker. Three players currently await a final disposition: Santos Rodriguez (White Sox), Rafael Ortega (Rangers), and Adys Portillo (Padres).
Rays right-hander Ramon Ramirez has been granted his release from Triple-A Durham, the team announced on Twitter. The 31-year-old veteran had signed a minor league deal with Tampa Bay back on July 1 after being designated for assignment by the Giants in mid-June.
Ramirez allowed seven earned runs in 5 2/3 innings with the Giants this year but excelled as a setup man from 2008-12, posting a 3.04 ERA with 7.5 K/9 and 4.0 BB/9 in 343 innings with the Royals, Red Sox, Giants and Mets. He's enjoyed a strong season in the minors in 2013, compiling a 3.31 ERA with 10.7 K/9 and 3.8 BB/9 in 35 1/3 innings between the Giants and Rays organizations.
Today's minor moves from around the league...
- Justin Thomas exercised his out clause with the Athletics and is now a free agent, according to Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle (Twitter links). Thomas made 16 starts for the club's Triple-A affiliate, posting a 4.48 ERA with 7.3 K/9 and 3.6 BB/9.
- The Nationals have granted Micah Owings his release from Triple-A Syracuse, tweets Dan Kolko of MASNsports.com. The former pitcher had been trying to make the team as a position player. He batted .265/.305/.480 with eight homers and played primarily left field in 57 games for the Chiefs this season.
- In addition to the two Rays moves below, Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times tweets that the team signed recently released right-hander Ramon Ramirez. The 31-year-old was an elite setup ma from 2008-11, posting a 2.77 ERA with 7.5 K/9 and 3.7 BB/9 for the Royals, Red Sox and Giants, but he's struggled the past two seasons in San Francisco.
- The Rays have released Triple-A right-hander Will Inman and signed outfielder Evan Frey, the team announced on Twitter. Inman, 26, posted a 6.47 ERA with more walks than strikeouts in 32 innings. Frey is a .271/.369/.357 hitter in 213 career games at Triple-A.
- Jonathan Sanchez has decided against exercising his July 1 opt-out clause with the Dodgers and instead negotiated a new opt-out date, according to Jon Heyman of CBS Sports (on Twitter). The lefty signed with the Dodgers in May but only got the opportunity to start two games for Triple-A Albuquerque. Sanchez began the year with the Pirates but didn't last long as he was designated for assignment after just five appearances and an 11.85 ERA.
- Jair Jurrjens has been officially optioned to Triple-A, according to Dan Connolly of the Baltimore Sun. The Orioles optioned Jurrjens rather than technically designating him for assignment, though he had the right to refuse the assignment. Jurrjens accepted, and will report to Norfolk in 72 hours (All Twitter links).
- Nine players are in DFA limbo: Carlos Marmol (Cubs), Francisley Bueno (Royals), Eric Hinske (D-Backs), Luis Cruz (Dodgers), Alex Liddi (Mariners), Clayton Mortensen (Red Sox), Travis Ishikawa (Orioles), Jeff Francoeur (Royals) and Matt Guerrier (Dodgers).
The Giants have designated Ramon Ramirez for assignment, according to Henry Schulman of the San Francisco Chronicle. The Giants have ten days to trade or waive Ramirez and chances are he’ll be outrighted to Triple-A Fresno.
Ramirez, 31, saw just 5 and 2/3 innings of work this year for the Giants. For his career, Ramirez owns a 3.42 ERA with 7.5 K/9 and 3.9 BB/9 across parts of eight big league campaigns.
The move will allow San Francisco to promote 24-year-old right-hander Jake Dunning who has posted a 1.75 ERA with 7.8 K/9 and 2.5 BB/9 in 23 games for the club's Triple-A affiliate.
The Giants were reported to be interested in re-signing Ramirez after they released him last week. Ramirez pitched 63 2/3 relief innings for the Mets last season, posting a 4.24 ERA with 7.4 K/9 and 4.9 BB/9.
Valdez and Ramirez had opt outs in their contracts with the team, Andrew Baggarly of CSNBayArea reports (Twitter links). The Giants would like to re-sign Ramirez to a minor league deal if he doesn't find a better opportunity elsewhere.
Valdez, a client of Wasserman Media Group, appeared in 77 games for the Reds in 2012, playing shortstop, second base, third base and even center field. The 34-year-old posted a .206/.236/.227 batting line in 208 plate appearances with Cincinnati.
The Giants signed Ramirez to a minor league deal last month. He appeared in 58 games for the Mets in 2012, posting a 4.24 ERA with 7.4 K/9 and 4.9 BB/9 in 63 2/3 innings out of the bullpen. The 31-year-old had a 46.7% ground ball rate and his fastball averaged 91.1 mph, according to FanGraphs.
2:06pm: It's a minor league deal, Andrew Baggarly of CSNBayArea.com reports (on Twitter).
The right-hander pitched for San Francisco from 2010-11, but was traded to the Mets with Andres Torres in the trade that brought Angel Pagan to San Francisco last offseason. One winter later, all three players signed with the Giants as free agents.
Ramirez appeared in 58 games for the Mets in 2012, posting a 4.24 ERA with 7.4 K/9 and 4.9 BB/9 in 63 2/3 innings out of the bullpen. The 31-year-old had a 46.7% ground ball rate and his fastball averaged 91.1 mph, according to FanGraphs.
Reds top prospect Billy Hamilton left today's Arizona Fall League Championship Game with lower back spasms after crashing into the wall on an Anthony Rendon triple. Hamilton, who stole 155 bases in the minor leagues this year, is in the process of transitioning from shortstop to center field. Here's the game's box score and here's the latest from around the league...
- Free agent right-hander Ramon Ramirez did not leave the ACES agency due to the Melky Cabrera suspension fallout, reports Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports (on Twitter). The two sides split mutually after Ramirez asked the agency to do something it had never done regarding fees.
- Joel Sherman of The New York Post wonders if Hiroki Kuroda's desire to finish in his career in Japan will help the Yankees re-sign him. New York is willing to offer a one-year contract right now, and Sherman thinks they may be willing to approach $16MM.
- Unsurprisingly, the Mets won't jump into the fray to sign Michael Bourn late, reports Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com (on Twitter). Earlier today, MLBTR readers voted 55-45 in favor of Bourn over fellow free agent center fielder B.J. Upton.
- The Marlins have hired Indians field coordinator Rob Leary as their new bench coach, the Indians announced (on Twitter). Leary spent almost a decade as an instructor in the Red Sox's farm system.
Here's the latest from around baseball as we head into the weekend...
- Hiroki Kuroda has told friends that his preference is to pitch in southern California to be near his daughters' grade school, reports Mark Saxon of ESPN Los Angeles. Saxon speculates this could make the Dodgers and Angels the favorites for Kuroda's services, with the Dodgers having the "presumptive edge" with Kuroda due to their past history.
- Angel Pagan could sign before the start of the Winter Meetings on December 3, reports FOX Sports' Ken Rosenthal. Pagan's suitors include "many of the same clubs" who are interested in fellow free agent B.J. Upton, a market that includes the Phillies, Braves and Nationals. The Giants are also in the mix to bring Pagan back to San Francisco.
- Also from Rosenthal, the Marlins made verbal promises to Jose Reyes and Mark Buehrle that neither would be traded when Miami was courting the two as free agents last winter. The promises were made in place of formal no-trade clauses, which the Marlins don't hand out as a matter of club policy. Reyes and Buehrle, of course, were traded to the Blue Jays on Tuesday as part of the big 12-player deal that has yet to be officially confirmed by the league.
- Right-hander Ramon Ramirez will no longer be represented by the ACES agency, tweets Jon Heyman of CBS Sports. Ramirez is the latest of several players to recently switch from ACES, which may be due to MLB's ongoing investigation of the agency for its alleged role in the Melky Cabrera fake website scandal, though the players' union cleared ACES earlier this month.
- Dodgers president Stan Kasten discussed such topics as his plans for the club's minor league system, his career history and MLB labor issues with Ken Davidoff of the New York Post.
- Rangers GM Jon Daniels talked with Michael Moye (Josh Hamilton's agent) earlier this week, reports Jeff Wilson of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, though it seems as if both sides were just checking in on the other.
- The Blue Jays have generated the most headlines of any team this offseason, but FOX Sports' Jon Paul Morosi notes some of the holes the Jays still have to fill.
The Mets will “turn over” the roster this coming offseason, team sources tell Adam Rubin of ESPNNewYork.com. Here are the details, starting with the team’s franchise player...
- Team officials remain optimistic that they’ll be able to retain David Wright long-term, Rubin reports. Mets executives hope the third baseman will succeed Tom Seaver as the unofficial ambassador for the organization once he retires as a player, according to Rubin. Wright told Rubin over the weekend that he hopes his next contract will cover the remainder of his playing career.
- Relievers Jon Rauch and Ramon Ramirez are expected to leave as free agents after the season, Rubin reports.
- Rubin hears from Mets sources that Andres Torres and Mike Pelfrey will likely be non-tendered this winter.
- R.A. Dickey’s contract includes a club option for 2013 that will surely be exercised, but his long-term future with the organization is not entirely secure, according to Rubin. Mets executives seem wary of making a “sizable commitment” to the Cy Young candidate.
- One Mets person said the team would require “a boatload” to part with Ike Davis, Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com reports. The Red Sox had two scouts in attendance at last night’s Mets-Marlins game and could have interest in trading for the first time arbitration eligible first baseman, Heyman reports.