Randy Winn Rumors

Randy Winn Retires

Randy Winn has retired after 13 season in the big leagues, according to Janie McCauley of the Associated Press (on Twitter). The Orioles signed Winn to a minor league this past offseason then released the 36-year-old this week.

Postseason baseball eluded Winn throughout his career and last year was no exception. The Yankees, who made it to the ALCS in 2010, signed him before the season, but designated him for assignment after he struggled. The Cardinals picked him up last summer, only to miss the postseason. Winn also played for the Giants (between their recent trips to the World Series), the Mariners (after their most recent playoff appearance) and the Rays (before they sniffed the playoffs).

Winn retires with a .284/.343/.416 line, 1759 hits, 110 homers and 215 stolen bases. He earned over $42MM in his career, according to Baseball-Reference.

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Orioles Release Randy Winn

Outfielder Randy Winn asked for and was granted his unconditional release, according to an Orioles press release.  Winn was one of eight cuts made today, as Nolan Reimold was optioned to Triple-A while Clay Rapada, Mark Hendrickson, David Riske, Ryan Drese, Pat Egan, and Nick Green were assigned to minor league camp.  As previously noted, Hendrickson and Riske can opt out.  The Orioles currently have 39 players on their 40-man roster and 28 in camp.

Winn, 36, hit .239/.307/.356 in 233 plate appearances for the Yankees and Cardinals last year, tallying 401 outfield innings.  He signed a minor league deal with the Orioles in early February.

Orioles Moves: Hendrickson, Riske, VandenHurk

The Orioles are paring down their roster today; here's the latest:

  • Lefty Mark Hendrickson is among the team's cuts, tweets MLB.com's Brittany Ghiroli.  Hendrickson can opt out rather than report to the minors.  Given his success against lefties, he should be able to find work in the big leagues.
  • Reliever David Riske is also one of today's cuts, reports Ghiroli.  She says Riske left camp for personal reasons, and the team isn't sure whether he'll join them in Triple-A.  He too has the ability to opt out. 
  • Righty Rick VandenHurk has been cut, reports Ghiroli.  Since the Dutchman is out of options, he'll have to clear waivers to remain with the organization.  The O's snagged VandenHurk at last year's trade deadline in the Will Ohman deal.

Orioles Sign Randy Winn

The Orioles announced that they have signed Randy Winn to a minor league deal and invited him to Spring Training. The 36-year-old will provide depth behind outfielders Nick Markakis, Adam Jones, Felix Pie and Nolan Reimold.

Winn has not made the playoffs in 13 years at the Major League level, though he came close last year. The Yankees, who made it to the ALCS in 2010, signed him, but designated him for assignment after he struggled. The Cardinals picked him up, only to struggle down the stretch themselves.

In 233 plate appearances for the Yankees and Cardinals last year, Winn batted .239/.307/.356 and played all three outfield positions. He was an everyday player as recently as 2009, but at this point in his career, the switch-hitter is likely a bench player. 

Nationals Notes: Winn, Webb, Wang, LaRoche

Washington may or may not be in on Cliff Lee. Here's what we do know about the Nationals:

Randy Winn Wants To Play In 2011

After 13 years and 1,717 regular season games, Randy Winn still hasn’t appeared in the playoffs, but the outfielder tells B.J. Rains of FOXSportsMidwest.com that he’s not worried about signing with a contender this offseason. At this stage in his career, the 36-year-old is simply looking for a job.

“I would like to find a team that would like me to play for them, that’s going to be my first thing,” Winn said. “I don’t know what my options are going to be. I hope some organization thinks I can come in and help. That’s what I’m hoping for.”

The Yankees were hoping Winn could be a useful fourth outfielder when they signed him last winter, but he struggled and they designated him for assignment. The Cardinals picked him up, but the team struggled down the stretch so Winn missed the playoffs yet again.

Winn batted .239/.307/.356 in 233 plate appearances between the Yankees and Cardinals and played all three outfield positions. He signed for $1.1MM last winter, but he’s likely looking at a minor league deal this time. Winn doesn’t expect to sign soon, but he says he’s happy to wait for offers and play with his kids.

Odds & Ends: Fielder, Lincoln, Gorzelanny, Lee, Haren

Links for Sunday..

Cardinals Sign Randy Winn

11:56am: John Shea of The San Francisco Chronicle tweets that the deal is official, and Winn will be available for today's game.

10:19am: The Cardinals are close to signing outfielder Randy Winn, according to the team's official Twitter feed. He was designated for assignment by the Yankees about a week ago.

Winn, 36 next week, hit just .213/.300/.295 in 71 plate appearances for the Yanks, and his merely average defensive performance wasn't even getting him playing time as a late-inning defense replacement by the end of his tenure. The Yanks are still on the hook for his $1.1MM salary, less the pro-rated portion of the league minimum that St. Louis will pay him.

Yankees Designate Randy Winn For Assignment

The Yankees designated Randy Winn for assignment to make room for Curtis Granderson, according to Ben Shpigel of the New York Times (via Twitter). Manager Joe Girardi told Mark Feinsand of the New York Daily News that the Yankees went with versatility and kept Kevin Russo and Ramiro Pena on the roster instead (Twitter link).

As Ben Kabak of River Ave. Blues explained today, Russo has turned himself into a household name and the Yankees like that Pena can back up at short. That means Winn is available to the 29 other teams (along with his .213/.300/.295 line). The Yankees expected Winn to be a strong defensive presence when they signed him last winter, but he has been average, according to UZR. Winn, who turns 36 next month, makes $1.1MM this year.

Odds & Ends: Chapman, Gordon, Winn, Brewers

Some Thursday notes from around the majors…

  • Aroldis Chapman recorded seven strikeouts while allowing three hits and a walk over five shutout innings for the Reds' Triple-A affiliate in Louisville tonight, reports John Fay of the Cincinnati Enquirer.  Chapman is in the midst of a 10 2/3 inning scoreless streak.
  • Fangraphs' Jack Moore looks at Alex Gordon's ongoing demolition of Triple-A pitching and says "there’s no excuse if he’s not back in Kansas City by June."
  • Mark Feinsand of the New York Daily News tweets that "many people believe" the Yankees will designate Randy Winn for assignment when Curtis Granderson returns from the DL.  Feinsand believes the Yanks should keep Winn and instead send Kevin Russo back to the minors.
  • MLB.com's Adam McCalvy reports (via Twitter) that the Brewers have signed right-hander Eduardo Morlan to a minor-league deal.  The Brewers selected Morlan from Tampa Bay in the 2008 Rule 5 draft but he was designated for assignment and returned to the Rays during spring training of that year.  The Rays just released Morlan two days ago.
  • ESPN's Insider Rumors section (subscription required) speculates that Rickie Weeks could be a trade candidate if Milwaukee doesn't want to pay his likely arbitration raise in the winter.  MLBTR's Tim Dierkes explored the Brewers' trade options last week, and noted that Weekes' arbitration salary bump might also cause teams to shy away from acquiring him.
  • John Schuerholz chatted on the air with Sirius XM Radio's Jim Bowden today.  Bowden tweeted that Schuerholz feels the Braves have enough pop in their lineup and don't "need to make a Fred McGriff type trade."  The Crime Dog was acquired by Atlanta in July 1993 for Donnie Elliott, Vince Moore and Melvin Nieves — don't you always need to make a deal like that?
  • Bowden also had Baltimore president Andy MacPhail on his show, and speculates (via Twitter) that the O's will look to draft Jameson Taillon based on MacPhail's description of his club's wants.  Bowden also tweeted that MacPhail didn't offer an endorsement of manager Dave Trembley, and instead just noted that it's still early in the season.
  • Omar Minaya said the Mets might look to trade for a starter later in the summer, reports Kieran Darcy of ESPNNewYork.com.
  • Fanhouse's Ed Price explains how Philadelphia's unheralded signings of Jose Contreras and Danys Baez have bailed out their bullpen over the first two months of the season.
  • Anthony Castrovince of MLB.com answers Cleveland-related fan questions in a mailbag about such topics as when Michael Brantley will return to the majors, the recent release of Scott Lewis, and how the Tribe passed on Jason Heyward in the 2007 amateur draft.