Rick VandenHurk Rumors
The latest procedural notes...
- D'Backs manager Kirk Gibson told Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic that Tony Abreu cleared waivers and is going to Triple-A (Twitter link).
- The Royals told Bob Dutton of the Kansas City Star that Gregor Blanco cleared waivers and will be outrighted to Triple-A (Twitter link).
- Outfielder Nick Evans cleared waivers yesterday, GM Sandy Alderson told Adam Rubin of ESPNNewYork.com (on Twitter). The Mets outrighted Evans when he didn't make the Opening Day roster.
- Another Mets player, Luis Hernandez cleared waivers, reports MLB.com's Anthony DiComo. He's unsure whether he'll accept a minor league assignment.
- Cubs catcher Max Ramirez cleared waivers and was outrighted to minor league camp, tweets MLB.com's Carrie Muskat.
- The Tigers outrighted infielder Audy Ciriaco to create a 40-man spot for reliever Enrique Gonzalez, tweets MLB.com's Jason Beck.
- Retired reliever Billy Wagner was removed from the Braves' 40-man roster today, tweets David O'Brien of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Wagner has no plans to come out of retirement, but if he did he'd have to play for the Braves in 2011. The AP has details.
- Orioles righty Rick Vandenhurk cleared waivers, tweets Jeff Zrebiec of the Baltimore Sun.
- Mets reliever Jason Isringhausen, who didn't make the club out of Spring Training, agreed to spend two weeks in Port St. Lucie. According to ESPN's Adam Rubin, one condition of the extended Spring Training agreement is that "if another team approaches Isringhausen in the interim about a major league opportunity, the Mets must either call up Izzy or let him depart." The Mets chose Blaine Boyer over Isringhausen for the Opening Day roster, which so far has allowed them to retain both relievers.
- Outfielder Brandon Boggs, outrighted by the Brewers yesterday, accepted his Triple-A assignment according to Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel.
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.
Ohman, 33 in August, has a 3.30 ERA, 8.7 K/9, and 5.4 BB/9 in 30 innings this year with three home runs allowed. He came a long way since signing a minor league deal in February, even spending a few days as the Orioles' closer. He hasn't displayed any special ability to retire lefties since the '08 season.
Vanden Hurk seems an acceptable return for two months of Ohman. This year at Triple A he posted a 4.68 ERA, 8.0 K/9, and 3.7 BB/9 in 98 innings, allowing 11 home runs. He's had multiple stints at that level and also has 155.6 big league innings under his belt. Strikeouts have been there, but everything else has been an issue (including health). Baseball America ranked Vanden Hurk 13th among Marlins prospects before the '07 season, noting that he was signed at 17 out of the team's Dutch academy. Did you know the Marlins had a Dutch academy? BA described Vanden Hurk as "smart and coachable."
Dan Connolly of the Baltimore Sun first tweeted that Ohman was traded, and Juan C. Rodriguez of the South Florida Sun-Sentinel tweeted that Vanden Hurk was the return.
Clark Spencer of the Miami Herald looks at what's in store for the Marlins as the Winter Meetings approach:
- No surprise here, but the Marlins won't be players for any reputable free agents. In fact, were you aware that over the past three offseasons, the most the Marlins have spent on any one free agent was the $2MM they gave Luis Gonzalez in 2007? Needless to say, Matt Holliday and Jason Bay aren't headed to South Florida.
- The Giants have been one of the most outspoken suitors for Dan Uggla, but the Marlins have asked for Madison Bumgarner in any deal for Uggla. The Giants top pitching prospect is a hefty price to pay, and could lead the Giants to pursue other avenues to add some thunder.
- As we've heard before, Renyel Pinto and Matt Lindstrom could very well be moved at the Winter Meetings.
- Even if Pinto and Lindstrom stay put, the Marlins will be on the lookout for affordable bullpen help now that Kiko Calero and Brendan Donnelly have departed.
- The Marlins will turn to internal options such as Gaby Sanchez and Logan Morrison to replace departed free agent Nick Johnson and his monstrous OBP.
- Josh Johnson and Ricky Nolasco are the team's two locks for the starting rotation. From there, a combination of Anibal Sanchez, Andrew Miller, Sean West, Rick VandenHurk, Chris Volstad, and Hayden Penn will fill out the final three spots.
A few Padres rumors from Tom Krasovic:
- The Marlins, who are eyeing Heath Bell, are a bit more open to trading Rick VandenHurk than guys like Sean West and Andrew Miller.
- All quiet on the Kevin Kouzmanoff front, not that the Pads haven't tried to gauge his value the last few years. The 28 year-old third baseman is hitting .248/.282/.417 in 401 plate appearances this year and is under team control through 2012.
- Krasovic says speedy minor league outfielder Luis Durango is drawing interest, and he could potentially be packaged with starter Kevin Correia. Yesterday we saw the Brewers linked loosely to Correia by Ken Rosenthal and Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports.