Rod Barajas Rumors

Odds & Ends: Angels, Brewers, Gordon, Romero

Some links to check out while we wait to see if Jon Garland can help the Padres extend their lead in the NL West…


Odds & Ends: Bell, Giants, Lowell, Maine, Indians

Sunday linkage..


Rangers Looking To Trade For Rod Barajas?

The Rangers' search for a reliable catcher may be taking them to a former Ranger who they pursued in the offseason.  T.R. Sullivan and Chris Cox of MLB.com report that if the Mets put Rod Barajas on the market, the Rangers will have an interest in the veteran catcher.  Sullivan and Cox notes that Texas is contacting several clubs about finding a solution to their catching problems.

Barajas turned down a minor-league contract from Texas over the winter, eventually signing a one-year deal with New York worth $500K.  He has already earned a $400K bonus for making the Opening Day roster, and another $1MM is also available if Barajas reaches other incentive plateaus.  Even if he gets to that maximum price, Barajas has been a bargain for the Mets, hitting a club-leading 10 homers and carrying an OPS of .893 into Friday's game with the Yankees.  

Sullivan and Cox cite sources who say that if the Mets do choose to deal Barajas, it won't be until much closer to the July trade deadline.  This could be to try and create a bidding war for the catcher's services, or maybe the Mets still think they can get back into contention.



Arturo Lopez Designated For Assignment, Clears Waivers

FRIDAY, 4:32pm: Rubin reports that Lopez has cleared waivers and will return to Mets' camp as a non-roster invitee.

WEDNESDAY, 3:48pm: The Mets designated lefty Arturo Lopez for assignment to make room for Rod Barajas, tweets Adam Rubin of the New York Daily News.  Lopez, 27, posted a 3.82 ERA, 6.2 K/9, and 3.8 BB/9 while allowing just one home run in 61.3 Triple A innings last year.  The Mets had claimed Lopez off waivers from the Padres in June.


Baseball Blogs Weigh In: Adrian, Howard, Jeter

A year ago today, the Giants renewed reigning Cy Young Award winner Tim Lincecum's contract for $650K. One year and a second Cy Young later, San Francisco bought out Lincecum's first two years of arbitration eligibility for $23MM. I'm sure they enjoyed paying him just six figures while it lasted. 

Let's take a look at what's being written around the baseball blogosphere…

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Mets Sign Rod Barajas

The Mets officially signed free agent catcher Rod Barajas to one-year Major League deal today. He's guaranteed $500K, with another $400K to come if he's on the team's Opening Day roster. Easily attainable games played incentives could put another $1MM in Barajas' pocket. 

Since the Type B free agent agreed to a Major League deal, the Blue Jays will receive a supplemental first-round pick (#41 overall) as compensation. Barajas turned down an offer of arbitration earlier in the winter and it probably cost him. He made $2.5MM with the Blue Jays last year and it would have been a surprise to see the club offer a significantly reduced salary. The Blue Jays, who signed catchers Jose Molina and John Buck, would not have obtained the compensation pick if Barajas had signed a minor league contract.

Mets' catchers hit a league-worst .254/.305/.380 last season. The 34-year-old Barajas hit .226/.258/.403 for the Blue Jays in 460 plate appearances, hitting 19 home runs.

Ken Rosenthal of FoxSports.com originally reported the deal, while SI.com's Jon Heyman added the details. Both links go to Twitter. 

Ben Nicholson-Smith contributed to this post.


Rod Barajas Considering Offers From Mets, Rangers

FRIDAY, 7:20pm: Barajas is now weighing multiple minor league offers, writes Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports. In addition to the Mets' $1MM proposal, Barajas is considering a $1.5MM offer from the Rangers, according to Rosenthal's source.

THURSDAY, 7:57am: Barajas is likely to accept the Mets' offer, according to Jon Heyman of SI.com (via Twitter). The minor league deal would be worth $1MM. 

WEDNESDAY, 12:57pm: Speaking to Brian Costa of the Newark Star-Ledger, a Mets official denied that they're making a "hard push" for Barajas.  They have interest on a minor league deal.

7:40am: The Mets are making a "hard push" to sign free agent catcher Rod Barajas on a one-year deal, reports Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports.  Barajas is the only starter available at the position, and the Mets still have a need.  The Mets offered a low-dollar, minor league deal, tweets SI's Jon Heyman.

Barajas, 34, hit .226/.258/.403 in 460 plate appearances for the Blue Jays last year, earning $2.5MM.  Consider him the poor man's Bengie Molina.


Texas Pursuing Jose Molina

Jose Molina is the Rangers' "No.1 target" in the free agent catching market, reports Jeff Wilson of The Fort Worth Star-Telegram.  Molina and Rod Barajas each turned down minor-league deals from Texas, with Wilson saying that Molina "isn't in a hurry to sign until some other catchers set the early-spring market."

Molina could also be holding out for a situation where he would have a better chance at a steady role, given that he would be one of seven catchers in the Rangers camp.  Taylor Teagarden and Jarrod Saltalamacchia are the favorites to win or share the starting job, but Saltalamacchia's September shoulder surgery has left Texas looking for a veteran backstop in case their young star isn't ready for Opening Day.  Wilson points out that Toby Hall (another experienced catcher signed to a minor-league deal by Texas last month) and Molina share the same agent.

Molina .217/.292/.268 in 155 plate appearances for the Yankees last season.  He has a career OPS of .609 in 10 major league seasons.


Odds & Ends: Rangers, Wang, Indians

A few links to pass along….


Mets Won’t Add Barajas; Delgado Possible

The Mets will pursue trades if positional battles at first base and catcher don't result in enough production, according to Kevin Kernan of the New York Post. For now, they seem content to let those positional battles play out. They have decided not to sign Rod Barajas, since they don't consider him the answer behind the plate.

The Mets remain interested in Carlos Delgado, but only on a minor league deal. This makes it likely that Daniel Murphy, Mike Jacobs, Fernando Tatis and Ike Davis will share time at first.