Royce Clayton Rumors

Crasnick On Remaining Free Agents

ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick examines the status of nine free agents: Sammy Sosa, Kenny Lofton, Reggie Sanders, Jeff Cirillo, Royce Clayton, Steve Finley, Freddy Garcia, David Wells, and Damian Miller.

  • Lofton is likely to find a job; he’s healthy and played reasonably well last year.  The Cubs still might be a fit.
  • Seems that Garcia probably won’t reach a big league mound until September; auditioning for teams may take place in July.
  • Miller received calls from the Yankees and Padres, but he’s still taking a Brewers or nothing stance.

Minor Moves: Cirillo, Elarton, Clayton

Some minor moves occurred recently.  Let’s catch up.

  • The Diamondbacks claimed 37 year-old infielder Jeff Cirillo off waivers from the Twins.  I still remember when Cirillo was a perennial .320 hitter and regular third baseman for the Brewers and Rockies.  This looks like a salary dump, with the Twins not wanting to pay the $550,000 or so due to Cirillo for the remainder of the season. 
  • The Indians signed Scott Elarton to a minor league contract.  Elarton was last semi-useful in Cleveland back in ’05, when he posted a 4.61 ERA in 181 innings.  Currently, southpaw groundballer Aaron Laffey is looking to secure the fifth starter job.
  • The Blue Jays designated Royce Clayton for assignment.  Looking for an aging backup shortstop with no discernible talents?  Clayton is your man.

Jays Sign Clayton

Ken Rosenthal reports that the Blue Jays signed Royce Clayton today to be their starting shortstop, at a price of $1.5MM.

As Rosenthal suggests, Clayton’s main skill, defense, has been deteriorating.  He isn’t much range-wise and probably shouldn’t be starting for anyone.  At least when the Red Sox went with Alex Gonzalez last year, he truly was saving runs with glovework.

While I don’t love the signing, the Blue Jays will still field a fine club in 2007 once they add some starting pitching.