Ryan Doumit Rumors

Twins Interested In Doumit, Willingham

The Twins spoke to agent Matt Sosnick today and expressed interest in Ryan Doumit and Josh Willingham, two of his clients, says Joe Christensen of the Star Tribune. Doumit and Willingham are players the Twins could end up aggressively pursuing, particularly if Michael Cuddyer signs elsewhere.

Doumit is reportedly weighing a few contract offers and may make a decision as soon as this week. Christensen indicates that the Twins haven't extended a formal offer, however, meaning they probably weren't among the clubs Doumit was considering over the weekend.

As for Willingham, we heard earlier in the month that at least ten teams had already expressed interest in the outfielder. Given the lack of power-hitting outfielders on the market, Willingham appears poised to do quite well for himself this winter.

Doumit Turned Down Dodgers Offer

The Dodgers offered free agent catcher Ryan Doumit a one-year deal for just under $3MM and the catcher turned it down, a source close to the team told Mike DiGiovanna of the Los Angeles Times (via Twitter).  The Angels, meanwhile, still haven't called on the veteran.

Doumit has reportedly received several offers and plans to sign with a team before the month is through.  Yesterday, Doumit's agent Paul Cobbe said that his client could sign within the next few days.

The 30-year-old hit .303/.353/.477 in 236 plate appearances last season.

Ryan Doumit Drawing Interest, Could Sign Soon

Ryan Doumit, who was already weighing multiple contract offers, received offers from two more teams today, tweets ESPN.com's Jerry Crasnick. Agent Paul Cobbe tells Crasnick that Doumit could sign within the next few days.

Matt Sosnick, another of Doumit's representatives at Sosnick Cobbe Sports, said earlier this month that his client was willing to catch, play the outfield, or DH. As Crasnick tweeted this week, there are teams that view Doumit as a combo player who could spend time at all three positions, making him more popular to AL clubs. However, Crasnick adds in another tweet that one of today's offers came from a National League team.

Doumit, 30, was limited to 236 plate appearances in 2011 due to injuries, but made the most of his playing time, hitting .303/.353/.477. Pittsburgh declined its option on the longtime Pirate at season's end.

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Quick Hits: Aoki, Cespedes, Pirates, Doumit

The Royals acquired Vin Mazzaro from the Athletics for David DeJesus on this date last year. A few days ago, Kansas City acquired Jonathan Sanchez from the Bay Area's other team. Here are today's links…

  • The A's, Nationals, Mets and Indians could be interested in Norichika Aoki, the three-time Central League batting champion who will be posted this offseason, according to ESPN.com's Jerry Crasnick. SI.com's Jon Heyman suggests those same four teams could be interested in Grady Sizemore (Twitter links).
  • ESPN.com's Keith Law previews the market for starting pitching and explains that if there's an available ace it's Japanese right-hander Yu Darvish. MLBTR’s Tim Dierkes previewed the market for starting pitching earlier this week.
  • Ben Badler of Baseball America explains that international scouts have known about Yoenis Cespedes for a while. The recent showcase video and the subsequent reaction gave fans the impression that the center fielder appeared out of nowhere, but that’s not the case.
  • Danny Knobler of CBS Sports hears from someone who expects Cespedes to sign for upwards of $30MM (Twitter link).
  • The Yankees and Pirates had preliminary discussions about trades involving catchers, but the Pirates' deal with Rod Barajas makes a trade between the Pirates and Yankees seem unlikely, as Joel Sherman of the New York Post explains (on Twitter).
  • Speaking of Pirates catchers, free agent Ryan Doumit has obtained multiple offers and expects to sign this month, according to ESPN.com's Jerry Crasnick (Twitter links). The versatile 30-year-old is looking for a one-year deal.

Twins Notes: Doumit, Barmes, Krivsky

The Twins started their offseason by claiming a pair of pitchers off waivers earlier this week. Let's round up the latest from Minnesota…

  • There has been no early contact between the Twins and free agents Ryan Doumit and Clint Barmes, reports Phil Mackey of 1500 ESPN Twin Cities (on Twitter). Ben Nicholson-Smith said a major expenditure at shortstop is unlikely in his Offseason Outlook, but he did mention that they need help at backup catcher.
  • The Twins hope to finalize an agreement with Wayne Krivsky that would make him GM Bill Smith's special assistant, according to Joe Christensen of The Star Tribune. His focus would be on pro scouting. Krivsky worked with the organization as Terry Ryan's assistant GM before becoming GM of the Reds in 2005.
  • Earlier today we learned that the Twins denied the Orioles permission to interview VP of player personnel Mike Radcliff for their still vacant GM job.

Quick Hits: Tigers, Doumit, Blue Jays, Oliver

Steve Carlton of the Phillies won his third career Cy Young Award on this day in 1980. The left-hander would go on to win a fourth Cy Young in 1982 en route to 329 career wins and a place in Cooperstown. Here are some links for Friday afternoon…

  • Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe suggests the Red Sox should pursue Jose Reyes and trade Jose Iglesias. However, the Red Sox expect Iglesias to be ready for the Major Leagues within a half-year or so. Cafardo expects the Red Sox to pursue Carlos Beltran this offseason.
  • The Tigers are looking for a leadoff hitter, according to ESPN.com's Jerry Crasnick (Twitter links). Reyes is a dream candidate and David DeJesus and Kelly Johnson could be more affordable alternatives.
  • Agent Matt Sosnick told Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports that free agent Ryan Doumit is willing to catch, play right field or DH in 2012 (Twitter link).
  • The Blue Jays announced that they hired former Devil Rays GM Chuck LaMar as a special assistant to amateur scouting.
  • Darren Oliver’s wife has given her husband the go-ahead to sign with whichever team has the best shot at a World Series title, according to ESPN.com’s Jerry Crasnick.

Pirates Decline Options On Maholm, Snyder, Doumit, Cedeno

The Pirates announced today they've declined club options on Paul Maholm, Chris Snyder, Ryan Doumit, and Ronny Cedeno.

The decision on Cedeno was the Pirates' one unknown.  Though a case could be made that the value of Cedeno's ability to play shortstop exceeded the $2.8MM net price of his option, the Pirates will aim higher than his .249/.297/.339 batting line.

For Maholm, the Pirates chose a $750K buyout over his $9.75MM club option.  The lefty told Rob Biertempfel of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, "The day I was put on the DL, I realized my time in Pittsburgh was done."  Prior to that season-ending stint for a shoulder injury, the 29-year-old posted a 3.66 ERA, 5.4 K/9, 2.8 BB/9, 0.61 HR/9, and 49.9% groundball rate in 162 1/3 innings.  As one of the ten best starters on the free agent market this winter, he's in line for a multiyear deal.

The Pirates' decisions to pay Snyder a $750K buyout over a $6.75MM option and Doumit a $500K buyout over a $7.25MM option were well-known.  Both players have offensive ability, and should be relatively popular on the free agent market.  Doumit's defense and durability questions will likely prevent a team from offering a full-time catching job, while Snyder will have to compete for one after missing most of 2011 with a back injury.

Quick Hits: Pirates, CBA, Cubs, Royals

Some late-night links on this Saturday night …

  • The Pirates are considering exercising shortstop Ronny Cedeno's $3MM 2012 option, but they will likely pass on options for Chris Snyder ($6.75MM), Ryan Doumit ($7.25MM) and Paul Maholm ($9.75MM), according to Jenifer Langosch of MLB.com. As well, Langosch adds the Bucs have interest in re-signing first baseman Derrek Lee but will probably allow Ryan Ludwick to walk in free agency.
  • MLB and the players union are close on a new collective bargaining agreement, tweets Jon Heyman of SI.com, although slotting for draft signing bonuses remains an issue of debate. Commissioner Bud Selig and some small-market teams are in favor of hard slotting, according to Heyman.
  • Cubs president Theo Epstein said he wants to talk to starter Carlos Zambrano before deciding how to proceed in handling the right-hander, according to Carrie Muskat of MLB.com, whether that be retaining Zambrano or trying to trade him. As well, Epstein hinted at one of the organization's overarching goals: "We're looking for assets," Epstein said. "We're going to scratch and claw and do everything in our power — in the Draft, internationally, small trades, waiver claims. We need to build assets because we don't have enough of them.
  • Royals GM Dayton Moore told Dick Kaegel of MLB.com that he will "explore trade possibilities to add a starter." Moore said the Royals probably won't try to sign a free-agent starter, however.

NL Central Notes: Pujols, Pirates, Astros

Let's turn our attention to the National League Central where we lead off with, who else, Albert Pujols..

  • If there was any doubt before, it's completely erased now: Albert Pujols is going to hit the free agent jackpot at the age of 31, writes Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports.  One performance logically shouldn't have a great effect on a player's value, but Rosenthal argues that all it takes is one team to take a contrary position.
  • If, as expected, the Pirates move on without Ryan Doumit and Chris Snyder, GM Neal Huntington said the team is "comfortable" with their internal options at catcher but will explore outside options as well, writes Michael Sanserino of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
  • The Astros have hired Bryan Lambe as an area scout, tweets MLB.com's Brian McTaggart.  Lambe and Wayne Krivsky, both hires of ex-GM Omar Minaya, were let go by the Mets exactly one month ago today.

Pirates To Decline Options On Snyder, Doumit

General manager Neal Huntington said that the Pirates intend to decline club options for Ryan Doumit and Chris Snyder after the conclusion of the World Series, writes Jenifer Langosch of MLB.com.  As Tim Dierkes wrote on Wednesday, both moves were expected.

Doumit's option would have paid him $7.25MM in 2012 and $8.25MM in 2013.  The 30-year-old has strugged to stay healthy in recent years, playing 75 games in 2009, 124 games in 2010, and 77 games this past season.

The Pirates acquired Snyder in a five-player deal last July.  The catcher's 2012 option would have paid him $6.75MM but he'll instead collect a $750K buyout.  Snyder saw action in just 34 games this season but has a career slash line of .271/.376/.396.