Scott Podsednik Rumors
Dodgers GM Ned Colletti told Bill Shaikin of the LA Times that he isn't pursuing Johnny Damon. The club could pursue a left field platoon partner for Jay Gibbons, but right-handed hitters are preferable for the Dodgers. That rules out Damon and suggests Scott Podsednik, another left-handed hitter, is not a fit in L.A. either.
Manny Ramirez is not an option, but Marcus Thames and Scott Hairston are potential fits (in my opinion). Gibbons, who boasts a career .259/.319/.464 line against right-handers, could be effective in a platoon with a righty batter like Thames (.838 career OPS against southpaws) or Hairston (.829 career OPS against southpaws). Both free agents have spent the majority of their careers in left field.
Colletti told Shaikin that he's open to adding relief help.
The Reds signed Fred Lewis to a one-year deal earlier today, presumably taking them out of the running for Scott Podsednik. The market for the outfielder has been anything but robust after he declined his half of a $2MM mutual option back in November, but let's see if we can find a potential fit for Podsednik with pitchers and catcher due to report in a little less than a month...
- Angels: The Angels showed interest in Scott Pods back in December, but we haven't heard of any dialogue since. Anaheim could use a speedy, lefty hitting leadoff type hitter, something they hoped to secure with Carl Crawford.
- Braves: Atlanta can certainly use a fourth outfielder, but Eric Hinske, Nate McLouth, and Jason Heyward all swing it from the same side as Podsednik. It's not a great fit.
- Dodgers: We know the Dodgers have interest in bringing Podsednik back and they still haven't solved their left field problem since he opted out. Could they get him for less guaranteed money than his original option?
- Mariners: The M's figure to give Michael Saunders a chance to sink or swim with regular playing time in left.
- Marlins: The Fish are counting on Chris Coghlan to transition from left field to center after the trade of Cameron Maybin, a position that he has played exactly zero innings at, majors or minors. Podsednik could give them a cheap fill-in at the position, allowing Coghlan move back to the infield.
- Mets: Carlos Beltran's knees are still a bit of a question mark, though they need a reserve outfielder anyway.
Podsednik has hit .300/.347/.397 with back-to-back 30+ steal seasons in the last two years, a nice rebound from five consecutive seasons with no better than a .700 OPS. His defense isn't what you'd expect from a speedy player, with negative UZR scores at all three outfield spots in recent years. Still a useful player with an albeit limited skill set, Podsednik doesn't have a ton of suitors and could end up settling for a platoon/bench job.
Let's take a look at some Reds-related tidbits courtesy of The Cincinnati Enquirer's John Fay..
- Fay writes that "it is believed" that the Reds have made an offer to free agent shortstop Edgar Renteria. The veteran said that the Giants' offer of $1MM showed "a lack of respect", leaving the Reds with a chance of signing the 2010 World Series MVP.
- The news of Carlos Gonzalez's impending seven-year, $80MMM deal with the Rockies will likely have a ripple effect on the Reds' talks with Joey Votto. Reds GM Walt Jocketty says that he hasn't seen the numbers on Cargo's new contract but Cincy can expect Votto to ask for even more money. The 27-year-old, Fay writes, had two very good years prior to his brilliant season in 2010 while last year was Gonzalez's first in the majors. Jocketty says that he hasn't talked to Votto's representation in recent weeks however due to the holidays.
- The Reds are reportedly close to signing Jeremy Hermida to a minor league deal but they may continue to look for a left-handed hitting outfielder. Jocketty confirmed that he talked to the agents for Fred Lewis and Scott Podsednik before the holidays.
- Speaking of left-handed hitting outfielders, the Reds haven't had any recent contact with Laynce Nix. The Reds were under the impression that Nix was Seattle-bound after receiving a contract offer from the M's in December, but no deal has been reached.
Photo courtesy of Icon SMI.
FRIDAY: ESPN Deportes' Enrique Rojas tweeted in Spanish yesterday evening that the Reds actually made an offer to Renteria "several weeks ago," and that if he hasn't signed yet, it's because of a difference in money between the two sides. On the other hand, the amount of years could also be an issue, since Renteria said in an interview yesterday that he's planning to play two more years, according to El Universal in Venezuela (link in Spanish). --Nick Collias
THURSDAY: GM Walt Jocketty told John Fay of the Cincinnati Enquirer that Arthur Rhodes’ agreement with the Rangers frees up money for the Reds. The club has spoken to the agents for Scott Podsednik and Edgar Renteria, since they are potential fits for the 2011 roster.
“What we’re looking for is veteran outfielder, preferably a left-handed hitting outfielder and an infielder who can back up at shortstop,” Jocketty told Fay.
Renteria suggested the Giants' $1MM offer showed a "lack of respect" from the team and the Marlins don't appear interested, so the Reds have a chance at signing the veteran infielder. Renteria played for the Cardinals from 1999-2004, while Jocketty was the St. Louis GM. Podsednik, who bats from the left side, has also drawn interest from the Angels this winter.
The Reds have spoken to other unnamed free agents and likely have about $4MM to spend, Fay writes. MLBTR's Tim Dierkes anticipated this week that the Reds needed a "lefty reliever, left-handed hitting outfielder/leadoff hitter [and] backup shortstop."
Here's the latest from the Queen City, courtesy of The Cincinnati Enquirer's John Fay...
- With Arthur Rhodes set to join the Rangers, the Reds now have money to spend elsewhere, including on a shortstop, lefty hitting outfielder, and potentially a rehabbing starting pitcher.
- Assistant GM Bob Miller told Fay that the Reds have not had any recent conversations with Brandon Webb.
- Miller also confirmed that there have been no further talks with Johnny Cueto about a long-term extension. Earlier this month we heard that the two sides had some preliminary discussions about a contract.
- "That's not going to happen quick," said Miller when asked about an extension for NL MVP Joey Votto. The two sides have had some talks, however.
- Miller confirmed the team's interest in Scott Podsednik.
It's no secret that the Angels may add an outfielder. They lost out on Carl Crawford, but have interest in a couple free agents. Here's the latest:
- Along with the Rays and Yankees, the Angels are one of Johnny Damon’s top three choices, according to Newsday’s Ken Davidoff. The Yankees have discussed financial parameters about a deal that would pay Damon a “respectable” amount, but less than the $8MM he earned in 2010. Damon has been linked to the Yankees and Rays this offseason, but it's the first time we've seen him connected to the Angels.
- The Angels and Reds are two of "a few" teams interested in Scott Podsednik, according to Jon Heyman of SI.com (on Twitter).
The Reds are interested in Scott Podsednik, according to Ken Rosenthal and Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports. As the FOX writers point out, Podsednik could platoon with Jonny Gomes in left field. Podsednik has a career .283/.344/.391 line against right-handers and Gomes has a career .276/.371/.507 line against southpaws.
Podsednik can still run, make good contact and get on base (.342 OBP last year, .352 in 2009). However, he isn't the base stealer he once was and doesn't hit for much power. Now 34, Podsednik is probably not going to steal 70 bases or be an elite leadoff hitter, but he's in position to command a raise from the $1.75MM salary he earned last year.
The Angels are interested in Podsednik and, earlier in the winter, the Dodgers seemed open to bringing the outfielder back. It will not cost a draft pick to sign Podsednik, who was not offered arbitraiton.
The Angels are showing interest in Scott Podsednik, according to Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports. Rosenthal writes that Podsednik would likely play left field, a position many fans and analysts thought Carl Crawford might occupy for 2011 and beyond.
As MLBTR's Steve Adams explained last month, Podsednik can still run, make good contact and get on base (.342 OBP last year, .352 in 2009). However, he isn't the base stealer he once was and doesn't hit for much power. Now 34, Podsednik is probably not going to steal 70 bases or be an elite leadoff hitter, but he's in position to command a raise from the $1.75MM salary he earned last year.
11 National League teams have free agent arbitration offer decisions to make, and we'll group them in this post. For a fantastic customizable chart with all 65 Type A/B free agents and their decisions in real-time, click here.
- The Padres offered Jon Garland (B), Yorvit Torrealba (B) and Kevin Correia (B) arbitration, according to MLB.com's Corey Brock (on Twitter). They did not offer Miguel Tejada (A) and David Eckstein (B) arbitration.
- The Reds declined to offer Orlando Cabrera (B) or Arthur Rhodes (A) arbitration, according to the team (on Twitter).
- The Dodgers declined to offer arbitration to Scott Podsednik (B), Rod Barajas (B) and Vicente Padilla (B), according to the team (on Twitter).
- The Giants offered Juan Uribe (B) arbitration, according to Henry Schulman of the San Francisco Chronicle (on Twitter).
- In a surprising move, the Brewers decided to offer Trevor Hoffman (B) arbitration, according to Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. MLB.com's Adam McCalvy reports that Hoffman has agreed to turn the offer down (Twitter link).
- The Diamondbacks announced that they offered arbitration to Adam LaRoche (B) and Aaron Heilman (B).
- The Rockies will offer arbitration to Jorge de la Rosa (A) and Octavio Dotel (B), according to Jim Armstrong of the Denver Post.
- The Braves will not offer arbitration to first baseman Derrek Lee (A), according to GM Frank Wren via David O'Brien of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution on Twitter.
- The Nationals offered arbitration to first baseman Adam Dunn (A), reports MLB.com's Bill Ladson.
- The Mets will offer arbitration to lefty Pedro Feliciano (B), tweets Andy Martino of the New York Daily News.
- Yesterday, MLB.com's Todd Zolecki learned that the Phillies will offer arbitration to Jayson Werth (A) but not Chad Durbin (B).
- The Dodgers are open to re-signing Rod Barajas, Vicente Padilla and Scott Podsednik, though they didn’t offer the players arbitration. Dylan Hernandez of the LA Times reports on Twitter that the team remains in contact with all three.
- Scott Boras' company provided families of poor Dominican prospects with tens of thousands of dollars, reports Michael S. Schmidt of the New York Times. Boras tells Yahoo's Tim Brown that he was helping prospects out when their careers were on the line, but MLB will investigate the issue.
- The Rangers expect Frank Francisco to accept their offer of arbitration, according to Jeff Wilson of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram (on Twitter).
- The Nationals are no longer pursuing Adam Dunn aggressively and they appear to be a fringe suitor for him, according to Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports.
- Brian Moehler tells MLB.com's Brian McTaggart that he intends to play in 2011 and has interest in returning to the Astros. But Moehler has never pitched in the playoffs, so he'd like to sign with a team that has a good chance of making a playoff run.
- The divorce between Frank and Jamie McCourt is now final, according to the AP (on ESPN). The McCourts await a decision that will determine whether Frank has sole ownership of the Dodgers or whether he shares the club with his ex-wife.
- Don Nomura, the agent for Japanese pitcher Hisashi Iwakuma, told Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle that he "deeply" hopes to complete a deal between his client and the A's. Oakland, who won the bidding for Iwakuma, broke off talks earlier in the week because the sides were too far apart.