Tony Pena Rumors

Minor Moves: Mariners, Luis Castro, Tony Pena

Here are today's minor moves, with the latest up top…

  • The Mariners released minor league catcher Ralph Henriquez in order to make room for 2012 No. 3 overall pick Mike Zunino on their Double-A roster, according to Larry Stone of the Seattle Times (on Twitter). The 25-year-old Henriquez was a second round pick by the Astros in 2005 but has just a .592 OPS in eight minor league seasons.
  • The Rockies have signed 16-year-old Venezuelan shortstop Luis Castro for $50K, reports MLB.com's Jesse Sanchez (on Twitter). Castro had originally signed with the Blue Jays for $800K last month, but the contract was voided due to health concerns.
  • The Angels have signed right-hander Tony Pena according to the MLB.com transactions page. The 30-year-old had Tommy John surgery last August, and has pitched to a 4.43 ERA with 6.3 K/9 and 3.1 BB/9 in 379 2/3 big league innings with the Diamondbacks and White Sox.
  • The Rockies have signed right-hander Jeff Marquez, also according to MLB.com. The 28-year-old posted a 6.69 ERA with 5.3 K/9 and 4.0 BB/9 in 76 2/3 innings with the Mariners' Triple-A affiliate this year. Marquez has four big league appearances to his credit, one with the White Sox (2010) and three with the Yankees (2011).

Minor Moves: Podsednik, Evans, Pena, Astros, Ray

Here's where we'll keep track of today's minor moves…

  • The Phillies have signed outfielder Scott Podsednik to a minor league deal with an invite to Spring Training reports Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports (on Twitter). The 35-year-old did not appear in the big leagues last year, instead hitting .254/.340/.396 in the Phillies' and Blue Jays' farm systems.
  • The Pirates have signed Nick Evans to a minor league deal with an invite to Spring Training, reports Andy Martino of The New York Daily News. The 25-year-old hit .256/.314/.403 line in 194 plate appearances with the Mets last season, playing all four corner positions
  • The Red Sox re-signed Tony Pena to a minor league deal with an invitation to Spring Training, according to Stark. The converted shortstop would earn $625K if he makes the big league team.
  • The Astros signed catcher Carlos Corporan to a minor league deal and invited him to Major League Spring Training, according to Alyson Footer of the Astros (on Twitter).
  • The White Sox signed Brian Bruney to a minor league deal, according to ESPN.com's Jayson Stark. The right-hander would earn $600K for making the big league team.
  • Robert Ray signed a minor league deal with the Marlins, according to Crasnick.
  • The Phillies signed left-hander Pat Misch and infielder Kevin Frandsen to minor league contracts, according to ESPN.com's Jayson Stark (Twitter links). Misch, 30, appeared in six games for the Mets this past season, spending most of the year with Triple-A Buffalo. He posted a 4.00 ERA with 6.0 K/9 and 2.6 BB/9 in 141 2/3 innings as a starter for the Bisons. Frandsen, who last appeared in the Major Leagues in 2010, spent the 2011 season in the Phillies' minor league system and posted a .309/.361/.430 line in 338 plate appearances.
  • The Diamondbacks signed right-handed reliever Jensen Lewis to a minor league deal, MLBTR's Tim Dierkes has learned (Stark originally reported the Rangers signed him). Lewis, 27, would earn $675K in the Major Leagues, according to Stark. Lewis spent the 2011 season at Triple-A, but has a career ERA of 3.68 with 8.0 K/9 and 3.9 BB/9 in parts of four MLB seasons.

White Sox Outright Four, Release Pena

The White Sox announced that they outrighted right-handers Kyle Cofield, Josh Kinney and Shane Lindsay and left-hander Leyson Septimo to Triple-A. They also requested unconditional release waivers for right-hander Tony Pena after reinstating him from the 60-day disabled list. All five players will become free agents and the White Sox now have 36 players on their 40-man roster.

Cofield, 24, spent the 2011 season in the upper minors, where he posted a 3.30 ERA with 7.5 K/9 and 3.9 BB/9 in 30 innings. Kinney appeared in 13 games for the White Sox, striking out more than one batter per inning. He spent most of the season at Triple-A, where he posted an impressive 2.77 ERA with 9.6 K/9 and 2.5 BB/9 in 61 2/3 innings. 

Lindsay, a native of Melbourne, Australia, had a cameo with the White Sox after spending most of the season in the upper minors. He posted a 2.18 ERA in the minors this year despite an alarming walk rate of 7.5 per nine innings. Septimo posted a similarly high walk rate (6.6 BB/9) in 56 innings at Double-A this year. Lastly, Pena, who was traded for Brandon Allen in 2009, appeared in 17 games for the White Sox this season.



Red Sox Notes: Papelbon, Pena Jr., Jenks

Let's take a look at some Red Sox-related tidbits from around the web..


Players To Avoid Arbitration: Tuesday

Today is the deadline for players and teams to submit arbitration figures. The sides will then settle on a salary between the team's proposed number and the player's proposed number or go to an arbitration hearing. Arbitration eligible players are under team control, so the clubs don't risk losing them – it's a question of how much the players will earn.

Yesterday, 11 players avoided arbitration. We could see just as many agreements trickle in today and we'll keep you posted on them right here and with our Arb Tracker. The latest updates will be at the top of the post:

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Relievers Headed For Non-Tenders

Often due to the save statistic, decent relievers are non-tendered every year because of their expected salaries.  It happened to Matt Capps last year.  Which relievers might get the axe on this year's December non-tender deadline and join the free agent market?

  • Bobby Jenks, White Sox.  Jenks has only blown one save this year, but Ozzie Guillen is already looking at other closer options.  Jenks has racked up strikeouts, but his control is off and he's given up a slew of hits.  I felt he was a longshot non-tender candidate last time around.  Tendering him a contract and giving a raise on his $7.5MM salary this time probably won't be appealing.
  • George Sherrill, Dodgers.  Giving Sherrill a bump from $4.5MM might not make sense for the Dodgers even if he was pitching well.  However, the lefty has completely lost it in the early going with 12 walks and 14 hits in 11.3 innings. 
  • Brian Bruney, Nationals.  Bruney would earn more than $1.5MM in 2011 as a fourth-time arbitration-eligible player.  With the walks spiraling out of control, there's a good chance the Nats cut him loose as they did with Mike MacDougal last year. 
  • Tony Pena, White Sox.  Pena has time to turn things around; he's only tossed 15.6 innings this year.  He's earning $1.2MM on the season and would go to arbitration for a second time.
  • Rafael Perez, Indians.  Perez is only earning $795K this year, but even the idea of a guaranteed contract might not work for the Tribe if he repeats his '09 season. 
  • The 2011 free agent list already contains a full slate of relievers, but keep these names in mind as potential additions.

Players Avoiding Arbitration: Monday

More 2010 salary agreements are expected in advance of Tuesday's noon deadline for exchanging arbitration figures.

  • Chad Durbin has avoided salary arbitration, agreeing to a $2.125MM contract with the Phillies, tweets Todd Zolecki of MLB.com.  This marks an increase over the $1.635MM he received by avoiding arbitration last year.
  • The Rockies signed Ryan Spilborghs to a two-year deal worth $3.25MM, reports Troy Renck of The Denver Post.  The 30-year-old, who was arb-eligible for the first time, could earn an additional $1.15MM in incentives over the course of the deal.
  • Arizona agreed to terms with right-handed pitchers Chad Qualls and Aaron Heilman, reports Steve Gilbert of MLB.com (via Twitter).  Jon Heyman of Sports Illustrated tweets that Heilman gets $2.15MM whereas Qualls will make $4.185MM in 2010.  This was the third arbitration-eligible year for both players.
  • The Bombers avoided arbitration with their last two eligible players, Chad Gaudin and Boone Logan, according to Chad Jennings of the LoHud Yankees Blog.  This was Gaudin's third arbitration-eligible year and Logan's very first.  Marc Carig of the Newark Star Ledger reports that Gaudin will make $2.95MM with incentives while Logan will make $590K.
  • The Rangers agreed to terms with pitcher C.J. Wilson on a one-year deal worth $3.1MM, reports T.R. Sullivan of MLB.com.  The deal represents a $1.25MM raise in base pay for the 29-year-old, who avoided his first potential arbitration hearing this time a year ago.
  • The Reds agreed to terms with Jared Burton, their last arbitration-eligible player, reports John Fay of The Cincinnati Enquirer.  This was Burton's first flirtation with the arbitration process.
  • The Marlins avoided arbitration with Anibal Sanchez and Renyel Pinto by signing each to one-year deals, according to the Marlins' official twitter page.  This is the first go-round in arbitration for both players.  Sanchez will earn $1.25MM with up to $100K in bonuses, reports Jon Paul Morosi (via Twitter).  Pinto will make $1.075 according to the Associated Press.
  • Tony Pena and the White Sox have avoided arbitration, agreeing to terms on a one-year deal, tweets White Sox VP Scott Reifert.  Pena will earn $1.2MM, according to Chris De Luca of the Chicago Sun-Times (via Twitter).  This was the 28-year-old's first time being arbitration-eligible.
  • Marlins second baseman Dan Uggla settled at $7.8MM, writes MLB.com's Joe Frisaro.  It's a $2.45MM raise for the slugger, who was arb-eligible for the second time.  He remains a trade candidate. Uggla told Frisaro he was happy to avoid a hearing, even after winning last year. 
  • The Brewers signed outfielder Jody Gerut for 2010, reports Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal-SentinelMLB.com's Adam McCalvy pegs the value at $2MM, a $225K raise.  This is Gerut's final arbitration year.
  • Blue Jays pitcher Shaun Marcum, who missed '09 due to Tommy John surgery, signed for $850K tweets Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports.  2010 is Marcum's first arbitration year.

White Sox Avoid Arbitration With Jenks, Quentin

6:58pm: Jenks will make $7.5MM in 2010 while Quentin will make $3.2MM, according to Alden Gonzalez of MLB.comJohn Danks and Tony Pena are the two remaining arbitration-eligible members of the White Sox.

6:28pm: Bobby Jenks and Carlos Quentin have agreed to terms with the White Sox, according to team VP Scott Reifert (via Twitter).

Around this time last year, Jenks avoided arbitration with the club by agreeing to a one-year deal worth $5.6MM.  In 2009 the 28-year-old closer posted a 3.71 ERA with 8.3 K/9 and 2.7 BB/9.  Despite having a slightly underwhelming campaign, Jenks threw his fastball at an average of 94.8 MPH, his hardest since 2006.

Meanwhile, plantar fasciitis slowed down Quentin in '09, as he played in just 99 games.  In his limited action, the left fielder managed to post .236/.323/.456 with 21 HRs.  The 28-year-old Quentin earned $550K last season.


Players Tendered Contracts

Midnight ET is the non-tender deadline, so we'll keep track of all the players who are offered and/or agreed to contracts today in this post. Keep coming back throughout the day for updates.


Diamondbacks Seeking Veteran Reliever

The Diamondbacks could have two potential holes to fill in their rotation depending on what happens with Doug Davis and Brandon Webb after the season, but GM Josh Byrnes also wants to add a veteran reliever according to Nick Piecoro of The Arizona Republic.

"We've had our share of adversity this year, and in the bullpen it's not going to be a smooth ride for six months," Byrnes said. "We'd like to have people who can sort of understand that a bad game is going to happen but not let it happen too often and set an example that way."

Arizona's pen was supposed to be anchored by Chad Qualls, Scott SchoeneweisTony Pena and Jon Rauch, but Rauch and Pena were traded, Qualls battled injury, and Schoeneweis dealt with the unfortunate passing of his wife. The foursome combined for a 4.46 ERA in 163.1 IP for the D-Backs this season.

Looking the list of available free agents this offseason, could Bobby Howry or Octavio Dotel make sense? Maybe a Brandon Lyon reunion?