Trent Oeltjen Rumors

International Notes: Oeltjen, Varona, Moncada

Outfielder Trent Oeltjen has seen action in parts of three MLB seasons and no less than eight Triple-A campaigns. The Aussie outfielder is now set to retire after playing his final ballgame this weekend for his hometown Sydney Blue Sox, according to a club release. Though Oeltjen had limited opportunity to have an impact at the big league level, he was a force in the upper minors. Across 2,908 plate appearances at Triple-A, he slashed .294/.358/.479 with 68 home runs and 122 stolen bases.

  • A large gathering of scouts was on hand for a showcase this week featuring Cuban outfielder Dayron Varona,’s Jerry Crasnick tweets. (Crasnick estimates that fifty sets of eyes were on hand to see the bonus limit-exempt Varona, while Jon Heyman of tweets that it was more like 75.) Via, Varona’s Serie Nacional statistics show a high-contact approach (.312/.376/.470 lifetime slash), though he has not put up big counting stats with 38 home runs and 22 steals (against 25 times caught) in a career spanning 1,504 trips to the plate.
  • In the pursuit of Cuban second baseman Yoan Moncada, who is subject to international bonus caps and penalties, the rich teams have the edge, Ben Badler of Baseball America explains. Any team signing Moncada will, of course, have to pay a 100% tax on most of the anticipated signing bonus. While the bonus itself can be paid out over three years, Badler notes that the penalty amount must be paid in a lump sum within a month of the June 15th end of the signing period. Regardless of exactly how many tens of millions of dollars Moncada commands, that is going to be a very significant, inflexible hit to the balance sheet — especially since it will go to a 19-year-old who will not add big league value for some time. Additionally, Badler notes, the potential for large arbitration paydays must also be accounted for. In the aggregate, even if the total cost (bonus plus penalty) added up to something akin to the payouts promised to players like Jose Abreu and Rusney Castillo, the required structure of the deal would greatly increase the cost to the team and present cash flow roadblocks. Deeper-pocketed teams will have an obvious edge in freeing resources to make that work.

Minor Moves: Spence, Oeltjen, Germano, Billings

Here are today’s minor transactions, with the newest moves at the top of the post…

  • The Marlins announced (on Twitter) that left-hander Josh Spence has been released from their Triple-A New Orleans affiliate. Spence, a 26-year-old from Australia, pitched reasonably well for the Zephyrs, posting a 3.97 ERA with 12 strikeouts in 11 1/3 innings. However, he also walked seven hitters in that time and hit a batter. Command hasn’t been an issue for Spence in previous minor league seasons, but he walked 24 batters in 40 innings for the Padres in 2011-12 despite a strong 3.15 ERA and 9.2 K/9 rate.
  • The Diamondbacks‘ Triple-A affiliate, the Reno Aces, announced today that outfielder Trent Oeltjen has been released (Twitter link). The Australian 31-year-old batted just .219/.286/.313 in 35 plate appearances for the Aces, but he has a strong .294/.358/.479 batting line in his career at that level. His last Major League action came with the 2011 Dodgers.
  • Right-hander Justin Germano has accepted his outright assignment to the Rangers‘ Triple-A affiliate, MLB Daily Dish’s Chris Cotillo reports (via Twitter).  Germano had the option of becoming a free agent after he was outrighted off the Rangers’ 40-man roster, following being designated for assignment earlier this week.  The veteran righty has been hit hard in his two appearances with Texas this season, posting an 11.81 ERA over 5 1/3 IP.
  • The Yankees have outrighted right-hander Bruce Billings to Triple-A, according to’s transactions page.  Billings was designated for assignment on Thursday.  The righty allowed four runs in four innings of work for New York this season, though he recorded seven strikeouts in that brief stretch.
  • With Billings’ situation resolved, MLBTR’s DFA Tracker tells us that three players remain in DFA limbo: Royals outfielder Justin Maxwell, White Sox infielder Jeff Keppinger and Marlins reliever Carlos Marmol.

Steve Adams contributed to this post.


Minor Moves: Trent Oeltjen, Clay Schrader

Here are today’s minor moves from around the league…

  • Outfielder Trent Oeltjen, who had been loaned to los Toros de Tijuana of the Mexican League, has been returned to the Diamondbacks‘ Triple-A affiliate in Reno, according to the Pacific Coast League transactions page. Oeltjen, 31, hit just .139/.273/.250 with a homer in his time with Tijuana, is a career .295/.359/.481 hitter in 735 Triple-A games. He’s seen big league time with the D’Backs and Dodgers but hasn’t been in the Majors since 2011.
  • The Braves have signed righty Clay Schrader to a minor league deal, per their official transactions page. The 23-year-old was Baltimore’s 10th-round pick in the 2010 draft and has a 2.62 ERA with 11.5 K/9 and 6.5 BB/9 in 172 innings of relief in the minors. Schrader, who will turn 24 in four days, reached Double-A in 2012 as a 22-year-old and has 79 innings at that level — the furthest he’s ascended in his minor league career to date.

Minor Moves: Oeltjen, Mathis

Here are today's minor moves from around baseball.

  • The Diamondbacks have reinstated outfielder Trent Oeltjen from the disabled list and loaned him to Toros de Tijuana in the Mexican League, according to the Pacific Coast League transactions page. Oeltjen, 31, has a .220/.299/.384 career batting line, with his last appearance in the big leagues coming in 2011 with the Dodgers. He hit .255/.345/.483 for Triple-A Salt Lake in 2014.
  • The Rangers released pitcher Doug Mathis, according to the same PCL transactions page. Mathis posted a 3.85 ERA with 6.7 K/9 and 4.2 BB/9 in 114 2/3 innings for the Marlins' Triple-A affiliate in New Orleans in 2013.

Minor Moves: Oeltjen, Laffey, Cassevah, Wolf, Hill

We'll keep tabs on the day's minor moves here:

  • Outfielder Trent Oeltjen tweets (via Rotoworld) that he has signed with the Diamondbacks. Oeltjen, 31, has not appeared in the big leagues since 2011 with the Dodgers, but he has hit well at the Triple-A level, putting up a line of .255/.345/.483 for the Angels' Triple-A Salt Lake affiliate last season.
  • The Orioles have released lefty Aaron Laffey,'s Steve Melewski tweets. Laffey pitched just 12 2/3 innings in the big leagues in 2013, spending most of it struggling at Triple-A, but he pitched 100 2/3 innings for the Blue Jays in 2012.
  • The Rockies have released pitcher Bobby Cassevah, MLB Daily Dish's Chris Cotillo tweets. Cassevah, who accumulated a 3.20 ERA with 4.7 K/9 and 4.6 BB/9 from 2010-2012 in the Angels bullpen, is currently rehabbing an injury.
  • Veteran lefty Randy Wolf has requested, and received, his release from the Mariners,'s Greg Johns tweets. Wolf was attempting a comeback after missing the entire 2013 season. He last appeared in the big leagues in 2012, when he pitched for the Brewers and Orioles. The Mariners told Wolf he had made the team, but he did not want to sign a 45-day advance consent release, Johns notes.
  • The Blue Jays have signed pitcher Shawn Hill from the York Revolution of the Atlantic League,'s Chris Iott tweets. Hill, 32, last appeared in the big leagues in 2012 with the Jays. He posted a 5.51 ERA with 5.0 K/9 and 2.8 BB/9 in 150 1/3 innings with the Tigers' Triple-A Toledo affiliate in 2013.
  • The Padres have acquired catcher Adam Moore from the Royals in exchange for cash considerations, tweets Andy McCullough of the Kansas City Star. The 29-year-old has seen bit action at the MLB level in each of the last five years. In his longest stint, a 2010 run with the Mariners, Moore managed only a .513 OPS in 218 plate appearances.

Charlie Wilmoth contributed to this post.

Minor Moves: Wagner, Angels, Rhymes, Wood

Some minor league deals from around the baseball world…

  • The Blue Jays have signed right-hander Neil Wagner to a minor league contract with an invite to Spring Training, MLBTR has learned.  Wagner has a 3.77 ERA, 2.95 K:BB ratio and 10.2 K/9 rate in 312 career minor league relief appearances in the Padres, A's, and Indians' systems, plus pitched five Major League innings with Oakland in 2011.
  • The Angels signed Billy Buckner, Luke Carlin, Brendan Harris, Trent Oeltjen, Jo-Jo Reyes and J.B. Shuck to minor league contracts with invites to the Major League Spring Training camp, reports's Alden Gonzalez.
  • The Nationals have signed infielder Will Rhymes to a minor league contract with a Spring Training invite, reports the Beverly Hills Sports Council's Twitter page.  (Rhymes is represented by the BHSC.)  Rhymes was designated for assignment by Tampa Bay in September and has a .266/.328/.343 line in 449 career plate appearances over three seasons with the Tigers and Rays.
  • Matt Eddy of Baseball America recaps the week's minor league transactions, including news of Brandon Wood signing a minor league deal with the Royals.  Wood, the former Angels third baseman who was once considered one of the top prospects in the game, last appeared in the Majors with the Pirates in 2011 and posted a .722 OPS for the Rockies' Triple-A team in 2012.

Minor Moves: 28 Players Elect Free Agency

A total of 28 players — all with big league time under their belts — recently elected free agency after finishing the year in Triple-A. Here is the full list, courtesy of the International League and Pacific Coast League transaction pages…

Dodgers Designate Trent Oeltjen For Assignment

The Dodgers have designated outfielder Trent Oeltjen for assignment, according to Bill Shaikin of the Los Angeles Times (via Twitter).  The club also promoted utility man Elian Herrera from Triple-A and placed Juan Uribe on the disabled list.

Oeltjen, 29, appeared in 61 games for the Dodgers in 2011.  The Australian owns a slash line of .301/.360/.473 across parts of six Triple-A seasons with the Twins, D'Backs, Brewers, and Dodgers.

Quick Hits: Pirates, Cabrera, Realignment, Oeltjen

Links for Saturday, as a pair of offseason headliners (Cliff Lee and Matt Garza) prepare to face off in Philadelphia this afternoon…

  • The Pirates have been asking around for a catcher but have found that the asking prices are high as clubs want to take advantage of their situation, tweets Jenifer Langosch of  Pittsburgh is in a bind with Ryan Doumit and Chris Snyder on the disabled list.
  • As the Giants look for infield help, ESPN's Buster Olney (via Twitter) says that Orlando Cabrera is a name to keep an eye on.  The veteran just lost his everyday job in Cleveland and the Giants were close to inking him over the winter.
  • After the Orioles tabbed Dylan Bundy with the fourth overall pick in the draft, Dan Connolly of The Baltimore Sun takes a look at Adam Loewen, the No. 4 pick that got away.
  • Major League Baseball and the players' association have discussed doing away with divisions altogether and balancing out the leagues to 15 teams each, writes's Buster Olney.  The new structure would have teams vying for five playoff spots in each league.  The odds of this happening, however, are still less than 50-50, according to one source.
  • Dylan Hernandez of The Los Angeles Times says that Trent Oeltjen could have become a free agent if the Dodgers didn't add him to the Major League roster by June 15th (Twitter link). Oeltjen was called up two days ago.
  • In a piece for ESPN, Jim Bowden wrote about how GM's prepare to make trades, a process that usually begins with low-ball offers being exchanged.
  • The writers at FanGraphs conducted a franchise player draft, selecting a player they would build a team around. Evan Longoria and Troy Tulowitzki were the first two off the board.
  • The Royals have signed 16 draft picks according to's Dick Kaegel. The highest signed pick was ninth rounder Aaron Brooks.

Minor Deals: Oxspring, Oeltjen, Ryal

The latest minor transactions….

  •'s Jason Beck reports that the Tigers signed Chris Oxspring, who made five appearances for the Padres in 2005. Oxspring, 33, has spent time pitching in Japan, Korea, and Australia since then.
  • The Dodgers have re-signed Trent Oeltjen to a minor league deal, according to CBS Sports. The 27-year-old outfielder got some big league playing time over the season's final month, making 30 plate appearances in 14 games. He was non-tendered by the Dodgers last week.
  • Rusty Ryal appears to be headed to a Japanese club, according to Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic. While it's not official yet, "there's a pretty good possibility" it'll happen (Twitter links).