Tyler Colvin Rumors
The Pirates hold the top spot in Baseball America's ranking of every organization's minor league system (BA subscription required). This list has some updates from the original ranking in the 2014 BA Prospect Handbook, as while the top dozen teams remain the same, some clubs have moved up and down the list due to subsequent offseason moves. The Yankees, for instance, rise to the #13 spot due to their signing of Masahiro Tanaka, as he is technically a "prospect" as an MLB rookie.
Here are some items from around the baseball world...
- Tyler Colvin has accepted his assignment to the Giants' Triple-A affiliate and will report tomorrow, CSNBayArea.com's Andrew Baggarly reports (via Twitter). Colvin signed a minor league deal with San Francisco in February that contained an opt-out clause if he wasn't added to the team's Opening Day roster.
- While fans may worry that their teams will be hamstrung in the future by massive contracts, Sports Illustrated's Tom Verducci notes that the financial costs aren't as great as they seem given how much revenue Major League Baseball is generating and passing down to all 30 teams. These big deals also tend to create extra revenue for teams -- Verducci cites how the Mariners' huge deal with Robinson Cano helped "a brand that needed polishing," and Cano's presence will help ticket sales and TV ratings.
- High schooler Joe Dunand's streak of eight home runs in as many at-bats has raised the youngster's profile, CBSSports.com's Jon Heyman writes. Dunand, 18, was considered by some scouting directors to be "a fringe pro prospect," but his homer streak attracted scouts from the Mariners, Angels, Royals, Orioles, Mets, Braves and Giants (among other teams) to his game on Wednesday. Dunand has committed to North Carolina State but could turn pro depending on his draft prospects. There's also the matter of Dunand's impressive bloodlines; his uncle is Alex Rodriguez.
- The Nationals announced that right-hander Erik Davis underwent Tommy John surgery today and will miss the entire 2014 season. Davis made his Major League debut last season and posted a 3.12 ERA and a 12.00 K/BB rate in 8 2/3 IP for Washington.
7:42pm: The deal is official now that Colvin has passed his physical, Schulman tweets.
4:34pm: Colvin himself tweets that he has "signed the dotted line."
10:37am: The Giants have agreed to terms outfielder Tyler Colvin, the Mercury News' Alex Pavlovic tweets. Colvin's contract is a minor-league deal, Henry Schulman of the San Francisco Chronicle tweets. Colvin will make $1MM if he makes the team, CBS Sports' Jon Heyman notes. Colvin is represented by Relativity Baseball.
The deal is pending a physical. Colvin had previously agreed to a big-league deal with the Orioles, but the O's backed out of the deal once Colvin took his physical with them, citing back issues.
Colvin, 28, has a career .241/.289/.454 line in 1,167 career plate appearances spread over parts of five seasons with the Cubs and Rockies. The lefty spent much of the 2013 season with Triple-A Colorado Springs, where he hit .275/.377/.480.
In case you missed it from Friday, ESPN.com's Jayson Stark provided an interesting look at the views of 23 MLB executives on the still-concluding off-season. Intervening events already have impacted some of the conclusions (and will continue to do so), but the piece is chock full of interesting observations nonetheless. Among them: whether or not the money was all wisely spent, the voters say that the Yankees are the most improved team in the American League. A comparatively quiet off-season from the National League left the Nationals as the most improved club on that side (largely on the back of the Doug Fister trade), with the Padres a somewhat surprising choice for the second slot. As for least improved, the Orioles and Blue Jays top the list on the AL side, though Baltimore has already made an off-season altering move and Toronto still could. (The Tigers came in third.) The Reds and Pirates pulled up the rear among National League teams. After the Fister deal (an "all-time heist," as Stark summed up the collective viewpoint), voters liked the Rays' trade for Ryan Hanigan and the Athletics' acquisition of Jim Johnson.
Here are notes on some other free agent situations around the game ...
- Last we checked in with lefty Barry Zito, it was to learn that his option was being declined by the Giants. The reason, reports Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com, is that Zito has apparently not done anything to pursue a contract. Though he is not necessarily hanging up his spikes for good, says Heyman, the 36-year-old will seemingly not pitch in 2014.
- Southpaw Oliver Perez is considering offers from four clubs, tweets Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe. A decision is expected in short order.
- Swingman Chad Gaudin tweeted today that he is in line for surgery and expects to be at 100% in three months. Gaudin, was recently released by the Phillies when he failed his physical, did not disclose details of his malady.
- Outfielder Tyler Colvin could still end up with the Orioles, tweets Troy Renck of the Denver Post. Baltimore somewhat infamously blew up its contract with the 28-year-old after he failed his physical.
- A.J. Burnett was mistaken when he said that the Orioles did not express much interest in him, reports Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports (via Twitter). In fact, says Rosenthal, Baltimore made multiple offers but Burnett wanted to pitch in the National League.
In his latest column over at FOXSports.com, Ken Rosenthal reports that the Diamondbacks' pursuit of top free agents Masahiro Tanaka, Shin-Soo Choo and Carlos Beltran stemmed from the fact they'll soon be completing a new television deal with FOX Sports that will be worth at least $90MM per season for a span of 15 to 20 years (beginning in 2016). He notes that while comparing TV deals is difficult because of differing equity stakes negotiated by each team, but the contract should still top the Rangers' recent TV deal, which pays them $80MM per season. More highlights from Rosenthal...
- The Cubs' offer to Masahiro Tanaka did not include an opt-out clause, according to Rosenthal. Knowing that they might not compete until 2016, the Cubs were wary of including a clause that would allow him to opt out shortly after their next competitive club hit the field.
- Their recent signing of Matt Garza will allow the Brewers to move trade acquisition Will Smith (received in exchange for Norichika Aoki) to the bullpen. Milwaukee could still add another reliever this offseason, but they also want to take a look at Rule 5 lefty Wei-Chung Wang.
- After missing out on a Major League deal with the Orioles due to concerns over his back, Tyler Colvin is weighing a number of minor league offers.
- The Marlins and Rockies are both interested in former Reds right-hander Nick Masset, who has missed each of the past two seasons due to shoulder injuries.
JAN. 24: Jon Heyman of CBS Sports tweets that Colvin's physical revealed that he still has back issues, causing the Orioles to reduce their offer from a Major League contract to a minor league deal. As such, Colvin will not sign and remains a free agent. Heyman points out that Colvin can now seek a big league deal with a club, knowing that he can sign a minor league pact with the O's as a fallback (Twitter link).
JAN. 22: A source tells ESPN.com's Jerry Crasnick (Twitter link) that the Orioles found an issue with Colvin's physical, which could be creating an obstacle to the deal.
JAN. 15: The Orioles have agreed to terms with free agent outfielder Tyler Colvin, reports Dan Connolly of the Baltimore Sun (Twitter links). Only a physical stands in the way of the deal, Connolly says, which is believed to be a guaranteed MLB contract. Colvin, 28, is represented by Relativity Baseball.
The left-handed swinging Colvin has seen MLB action in parts of five seasons. In 2012, his first year with the Rockies, Colvin posted a promising .290/.327/.531 triple-slash in 452 plate appearances. But he took a step back last year, earning only 78 MLB plate appearances and registering a meager .160/.192/.280 line in the process. He continued to hit at the Triple-A level, however, slashing .275/.377/.480 in 269 trips to the plate for Colorado Springs.
Colvin started his career with the Cubs before heading to Colorado in the Ian Stewart trade. The 13th overall choice in the 2006 draft, Baseball America considered Colvin the game's 75th-best prospect after the 2007 season.
Colvin joins a long list of outfielders that will join the O's for Spring Training. (The Sun's Eduardo Encina counts 12, on Twitter.) Other offseason outfield additions include Delmon Young, Quintin Berry, Xavier Paul, David Lough, and Francisco Peguero.
Jon Rauch is close to signing with a team, MLBTR's Zach Links reports (Twitter link). The 35-year-old posted a 7.56 ERA in 16 2/3 IP with the Marlins last season and also made 10 appearances for the Orioles' Triple-A affiliate after signing a minor league contract with the O's in June. Despite his outlier of a 2013 season, Rauch has been a solid right-handed bullpen arm for much of his career, posting a 3.65 ERA, 2.79 K/BB and 7.2 K/9 over 549 2/3 IP from 2004-2012.
Here's some more news as we wrap up a busy Wednesday around baseball...
- The Braves only offered Eric O'Flaherty a one-year contract to remain with the team, David O'Brien of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports (via Twitter). Though O'Flaherty underwent Tommy John surgery last May and will miss at least part of the 2014 season, he still scored a two-year, $7MM deal from the A's earlier today.
- Yuniesky Betancourt will decide on his new club within the week, MLB Daily Dish's Chris Cotillo reports (Twitter link). Betancourt was drawing interest from several teams, potentially even as a starter.
- Also from Cotillo, there is "strong interest" in right-hander Todd Coffey. At least nine of the 14 teams who attended Coffey's throwing session last week want to see his second session. Coffey is looking to return to action after missing all of 2013 recovering from Tommy John surgery.
- Much of the Indians' success at the plate last season was due to their lineup flexibility and use of bench players, a trait that MLB.com's Anthony Castrovince believes could be somewhat difficult to duplicate in 2014, though Carlos Santana's proposed attempt to play third base would be a great help in that department.
- The Twins didn't have any interest in Grady Sizemore this winter, though the club checked in on him last summer, 1500 ESPN's Darren Wolfson reports (via Twitter).
- "Another issue with a physical does nothing to enhance the Orioles' reputation in the industry, which is taking a two-fisted beating this winter," Roch Kubatko of MASNsports.com writes in regards to the news that Baltimore's agreement with Tyler Colvin has been delayed due to a problem with the outfielder's physical. Kubatko wonders if the O's could be trying to get Colvin to sign a minor league contract instead of a Major League deal, as the club did last offseason when it wasn't satisifed with Jair Jurrjens' physical.
- The Phillies liked Masahiro Tanaka and engaged in "cursory negotiations" with his representatives, but GM Ruben Amaro told Matt Gelb of the Philadelphia Inquirer that the team wasn't prepared to go beyond five years to sign the Japanese righty. The Phillies seem likely to go into 2014 with their current pitching options, as they only would've exceeded their payroll limitations for "an exception" like Tanaka.
One season removed from a .290/.327/.531 campaign that saw him belt 18 homers, Tyler Colvin has lost his spot on the Rockies' 40-man roster, according to Troy Renck of the Denver Post. The 28-year-old Colvin has cleared waivers and accepted a minor league assignment.
Colvin dealt with a disc injury in his back for the majority of the season, Renck adds, which is likely at least part of the reason for the .160/.192/.280 batting line he posted in 27 big league games this season. He opened the season by hitting .293/.396/.518 in 229 Triple-A plate appearances but struggled upon his promotion to the Majors. After being sent back to Colorado Springs, the former first-round pick hit just .200/.300/.314 in 10 games before missing the end of July and the entire month of August.
Originally drafted 13th overall by the Cubs in 2006, Colvin was acquired by Colorado prior to the 2012 season along with DJ LeMahieu in a trade that sent Ian Stewart and Casey Weathers to Chicago. His power is very real (career .203 ISO), but overall his .241/.289/.454 line and 26.3 percent strikeout rate illustrate persistent struggles to get on base at the Major League level. Colvin has struggled against left-handed pitching in particular, hitting southpaws at a .217/.255/.385 clip. He's capable of playing all three outfield positions and has experience at first base as well. Colvin could be a buy-low candidate for power-starved teams this offseason if the Rockies decide he no longer has a place in their organization.
The injuries keep coming for the Yankees, who will now consider pursuing corner infielders after losing Mark Teixeira for eight to ten weeks. There aren’t many attractive options available in trades or on the free agent market, however. Ken Davidoff of the New York Post explains the team’s predicament:
- The Yankees acknowledge that their roster doesn’t have the same kind of depth it did in past seasons, when players such as Eric Chavez and Bartolo Colon were available to step in after others sustained injuries.
- Anything is possible for the Yankees at this point, Davidoff writes. Free agent Carlos Lee would be one option, but he hasn’t been willing to sign for a low base salary, according to Davidoff.
- Scott Rolen is available in free agency, but he hit just .244/.301/.397 in 2011-12.
- While Tyler Colvin doesn’t have a starting role with the Rockies, the Yankees and Rockies “haven’t clicked” in recent trade talks.
- GM Brian Cashman explained that he’s not at all worried about Derek Jeter’s health. “He’ll be ready when it counts,” the GM said.
Dozens of players will agree to terms with their respective teams today and avoid arbitration. We'll have detailed posts on the top earners around MLB, and we'll track more modest agreements -- those worth less than $4MM -- right here. MLBTR's Arbitration Tracker will have all of the details.
Teams had until 12pm CDT today to exchange filing numbers with their arbitration eligible players. Generally speaking the deadline creates lots of discussion and leads to early deals. Plus, for ‘file and trial’ teams this marks the final chance for negotiations in advance of a hearing. Here are the latest agreements from around MLB...
- The Padres announced that they have avoided arbitration with Edinson Volquez. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
- The Red Sox announced that they avoided arbitration with Andrew Bailey ($4.1MM), Daniel Bard ($1.8625MM), Andrew Miller ($1.475MM), and Franklin Morales ($1.4875MM). Terms courtesy of WEEI.com's Rob Bradford.
- The Mets and Bobby Parnell avoided arb with a $1.7MM deal, Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com reports (on Twitter).
- The Red Sox avoided arbitration with Alfredo Aceves, agreeing to a deal worth $2.65MM plus incentives, according to O'Connell Sports Management, Aceves' agency (on Twitter via Jon Heyman).
- The Cubs avoided arbitration with James Russell and Jeff Samardzija, Jesse Rogers of ESPNChicago.com reports (on Twitter). Samardzija obtains $2.64MM while Russell gets $1.075MM, Bruce Levine of ESPNChicago.com reports (on Twitter).
- The Diamondbacks announced that they avoided arbitration with Chris Johnson ($2.2875MM). The team also avoided arbitration with Brad Ziegler ($3.15MM), agreeing to a one-year deal, ESPN.com's Jayson Stark reports (on Twitter). Terms courtesy of Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic (on Twitter).
- The Nationals announced that they agreed to terms with Tyler Clippard, avoiding arbitration (via Amanda Comak on Twitter). The Nationals avoided arbitration with Ian Desmond, agreeing to a one-year, $3.8MM deal, Amanda Comak of the Washington Times reports (on Twitter). The Nationals also avoided arb with Roger Bernadina according to the outfielder's agent, James Wagner of the Washington Post reports (on Twitter). The Nationals and Ross Detwiler agreed to a one-year, $2.3375MM contract, according to CAA (via Twitter).
- Brennan Boesch and Phil Coke avoided arbitration, agreeing to one-year deals with the Tigers, Jason Beck of MLB.com reports (on Twitter). Boesch will earn $2.3MM while Coke will earn $1.85MM. The Tigers also avoided arbitration with Alex Avila, agreeing to a one-year, $2.95MM deal, Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com reports (all Twitter links). Austin Jackson agreed to a deal worth $3.5MM for 2013, Heyman reports. Doug Fister obtained a one-year, $4MM deal from Detroit, Heyman reports.
- The Dodgers and A.J. Ellis avoided arbitration, agreeing to a one-year, $2MM deal, Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com reports (on Twitter). Ronald Belisario agreed to a one-year, $1.45MM deal, MLB.com's Ken Gurnick reports (on Twitter).
- The Mariners announced that they avoided arbitration with Kendrys Morales and Brendan Ryan on one-year agreements for 2013. Morales will obtain $5.25MM plus performance bonuses, Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com reports (on Twitter). Ryan obtained $3.25MM, Heyman reports (on Twitter).
- The Rockies avoided arb with Tyler Colvin, agreeing to a one-year deal, the team announced (on Twitter). Colvin will earn $2.275MM, Troy Renck of the Denver Post writes (on Twitter).
- The Braves avoided arbitration with Cristhian Martinez, agreeing to a one-year deal, MLB.com's Mark Bowman reports (on Twitter). The Braves avoided arb with Kris Medlen, David O'Brien of the Atlanta Journal Constitution reports (on Twitter). Medlen will earn $2.6MM in 2013. They also avoided arb with Jason Heyward, agreeing to a one-year, $3.65MM deal, Bowman reports (onTwitter). The Braves agreed with another young player, avoiding arb with Jonny Venters, O'Brien reports (on Twitter). It's a $1.625MM deal. Earlier today the Braves agreed to a one-year deal with Eric O'Flaherty, avoiding arbitration, Bowman reported (on Twitter). He'll earn $4.32MM plus awards bonuses, Bowman adds.
- The Athletics announced they avoided arb with Jerry Blevins and Brandon Moss, agreeing to one-year deals for 2013.
- The Cardinals avoided arb with Mitchell Boggs and Edward Mujica, B.J. Rains of FOX Sports MidWest reports (on Twitter).
- The Indians announced that they avoided arb with Matt Albers and Justin Masterson. Albers will earn $1.75MM in 2013, MLB.com's Jordan Bastian reports (on Twitter). Masterson will earn $5.6875MM according to Bastian (on Twitter). The Indians and Joe Smith avoided arbitration with a one-year, $3.15MM deal, Bastian reported earlier today (on Twitter). The Indians also avoided arbitration with Lou Marson, Bastian reports (Twitter links). The catcher will earn $1MM on a one-year deal in 2013.
- The Astros avoided arb with Wesley Wright, agreeing to a one-year deal, MLB.com's Brian McTaggart reports (on Twitter). Wright will earn $1.025MM, according to Heyman (on Twitter). Earlier today the Astros and Bud Norris avoided arb with a one-year, $3MM deal, McTaggart reports (on Twitter). The Astros and Jed Lowrie avoided arbitration with a one-year, $2.4MM deal with awards bonuses, according to his representatives at CAA Baseball (on Twitter).
- The White Sox announced that they avoided arbitration with Alejandro De Aza, agreeing to a $2.075MM deal for 2013. The White Sox also avoided arb with Gordon Beckham, agreeing to a one-year deal worth $2.925MM for 2013, MLBTR has learned.
- The Orioles announced that they avoided arb with Chris Davis and Brian Matusz (Twitter link). Matusz gets a base salary of $1.6MM while Davis gets $3.3MM, Dan Connolly of the Baltimore Sun reports (Twitter links). The Orioles also avoided arbitration with Troy Patton. The sides agreed to a one-year, $815K deal, his agency, CAA Sports, announced on Twitter.
- The Brewers avoided arb with right-hander Marco Estrada and reliever Burke Badenhop, Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports (Twitter links). Estrada will earn $1.955MM while Badenhop will earn $1.55MM, Haudricourt reports.
- The Rays avoided arbitration with Matthew Joyce and Ryan Roberts, Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports (on Twitter). Joyce will earn $2.45MM and Roberts will earn $2.95MM plus incentives, the Rays announced. The Rays also avoided arbitration with Sam Fuld, agreeing to a one-year, $725K deal, Topkin reported (on Twitter). Earlier today the Rays avoided arbitration with Jeff Niemann. The sides agreed to a one-year, $3MM deal, Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com reports (on Twitter).
- The Royals announced that they avoided arbitration with Luke Hochevar, agreeing to a one-year deal for 2013. Hochevar will earn $4.56MM plus performance bonuses, Pete Grathoff of the Kansas City Star reports (on Twitter).
- The Yankees avoided arb with Boone Logan, agreeing to a one-year, $3.15MM deal (via CAA Sports on Twitter).
- The Padres avoided arb with John Baker, agreeing to a $930K deal (via CAA Sports on Twitter).
- The Twins and Brian Duensing avoided arb with a $1.3MM deal for 2013 (via CAA Sports on Twitter).
- The Marlins avoided arbitration with Ryan Webb, agreeing to a $975K deal, Clark Spencer of the Miami Herald reports (on Twitter).
- The Blue Jays announced that they avoided arbitration with Emilio Bonifacio by agreeing to a one-year, $2.6MM deal. The Blue Jays also announced that they avoided arbitration with J.A. Happ, agreeing to a one-year, $3.7MM deal for 2013.
- The Angels and Tommy Hanson avoided arbitration with a one-year, $3.725MM deal, Jeff Fletcher of the Orange County Register reports.
- The Giants avoided arb with Gregor Blanco, agreeing to a one-year, $1.35MM deal, Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com reports (on Twitter).
- The Phillies announced that they avoided arbitration with Antonio Bastardo with a $1.4MM contract for 2013.
- Gaby Sanchez and the Pirates have reached agreement on a one-year, $1.75MM deal plus bonuses to avoid arbitration, according to the Beverly Hills Sports Council (on Twitter).
Players with at least two years and 139 days of service time will be eligible for the potentially lucrative arbitration process this offseason, according to the Associated Press (via FOXNews.com). The top 22% of players with between two and three years of MLB service qualify for arbitration under baseball’s new collective bargaining agreement.
Nationals reliever Drew Storen, Padres shortstop Everth Cabrera, Mets catcher Josh Thole, Rays outfielder Sam Fuld, Rockies outfielder Tyler Colvin and Diamondbacks third baseman Chris Johnson are all eligible.
Mariners outfielder Michael Saunders missed the cutoff by one day. Others, including Justin Smoak, Danny Valencia, Michael Brantley, Jordan Schafer, Giancarlo Stanton, Stephen Strasburg, Daniel Hudson, Dan Runzler, Andrew Cashner, Alex Burnett, Esmil Rogers and Alexi Ogando, came close to super two status without reaching the threshold.
Super two status entitles certain players to four years of arbitration eligibility, rather than the usual three. As a result, players who earn the super two designation generally earn more than their peers. The cutoff would have been two years and 144 days under baseball’s previous collective bargaining agreement, according to the AP. In previous years the top 17% of players with between two and three years of MLB service qualified. The players and owners agreed to a new system last fall.