Wilfredo Ledezma Rumors
With such notable names as Zack Greinke, Wandy Rodriguez and Hanley Ramirez already dealt, what other big moves could see as we head into the last weekend before the trade deadline? Here are a few items to kick off Saturday...
- The Padres have sent three officials to watch the Orioles over the last two weeks, with senior VP Omar Minaya in attendance at Camden Yards for Friday's Athletics/Orioles game at Camden Yards, according to Dan Connolly of the Baltimore Sun. Of course, Minaya could have also been watching the visitors, given that both Oakland and Baltimore are two of the top suitors for Chase Headley.
- Would-be contenders aren't shying away from dealing away major pieces in an effort to start fresh, opines MLB.com's Terence Moore. "Trades also are now more about trading contracts than trading players, which is part of the bottom line: People in baseball are looking for ways to control those payrolls and budgets," says SiriusXM Radio's Steve Phillips.
- The new CBA rules prohibiting draft pick compensation for teams who acquire "rental players" is having an impact on the deadline movement, writes MLB.com's Paul Hagen.
- The Chiba Lotte Marines announced the acquisitions of left-hander Wil Ledezma and right-hander Doug Mathis, according to a Sponichi news report (passed on by Patrick Newman of NPB Tracker). Ledezma, 31, signed a minor league deal with the Dodgers last winter but posted a 6.99 ERA in 38 relief appearances at Triple-A Albuquerque. The nine-year Major League veteran pitched five games for the Blue Jays in 2011. Mathis, 29, last appeared in the Majors with the Rangers in 2010 and had previously signed a minor league deal with the Red Sox in January.
The Dodgers announced the signing of 15 non-roster players yesterday, reported MLB.com's Ken Gurnick: catcher Josh Bard, lefty reliever Wil Ledezma, lefty reliever Alberto Castillo, righty reliever Angel Guzman, outfielder Cory Sullivan, righty reliever Fernando Nieve, righty reliever Jose Ascanio, righty Ryan Tucker, righty Will Savage, lefty Matt Chico, lefty Scott Rice, corner infielder Jeff Baisley, infielder Lance Zawadzki, and infielder Luis Cruz.
Bard, 33, had 86 plate appearances for the Mariners this year and another 250 in Triple-A. His signing was first rumored last week at the Winter Meetings. Ledezma, 30, briefly appeared in the Majors with Toronto this year. He struck out 64 batters in 48 Triple-A innings as well. Castillo, a 36-year-old Cuban, tossed 11 2/3 innings for the Diamondbacks and a strong 42 1/3 frames at Triple-A. His near-deal was first reported last week.
Ascanio, 26, appeared briefly in the bigs with the Pirates this year and also whiffed 50 in 44 Triple-A innings. He was part of the July '09 John Grabow-Tom Gorzelanny trade with the Cubs, but he had labrum surgery in October of that year. Tucker, 25, is a former first-round pick of the Marlins who pitched five innings with the Rangers this year and 68 1/3 more in Triple-A. Guzman, Sullivan, Nieve, Chico, Baisley, Zawadzki, and Cruz have also spent time in the Majors. Guzman, notably, was a successful setup man for the Cubs in '09.
SUNDAY, 8:01am: Morosi clarifies (via Twitter) that Ledezma's deal isn't quite official yet, but that the 30-year-old has told people he intends to sign with the Dodgers.
SATURDAY, 11:25pm: The Dodgers have signed reliever Wil Ledezma to a minor-league deal, according to Venezuelan outlet El Universal (Spanish link). A source confirmed the signing to Jon Paul Morosi of FOXSports.com (via Twitter).
Ledezma was designated for assignment by the Blue Jays in August and finished out the year with the club's Triple-A affiliate. After the end of the regular season, the left-hander was one of 22 Triple-A players to declare free agency.
In parts of nine big league seasons, Ledezma has a career ERA of 5.40 with 6.4 K/9 and 4.5 BB/9.
A total of 22 players that finished the year in Triple-A elected free agency after the end of the regular season according to the transaction pages of the Pacific Coast and International Leagues. All but one of those 22 players (Matt Carson, formerly of the Rays) played in the big leagues this season. Here's the full list:
Dusty Brown (Pirates), Travis Buck (Indians), Armando Galarraga (D'Backs), Jay Gibbons (Dodgers), Edgar Gonzalez (Rockies), Steve Holm (Twins), Wil Ledezma (Blue Jays), Andy LaRoche (Athletics), Felipe Lopez (Brewers), Lastings Milledge (White Sox), Pat Misch (Mets), Pat Neshek (Padres), Mike O'Connor (Mets), Matt Palmer (Angels), Felix Pie (Orioles), Brad Snyder (Cubs), Brett Tomko (Rangers), Wyatt Toregas (Pirates), P.J. Walters (Blue Jays), Randy Williams (Red Sox), and Reggie Willits (Angels).
Ledezma, 30, allowed 10 earned runs in just six innings with the Jays this year, six of which came today. He also allowed 11 hits and walked seven while striking out just six. All told, he's got a 15.00 ERA on the season.
The Blue Jays are the seventh team for which Ledezma has played over parts of nine MLB seasons. The southpaw has posted a 5.40 ERA, 6.4 K/9, and 4.5 BB/9 in 396 1/3 Major League innings. A corresponding roster move will be announced later tonight.
Here are the latest players to get outrighted to Triple-A...
- The Astros outrighted Luis Durango to Triple-A after he cleared waivers, according to MLB.com's Brian McTaggart (on Twitter). Houston designated him for assignment on Friday.
- The Blue Jays announced that they outrighted Wil Ledezma to Triple-A to create roster space for right-hander Henderson Alvarez, who will make his MLB debut tomorrow night. Ledezma appeared in two games for the Blue Jays, allowing three earned runs in as many innings pitched. Alvarez, 21, has a 3.18 ERA with 6.5 K/9 and 1.7 BB/9 in 96 1/3 innings this year, mostly at Double-A.
One year ago today, the Reds won the bidding for Aroldis Chapman. The Cuban left-hander made 15 relief appearances in the majors last year and figures to have an even bigger impact on the 2011 season. Here are today's links...
- The Cardinals' negotiations with Albert Pujols could resemble the Yankees' negotiations with Alex Rodriguez, writes Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Cardinals executives have acknowledged that an extension with their first baseman would take the organization "places it hasn't gone" in terms of contract value and potential incentive clauses, Goold writes.
- Benjamin Kabak of River Ave. Blues says he'd lean toward Andruw Jones over Marcus Thames for the Yankees in 2011.
- Meanwhile, Troy Renck of the Denver Post reports that the Rockies still have some interest in Jones (Twitter link).
- The Rangers are concerned that Jim Thome would prefer to return to Minnesota, according to Danny Knobler of CBS Sports (on Twitter). The Rangers are interested in Thome, though he's not a perfect fit for their needs.
- The Nationals need a utility player who can back Danny Espinosa up at second base and potentially play in the outfield, according to Ben Goessling of MASNSports.com. He lists Willie Bloomquist, David Eckstein and Willie Harris as possible fits.
- Dan Szymborski explains the challenges the Giants face if they want to repeat as World Champions in a piece for ESPN.
- The Blue Jays announced that they outrighted Wil Ledezma to Triple-A Las Vegas.
The Blue Jays claimed Wil Ledezma on waivers from the Pirates, according to a Toronto press release. The Pirates agreed to terms with the left-hander on a one-year split contract earlier in the offseason and designated him for assignment late last month. Ledezma will earn $700K in the majors and $300K in the minors.
Ledezma who turns 30 this month, posted a 6.86 ERA with 10.1 K/9 and 2.7 BB/9 in 19 2/3 innings for the Pirates last year. He'll likely compete with left-handers Jesse Carlson, Rommie Lewis and David Purcey for bullpen spots this spring.
The Pirates have agreed to terms with left-hander Wil Ledezma on a one-year contract, according to a team press release. The Bucs signed the 29-year-old to a minor league deal last winter and he delivered a 6.86 ERA in 27 relief appearances. With the signing, Pittsburgh avoids arbitration with Ledezma.
The Pirates signed lefty Wil Ledezma to a minor league deal, according to a team press release. Ledezma, 29 in January, bounced around in the Nationals and Blue Jays organizations this year. He compiled a 3.49 ERA in 38.6 innings at three minor league stops, whiffing over a batter per inning but walking 4.2 per nine innings.