Wilin Rosario Rumors

NL West Notes: Hanley, Kemp, Ross, Rosario

It was on this day in 1890 that the Dodgers (then playing in Brooklyn and using the rather non-intimidating “Bridegrooms” nickname) swept a triple-header over the Pirates.  This was one of the season’s many highlights for the Dod..er, Bridegrooms as they went on to win the franchise’s first National League pennant.

Here’s some news from around the NL West…

  • If Hanley Ramirez leaves the Dodgers in free agency, it could be for an American League team that could give him the occasional rest day at DH, Peter Gammons writes.  Ramirez could also go to a team in need of third base help if he’s willing to switch positions.  As recently reported, the Dodgers are wary of giving Ramirez a long-term contract due to concerns about his durability and defense.
  • Ramirez’s departure would also make it very unlikely that the Dodgers would trade Matt Kemp, Gammons adds.  Without Ramirez, the Dodgers will need Kemp to help balance a lineup that would have only one other notable right-handed bat in Yasiel Puig.
  • Cody Ross knows he’ll be fighting for playing time with the Diamondbacks next season, but the veteran outfielder tells Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic that he plans to be fully recovered from the career-threatening hip fracture he suffered in August 2013.
  • The Rockies could use an upgrade at catcher next season, Patrick Saunders of the Denver Post opines.  Wilin Rosario has struggled with injuries and performance this season, plus his defense is still a work in progress; Saunders thinks that Rosario’s focus on his glovework may have also been a reason for his dropoff at the plate.  Rosario will be eligible for arbitration for the first time this offseason.

Quick Hits: Escobar, Rodon, Prado, Colon, Rosario

25 years ago today, Bart Giamatti banned Pete Rose from Major League Baseball for life for gambling on the game. As Bleacher Report’s Scott Miller points out, the next year could be a turning point for Rose, as Rob Manfred replaces Bud Selig as commissioner and MLB prepares to host the All-Star Game in Cincinnati next July. Miller suggests it’s time for baseball to give its all-time hits leader a second chance. Here’s more from around the game.

  • The Athletics recently claimed Yunel Escobar from the Rays on revocable waivers, but Escobar does not want to play for Oakland, CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman writes. “I am very concerned with Yunel having been selected on waivers by Oakland,” says Escobar’s agent, Alex Esteban. “While I believe Oakland is an excellent organization, I don’t feel that it is the best organization for him.” Esteban adds that Escobar has a good relationship with Rays manager Joe Maddon. Of course, Escobar does not have a no-trade clause and cannot block a trade to the A’s, but his disinterest in playing for them is one variable to keep in mind as the situation develops. Escobar has stayed out of trouble in Tampa, but he did not get along with Bobby Cox in Atlanta and received a suspension for a homophobic slur while playing for Toronto.
  • White Sox top prospect Carlos Rodon dominated Sunday in his second career start for Triple-A Charlotte. Rodon pitched four innings and struck out eight batters, including five of the last six he faced. Less than two months after signing as the third overall pick in the draft, Rodon is already pitching well at the highest level of the minor leagues.
  • Martin Prado and Brandon McCarthy have played well since the Yankees traded for them this summer, writes Barry M. Bloom of MLB.com. Prado played mostly third base with the Diamondbacks, but since being traded he’s played there sparingly, instead appearing more often in right field and at second base. That’s not surprising, given that the Yankees had acquired Chase Headley the previous week. “They talked to me about that the first day before I even stepped out on the field,” says Prado. “I had this experience in the past with the Braves. It’s not like I haven’t done it.”
  • The most likely destination for Bartolo Colon is either the Angels or Dodgers, one executive tells Adam Rubin of ESPN New York (via Twitter). The Tigers don’t have the money for him, Rubin writes. The Mets placed Colon on revocable waivers on Saturday. Rubin tweets that he does not think the Mets will get rid of Colon simply to avoid paying him his $11MM salary next year.
  • Wilin Rosario is dealing with a wrist injury just as he might be coming to a fork in the road with the Rockies, Nick Groke of the Denver Post writes. Rosario is eligible for arbitration after the season and he hasn’t made an overwhelming case to start next season, hitting .248/.289/.399 while concentrating on improving his defense. One element possibly in Rosario’s favor, though, is that there won’t be many good catchers available on the free agent market — Russell Martin is the only obvious starting-caliber catcher.

NL West Notes: Melky, Alonso, Rosario

The Giants clinched the NL West Division title this past weekend, despite having lost Melky Cabrera for the remainder of the regular season due to a failed drug test. As the 2010 World Champs gear up to make a run at a second title in three years, here are some links surrounding the division…

  • Sergio Romo appeared on "Inside Pitch" with Casey Stern and Jim Bowden on MLB Network Radio on Sirius XM and said the Giants would welcome Cabrera back with open arms if he returned to the team during the playoffs. "Why wouldn't we want him on our team?" asked Romo, before going onto call Cabrera a "great teammate" whose talent would improve the team's chances of winning it all.
  • Padres first baseman Yonder Alonso was on a trip to Spain with his sister and friends (including Manny Machado) last winter when he learned of his trade, writes MLB.com's Corey Brock. Alonso was there courtesy of his team at the time, the Reds, to watch his favorite soccer team — Real Madrid. Brock's article is a terrific look at how trades can affect players on a personal level, and contains quotes from Alonso, Machado, and GMs Walt Jocketty (Reds) and Josh Byrnes (Padres).
  • Rockies catcher Wilin Rosario is the best rookie that no one is talking about, writes Jon Heyman of CBS Sports. Heyman suggests that Rosario is could be outperforming other, more commonly discussed candidates.


Quick Hits: Nationals, Mets, Wandy, Blue Jays

On this date 25 years ago, A's rookie Mark McGwire hit his first MLB home run. Another historic slugger, Jim Thome, could be on the move this week. Here are the latest links from around MLB…

  • Thomas Boswell of the Washington Post wants to see Davey Johnson return as the Nationals' skipper in 2012.  Earlier this week, GM Mike Rizzo raved about Johnson's ability to connect with his players.
  • The Mets haven't yet had internal discussions about picking up the 2013 option for manager Terry Collins, but they'll likely discuss the possibility within the next month, according to Andy Martino of the New York Daily News
  • Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports hears from someone connected to baseball management who wonders why MLB players don't insist on slotting. Capping bonuses does have potential benefits, but as Rosenthal explains, it's far from an ideal system.
  • The Astros wanted Wilin Rosario or Drew Pomeranz for Wandy Rodriguez, but the Rockies were only offering Jason Hammel, Casey Weathers or Christian Friedrich, according to Danny Knobler of CBSSports.com (on Twitter). Talks between the two teams reached a standstill yesterday, after the Rockies claimed Rodriguez earlier in the week.
  • The Blue Jays announced that they signed non-drafted free agent Luke Willson, a left-handed hitter who also plays tight end for the Rice University Owls.

Astros To Keep Wandy Rodriguez

The Astros pulled Wandy Rodriguez back off of waivers, according to Richard Justice of the Houston Chronicle (on Twitter). The Rockies claimed Rodriguez yesterday, but balked when Houston insisted on obtaining prospects and salary relief for the 32-year-old.

Technically, Houston GM Ed Wade could place Rodriguez on waivers again, but if he does so, he'll no longer be able to pull the left-hander back. The Astros' best chance to trade Rodriguez could be this offseason, when they can engage all 29 of their rivals in the bidding.

Rodriguez earns $10MM next year and $13MM in 2013. If he's traded, the Astros $13MM option for 2014 becomes a player option. Rodriguez has solid numbers this season (3.41 ERA with 7.5 K/9 and 3.1 BB/9 in 153 innings), but the Rockies picked up ten hits and six runs (four earned) against him at Coors Field today.

The Astros wanted Wilin Rosario or Drew Pomeranz plus salary relief for Rodriguez, according to Troy Renck of the Denver Post (Twitter links). That deal wouldn't have worked for the Rockies, but they were willing to take on Rodriguez's entire salary, according to Renck.


No Momentum For Wandy Trade

2:29pm: Astros GM Ed Wade told MLB.com's Brian McTaggart that his gut tells him Rodriguez is staying put.

WEDNESDAY, 11:53am: A deal remains a long shot because the Astros want catching prospect Wilin Rosario or a top young pitcher from the Rockies in the deal.  Last month, Baseball America ranked Rosario the 28th best prospect in baseball.  Oddly enough, Rodriguez is scheduled to pitch for the Astros a couple of hours from now at Coors Field.

TUESDAY, 3:25pm: There's no momentum for a Wandy Rodriguez trade at the moment, according to ESPN.com's Buster Olney (Twitter links). The Rockies claimed the Astros' left-hander on waivers and now have 48 business day hours to work out a trade or claim with Houston.

The Astros aren't especially motivated to move Rodriguez, according to Olney. Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports notes (on Twitter) that the Astros can afford him next year even if they reduce their payroll to $60MM or so, as they intend to. 

ESPN.com's Jim Bowden says the Astros are looking to acquire a bona fide return for Rodriguez and could consider dealing him in the winter if Colorado doesn't offer what they're looking for (Twitter link). The Rockies, meanwhile, are well aware that free agent starters are hesitant to sign with them, according to Olney.