Yoshinori Tateyama Rumors

Minor Moves: Tateyama, Phipps, Komatsu, Johnson

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

  • Japanese sidearmer Yoshinori Tateyama has been released by the Yankees, according to the International League transactions page. The 38-year-old, a 12-year Nippon league veteran, came stateside in 2011 with the Rangers. In two seasons, he threw 61 innings of 5.75 ERA ball while striking out 9.0 batters per nine against 2.5 BB/9. Working out of the Yanks’ Triple-A pen this year, Tateyama carried a 6.08 ERA in 13 1/3 innings, though he did have an impressive 11.5 K/9 against just 2.0 BB/9.
  • The White Sox have released 28-year-old outfielder Denis Phipps, according to the International League transactions page. Phipps was struggling at Triple-A for Chicago in 2014 with a .159/.250/.270 line in 72 plate appearances. This year was the first that Phipps spent away from the Reds, with whom he had a cup of coffee in 2012. Of course, if the Dominican never finds his way back to the bigs, he can still talk up his lifetime 1.064 OPS, even if it covers just 11 plate appearances.
  • MLB.com’s Bill Ladson reports (via Twitter) that the Nationals have released outfielder Erik Komatsu. The 26-year-old was selected by the Cardinals in the 2012 Rule 5 Draft and then claimed off waivers by the Twins when St. Louis cut him loose. Komatsu made 58 total plate appearances that season, hitting .216/.293/.216 before being returned to the Nats. The former eighth-round pick, who was once traded from Milwaukee to Washington in exchange for Jerry Hairston, batted .188/.365/.271 at Triple-A this season and owns a career .232/.344/.328 batting line at that level.
  • The Indians have outrighted utility man Elliot Johnson to Triple-A Columbus, according to the club’s transactions page. Johnson signed a minor league deal with Cleveland this offseason but collected just two hits with seven strikeouts and no walks in 20 plate appearances in his time with the club before being designated for assignment last week. The 30-year-old Johnson had the option to reject his assignment and pursue free agency, but the team announced that he has accepted and will report to Triple-A Columbus (Twitter link).

Minor Moves: Tateyama, Severino, Wimberly, Indians

Baseball America's Matt Eddy has a new Minor League transactions piece posted that is rife with signings and releases. Here are just some of the highlights, but the full, free piece is highly recommended (all info credited to Eddy unless otherwise specified)…

  • The Yankees have re-signed right-hander Yoshinori Tateyama to a minor league deal and inked Bruce Billings to a minor league pact as well. Tateyama, who turned 38 on Dec. 26, had an outstanding 1.70 ERA with 8.9 K/9 and 0.9 BB/9 in 42 1/3 innings for the Yankees' Triple-A affiliate in 2013. Billings, a 28-year-old right-hander, has spent the past three seasons in Oakland's system and posted a 4.31 ERA in 148 1/3 innings at Triple-A in 2013.
  • Left-hander Atahualpa Severino has inked a minor league deal with the Braves. As Eddy notes, the 29-year-old held opposing left-handers to a .171/.234/.271 batting line while striking out 27.3 percent and walking 6.5 percent of the 77 he faced last year. He split the season between the Triple-A affiliates for the Pirates and Royals, posting a combined 3.60 ERA.
  • The Twins have signed outfielder/second baseman Corey Wimberly to a minor league deal, tweets Chris Cotillo of MLB Daily Dish. The 30-year-old is a career .274/.351/.347 career hitter in parts of four seasons at the Triple-A level and split 2013 between the Reds and Braves organizations.
  • Cotillo also reports that the Tigers have signed backstop Luis Exposito to a minor league deal with an invite to Spring Training (Twitter link). Soon to be 27, Exposito slashed .224/.279/.346 in 64 games with Baltimore's Triple-A affiliate in Norfolk last year.
  • The Indians announced on Twitter that they have released six minor leaguers: right-handers Kyle Blair, Owen Dew, Rafael Homblert and Michael Goodnight; infielder Manuel Boscan; and outfielder Victor De Jesus.

Yankees Acquire Yoshinori Tateyama

The Rangers announced that they have sent right-hander Yoshinori Tateyama to the Yankees for future considerations.  The right-hander has been assigned to Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.

Tateyama has spent the entire season at Triple-A Round Rock, posting a 4.24 ERA with 11.6 K/9 and 2.6 BB/9 in 23 games. The 37-year-old spent portions of the 2011-12 seasons with Texas, posting a 5.75 ERA with 9.0 K/9 and 2.5 BB/9 in 53 relief appearances.  

Rangers Re-Sign Yoshinori Tateyama

SATURDAY: Days after releasing Yoshinori Tateyama, the Rangers have re-signed the reliever to a minor-league contract, Ron Matejko of ESPN Dallas and T.R. Sullivan of MLB.com both note.

THURSDAY: The Rangers have released right-handed reliever Yoshinori Tateyama, reports T.R. Sullivan of MLB.com. The 37-year-old Tateyama, a client of Pro Star Management, will look to catch on with another club, according to Sullivan.

Tateyama signed a minor league deal with Texas after throwing just 17 big league innings last year, posting a 9.00 ERA with 9.5 K/9 and 3.2 BB/9. Tateyama did perform well in Triple-A in 2012, putting up a 1.13 ERA in 39 2/3 innings. He also played a larger role with the big club in 2011, logging 44 innings and managing a 4.50 ERA on the back of 8.8 K/9 and 2.3 BB/9.  

Minor Moves: Tateyama, Greenberg, Miller

The latest minor moves from around MLB…

  • The Rangers signed right-hander Yoshinori Tateyama to a minor league deal, Jeff Wilson of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram reports (on Twitter). The 36-year-old appeared in 14 games for the Rangers this past season, but spent the majority of the year at Triple-A, where he posted a 1.13 ERA with 10.2 K/9 and 1.6 BB/9 in 39 2/3 innings.
  • The Orioles agreed to sign Adam Greenberg to a minor league contract, Steve Melewski of MASNsports.com reports (on Twitter). Greenberg's MLB career nearly ended when he was hit on the head with a pitch seven years ago, but the Marlins signed him this past September and he got an official MLB at bat.
  • The Reds re-signed catcher Corky Miller to a minor league deal that includes an invitation to MLB Spring Training, ESPN.com's Jayson Stark reports (on Twitter). Miller, 36, spent this past season with the Reds' Triple-A team, posting a .235/.386/.354 batting line in 313 plate appearances. He has ten years of MLB experience, but last appeared in the big leagues with the Reds in 2010.

AL West Notes: Rangers, M’s, Hamilton, Adams, Uehara

Rangers General Manager Jon Daniels says that the door is open for reliever Mike Adams to return, but he doesn't sound terribly optimistic about it happening, writes Jeff Wilson of the Star-Telegram.  "I think Mike's earned the right and put up performances indicative of a substantial contract," Daniels said. "Historically we haven't done those kinds of deals."  More on the Rangers and other items out of the AL West..

  • While some have speculated that the Red Sox and Rangers could partner up for a swap of Jacoby Ellsbury and Elvis Andrus, such a trade won't be happening, tweets Rob Bradford of WEEI.com.
  • People familiar with the Mariners' thinking told Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com that the club could be a new entry into the Josh Hamilton sweepstakes.  Earlier today, we learned that the Orioles will be targeting Hamilton this winter.
  • Daniels also said that he wants to see Koji Uehara return in 2013, Wilson writes.  With the likely departure of Adams and Alexi Ogando's move to the rotation, the Rangers have three vacancies to fill in the bullpen.
  • The GM also confirmed that the club has discussed a minor league deal with right-hander Yoshinori Tateyama.  The Rangers declined their $1.2MM option on Tateyama last week.
  • Daniels believes that there is a perception that the Rangers do not want to retain Hamilton and said that it is inaccurate, Wilson writes.  The Rangers have maintained contact with Hamilton's agent, Mike Moye, but contract terms have yet to be discussed.
  • Earlier tonight, Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports reported that the Rangers are pursuing free agent first baseman Adam LaRoche.

Rangers Decline Options For Feldman, Tateyama

5:42pm: Tateyama's 2013 option was worth $1.2MM, according to our own Ben Nicholson-Smith (via Twitter).

4:03pm: The Rangers have declined their 2013 options for Scott Feldman and Yoshinori Tateyama, Jeff Wilson of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram reports. The Rangers reinstated Neftali Feliz from the 60-day disabled list and purchased the contract of Justin Miller in related moves.

Feldman obtains a $600K buyout instead of a $9.25MM salary. The 29-year-old started and relieved for the Rangers this past season, posting a 5.09 ERA with 7.0 K/9 and 2.3 BB/9 in 123 2/3 innings.

The value of Tateyama's option remains unknown, but his 2012 option was valued at $1MM. The 36-year-old allowed 17 earned runs in as many innings this year after a promising debut season. He spent most of the 2012 campaign at Triple-A where he pitched much more effectively.

Rangers Exercise Option On Yoshinori Tateyama

The Rangers announced that they exercised their 2012 option for Yoshinori Tateyama (Twitter link). The right-hander will earn a $1MM salary in 2012. 

Tateyama, 35, debuted in the Major Leagues in 2011, pitching 44 innings of relief for the Rangers. He posted a 4.50 ERA with 8.8 K/9, 2.3 BB/9, a 38.7% ground ball rate and an average fastball velocity of just 86.9 mph.

Rangers Sign Yoshinori Tateyama

The Rangers signed Japanese free agent righty Yoshinori Tateyama to a one-year Major League deal with two club option years, tweets Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports.  Tateyama, 35 next month, posted a 1.80 ERA, 9.7 K/9, 1.8 BB/9, and 0.49 HR/9 in 55 relief innings this year for the Nippon Ham Fighters.  He's primarily a fastball/slider pitcher, wrote NPB Tracker's Patrick Newman in October.  Baseball Prospectus' Kevin Goldstein tweets a more detailed scouting report.