Zach Simons Rumors

Orioles Sign McCutchen, Meyer; Rangers Sign Simons

The Orioles have signed Daniel McCutchen and Dan Meyer to minor league deals, and the Rangers have done the same with Zach Simons, MLBTR's Tim Dierkes has learned.

McCutchen, 29, has pitched to a 4.77 ERA in 188 2/3 innings in parts of four seasons with the Pirates. He was acquired by the Buccos along with Jeff Karstens, Ross Ohlendorf and Jose Tabata in 2008 as part of the trade that sent Xavier Nady and Damaso Marte to the Yankees. McCutchen has totaled a 3.66 ERA, 6.8 K/9 and 1.8 BB/9 in 403 1/3 Triple-A innings.

Meyer, 31, last appeared in the big leagues in 2010 with the Marlins. The southpaw was once traded by the Braves along with Juan Cruz and Charles Thomas to the A's in exchange for Tim Hudson. He has a 5.46 ERA in 113 2/3 Major League innings. He's spent the past two seasons pitching for the Pirates' Triple-A affiliate and in independent ball, posting ERAs over 7.00 each year.

Simons, 27, spent last season pitching to a 3.57 ERA between Double-A and Triple-A in the Rockies' organization. He's fanned 7.1 hitters per nine innings over the course of 589 minor league innings but also walked four batters per nine. He was a second-round pick of the Rockies back in 2005, but has also spent time in the Tigers and Marlins organizations.

Minor Moves: Baxter, Blanco, Orioles, Michaels

We'll track today's minor moves here…

  • The Mets signed outfielder Mike Baxter to a minor league contract, according to the team's official Twitter feed.  The deal includes an invitation to the Major League spring training camp.  Baxter, 27, was born in Queens and appeared in 22 games with the Mets last season.
  • The Nationals signed Andres Blanco to a minor league deal, tweets's Bill Ladson. In 82 plate appearances for the Rangers in 2011, the versatile 27-year-old posted a .224/.263/.342 line and played four positions.
  • The Orioles agreed to sign outfielders Antoan Richardson and Lee Cruz to minor league deals, tweets's Jerry Crasnick. Richardson, who briefly played for the Braves in 2011, is one of six players in MLB history from the Bahamas, Crasnick tweets.
  • The Nationals signed outfielder Jason Michaels to a minor league deal, according to Matt Eddy of Baseball America (on Twitter). Michaels spent the 2011 season with the Astros and posted a .199/.256/.295 line in 169 plate appearances. The 11-year veteran has a career line of .263/.335/.407 and experience at all three outfield positions.
  • The Rockies signed catcher Wilkin Castillo and right-handed relievers Mike Ekstrom and Zach Simons to minor league deals, according to Matt Eddy of Baseball America (on Twitter). Castillo spent the 2011 season at Triple-A, where he hit .262/.285/.366 in 291 plate appearances. Ekstrom, who appeared in one game for the Rays in 2011, posted a 4.35 ERA with 8.6 K/9 and 3.8 BB/9 for Tampa Bay's top affiliate. The 26-year-old Simons posted a 5.46 ERA with 6.8 K/9 and 5.3 BB/9 in 61 innings in the Tigers' and Marlins' systems in 2011.

Minor Moves: Simons, Miller, Corcoran, Hernandez

A few transactions from the minor leagues…

  • The Marlins have signed right-hander Zach Simons, MLBTR has learned.  Simons, 26, was released by the Tigers last week.  Simons was drafted by the Rockies in the second round of the 2005 draft and has a 4.06 ERA and a 7.1 K/9 rate in seven minor league seasons in the Colorado and Detroit systems.
  • The Dodgers have signed Justin Miller to a minor league deal, MLBTR has learned.  This is Miller's second stint with L.A. after posting a 4.44 ERA in 19 appearances with the club in 2010 before being designated for assignment.  Miller has pitched for the Mariners' and Rangers' Triple-A teams this season, with a combined 5.31 ERA in 17 appearances.
  • The Dodgers signed right-hander Roy Corcoran to a minor league deal and assigned him to Double-A Chattanooga, according to the Southern League's transactions page.  Corcoran last piched in the Majors in 2009 and has a career 4.17 ERA in 82 appearances with the Expos, Nationals and Mariners between 2003 and 2009.  Corcoran pitched for the Astros' Triple-A affiliate in Round Rock last season.
  • The Yankees released Fernando Hernandez, according to the International League's transactions page.  Hernandez had posted a 5.91 ERA in 33 appearances for Double-A Trenton this season and made just one appearance for Triple-A Scranton before being released.  The right-hander, who turns 27 later this month, has three Major League innings to his name, all with Oakland in 2008.    

Rockies Acquire Jason Grilli, Jorge de la Rosa

The Rockies and Tigers made a swap today.  The Rockies get 31 year-old pitcher Jason Grilli, while the Tigers receive 22 year-old pitcher Zach Simons.

Grilli has served as a mop-up man for the Tigers the past two years, eating bullpen innings at a mediocre ERA.  The Rox may have been drawn to his typically decent groundball rates.

Simons appears to be a long shot to reach the bigs; he wasn’t among the Rockies’ top 30 prospects.

The Rox also completed their long-rumored deal for lefty Jorge de la Rosa.  He’ll jump right into the rotation.  The 27 year-old is an interesting arm when healthy.