Friday afternoon rumor tidbits…
- The Indians will probably let Kenny Lofton leave while exercising Joe Borowski’s $4MM option. No big surprise there.
- Nor is it a surprise that the Yankees are heavily leaning towards exercising Bobby Abreu’s $16MM option.
- From the what might’ve been department: Red Sox owner John Henry was in favor of signing A.J. Burnett instead of trading for Josh Beckett. One could make a solid argument that the Red Sox would be better off if Henry had gotten his wish. Beckett and Julio Lugo combined for 8.6 wins at $14MM this year while Burnett and Hanley Ramirez combined for 14.8 wins at $12.4MM (according to WARP).
- From that same department – Tom Gage notes that the Tigers once nearly acquired Todd Helton for Tony Clark. There were many Clark rumors from 1999-2001 before the Red Sox claimed him off waivers. I heard Buck and McCarver talking recently about how Helton is not a product of his home park. For the record Helton has hit .368/.474/.668 at home in his career and .304/.409/.515 on the road. He probably belongs in the Hall but it would be a lot tighter if his career OPS was .924 instead of 1.014.
- Nick Cafardo makes his case for the Red Sox to re-sign Curt Schilling.
- A scouting look at Hiroki Kuroda, plus other Japanese pitchers who may come over (hat tip to MetsBlog). Jason Churchill estimates a three-year deal for Kuroda at $9-11MM per.
- How would you like to face a 125 mph fastball?