Ryan Howard will gain full no-trade rights as a 10-and-5 player in May, and that’s no small matter for the Phillies, writes Jim Salisbury of CSNPhilly.com. The Phillies are willing to eat a significant portion of the $60MM that remains on Howard’s contract to get a deal done, but once his 20-team no-trade list turns into a full no-trade provision, it could create another roadblock for them. More from the NL East..
- A major league source told Gordon Edes of ESPNBoston.com (on Twitter) that the Phillies haven’t been active in trying to move Cole Hamels at the winter meetings.
- Phillies skipper Ryne Sandberg said the return for Hamels “would need to have a wow factor” for the Phillies to trade him to the Red Sox, tweets Scott Lauber of the Boston Herald. Sandberg added that in a Hamels deal he would want pieces that could help in 2015, tweets Alex Speier of WEEI.com.
- The Mets have remained in contact with free agent reliever Craig Breslow, according to Jon Paul Morosi (Twitter link) and Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports. However, Andy Martino of the Daily News (on Twitter) gets the impression that the Mets aren’t currently in serious pursuit of him.
- Mets GM Sandy Alderson has said that any shortstop upgrade would be a modest one, so we shouldn’t expect to see the likes of Troy Tulowitzki, Starlin Castro, or Elvis Andrus in Queens, tweets Adam Rubin of ESPNNewYork.com.
- Alderson says there are two to three options on the shortstop trade market at present, according to Matt Ehalt of The Bergen Record (via Twitter). The Mets are looking at a mix of youngsters and veterans.
- Ian Levin has been named as the new farm director of the Mets, according to Rubin (on Twitter). He previously headed the analytics department, which will now be run by T.J. Barra.