A few notes from the American League:
- The cost for the Red Sox to purchase right-hander Hector Velazquez from the Mexican League last week was just $30K, reports Evan Drellich of the Boston Herald. Velazquez’s pact with the Red Sox includes escalators based on consecutive days he spends on Boston’s roster, and one general manager told Drellich it’s the first such deal he has seen. Red Sox front office members Allard Baird, Jared Banner, Marcus Cuellar and Edgar Perez were all involved in the signing, per Drellich. Velazquez is familiar with Cuellar, notes Drellich, which helped the Sox beat out other teams (including the Yankees) for his services.
- Blue Jays first base prospect Rowdy Tellez is “knocking at the door” of the big league roster, manager John Gibbons said Saturday (via Paul Hagen of MLB.com). Continued Gibbons: “You just watch him more and more. There’s something there. Something special there.” Since going in the 30th round of the 2013 draft, Tellez has raked in the minors, including at the Double-A level last season. The 21-year-old slashed .297/.387/.530 with 23 home runs and 63 walks against 92 strikeouts. Now Baseball America’s 95th-ranked prospect, Tellez is likely to start the year with Triple-A Buffalo, relays Ben Nicholson-Smith of Sportsnet.
- Righty Daniel Gossett made a surprise start for the Athletics on Sunday, leading Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle to wonder if he could be in the mix for the last spot in the team’s rotation. Manager Bob Melvin isn’t ruling it out. “He impressed everybody in the organization last year, so in talking about that fifth starter, who knows?” said Melvin. Gossett, 24, checks in at No. 8 on BA’s list of A’s prospects after pitching at all three levels last year. The 2014 second-round pick spent most of his time at Double-A, where he posted a 2.49 ERA, 9.00 K/9 and 2.39 BB/9 in 94 innings.
- Non-roster invitee Ronny Rodriguez has emerged as a serious candidate to earn a role as a utility infielder with the Indians, writes Jordan Bastian of MLB.com. Rodriguez, who’s competing against Michael Martinez and Erik Gonzalez (a potential trade chip), has won the favor of manager Terry Francona. “He’s got a lot of sock in his bat,” said the skipper. “He can play other positions. He’s really interesting. I don’t think you hold it against a guy, because he maybe spent more time in the Minor Leagues. Some guys figure it out later in life. He’s got all the tools.”