Both Molina ($1.8MM) and Shields ($10.25MM) were expected to have their options picked up. The 35-year-old Rodney pitched to a 0.60 ERA with 48 saves this year, so his $2.5MM option was a no-brainer. Scott, 34, hit .229/.285/.439 with 14 homers and will receive a $1MM buyout rather than a $6MM salary.
Luke Scott’s 2012 season fell short of expectations, but he’d like to return to Tampa Bay for another year. The 34-year-old designated hitter told Bill Chastain of MLB.com that he hopes the Rays exercise the $6MM club option on his contract instead of paying him a $1MM buyout.
“The environment is awesome,” Scott said. “It's just a great place to play. I really enjoyed my time here. I hope they'll have me back."
Scott made two trips to the disabled list this past season as a result of oblique and back injuries. When healthy he hit 14 home runs and posted a .229/.285/.439 batting line in 344 plate appearances. Rays executive vice president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman told Chastain it’s too early to say whether Scott will be back for another year.
“He really scuffled in the first half,” Friedman said. “In the second half he had the type of output that we kind of anticipated if things went well and lined up well."
On this date in 2009, the Red Sox signed John Smoltz to a one-year contract. He struggled through 40 innings in Boston before moving on to St. Louis, where he pitched to considerably better results in seven starts. Here's the latest on the AL East…
- Roch Kubatko of MASNsports.com and Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com wonder if Johnny Damon could be a fit for the Orioles in 2012.
- The Rays and Joe Maddon have made progress in extension talks for the skipper, Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports. Maddon’s contract expires after the 2012 season, but both sides have expressed interest in working an extended agreement out before then.
- Luke Scott told reporters that he won’t be ready to play the outfield until May or June, because his shoulder injury is still healing, Topkin tweets. Scott, whose deal with the Rays became official today, will DH right away and may play some first base.
- Scott says the Orioles never made him a firm offer after non-tendering him, Kubatko tweets.
- The Red Sox are still in talks with the agent for Hiroki Kuroda, Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports tweets.
- Former Red Sox GM Theo Epstein addressed his departure from Boston and other related topics on WEEI this morning and we have the details here.
THURSDAY: The deal is official, Marc Topkin of the St. Petersburg Times (Twitter links). Scott will earn $5MM in 2012, and the club option is worth $6MM with a $1MM buyout. The Tampa Tribune reports (on Twitter) that the contract also includes bonuses placed on plate appearances.
WEDNESDAY: The Rays have reached an agreement with designated hitter Luke Scott on a one-year deal with a 2013 option, reports Dan Connolly of the Baltimore Sun. Marc Topkin of the St. Petersburg Times was first to report the near-agreement, and he notes that it includes incentives. Scott is represented by PSI Sports Management.
Scott, 33, hit .220/.301/.402 in 236 plate appearances in 2011, his season cut short by July shoulder surgery. The Orioles non-tendered him last month rather than pay a salary in the range of 2011's $6.4MM figure. Scott told Topkin he expects to primarily serve as the Rays' DH, with some time at first base. If his shoulder is fully recovered, perhaps he can return to the .500 slugging percentage-type power he's shown in the past. The Rays are closest to Scott's Florida home, notes Connolly.
Scott is a late bloomer, having burst onto the scene with a strong half-season for the Astros at age 28 in '06. After the '07 campaign, he was dealt to the Orioles as part of the Miguel Tejada trade. Scott has drawn plenty of attention off the field, particularly after interviews with David Brown of Yahoo and Amy K. Nelson of ESPN.
Photo courtesy of Icon SMI.
12:12pm: It sounds like the Rays are moving close to a deal with Scott, tweets Topkin.
8:50am: Luke Scott is among the players the Rays have talked about, reported Marc Topkin of the St. Petersburg Times yesterday. Scott could be a one-year option for the Rays mainly at designated hitter. Reportedly ten teams aside from the Orioles have shown interest in Scott since he was non-tendered a month ago, but none of them had been revealed until now. Shoulder surgery ended Scott's season in July.
The Orioles announced a three-year deal with left-hander Wei-Yin Chen today, but that’s far from the only news to trickle out of Baltimore today. Here’s the latest on the club…
- Now that they’ve signed Chen, the Orioles are going forward with Jim Johnson in the bullpen, MLB.com’s Brittany Ghiroli tweets. Johnson, 28, posted a 2.67 ERA with 5.7 K/9 and 2.1 BB/9 in 91 innings of relief for Baltimore in 2011 and there's been talk of moving him to the rotation.
- The Orioles haven’t discussed a possible contract extension with Adam Jones, Roch Kubatko of MASNsports.com tweets. Jones projects to earn $5.8MM or so in 2012 as a second time arbitration eligible player
- GM Dan Duquette has had contact with free agent Luke Scott, Ghiroli tweets. However, no deal appears to be brewing between the Orioles and Scott, who got non-tendered in December.
- Kubatko suggests Chen, Jeremy Guthrie and Tommy Hunter will be in next year's rotation and that hopefuls such as Zach Britton and Brian Matusz will have to earn their rotation spots by pitching well in Spring Training.
- Executive vice president of baseball operations Dan Duquette told Roch Kubatko of MASNSports.com he wants to improve the Orioles' "on-base capability from top to bottom." Duquette isn't sure he currently has a .380 OBP guy, and isn't sure if his second baseman is currently on the roster. The free agents with the best 2011 OBPs include Casey Kotchman, Chris Snyder, Carlos Pena, and Pat Burrell.
- The Orioles haven't made contract with Luke Scott since non-tendering him on December 12th, reports Kubatko.
- The Orioles are fairly confident they will add another outfielder, though that wouldn't necessarily portend an Adam Jones trade, writes Dan Connolly of the Baltimore Sun. The Orioles were not overly intrigued by the Braves' offer of Jair Jurrjens, Martin Prado, and a minor league pitcher. Connolly doesn't see Jurrjens as a centerpiece for a Jones trade. Instead, the Orioles are intrigued by Tommy Hanson.
- Connolly notes that an extension remains possible for Jones, who is under team control for two more years. January is always a big month for extensions.
- An Orioles source told Connolly they would not offer Prince Fielder the seven-year, $140MM deal Mark Teixeira rejected three years ago. For the Orioles to sign Fielder, Connolly feels that his market would have to completely collapse, and he finds that highly unlikely. Connolly reiterates that agent Scott Boras and Fielder "did not meet with [Orioles owner] Peter Angelos despite being in the area – which I thought should demonstrate once and for all that the Orioles really aren’t anywhere near the frontburner of this issue and Fielder's side isn't forcing it."
After introducing the newly signed Tsuyoshi Wada to the media today, Orioles GM Dan Duquette addressed his club's offseason to date and future plans with reporters, including Brittany Ghiroli of MLB.com. Here's the latest:
- Duquette said he's interested in bringing back slugger Luke Scott, who was non-tendered on Monday, but cautioned that a deal is no sure thing. As for the non-tendering, he explained: "We just felt his value in arbitration was much higher than his actual market value."
- A left-handed-hitting outfielder and a DH remain on the club's offseason wish list.
- On whether any swaps are possible, Duquette said: “We’ve got a couple trade discussions that are still alive."
- The decision on whether Jim Johnson and Brad Bergesen will be starters or relievers in 2012 will be left up to manager Buck Showalter in the spring. Johnson is eligible for arbitration for the second time this offseason and projects to earn $2.5MM through that process.
The Orioles and approximately ten other teams have expressed some level of interest in signing Luke Scott, according to Dan Connolly of the Baltimore Sun (on Twitter). The 33-year-old became a free agent Monday night when the Orioles declined to tender him a contract.
Scott, who battled a shoulder injury in 2011 and underwent surgery this summer, projected to earn $6MM through arbitration, so GM Dan Duquette let him go. But from 2008-10, Scott averaged 25 home runs and a .266/.348/.497 line, so there's strong interest in the PSI Sports Management client.
Today's American League non-tenders are below, but you can keep track of all teams in our non-tender tracker.
- The Mariners announced that they non-tendered Dan Cortes and Chris Gimenez.
- The Orioles announced that they non-tendered Willie Eyre, the right-handed reliever who was designated for assignment last week. They non-tendered Jo-Jo Reyes, according to Dan Connolly of the Baltimore Sun (Twitter link). The Orioles also non-tendered Luke Scott, tweets Connolly. Scott, who battled a shoulder injury in 2011 and underwent surgery this summer, projected to earn $6MM through arbitration.
- The Rays non-tendered Andy Sonnanstine, according to Marc Topkin of the St. Petersburg Times (Twitter link).
- The Rangers non-tendered right-hander Fabio Castillo, according to Anthony Andro of FOXSportsSouthwest.com (Twitter link).
- The Red Sox announced that they non-tendered Rich Hill.
- The Royals announced that they will non-tender left-hander Aaron Laffey.
- The Twins announced that they've non-tendered left-hander Jose Mijares (Twitter link).
- The Tigers non-tendered second baseman Will Rhymes, announced the team. Rhymes is not yet close to being arbitration eligible, as he has less than one year of big league service time. Rhymes, 28, hit .306/.377/.390 at Triple-A this year.