- The Giants had one text conversation with Melvin Mora's agent according to Andrew Baggarly of CSNBayArea.com (on Twitter), but there was "absolutely no offer made." Mora recently told a Venezuelan newspaper that he had received offers from both the Giants and Reds.
- Baggarly says (on Twitter) there is no consensus within the organization about signing the recently released Orlando Hudson. The Giants infield is short at the moment, but Pablo Sandoval will return soon and the club expects to get Freddy Sanchez back from his shoulder problems at some point.
A trio of venezolanos try to claw their way back to la gran carpa. Yes, that literally translates to "the big carp," but it also means "the big top." Links are in Spanish…
- Melvin Mora will fly to the states this weekend to begin negotiations with the Giants and Reds, the 40-year-old utilityman told Jonathan Costa Hernández at Líder en Deportes. Mora said his agent received offers from both teams last week, but he didn't yet know the terms. "I haven't had much time for that, due to the kids," Mora said, in reference to his 11-year-old quintuplets.
- After managing just five innings over the last five years, Kelvim Escobar says he is mounting what will be his final attempt at a comeback. "In two months I'll know where I'm at and the progress of my shoulder," the 36-year-old told Meridiano Television in Venezuela. He said his agent has been contacted by several teams, but they will wait until his shoulder is consistently healthy before attempting to arrange a tryout. In 2009, the Mets signed Escobar to an incentive-laden one year deal, but continued shoulder problems kept him from ever taking the mound.
- Francisco Cervelli has heard that two teams are interested in obtaining him from the Yankees, but the team doesn't want to trade him, the catcher told Wilmer Reina at La Verdad. The Yankees have reportedly come close to trading Cervelli several times over the last two seasons, but for the moment he is laboring at Triple A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre and says his singular focus is on improving his offensive output enough for another callup. "I don't know anything about the Major Leagues, not even from the news," he said. "Now I only worry about working at my job and developing as a player."
Links are in Spanish…
- Melvin Mora has received offers from the Athletics, Rangers, and Marlins, but he's told all three teams they'll have to wait on his decision, the 40-year-old told Nelson Suárez at the Caracas paper Correo del Orinoco. Right now, Mora is dedicating himself to overseeing the construction of a weather shelter for Caracas' thousands of motorcycle messengers. "They've offered me minor league contracts with the possibility of returning to the majors, which I'd be able to do, because I feel like I'm in shape," Mora said. "I've still got two years left in baseball, but for the moment this project is my priority."
- At the other end of the spectrum, Magglio Ordonez told Marcus Grunfeld at Beisbol Venezolano that he's still waiting for offers. "There's still nothing," he explained. "The games have barely begun, and the teams are still studying their needs. It's possible that I'll receive an invitation to some camp." Ordonez insists he won't discount any possibility, though he would prefer a starting role.
- The Blue Jays signed Dominican outfielder Andres DeAza, reports MLB.com's Gregor Chisholm. The 17-year-old was passed over in last year's July 2nd class.
- The Pirates signed three players from the Mexican League's Leones de Yucatán, according to the Mexican team's site. Infielder Julio Perez, 20, left-handed pitcher Omar Basulto, 19, and lefty Eduardo Vera, 17, will all report to the Pirate's Dominican complex before receiving minor league assignments stateside.
January 11th: Mora has not retired and he intends to play in 2012, agent Eric Goldschmidt told Ken Rosenthal and Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports.
December 29th: Utilityman Melvin Mora has announced his retirement, reports Rafael Rojas Cremonesi of Meridiano Deportes (via Twitter). The 39-year-old Mora was released by the Diamondbacks in June and had hoped to play for the Orioles or another east coast team in 2012, but instead has hung up the cleats after 13 Major League seasons.
Mora signed an amateur contract with the Astros in 1991 and finally reached the Majors in 1999 as a New York Met. He made an immediate impression in his rookie year, posting a 1.143 OPS in 16 plate appearances in the 1999 NLCS as the Mets lost in six games to the Braves.
After being dealt to the Orioles in July 2000 as part of a four-player package for Mike Bordick, Mora became a Baltimore fixture for much of the decade. Mora was a two-time All-Star for the O's, hitting .294/.366/.469 between 2003-08 (including a league-best .419 OBP in 2004) and settling in as the Orioles' third baseman in 2004 after playing all over the diamond in his first four seasons with the team. The O's declined his contract option after the 2009 campaign and Mora went on to play a season each with the Rockies and D'backs.
Mora retires with 1503 hits, 171 homers, and a .277/.350/.431 slash line in 1556 Major League games. According to Baseball Reference, Mora made just under $40.5MM during his career.
Some news from the AL East….
- Team sources tell Gordon Edes of ESPN Boston that Ben Cherington is "extremely high" on Dale Sveum. The former Red Sox third base coach is one of five candidates that appear to be the finalists to be Boston's new manager. Edes guesses that Cherington may have already settled on his choice and "is just going through the process" for the sake of due diligence.
- We heard yesterday from SI's Jon Heyman that Jorge Posada could sign with the Orioles or Marlins if he decides to keep playing, but Steve Melewski of MASNsports.com doesn't see Posada in Baltimore "under any circumstances" next year. I agree with Melewski; it's hard to imagine Posada wanting to spend his probable last season as a bench player for a non-contender.
- Bob Klapisch of the Record lays out the case for Posada to retire.
- Blue Jays GM Alex Anthopoulos enters this offseason with much more "clarity" about the state of his team after spending two years remaking the roster, writes Rogers Sportsnet's Shi Davidi.
- Melvin Mora tells Dan Connolly of the Baltimore Sun that he wants to return to the Orioles. If not Baltimore, Mora wants to play on the East Coast to be near his wife and six children.
Some links from the so-called junior circuit…
- Royals GM Dayton Moore told MLB.com's Dick Kaegel that any move the team makes before the trade deadline would be something "we felt would help us long term." Kaegel notes that Jeff Francoeur, Melky Cabrera, Jeff Francis, and Bruce Chen are all candidates to move.
- "I can't sit here and say we'll definitely make a blockbuster trade,'' said Red Sox GM Theo Epstein to Gordon Edes of ESPN Boston. "For one thing, there's not a huge market for sellers right now. But it's a long way from July 31. Market dynamics change, our own situation can change.'' It's been reported that Boston is unable to take on payroll at the deadline.
- MLB.com's Jordan Bastian spoke to Indians GM Chris Antonetti, who said that "dialogue with other teams has certainly picked up over the last few weeks." Bastian says the team is likely to make smaller, incremental upgrades, but they are not opposed to dealing prospects.
- Indians manager Manny Acta told Enrique Rojas of ESPNDeportes that Melvin Mora and Mike Cameron are “interesting” possibilities (Spanish link on Twitter). Mora was released yesterday and Cameron was designated for assignment today.
- Geoff Baker of The Seattle Times looked back at what the Mariners did at the deadline over the last few seasons, which includes attempts to rebuild and "go for it."
- With a 3.14 ERA through 117 2/3 innings, Rangers ace C.J. Wilson has put himself in a great position heading into free agency, writes T.R. Sullivan of MLB.com.
Mora, 39, hit just .230/.246/.278 in 134 plate appearances this year while seeing time at third base almost exclusively. With Ryan Roberts having a big year, Mora was the odd man out and had to settle for limited action off the bench. Arizona signed him to a one-year deal worth $2MM in the offseason, and they'll still be on the hook for that salary the rest of the season.
Mora's career found new life in the National League with the Rockies this year. He hit .285/.358/.421 in 354 plate appearances while spending time at first base, second base, third base, and left field. Mora is represented by Eric Goldschmidt.
The Rockies have drawn the line at a three-year deal for free agent lefty Jorge de la Rosa, reports Troy E. Renck of the Denver Post. Competition for De La Rosa appears heavy; Renck adds the Orioles to a list of suitors that already included the Pirates, Nationals, Rangers, Yankees, and Brewers. Since three of those clubs are eyeing higher profile lefty Cliff Lee, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports feels that De La Rosa may wait until he signs, though Renck does not agree.
With Jake Westbrook and Hiroki Kuroda off the board, Renck believes that Carl Pavano is now a stronger possibility for Colorado. Renck also names Javier Vazquez, and I imagine they might take a look at Jon Garland.
Renck also notes that Melvin Mora is looking to sign a contract soon. The Rockies aren't ready to commit, so he may sign elsewhere.
It's already been a busy day for the Rockies what with their declined options on Jeff Francis, Octavio Dotel and (possibly) Miguel Olivo, but the Denver Post's Troy Renck has even more news from the Mile High City. All of Renck's links are from Twitter…
- John Buck is not a candidate to play for Colorado next season, but Renck "knows for a fact" the Rockies like the Angels' Mike Napoli.
- The Rockies are interested in Jose Lopez, among several other right-handed hitters. Lopez had his 2011 option declined today by Seattle and could be non-tendered next month.
- Lopez could be a right-handed option at first base to platoon with Todd Helton, which would make Jason Giambi "unlikely to return." Then again, Renck notes Giambi "really didn't fit last year" in terms of a platoon situation and he was very popular in the clubhouse.
- Melvin Mora wants to come back next season, but there might not be enough playing time available to satisfy him.
- Renck says there's about a "60%" chance that Francis returns to Colorado. He notes that Pittsburgh could be interested in Francis if former Rockies manager Clint Hurdle is hired to manage the Bucs and if Zach Duke is non-tendered.
- It's "uncertain" if Joe Beimel will be pitching for the Rockies next year.