- Manny Ramirez told ESPN's Pedro Gomez that he can be a role model if an MLB team gives him a chance. "I want to show people that Manny can change, that he can do the right thing," Ramirez said.
- Colby Lewis told Jeff Wilson of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram that he and the Rangers have had some talks about an extension (Twitter link). Lewis is set to hit free agency after the 2012 season, when he'll earn $3.25MM.
- Johnny Damon expressed some frustration with the Rays, according to Marc Topkin of the St. Petersburg Times. "It's an unhappy day,'' Damon said after hearing that Luke Scott had agreed to terms with Tampa Bay. "Didn't realize the DH and 1B brought the offense down [in 2011]. Thought we would've had an offer.''
- Renyel Pinto signed with the Softbank Hawks for $910K plus incentives, according to this Sponichi report relayed by Patrick Newman of NPB Tracker.
- More from Newman, who passes along another Sponichi report that has the Yomiuri Giants working on a deal with outfielder John Bowker. The Phillies granted Bowker his release earlier in the week.
On this date in 1998, the Tigers traded Luis Gonzalez to the Diamondbacks for Karim Garcia. Gonzalez would hit 224 home runs in eight seasons with Arizona, including 57 homers during the team's 2001 Championship season. Here are tonight’s links…
- Jim Bowden ranks the top ten contracts in baseball (from a team perspective) at ESPN.com and Rays players (Matt Moore, David Price and Evan Longoria) occupy three of the top four spots.
- The Brewers started negotiations with Norichika Aoki in the $1-1.5MM range, according to a Sanspo report relayed by Patrick Newman of NPB Tracker. Milwaukee won the bidding for the Japanese outfielder with a bid of $2.5MM earlier this month.
- The Chiba Lotte Marines announced that they signed former big league first baseman Josh Whitesell, according to a Sponichi report passed along by Newman.
- Newman also relays a Sponichi report indicating that Softbank is working to acquire former big league lefty Renyel Pinto. The Orioles had some interest in Pinto this offseason.
- Kevin Goldstein of Baseball Prospectus lists ten prospects who will look to turn their careers around in 2012 after disappointing 2011 campaigns. Wilmer Flores of the Mets, Aaron Hicks of the Twins and Jose Iglesias of the Red Sox appear on the list.
- Dave Cameron of FanGraphs attempts to determine which active players are future Hall of Famers and considers Major Leaguers such as Albert Pujols, Scott Rolen, Carlos Beltran and Joey Votto along the way.
The Orioles have expressed interest in left-hander Renyel Pinto, according to Roch Kubatko of MASNsports.com. Orioles director of international operations David Stockstill scouted the 29-year-old in his native Venezuela last week. Stockstill met with Pinto, a five-year veteran of the Major Leagues, and a deal remains possible.
Pinto has a 1.42 ERA with a 42K/16BB ratio in 43 2/3 innings as a starter in the Venezuelan Winter League this year, for what it’s worth. He last pitched in the Major Leagues for the 2010 Marlins. In parts of five seasons with the Marlins, Pinto posted a 3.62 ERA with 8.6 K/9, 5.9 BB/9 and a 42.4% ground ball rate in 231 innings (244 relief appearances).
The Orioles don’t currently have interest in free agents Jason Varitek or Jorge Posada as possible backup catchers, since they prefer someone who could catch every day if necessary. Matt Wieters is the lone catcher on the Orioles’ 40-man roster at the moment.
Some Bombers-related items as the Yankees take on the Orioles at home..
- Earlier today, the Yankees disclosed that Pedro Feliciano may require significant surgery and could miss the entire 2011 season. GM Brian Cashman says that left-hander Damaso Marte is likely done for the season as well after undergoing shoulder surgery in October. When asked about a potential replacement for Feliciano, Cashman acknowledged that he would look for one, though he doesn't expect to find one easily.
- With Feliciano and Marte likely on the shelf for '11, David Villavicencio of FoxSportsFlorida.com (via Twitter) wonders if the Yanks might give former Marlins left-hander Renyel Pinto a call. Pinto had a brief stint with the Cardinals last season that ended after he posted a 4.78 ERA with 10.6 K/9 and 7.5 BB/9 in Triple-A.
- Speaking of the Yankees bullpen, Cashman says that the overuse of relievers under the watch of Joe Torre was not his fault, writes Ian Begley of ESPNNewYork.com. In fact, the GM says that he told relievers to be truthful with Torre and his staff when they were asked about their availability to pitch.
The minor league transactions continue, even as the minor league season draws to a close. Matt Eddy of Baseball America has all the minor league news for August 19th-25th. Here are some highlights:
- The Yankees signed Tzu-Wei Lin, a 16-year-old shortstop from Taiwan, for a six-figure bonus. However, Lin may be looking to void the contract and take more money from the Twins or A’s. Lin, who stands 5’7”, has good speed and a good arm with an above-average bat.
- The Cardinals released lefty reliever Renyel Pinto after he posted a 4.78 ERA with 10.6 K/9 and 7.5 BB/9 at Triple A. Memphis was not kind to Pinto or to Nate Robertson, another lefty who signed with the Cards after the Marlins released him.
Joe Capozzi of the Palm Beach Post tweets that Renyel Pinto, who was released by the Marlins on Wednesday this week, will sign with the Cardinals. The deal is pending a physical. Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch confirms the deal and says Pinto will report to Triple-A Memphis, assuming he passes his physical.
Pinto was designated for assignment back on June 16 prior to his release, in spite of pitching relatively well this season. While he's had his typical control issues (nine walks in 15.2 IP), he's also notched 16 Ks on the year. Pinto has two years of arbitration remaining, so St. Louis pitching coach Dave Duncan could have plenty of time to work with the southpaw and his career 5.9 BB/9.
Left-handed opponents have been a problem for Pinto throughout his career, despite being a lefty himself. He's allowed a .253 opponent batting average to lefties versus just a .209 average to right-handers, though he does strike out more left-handed hitters (11.7 career K/9) than right-handed (7.0 career K/9).
The Marlins released lefty Renyel Pinto, according to Clark Spencer of the Miami Herald (via Twitter). It's been a busy day for the Marlins, who fired manager Fredi Gonzalez and have already started contacting potential replacements. Pinto was designated for assignment a week ago, so his release is less of a surprise than his former manager's firing.
Pinto, 28 next month, had a 2.70 ERA in 16.2 innings for Florida this year, striking out 16 and walking nine. He is under team control for both the 2011 and 2012 seasons, so he figures to draw some interest as a free agent.
Pinto, 27 next month, had a 2.80 ERA in 15.2 innings for Florida this year, striking out 16 to eight walks. He has actually fared better against righthanded batters in his career than lefties. Pinto is owed approximately $640K for the remainder of the season, and he will be under team control for both the 2011 and 2012 seasons.
More 2010 salary agreements are expected in advance of Tuesday's noon deadline for exchanging arbitration figures.
- Chad Durbin has avoided salary arbitration, agreeing to a $2.125MM contract with the Phillies, tweets Todd Zolecki of MLB.com. This marks an increase over the $1.635MM he received by avoiding arbitration last year.
- The Rockies signed Ryan Spilborghs to a two-year deal worth $3.25MM, reports Troy Renck of The Denver Post. The 30-year-old, who was arb-eligible for the first time, could earn an additional $1.15MM in incentives over the course of the deal.
- Arizona agreed to terms with right-handed pitchers Chad Qualls and Aaron Heilman, reports Steve Gilbert of MLB.com (via Twitter). Jon Heyman of Sports Illustrated tweets that Heilman gets $2.15MM whereas Qualls will make $4.185MM in 2010. This was the third arbitration-eligible year for both players.
- The Bombers avoided arbitration with their last two eligible players, Chad Gaudin and Boone Logan, according to Chad Jennings of the LoHud Yankees Blog. This was Gaudin's third arbitration-eligible year and Logan's very first. Marc Carig of the Newark Star Ledger reports that Gaudin will make $2.95MM with incentives while Logan will make $590K.
- The Rangers agreed to terms with pitcher C.J. Wilson on a one-year deal worth $3.1MM, reports T.R. Sullivan of MLB.com. The deal represents a $1.25MM raise in base pay for the 29-year-old, who avoided his first potential arbitration hearing this time a year ago.
- The Reds agreed to terms with Jared Burton, their last arbitration-eligible player, reports John Fay of The Cincinnati Enquirer. This was Burton's first flirtation with the arbitration process.
- The Marlins avoided arbitration with Anibal Sanchez and Renyel Pinto by signing each to one-year deals, according to the Marlins' official twitter page. This is the first go-round in arbitration for both players. Sanchez will earn $1.25MM with up to $100K in bonuses, reports Jon Paul Morosi (via Twitter). Pinto will make $1.075 according to the Associated Press.
- Tony Pena and the White Sox have avoided arbitration, agreeing to terms on a one-year deal, tweets White Sox VP Scott Reifert. Pena will earn $1.2MM, according to Chris De Luca of the Chicago Sun-Times (via Twitter). This was the 28-year-old's first time being arbitration-eligible.
- Marlins second baseman Dan Uggla settled at $7.8MM, writes MLB.com's Joe Frisaro. It's a $2.45MM raise for the slugger, who was arb-eligible for the second time. He remains a trade candidate. Uggla told Frisaro he was happy to avoid a hearing, even after winning last year.
- The Brewers signed outfielder Jody Gerut for 2010, reports Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel. MLB.com's Adam McCalvy pegs the value at $2MM, a $225K raise. This is Gerut's final arbitration year.
- Blue Jays pitcher Shaun Marcum, who missed '09 due to Tommy John surgery, signed for $850K tweets Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports. 2010 is Marcum's first arbitration year.
The Marlins spent big yesterday. Here are the details on their plans for the rest of the offseason:
- Josh Johnson tells MLB.com that he always wanted to stay with the Marlins long-term. Yesterday the right-hander agreed to an extension that buys two of his free agent years out.
- MLB.com's Joe Frisaro tweets that the Marlins didn't consider a long-term deal for another one of their young right-handers, Ricky Nolasco.
- The Marlins may trade Renyel Pinto before the season begins, according to Joe Capozzi of the Palm Beach Post.
- Capozzi hears that the Marlins are talking regularly with Dan Uggla in hopes of agreeing on the infielder's 2010 salary without going to arbitration.