Results tagged ‘ blue jays ’

Red Sox in on Beimel, kicked tires on Bautista

The Red Sox and about four other teams, including the O’s, are going after southpaw reliever Joe Beimel, according to the Baltimore Sun. No teams besides the O’s and Red Sox were named, but one other club is identified as being an American League team.
Turning 34 in April, Beimel went 1-2 with a 3.40 ERA for the Rockies in 45 innings and 71 appearances last season, striking out 21 and walking 15. 
Beimel’s been better been against left-handed hitters (.221 last season vs. .329 against righties) and he’s been durable in a 10-year career, making no fewer than 62 appearances in each of the last six seasons. For Baltimore, Beimel would be a complement to Michael Gonzalez, while for Boston, he’d provide depth behind Hideki Okajima.
Mulitple outlets on Tuesday reported that the Red Sox pursued Jays’ slugger Jose Bautista before landing Carl Crawford, making “multiple offers” for him — a sign of how serious Boston was about upgrading its offense. The lineup took a hit when Adrian Beltre and Victor Martinez departed via free agency, but was quickly revamped when Adrian Gonzalez (via trade) and Crawford (via free agency) arrived in the same week.
Other unnamed teams reportedly pursued Bautista, who led the Majors with 54 homers, as well.
“It’s all just rumors to me at this stage…who knows if any of it is true?” Bautista told The Boston Globe by text. “There’s nothing for me to comment on yet.”
The Jays reportedly were never serious about trading Bautista, who is looking for more than $10.5 million in arbitration. Toronto submitted a $7.6 million figure. Bautista is a free agent after this season and, according to FOX Sports, there aren’t current talks of a long-term extension.
– Evan Drellich

Roundup: Rangers, Jays complete swap

For the second time in a week on Tuesday, the Blue Jays pulled the trigger on a trade involving catcher/infielder Mike Napoli. Napoli, acquired from the Angels along with Juan Rivera for Vernon Wells last Friday, is heading back west but this time to the Rangers.
In exchange for Napoli, the Rangers sent right-handed reliever Frank Francisco to Toronto. Francisco, 31, saved 25 games for the Rangers in 2009 and brings a solid resume to the back end of the Blue Jays’ bullpen.
Napoli, on the other hand, could serve in a variety of roles. He slots in as another possible backup catching option as well as provide insurance in case first baseman Mitch Moreland struggles and can take over some designated hitter at-bats. The 29-year-old Napoli also brings a healthy dose of power to the Rangers, having hit at least 20 home runs in each of the last three seasons. 
Tuesday’s swap dominated most of the Hot Stove action, but here’s a look at other news and notes from around the league:
 
- The Astros avoided a salary arbitration hearing with left-hander Wandy Rodriquez, signing the left-haned starter to a three-year, $34 million extension. The deal includes a one-year option that would hike the deal to $44.5 million.
- The Cubs added a familiar arm, agreeing to terms with Todd Wellemeyer on a one-year, non-guaranteed Minor League deal for $800,000, ESPNChicago.com reported. Working mostly as a starter, Wellemeyer went 3-5 with a 5.68 ERA last season for the Giants.
- Oakland avoided arbitration with left-hander Craig Breslow on Tuesday, agreeing to a one-year, $1.4 million deal, according to MLB.com’s Jane Lee. Breslow, the A’s last remaining arbitration-eligible player, earned a significant raise over his 2010 salary of $425,000. Breslow is also eligible for $25,000 in incentives based on the number of games he finishes, Lee reported.
 
 
- The Twins avoided arbitration with Kevin Slowey, agreeing to a one-year, $2.7 million deal, MLB.com’s Kelly Thesier reported. Slowey had filed at $3.1 million and the Twins had filed at $2.3 million, which puts the agreed-upon deal right at the midpoint of the two submissions.
Slowey posted a 4.45 ERA with 6.7 K/9 and 1.7 BB/9 in 155 2/3 innings last year. The 26-year-old has never posted a walk rate above 1.7 per nine or a strikeout rate above 6.7 per nine in four big league seasons.
 
 
- After an offseason of additions, the Brewers are still seeking another veteran bench presence, Fox Sports.com reported Tuesday. Mark Kotsay is one possibility for the role, according to the report. The 35-year-old hit .239 for the White Sox last season but owns a .312 career average as a pinch hitter.
- The Os agreed to a Minor League deal with reliever Clay Rapada on Tuesday, MLB.com’s Brittany Ghiroli reported. The deal, which would include an invite to Spring Training, gives the O’s a candidate for the situational lefty role in the pen.  The 29-year-old appeared in just 13 games last season for the Rangers, but was exceptionally tough on left-handed hitters (1-for-21).
– Bailey Stephens

Report: Napoli, Rivera for Wells

According to FOXSports, the Angels have agreed to deal catcher Mike Napoli and outfielder Juan Rivera to the Toronto Blue Jays for outfielder Vernon Wells, who waived his no-trade clause in the report by Ken Rosenthal and Jon Paul Morosi.

Wells has $86 million coming in the remaining four years on his contract and can opt out after drawing $23 million in 2011. He could move into center field or play left with Peter Bourjos in center field and Torii Hunter in right. Wells had 33 homers and 88 RBIs in 2011 and owns three Gold Gloves. He is 32 and has spent his entire career in Toronto, emerging as a regular in 2002.
 
The Blue Jays could combine Napoli with former Angels teammate Jose Molina behind the plate, along with J.P. Arenciba and also give the slugger playing time at first base, where he performed capably last season in Kendry Morales’ absence. Napoli is arbitration-eligible and has asked for $6.1 million while the Angels proposed an offer of $5.3 million. He led the club with 26 home runs last year.

Rivera is owed $5.25 million on the final year of his contract. Combined, Napoli and Rivera would account for roughly half of Wells’ 2011 salary. Adding Wells would lift the Angels’ payroll into the $150 million range, but they are receiving an unspecified amount of cash in the trade.

The swap would leave the Angels with Jeff Mathis, Bobby Wilson and Hank Conger as their catchers. – Lyle Spencer

Angels linked to Manny, Vlad

The Angels, searching for offense, appear to be interested in both Manny Ramirez and Vladimir Guerrero as free agents, according to a report by Enrique Rojas of ESPNDeportes. Citing sources, Rojas reports that both players are closing in on deals. One source suggests Ramirez is likely to sign by the beginning of next week.

The Angels, Twins, Rangers, Rays and Blue Jays have shown some interest in Ramirez, but Minnesota is out after signing Jim Thome. The Angels, Rangers and Rays appear to be pursuing him most aggressively. Rojas hears that Ramirez is determined to redeem himself after a disappointing season, and money is not his primary concern.

Guerrero, according to a source, believes the Orioles have the inside track on signing him, but the Angels are another possibility. – Lyle Spencer

 

Roundup: Soriano to Yanks as market starts to thin

Spring Training sits firmly on the horizon with just about a month to go until that special day when pitchers and catchers report. It could be a busy month, though, for several teams who are still looking to add a key piece or two to their roster for 2011.
One of those teams is the Yankees, who pulled by far the biggest move of Thursday, agreeing to terms with reliever Rafael Soriano on a three-year deal, pending a possible Tuesday physical, that would have him set up closer Mariano Rivera — for now — and earn about $35 million. He has opt-out options after each of the first two years of the contract.
 
While pitching is always a valued commodity, some clubs are also looking for a role player; maybe a fourth outfielder or a back-up infielder that will provide a little extra insurance. 
 
Regardless of what they are shopping for, the Hot Stove market is definitely growing thinner at this stage in the game. However, there are still plenty of players out there who could prove to be a gem for one team. 
Here’s a look at the latest updates on the market from around the league: 
- The Padres are on the verge of adding some additional depth to their bullpen, in the form of right-hander Chad Qualls, according to MLB.com’s Corey Brock. Brock reported on Twitter on Thursday afternoon that the Padres are “very close” to a deal with Qualls. 
- Utility man Willie Bloomquist has agreed to a one-year deal, $1.05 million deal with the D-backs, SI.com’s Jon Heyman tweeted on Thursday. The deal also includes a mutual option for the 2012 season. 
- It’s not appearing that outfielder Willie Harris will return to the Nationals in 2011. Harris has two offers at this point, MLB.com’s Bill Ladson tweeted Thursday and neither of them are from the Nats. The two sides haven’t spoken in weeks, Ladson added. 
- Veteran Eric Chavez has worked out recently for the Blue Jays, ESPN.com reported Thursday. Chavez has been working out for teams in Arizona over the past few weeks. The Mariners and Dodgers have also been linked to Chavez at times this offseason.
– Bailey Stephens

Roundup: Market for veterans heating up

With Spring Training fast approaching, many elite free agents have found their home for 2011, but there are more than a few impact players still on the market. Two such players, Andruw Jones and Jim Thome, headline a group of veteran role players aiming to prove they can still be difference-makers. 
Jones has reportedly drawn interest from the Yankees in recent weeks. At this point, the Bombers see Jones as their best option, SI.com’s Jon Heyman tweeted on Monday, but the two sides are still apart on the money. Jones would seemingly be a strong fit for New York, serving as a fourth outfielder with significant pop off the bench. Jones, 33, would also fit the bill of a right-handed hitting outfielder, which the Yanks have been seeking this offseason.
Thome, another aging yet still productive slugger, is drawing interest from the Rangers, according to a tweet from ESPN’s Buster Olney. Olney reported that the team is “actively trying to lure” the slugger to Texas. After the Rangers signed Adrian Beltre, it began to look unlikely that they’d try to keep Vladimir Guerrero around as the designated hitter. After hitting 25 homers last season, it seems likely that Thome could help fill the power void left by Guerrero. 
Here’s a look at other news and notes from around the league on Monday: 
Jose Bautista could be facing a position switch this season, moving from the outfield to third base, Fox Sports reported on Monday, citing an unnamed team official. Unless the Jays add another starting infielder, Bautista figures to be moving to third to start the season. Bautista, who lead the Majors with 54 home runs in 2010, is scheduled to be a free agent after this season, so it’ll be a key year for the 30-year old, the report noted. 
– Catcher Max Ramirez was claimed off waivers for the second time in less than a week, this time by the Cubs from the Red Sox. Boston claimed Ramirez from the Rangers on Jan. 5. Ramirez, 26, gives the Cubs some additional depth behind the plate. Ramirez, who is out of Minor League options at this point, hit .217 in 28 games with Texas last season.
– The Padres completed a two-year deal with shortstop Jason Bartlett on Monday, which will pay the infielder $11 million over the life of the deal. There is also a vesting option for 2013, which could bring the total of the deal to $15 million according to MLB.com’s Corey Brock. 
– The Red Sox made their one-year deal with left-hander Hideki Okajima official on Monday. After non-tendering him earlier this offseason, the Sox have re-signed Okajima for $1.75 million. Okajima, 35, could increase that figure to the neighborhood of $2.3 million with incentives, according to ESPN.com’s Jerry Crasnick.
– The Astros and Phillies completed a minor trade, swapping two Minor League players on Monday. Houston sent second baseman Albert Cartwright to Philly in exchange for left-hander Sergio Escalona. Escalona was recently designed for assignment after the Phils re-signed J.C. Romero.
- Bailey Stephens

Roundup: Rays looking to deal?

The Hot Stove took a bit of a backseat on Wednesday, with the announcement that Roberto Alomar and Bert Blyleven will be inducted into the Hall of Fame this July dominating the baseball headlines.

With Adrian Beltre‘s signing with the Rangers now official, the rumor mill did ramp up on the trade market — namely, on Tampa Bay starter Matt Garza and a possible deal to the Cubs, reported on Tuesday night by the Chicago Sun-Times. That story was news to the Cubs, according to MLB.com’s Carrie Muskat, who also reported that the Rays are more likely to wait until the summer to move Garza.

Here’s the rundown of the rest of the news from Wednesday:

- Staying in the NL Central, the Cardinals have resumed extension talks with their own potential Hall of Famer, first baseman Albert Pujols. Pujols could hit the free-agent market following the 2011 season.

- The latest out of Southern California is that the Angels have interest in signing Vladimir Guerrero.

On MLB Network Radio on Sirius XM, Angels manager Mike Scioscia told co-hots Jim Duquette and Kevin Kennedy that the Angels are not closing the door on the possibility of Guerrero returning to his former home after one season in Texas.

After hitting .300 with 29 homers and 115 RBIs in 2009, the Angels’ American League Most Valuable Player in 2004, accepted a one-year contract with the Rangers and helped the AL West rivals reach the World Series.

Guerrero, whose career began with nine games in Montreal in 1996, is a .320 career hitter with a .383 on-base percentage and .563 slugging mark.

- The Mariners are working on a potential two-year deal with recently acquired shortstop Brendan Ryan, according to MLB.com’s Greg Johns. Ryan, who came over from St. Louis in a December trade, is eligible for arbitration for the first time in his career.

- The Red Sox claimed catcher Max Ramirez off waivers from the Rangers, tweeted MLB.com’s T.R. Sullivan. Ramirez, you may remember, was close to going to Boston last off-season in exchange for Mike Lowell. Ramirez hit .217 in 28 games for the Rangers in 2010.

- The Blue Jays announced that they claimed left-handed reliever Wil Ledezma on waivers from the Pirates. Ledezma was 0-3 with a 6.86 ERA for Pittsburgh in 2010.

- The Diamondbacks resigned lefty reliever Clay Zavada to a Minor League deal, as reported by Baseball America. Zavada pitched in five games for Triple-A Reno in 2010 before undergoing Tommy John surgery. Zavada posted a 3.35 ERA in 49 games for Arizona in 2009.

- The Rangers and Beltre made it official on Wednesday, with the club announcing the addition of the third baseman in an afternoon press conference. The signing of Beltre means that the Rangers are no longer interested in their former DH Vladimir Guerrero, according to a tweet from the Dallas Star-Telegram’s Anthony Andro.

- Likewise, the Brewers finalized their deal with Takashi Saito. As reported by MLB.com’s Adam McCalvy, the right-hander’s base salary will be under $2 million, but he can make more than $3 million in incentives.

- The Rockies have signed utilityman Hernan Iribarren to a Minor League contract. Iribarren, 26, last played in the Majors with Milwaukee in 2009, spending last season with Texas’ Triple-A affiliate.  The deal includes an invitation to Colorado’s Major League Spring Training camp.

-  The Padres signed versatile Kevin Frandsen and catcher Guillermo Quiroz Minor League contracts.  The deal will pay Frandsen $575,000 if he makes San Diego’s Major League roster, according to ESPN.

Frandsen, 28, has played several positions during his MLB career with the Giants and Angels, playing primarily third base last season for the Angels, who did not tender him a contract for 2011.

Quiroz, 29, has played parts of the last seven seasons in the Major Leagues with the Blue Jays, Mariners, Rangers and Orioles. He is a career .208 hitter in 255 at-bats.

–Tim Britton

Roundup: Hot Stove comes alive after Holidays

With a bevy of signings and a fresh batch of rumors, the Hot Stove came back to life on Monday following the holiday hiatus. In addition to the Rockies’ efforts to lock up outfielder Carlos Gonzalez for the long haul, Monday brought the completion of the Rangers’ deal with Brandon Webb and Arthur Rhodes in addition to several other smaller signings. 
It wasn’t all about pitching in Texas on Monday, however. After talks emerged over the weekend regarding a potential deal with Adrian Beltre, that possibility seems less likely now, according to MLB.com’s T.R. Sullivan. The Rangers have checked with Michael Young about the possibility of a position change, an idea that the third baseman didn’t seem overly keen about, according to Sullivan. Given that, club officials now aren’t overly optimistic they’ll get anything done at this point. 
It remains to be seen if this will swing momentum in the Beltre sweepstakes back to the Halos.
In addition to the Rangers’ dealings, here’s a rundown of Monday’s news from around the league:
- The Mets signed a pair of pitchers, left-hander Chris Capuano and right-hander Taylor Buchholz. Before 2010, Capuano hadn’t pitched in the Majors since 2007, and Buchholz hadn’t since 2008, both because of Tommy John surgery. The Mets released right-hander Ryota Igarashi to make room, despite owing him $1.75 million next season.
- The Yankees expect to hear something on veteran pitcher Andy Pettitte soon, ESPN New York.com reported on Monday. The team could know within a couple of days, according to the site. Also in the Bronx, the Yankees made their signing of reliever Pedro Feliciano official on Monday.
- The Nats are “progressing” in their talks with free agent first baseman Adam LaRoche, MLB.com’s Bill Ladson reported on Monday. The two sides are not far apart at this point, a baseball source confirmed to Ladson. 
- In addition to the Twins and Nationals, there are thought to be one or two other teams in on Carl Pavano, SI.com reported on Monday. Pavano is largely seen as the best free agent pitcher on the market at this point.
- Pittsburgh has agreed to re-sign left-hander Brian Burres, MLB.com’s Jenifer Langosch reported on Monday. Burres, who was non-tendered earlier this year, could be a candidate for the rotation this season.
- The Dodgers agreed to terms with veteran Tim Redding to a Minor League deal with a Spring Training invite on Monday. Redding, 32, will give Los Angeles another capable starter in the rotation, if needed. 
- The Red Sox picked up utility man Hector Luna on a Minor League agreement, Fox Sports’s Jon Paul Morosi tweeted on Monday. Luna, who will turn 31 in February, appeared in 27 games for the Marlins last season. 
- In their search for a versatile outfielder, the Reds have turned their attention to Fred Lewis, according to Fox Sports.com. Lewis, 30, proved productive for the Blue Jays last season and could fit into the Reds’ outfield needs. 
– Bailey Stephens

Roundup: A’s out on Beltre?

The market for free agent third baseman Adrian Beltre continued to evolve on Wednesday amidst reports that another team was out of the mix.
The Athletics ended talks with Beltre this week to turn their focus toward other players, Fox Sports.com reported. 
Oakland entered the bidding for Beltre early on this offseason, reportedly offering him an initial five-year, $64 million deal. Until this week, the club continued to negotiate with Beltre.
While the Angels remain the front runners to land Beltre, the Rangers are still interested but aren’t comfortable with his price tag, the report suggested. For Texas, adding Beltre would meaning moving Michael Young to designated hitter or to another club, two unlikely concepts.
The Halos reportedly made a five-year, $70 million offer to Beltre earlier this month, a figure that the Rangers aren’t believed to be willing to approach. Scott Boras, Beltre’s agent, is reportedly seeking a deal in the neighborhood of five-years, $85 million. Angels owner Arte Moreno told the Los Angeles Times earlier this month that the club had made a “significant offer” to Beltre and it wouldn’t be increasing.
Oakland entered the bidding for Beltre early on this offseason, reportedly offering him an initial five-year, $64 million deal. Until this week, the club continued to negotiate with Beltre, according to the report.
There are several other unmentioned clubs who could be interested in Beltre, the report suggested, including the Orioles and Blue Jays.
The 31-year-old is coming off a very strong campaign in Boston, hitting .321 with 28 homers and 49 doubles. After missing out on free agent Carl Crawford, Beltre would add some of the desired power to the Angels lineup. 
Here’s a look Wednesday’s news from around the league: 
- The Orioles’ bullpen wish-list continues to take shape as the club has “definite interest” in free agent reliever Grant Balfour, MASNsports.com reported on Wednesday. Signing Balfour would mean the Orioles would have to forfeit a Draft pick, as the right-hander is a Type-A free agent. 
- Additional details on Octavio Dotel’s deal with the Blue Jays emerged on Wedesday as Fox Sports.com reported that the deal includes a favorable $3.75 million option for 2012, leaving the door open for a possible return. The deal also allows for the Jays to recoup Draft picks if Dotel departs as a Type-B free agent after next season. 
- The Yanks have checked in with free agent Rafael Soriano, SI.com’s Jon Heyman reported on Wednesday. Soriano would obviously have to move to a role outside the 9th inning to find in a fit in the Bronx. 
– Bailey Stephens

Roundup: Phils, Crew lock up relievers

Relievers continue to be a valuable commodity on the Hot Stove market, as two more free agents found a home on Monday to highlight an otherwise quiet day. 

Left-hander J.C. Romero agreed to a one-year deal with the Phillies, while veteran right-hander Takashi Saito agreed to a one-year pact with the Brewers. 

Saito’s deal, expected to be announced next week, gives the Crew another established arm in the back end of the ‘pen and continues their offseason pitching staff overhaul. 

Saito, who will be 41 on Opening Day, carried a 2.83 ERA while serving as Atlanta’s primary set-up man to closer Billy Wager. The Japanese-born hurler did suffer shoulder injuries as the season wore on, but he proved mostly effective when healthy. 

Elsewhere in the National League, the Phillies elected to bring back Romero after declining his $4.5 million option earlier this offseason. After a potential deal with Romero’s would-be replacement, left-hander Dennys Reyes, fell through, the club looked back to a familiar face. 

After injuries limited Romero to just 21 games in 2009, Romero registered a 3.68 ERA last season while struggling at times with his control. 

Here’s a look at Monday’s other happenings around the league: 

- The Blue Jays continue to “move closer” to an agreement with Octavio Dotel, Fox Sports.com’s Ken Rosenthal tweeted on Monday. In agreement with earlier reports, Rosenthal concurred that the deal will be in the $3.5 million range.

- Brandon Webb, who agreed to a one-year deal with the Rangers on Sunday, will earn $3 million plus incentives, ESPN.com’s Buster Olney tweeted Monday. Jerry Crasnick, also of ESPN.com, added that with incentives, Webb could earn between $8-10 million when all is said and done.


– Bailey Stephens

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