Results tagged ‘ Cliff Lee ’
As Cliff Lee prepares to make his first start with the Rangers tonight, the rest of baseball is calculating their next move in a market without the hurler. But there’s still plenty of strong players left around the league, so it’ll be interesting to see where the chips fall in the next few weeks before the big non-waiver Trade Deadline.
Now that Cliff Lee is off the market, could Roy Oswalt be the next big-name pitcher to be dealt ahead of the July 31 deadline? Oswalt was asked Friday if he thought he expects to hear about more trade possibilities now that Lee has been dealt.
“This is my first time [going through this],” he said. “I don’t know.”
Rangers president Nolan Ryan told MLB.com last month he was interested in acquiring Oswalt, who earlier this year requested the Astros trade him to a contender.
“That’s a good pick-up for them,” Oswalt said. “Lee’s a good pitcher, and adding a quality starting pitcher should make them better.”
Oswalt is 6-10 with a 3.08 ERA in 18 starts this year and is coming off a one-hit shutout thrown against the Pirates on Thursday at Minute Maid Park. Scouts from the Phillies, Mets, Twins, Rays and Dodgers were among those on hand to watch Oswalt pitch Thursday, but nothing appears imminent.
“They told me they’d come to me first and tell me what they have on the table, and they haven’t told me anything,” Oswalt said Friday.
Oswalt still has the remainder of his $15 million salary this year and is set to be paid $16 million next year, making him a much more difficult commodity to trade than Lee.
— Brian McTaggart
The Reds made a hard run the last couple of days at getting Cliff Lee from the Mariners. Reds GM Walt Jocketty believed his club was one of three teams that had a chance. From reports, I’d imagine the Yankees were definitely the other team that didn’t get him. Obviously, Lee was dealt from Seattle to Texas today in a six-player trade that moved premier prospect Justin Smoak to the Mariners.
“We felt we made a pretty substantial offer,” Jocketty said. “Obviously, they felt the Texas deal was better.”
Asked if he would pursue another starting pitcher, Jocketty said this:
“If you’re talking about significantly upgrading, this guy was a significant upgrade. I’m not sure there’s another guy like that out there that we can get right now. We’ll keep looking.”
Jocketty did not disclose the players Seattle asked for or his own proposals.
“It’s just one of those deals you would have liked to have done because we wanted to show our club we’re doing everything we can possible,” he said. “They’re doing their job on the field and we’re trying to do our job in the front office to keep us where we’re at.”
— Mark Sheldon
While most of the New York population felt the disappointment of the Knicks and Nets not acquiring LeBron James, the Yankees made themselves a frontrunner to acquire another marquee player: Cliff Lee. The New York Post reported late Thursday night that the Yankees were “on the brink” of acquiring Lee from the Mariners in exchange for a package that would include top catching prospect Jesus Monetero.
It appears that discussions between the Reds and Mariners about pitcher Cliff Lee have yet to hit the serious stages.A baseball source told MLB.com Thursday that no formal proposals have been exchanged between the two teams.
“It’s just been the parameters and the types of players that they are looking for or not looking for,” the source said. “It’s been quiet lately.”
The first-place Reds are one of several teams in the hunt for the left-handed Lee, an ace-quality starting pitcher, who is earning $8 million this season with Seattle. He would essentially be a “rent-a-player” for Cincinnati since he can become a free agent at season’s end.
It’s been widely reported that the Mariners are seeking multiple big league ready prospects, which is an area where the Reds have some chips they could deal. Triple-A Louisville first baseman Yonder Alonso is blocked in the Majors by Joey Votto and Alonso’s teammate, third baseman Juan Francisco, is blocked by Scott Rolen.
The Reds also have young left-handed pitchers like Travis Wood and Matt Maloney, who have both recently been called up.
— Mark Sheldon
With the All-Star break just around the corner, the trade rumors are really beginning to pick up. While Mariners’ ace Cliff Lee is definitely the talk of the MLB town, there are other names gaining traction as potential trade bait as we turn into the final weekend of the first half.
Here’s a look at talks around the league on Thursday:
— MLB analyst Peter Gammons reported on Twitter a rumor of potential Brewers-Braves trade that would send All-Star outfielder Corey Hart to Atlanta in exchange for 2009 1st-round Draft pick pitcher Mike Minor. Minor, who has put up big K numbers so far, is currently at Triple-A Gwinnett after a fast ascent through the system.
— The Mets have been named in a variety of trade possibilities, including the Cliff Lee sweepstakes. But most recently, Ken Davidoff of Newsday suggested on Twitter that the Cubs and Mets could both be interested in a potential deal for pitcher Ted Lilly.
— The Phillies currently sit 5 games behind the Braves in the NL East and there’s been no word on whether they’ll be buyers or sellers come the Trade Deadline. But, there has been chatter about moving Jayson Werth, talks which ESPN’s Buster Olney confirmed on Twitter are still gaining steam. In return, they are reportedly looking for a good starting pitcher who could fill one of the spots after Roy Halladay.
The Mets have reason to believe they can defy the odds and land Cliff Lee at the deadline, despite widespread speculation to the contrary. Their reason for optimism is simple. They’ve done it before.
Heading into the 2008 season, the Mets were considered a distant third option for the Twins, who were trying to deal Johan Santana at the time. But Minnesota rebuked early offers from the Yankees and Red Sox, who both backed out of the sweepstakes by January. At the end of the month, the Mets landed Santana for a package of underwhelming prospects.
Banking on a similar turn of events this summer, of course, would be foolhardy. But the Mets, according to the New York Post, believe that the Mariners are leaning more toward scouting than number crunching in their dealings with Lee, which the Mets believe can help them. Though the Mets don’t have a ton of statistical marvels in their farm system, they do have some live arms and projectable bodies — i.e., the types of things that scouts love.
The Twins have been linked to Mariners left-hander Cliff Lee quite often in early trade speculation. Various reports have even labeled the Twins as a front-runner for the ace pitcher.
Twins general manager Bill Smith and other team officials have said they
will not comment on whether the team is in discussions for
Lee. Still indications are that the two clubs have been talking about a
possible swap for Lee, although there
appears to be nothing imminent in terms of a deal.
One report on Monday night said that the Twins had offered two of their top prospects — outfielder Aaron Hicks and catcher Wilson Ramos — for Lee. That seems like much more than the Twins would be willing to offer for a short-term rental. Lee, who is making $8 million this season, will be a free agent at the end of this year and he is expected to draw a big payday as one of the marquee players available.
Ramos certainly appears to be the prospect that the Mariners could be most interested in, since they don’t have a Major League catcher. And with Joe Mauer having signed an eight-year, $184 million contract extension that begins next season, the Twins could move Ramos if they feel it’s for the right piece.
— Kelly Thesier
The Twins, according to the Twitter account of AOL FanHouse’s Jeff Fletcher, have offered Minor League outfielder Aaron Hicks and Minor League catcher Wilson Ramos in exchange for Cliff Lee. Hicks and Ramos were ranked by Baseball America as the No. 1 and No. 2 prospects in the Twins’ system, respectively, heading into the season. No deal is imminent, however, according to FOXSports.com and the Minneapolis Star Tribune. But the revealing of names means things may be progressing.