Results tagged ‘ Giants ’

Giants might be eyeing Ludwick, or vice-versa

Monday, Dec. 5

DALLAS — Add Ryan Ludwick to the list of free-agent outfielders who might intrigue the Giants.

The Giants were believed to have scheduled a meeting Monday with Ludwick’s agent, Dan Horwits. Ludwick earned $6.775 million last season but might be more affordable than that this winter, even on the open market.

A right-handed batter, Ludwick thrived in 2008-09, when he hit .283 with 59 home runs and 210 RBIs for St. Louis.
When the Cardinals sent him to San Diego at the 2010 Trade Deadline, Ludwick remained productive, as he was batting
.281 with 11 homers and 43 RBIs in 77 games at the time.

Since that deal, however, Ludwick has hit .229 with 19 homers and 101 RBIs in 198 games for San Diego and
Pittsburgh. He batted .237 with 13 homers and 75 RBIs overall last season. The 33-year-old’s on-base percentage has
dwindled each year since 2008, from .375 to .329 to .325 to .310. His slugging percentage also has declined
annually, from .591 in 2008 to .447 to .418 to .363.

Ludwick has performed adequately at AT&T Park, where he owns a .265 batting average (22-for-83) in 23 games. His total of five home runs in 83 at-bats by the bay indicates that, unlike many hitters, the ballpark’s dimensions don’t intimidate him.

Other free-agent outfielders to whom the Giants have been linked include Coco Crisp and Josh Willingham. They also
were thought to be interested in David DeJesus before the A’s traded him to the Cubs, and in Grady Sizemore before he re-signed with Cleveland.

Chris Haft

Grady Sizemore: Sizing up the Market

Free-agent outfielder Grady Sizemore expects to be completely healthy by the start of Spring Training and is keeping his options open for 2012.

On Monday, the Indians announced they were declining Sizemore’s $9 million option for 2012, instead choosing to pay the $500,000 buyout. On Thursday, Sizemore’s agent, Joe Urbon, said the interest in his client’s services is best described as “steady” and he has heard from a number of clubs.

Urbon declined to name the clubs that have inquired or the parameters of a deal Sizemore is seeking. He added that there is not a timetable for a decision.

Sizemore has been mentioned in reports as a possible target for Washington, San Francisco and Milwaukee, among other teams.

“The minute they chose not to exercise the option we informed Grady that we will find the best opportunity to allow him to show his health and that he is the elite player that everyone was used to seeing from 2005 to 2008,” said Urbon, co-head of CAA Baseball. “It’s rare for a two-time Gold Glove winner to have the power and ability to produce like a corner outfielder. It’s rare and rarely exists.”

One option for Sizemore could be shifting from center field to left or right if it’s the right fit. He could also seek a one-year incentive-based deal that would make him a free agent at the end of the 2012 season. Sizemore might believe his value will increase for the ’13 season with improved health and full season under his belt.

One thing is certain: Sizemore will be ready and looking to rebound. He hit .224 with 10 homers, 21 doubles and 32 RBIs in 71 games for Cleveland this past season and has not played a full season since 2008.

He has had two knee surgeries — one on each knee — in the last year and a half, including microfracture surgery on his left knee last year. He also suffered a sports hernia and a right knee injury. He is recovering from an Oct. 3 arthroscopic procedure on his right knee, which had a bone bruise and was part of the reason he was off the field for most of the second half of the season.

“The microfracture is not an issue,” Urbon said. “He’s as structurally as sound as you can be, and nothing he has suffered is chronic. He missed parts of three years. I’m not going to dismiss health, nor should it be, but it will all be cleared up by due diligence.”

As of Monday, the Indians had not ruled out Sizemore’s return to Cleveland.

“We will still stay in touch with his representatives and Grady throughout the offseason and remain hopeful he will remain part of this organization,” Indians GM Chris Antonetti said. “I think both parties remain open-minded to continuing the relationship. It’s just not at the option value.”

- Jesse Sanchez

 

7/29 Hot Stove Roundup: Who’s next to go?

That hasn’t really been decided yet.

Since Carlos Beltran officially joined the Giants on Thursday, no big moves have been made — at least not as of late afternoon on Friday. So, with the non-waiver Trade Deadline now less than two days away, and lots of big names remaining, we’re almost bracing for an avalanche of deals to be carved out just in time.

Before then, here are Friday’s biggest rumors …

* Ubaldo Jimenez is still the big ace that’s apparently being dangled, but nobody seems to have stepped up. Jon Heyman of SI.com and MLB Network said the Red Sox are aggressively pursuing Jimenez, the Yankees are “lurking,” and the Indians, Reds and Blue Jays are also in the mix. Jayson Stark of ESPN.com then stated that the Yankees’ interest has waned, and the Indians are the ones emerging.

* The Astros remain in “intense” trade talks for Hunter Pence, according to MLB.com’s Brian McTaggart. Pence was removed from Thursday’s lineup because of a potential trade, McTaggart added, and said a direct two-team deal remains general manager Ed Wade‘s preference. The Phillies have made Pence their top target, but how much are they willing to give up?

* The Tigers are a contending team, and they need starting pitching. That’s no secret. The question is who they can get — or better yet, who can they get without giving up top prospect Jacob Turner? One way or another, MLB.com’s Jason Beck wrote, the Tigers’ search for a starter is nearing a resolution.

* The Reds may be 6 1/2 games out of first place after losing four straight, but GM Walt Jocketty said this much: “We are not selling.”

* If you need a third baseman, don’t look to the Cubs. Aramis Ramirez and his no-trade clause are not on the market.

* The Mariners traded Ryan Langerhans to the Diamondbacks for cash considerations, in order to clear room on the roster for former D-backs outfielder Wily Mo Pena.

* The Rangers are pushing hard to get closer Heath Bell, MLB.com’s T.R. Sullivan writes. Whether or not that materializes, the Padres have a lot of interesting pieces, and things should pick up between now and the Deadline.

* Jason Marquis, Jeremy Guthrie, Koji Uehara, Hiroki Kuroda, Erik Bedard (who pitches tonight), Doug Fister, Mike Adams, Wandy Rodriguez, Grand Balfour and Kevin Slowey are some of the arms that can be had before 4 p.m. ET on Sunday. B.J. Upton, Denard Span, Michael Bourn, Jamey Carroll, Carlos Quentin, Jason Kubel, Delmon Young and Josh Willingham are some of the position players to be had. But no movement yet.

So we wait.

Alden

Mets (probably) done dealing

After officially announcing the trade of Carlos Beltran to the Giants Thursday afternoon, Mets general manager Sandy Alderson said that, barring something unforeseen, he is done moving players prior to this weekend’s non-waiver deadline.

“By trading Carlos, we’ve made it a little tougher on our remaining players and the Mets club,” Alderson said. “There’s no question about that. I certainly acknowledge that. On the other hand, we have a pretty tough group and lots of highly motivated players, and I think that’s been evidenced throughout the season in the face of much other adversity, losing players to injury, slumps. The team as a whole has responded extraordinarily well in almost every situation, and I think that’s a tribute to Terry and the coaching staff but also most importantly the players.

“I’d be very reluctant to make it any tougher on them. I really have some confidence, real confidence, that this group is going to respond to this change, as they have to other situations earlier in the year. I really believe that this group still has the kind of persistence and tenacity that could lead them to some positive things this year.

“To make a long story short, unless something extraordinary were to come up, I wouldn’t rule it out. But for me personally, I’m reluctant to make many other changes. I like the group that we have. I like the remaining players. I’ve got a lot of confidence in them and would like to see what they can do.”

–Anthony DiComo

Rangers out of Beltran sweepstakes?

The Rangers are out of the running for outfielder Carlos Beltran, according to a tweet from FOX Sports’ Ken Rosenthal, who also identified the Giants as frontrunners for the Mets outfielder.

Along with the Giants, Braves, Phillies and Red Sox, the Rangers had been one of five teams seemingly most likely to swing a deal for Beltran prior to this weekend’s non-waiver Trade Deadline. Beltran has said publicly that he would waive his no-trade clause to join any of those clubs.

–Anthony DiComo

Donnie Baseball wins debut

With only an unearned run for support, Clayton Kershaw fired seven scoreless innings Thursday as the Dodgers edged the World Series champion Giants and ace Tim Lincecum, 2-1, presenting new manager Don Mattingly with an Opening Day first victory.

The 23-year-old Kershaw, the youngest Opening Day starter for the Dodgers since Fernando Valenzuela in 1983, struck out nine and allowed four hits with one walk. He outdueled Lincecum, the two-time Cy Young Award winner, who also went seven innings with five strikeouts, five hits and three walks.

– Ken Gurnick

Let’s get it started

The last time it counted — 149 days ago to be exact — Brian Wilson struck out Nelson Cruz swinging to give the Giants their first World Series title since 1954.

Hot Stove season came and went. Spring Training games were played.

Now, it’s time for a new season.

Opening Day 2011 features six matchups (all times ET): Braves-Nationals at 1:05 p.m.; Tigers-Yankees at 1:05 p.m.; Brewers-Reds at 2:10 p.m.; Angels-Royals at 4:10 p.m.; Padres-Cardinals at 4:15 p.m.; and Giants-Dodgers at 8 p.m. in the ESPN Opening Night game.

The Giants begin their quest to become the first repeat champion since the 1998-2000 Yankees, and the first in the NL to repeat since the 1975-76 Reds. But the Phillies added Cliff Lee, giving them a philthy rotation that could be the best in MLB history. Over in the AL, the Red Sox added some serious firepower in the likes of Adrian Gonzalez and Carl Crawford.

The 27 other MLB clubs begin today with the same record, the same hopes, the same dreams.  Follow us all day as we chronicle the dawn of a new season, from the first pitch on the East Coast, to the last out in SoCal. Who will rise in October? Buckle up and enjoy The Show.

Roundup: Market continues to evolve in 2011

In the new year’s first week, the Hot Stove is in full gear. With Adrian Beltre nearing terms with Texas and Kevin Gregg inking a deal with Baltmore, the number of available impact free agents has begun to dwindle, as has their potential destinations.

One of the big fish remaining is Vladimir Guerrero, whose time in Texas is all but finished with the Rangers on the verge of a deal with Beltre. Guerrero’s former team, the Angels, were also in talks with Beltre, but ESPN Los Angeles.com is reporting that the Halos aren’t targeting their former AL MVP for offensive help.

Here’s the rundown on the other movers and shakers on Tuesday:

MLB.com’s T.R. Sullivan reports that the Rangers are close to signing Beltre to a six-year, $96 million contract. The 31-year-old Beltre is coming off of a strong bounceback season in Boston, where he hit .321 with 28 homers and 102 RBIs. Current Texas third baseman Michael Young told the club he would be willing to change positions — again — to designated hitter to accommodate the addition of Beltre, a two-time Gold Glove winner at third.

- Gregg took his time making a decision, but the right-handed reliever has signed a two-year deal with the Orioles, MLB.com has confirmed. Gregg has 121 saves and a 3.79 ERA over the last four seasons, including 37 saves for Toronto in 2010. Baltimore will be his fourth club in as many seasons and fifth in the last six years.

- According to the outfielder himself, Carlos Gonzalez has “practically concluded” talks with the Rockies on a seven-year, $80 million contract extension. The 25-year-old Gonzalez had a breakout campaign in 2010 with a .336 average, 34 home runs and 117 RBIs — good enough to finish third in the NL MVP balloting. If and when the deal is finalized, Colorado will have locked up two of its young stars in Gonzalez and Troy Tulowitzki through at least the 2017 season.

- The Reds came to terms on a Minor League deal with outfieder Jeremy Hermida. The left-hand-hitting Hermida is a .259 career hitter, but batted just .216 last season between stops in Boston and Oakland. He has hit .267 in his career off of right-hand pitching.

- The Giants and World Series MVP Edgar Renteria are back in negotiations, as tweeted by CSNBayArea.com’s Mychael Urban. San Francisco, however, isn’t overly optimistic about signing the shortstop, who termed an earlier $1 million offer from the club a “lack of respect.”

-The Nationals and Adam LaRoche continue to near a two-year agreement, tweeted Jim Bowden of Sirius XM, echoing news MLB.com’s Bill Ladson reported on Monday.

-The Phillies and right-handed reliever Chad Durbin have exchanged offers, according to the Philadelphia Inquirer. Durbin, who has been a member of the Philadelphia bullpen for three seasons, is apparently seeking a raise from the $2.125 million he made in 2010.

–Tim Britton

Roundup: Pavano next chip to fall?

As the Brewers added an ace to their deck with the acquisition of Zack Greinke on an otherwise quiet Sunday, attention turned to the next top-tier pitcher on the market: free agent Carl Pavano.
While the Twins have been seen as the favorite to land Pavano this offseason, the addition of Greinke to the Brewers may have only increased that possibility, as FoxSports.com suggested on Sunday. 
Milwaukee was another team that had reportedly been in contention for Pavano’s services, but with their No. 1 starter taken care of, the Brewers are likely out of the fray.
The Nationals and Rangers, who had been seriously working to land Greinke, haven’t seriously pursued the 34-year-old starter, sources told Fox Sports.com.
Here’s a look at other moves from around the league: 
- Greinke’s disappearance from the trade market could have boosted interest in Marlins right-hander Ricky Nolasco, who is arbitration eligible this offseason and next, but the Marlins put the kibosh on that. Nolasco is near to signing a three-year extension worth $27 million, MLB.com’s Joe Frisaro reported Sunday night. The deal, which runs through 2012, is pending a physical.
- Guillermo Mota is returning to the Giants for a second season, ESPN Deportes reported. Mota, who won a World Series ring with San Francisco in 2010, did not receive a Major League deal, but will have an invite to big league Spring Training.
- ESPN Deportes reported that the Braves have signed 25-year-old southpaw Yohan Flande and invited him to Spring Training. Flande went 10-8 with a 4.38 ERA in 27 starts at Double-A for the Phillies last season. 
- The Blue Jays have signed catcher Ryan Budde to a Minor League deal, Jerry Crasnick of ESPN.com tweeted on Sunday. Budde, who has seen limited Major League action with the Angels over the last several years, owns a career average of .212.
- Right-hander Anthony Lerew has signed a one-year deal with the Softbank Hawks of Japan’s Pacific League according to the NPB tracker. Lerew struggled in six starts with the Royals last season. 
- The Yankees have given right-hander Luis Vizcaino a Minor League deal and an invite to big league camp, The Star-Ledger reported. Vizcaino, 36, has been out of pro ball since 2009, but pitched well this offseason in the Dominican Winter League.
- The Nationals had reached a deal with the Royals for Greinke, before the right-hander exercised his no-trade clause to veto the deal, a source confirmed to MLB.com’s Bill Ladson. No reason was given for Greinke’s decision, but the ace had previously expressed a desire to play for a title contending team.
– Bailey Stephens

Roundup: O-Dog (fittingly) headed to PETCO

It turns out Orlando Hudson may be team-less no more.

Hudson broke the news himself on MLB Network Radio that his next destination is San Diego, and FOXSports.com reported that the Padres and the free-agent second baseman agreed to terms on a two-year, $11.5 million contract.

Hudson — a two-time All-Star joining his fourth team in four years — will fill the role played last year by David Eckstein, who’s a free agent and said recently that the Padres have not contacted him about a return.

Here’s more from around the league …

* The Yankees, according to multiple reports, have agreed on a two-year contract with veteran reliever Pedro Feliciano. Feliciano, the former Met who has led the Majors in appearances each of the last three seasons, joins Boone Logan to give the Yanks two lefties in the bullpen.

* Reigning World Series MVP Edgar Renteria was none-too-thrilled with the $1 million offer the Giants tendered him this offseason. “That offer from the Giants was a lack of respect,” Renteria told ESPNdeportes.com. “A total disrespect.” Renteria has previously stated he’d like to finish his career with the Marlins or Cardinals. 

* The Astros reached an agreement with the versatile Bill Hall to be their starting second baseman, sources told MLB.com’s Brian McTaggart. According to FOXSports.com’s Ken Rosenthal, the two sides agreed on a one-year contract worth about about $3 million and with a mutual option for 2012. 

* A couple of notable deals have been made official: The Cubs’ with Kerry Wood, and the Tigers’ with Magglio Ordonez.   

– Alden Gonzalez  

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