Results tagged ‘ Red Sox ’

Nationals, Blue Jays interested in Burke Badenhop

There a number of clubs still looking for bullpen help on the free-agent market. The Nationals and Blue Jays are among those teams and have both shown interest in veteran right-hander Burke Badenhop, reports Jon Morosi of FOX Sports.

Badenhop, 31, made 70 appearances with the Red Sox last season and had a 2.29 ERA. He’s pitched for four different clubs in each of the last four years.

The Red Sox were linked to Badenhop earlier in the offseason. Boston remains in the market for right-handed relief, tweets Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports. The Dodgers and Brewers are still looking for bullpen help, too.

–Austin Laymance

Report: Hamels has four primary suitors

Cole Hamels has been on the trading block for months as the Phillies undergo a rebuilding process. So far, that hasn’t resulted in a deal for the ace.

With Spring Training five weeks away for the Phillies, Comcast Sportsnet reports there are four “primary suitors” for Hamels: the San Diego Padres, Boston Red Sox, St. Louis Cardinals and Texas Rangers. The Phillies are reportedly looking for two top prospects in exchange for Hamels.

The Phillies would prefer to add a premier catching prospect, according to the report, and have interest in Boston’s Blake Swihart, San Diego’s Austin Hedges and Texas’ Jorge Alfaro.

General manager Ruben Amaro Jr. has repeatedly said the Phillies would only deal Hamels for the right price, one that remains high. It’s possible the club keeps Hamels going into the season and continues to explore trades throughout the year.

“Again, he sits right in the sweet spot,” Amaro said last month. “We can keep him and it would be great for us, and if we feel he can move us forward by moving him, that’s something we can explore as well. As I said, we don’t have any rush to move him or mandate to move him.”

– Austin Laymance

Moncada still not cleared, plans to hold workouts this month

Cuban prospect Yoan Moncada still has not been cleared by the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control to sign with a Major League team, according to Jesse Sanchez of MLB.com. Sanchez adds that Moncada has plans to hold seven private workouts this month with undisclosed teams.

The Yankees and Red Sox were recently mentioned by Fangraphs’ Kiley McDaniel as the “heavy favorites” to ultimately sign the 19-year-old middle infielder, who can also play third base. Moncada is considered one of the most highly-touted international prospects in the game right now, with Sanchez listing him as the top Cuban player to keep an eye on.

One thing to keep in mind, however, is that Moncada is subject to international signing guidelines, due to the fact that he is under 23 and did not play in a Cuban professional league for at least five seasons. In accordance with the Collective Bargaining Agreement, each team is allotted a $700,000 base and a bonus pool based on the team’s 2013 record during the international signing period, which started on July 2. Both the Yankees and Red Sox are in the maximum penalty range for the 2014-15 international signing period, which prohibits them from signing any player for more than $300,000 during the next two signing periods.

Considering Moncada is expected to ultimately land a substantial contract, neither the Yankees nor the Red Sox would be able to sign Moncada if he does not become eligible to sign before June 15 — though there is nothing to suggest that will happen at this point.

– Paul Casella

Red Sox, Dodgers showing interest in Ogando

The Red Sox and Dodgers have been “aggressive” in their pursuit of free agent right-hander Alexi Ogando, according to Peter Gammons of GammonsDaily.com.

Though Ogando’s injury history has presented a serious concern for some clubs, the righty reportedly impressed at least some scouts at his workout last week, attended by approximately two dozen teams. The Red Sox and Dodgers were both among the clubs represented at that showcase.

Ogando struggled to a 6.84 ERA over 27 injury-hampered appearances with the Rangers last season. He was 7-4 with a 3.11 ERA over 23 outings (18 starts) in 2013, while again being slowed by injuries.

Ogando, who can serve as either a back-end starter or a reliever, is expected to make a decision next week. It’s unclear what it’ll take to sign him, but he’ll likely settle for a contract loaded with performance-based incentives after being limited by shoulder and elbow injuries in each of the last two seasons.

– Paul Casella

Red Sox bring back Breslow

The Red Sox have signed left-handed reliever Craig Breslow to a one-year contract, the club announced on Wednesday. The deal, worth $2 million, had previously been reported in December but was not official until today.

Boston designated catcher Dan Butler for assignment to make room on the 40-man roster for Breslow.

Breslow is coming off a bit of a down year in 2014, when he had a 5.96 ERA over 60 appearances with the Sox. He was a key member of the bullpen during the World Series championship season of ’13, though, posting a 1.91 ERA.

Butler, 28, made his big league debut last season. He was 4-for-19 (.211) with three doubles over seven games with the Sox. He spent the majority of the year with Triple-A Pawtucket. Boston now has three catchers on the 40-man roster in Ryan Hanigan, Blake Swihart and Christian Vazquez.

– Austin Laymance 

Shields reportedly in line for nine-figure deal

Though the James Shields sweepstakes is yet to really heat up this winter, the free agent right-hander is expected to land a contract north of $100 million, according to FOX Sports’ Ken Rosenthal. Rosenthal actually adds that two Major League executives say that Shields already has a five-year, $110 million offer in hand from an unknown team.

The Red Sox, Giants, Marlins and Diamondbacks are all among the teams that have shown interest in Shields at various times this offseason, though no club has been linked to anything concrete regarding the veteran righty. In fact, Rosenthal goes on to say that the Marlins and D-backs have both backed off in their pursuit of Shields recently, while the Red Sox and Giants are also longshots when it comes to making a play for Shields.

As for other potential landing spots, Rosenthal mentions the Yankees, Tigers and Angels as three teams looking to upgrade their rotation — but adds that none of those three clubs have been linked to Shields thus far.

Another thing working against Shields’ market is the fact that he rejected a qualifying offer from the Royals earlier this offseason, meaning a potential suitor would need to surrender a draft pick in order to sign him. The $100 million price tag, combined with the need to forfeit a draft pick, seems to be a steep price for any team to pay for a 33-year-old pitcher that has logged 1,910 innings over his nine-year career — including 200-plus frames in eight straight seasons.

Despite coming off a rocky postseason with the Royals, Shields could still give any club a durable option at the top of its rotation. Along with his eight straight seasons of working at least 200 innings, Shields went 14-8 with a 3.21 ERA this past season in helping the Royals reach the postseason for the first time since 1985.

– Paul Casella

Moncada could start workouts within two weeks

Cuban shortstop Yoan Moncada is still awaiting clearance from the Office of Foreign Asset and Control (OFAC), but is widely expected to begin private workouts within the next two weeks according to MLB.com’s Jesse Sanchez.

The 19-year-old is one of the game’s top international prospects right now and is expected to garner significant interest once he’s officially available. Though his market will continue to develop as teams make more offseason moves, the clubs that were represented at Moncada’s “batting showcase” earlier this year were the Braves, Red Sox, Yankees, Giants, Rays, Padres and Cubs.

Given his age, position and switch-hitting ability, Moncada doesn’t figure to be short on offers as the process continues. There are no clear frontrunners at this point, but it’s certainly a situation worth monitoring in the coming weeks.

– Paul Casella

Red Sox discussing Allen Craig trade?

Allen Craig could be on the move again.

The Red Sox are reportedly in active trade talks with at least one team regarding Craig, tweets Jon Morosi of FOX Sports, who adds the first baseman/outfielder is recovered from a left foot injury that he aggravated this season.

Craig, 30, was part of the deal that sent John Lackey to the Cardinals at the Trade Deadline in July. He struggled for much of the 2014 season, posting a .215/.279/.315 slash line over 126 games between the Cardinals and Red Sox.

The Red Sox have already dealt one outfielder this month, Yoenis Cespedes, and still have a crowded outfield that includes: Hanley Ramirez, Shane Victorino, Jackie Bradley Jr., Daniel Nava and Rusney Castillo.

–Austin Laymance

Red Sox acquire Varvaro from Braves

The Braves traded right-handed reliever Anthony Varvaro to the Red Sox on Wednesday in exchange for Minor League right-hander Aaron Kurcz and cash considerations.

Varvaro, who compiled a 2.74 ERA in 123 appearances over the last two seasons, was somewhat surprisingly designated for assignment earlier this week to clear a spot for recently acquired infielder Alberto Callaspo. The hard-throwing righty also racked up 50 strikeouts over 54 2/3 innings this past season.

As for Kurcz, the 24-year-old tallied a 2.14 ERA in 34 appearances this past season for Double-A Portland, while striking out 54 batters over 42 innings.

Given that there was almost zero chance Varvaro was going to pass through waivers unclaimed after being designated earlier this week, it was only a matter of when, not if, the Braves were going to work out a trade inolving the 30-year-old reliever.

– Paul Casella

Astros could enter mix for Hamels

The Astros are reportedly being considered a “sleeper team” in trade talks regarding the Phillies’ Cole Hamels, according to Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe.

The Cubs, Red Sox, Dodgers, Padres, Rangers and Giants have all been linked to Hamels this offseason, though Cafardo believes the Astros could swoop in and make a push to work out a deal with the Phils. That said, Hamels does have a no-trade list and it’s unclear at this point whether or not the Astros are on it.

Either way, there is speculation that Hamels might be willing to waive his no-trade clause for any of the aforementioned teams, if said team agrees to pick up his $20 million club option for 2019. He’s currently owed $90 million over the next four seasons before that option year comes into play.

The Giants’ interest likely depends on whether or not they’re able to sign James Shields, while the Cubs could fall out of the race as well after signing top free agent starter Jon Lester last week. The Red Sox and Dodgers are widely believed to still be the frontrunners for Hamels, but it appears they may have more competition than initially expected.

– Paul Casella

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