Tag:Bengie Molina
Posted on: November 2, 2010 9:00 am
Edited on: April 18, 2011 12:14 pm

3 Rangers face offseason questions

Cliff Lee Not sure if you've noticed this piece of news during the run-up to the World Series and during those five games, but Rangers pitcher Cliff Lee is now a free agent.

I know, you'd think someone had told you by now, but you're lucky we're here to let you in on that little secret.

Anyway, Lee said he'd "love to" return to Texas and Rangers general manager Jon Daniels said he'd "love to have him back."

Simple, right? Daniels sends Lee a note to check a box if he'll "go with him" and Lee wants too… thing is, there are other suitors out there and this courtship won't end quickly.

"We've tried to make it as little of a distraction as possible in talking about his free agent status, which has basically been our approach with everything, whether it's staff, contracts or player contract or whatever, we're trying to push everything on the back burner and focus on tonight's game," Daniels told the Dallas Morning News before Monday's Game 5. "But we've made it clear we'd like to have him back. I know we're not the only club that would like to have him. It's a competitive market, as it should be, and we'll see what happens."

Lee was the loser on Monday, but will be the winner in contract negotiations soon enough. He said all the right things about the Rangers, but that's what you do in this case.

"Yeah, I like this team," Lee told the Dallas Morning News . "It's a very fun team to play on. It was a very talented group of guys. I expect this team to do some really good things next year. I don't know if I'm going to be a part of it or not, to be honest with you. I would love to be, but so many things could happen, you never know."

Well, he could know, but that's a different story. You can't blame a guy for looking around when everyone wants to get his attention. The thing is, he'll have some really good teams bidding for his services.

The Yankees, of course, are a given for any player looking for a huge paycheck. And then there's the Rangers, who should be pretty good again next season.

Most of the Rangers are under contract for next season, including the rest of the rotation and the team's infield and its big bats in the outfield, Josh Hamilton and Nelson Cruz.

"That’s the benefit of playing yourself into free agency: you finally get a choice in the matter of what goes on and where you’re going to be," Lee told the New York Times . "I’m looking forward to it. I think it’s going to be fun."

The team's other question marks are Vladimir Guerrero, who owns a $9 million mutual option with the team for 2011 (with a $1 million buyout for the Rangers and none if Guerrero opts out).

"I don't know," Guerrero told MLB.com when asked if he'd return in 2011. "We'll see what happens. I like it here. This team has a good future."

The other question mark is behind the plate. Neither Bengie Molina nor Matt Treanor are signed for next season and Molina has contemplated retirement.

Molina will get a World Series ring from the Giants, but was a Ranger for the series. As for 2011, he still doesn't know.

"Right now it's probably closer to not playing than yes," Molina told the Fort Worth Star-Telegram . "I don't want to decide right now because then something could happen later on and I come back. I just want to spend time with my family right now -- my mom, my wife and my kids. I'll spend time and I'll make a decision."

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter or subscribe to the RSS feed.

Posted on: October 27, 2010 8:25 pm

Bengie blogs

Bengie Molina
Let's face it, most people's personal blogs are really boring and self-indulgent. But it gets a lot more interesting if it's written by a guy who's playing in the World Series, against his former team.

Bengie Molina has blogged for years, and picked up again in earnest when he was traded from San Francisco to Texas on July 1. He's pretty honest and funny, and it's a good read. Some recent highlights:

* On hitting for the cycle July 17, ending with just the sixth triple of his career: "I saw the fielder jump and I thought he was going to catch it. The ball hit his glove and bounced off into the perfect spot. I said to myself, 'I ain't stoppin' for nothin'! This might be your only chance at this!' ... I will never forget that moment for the rest of my life."

* On his big homer against the Yankees in the ALCS: "When I warmed up the starting pitchers during our games in Yankee Stadium, fans near the bullpen chanted, "Ben-gie's fat! Ben-gie's fat!'' It was kind of funny, of course. They sounded like fourth-graders in the playground. The best part was they chanted in English AND in Spanish to make sure I was absolutely clear about what they were saying. So to drive in the go-ahead runs in front of those fans put a smile on my face."

* On being at the bottom of the dogpile after the Rangers clinched: "I could hardly breathe -- that's a lot of poundage in that pile. ...  I can't move a muscle -- and my face is smashed into [Neftali] Feliz's Afro. That was nasty."

* On seeing his former teammates Tuesday on the field on workout day: "All the Giants were walking in a line out to an area beyond right field where they were going to be interviewed by the media. Every guy stopped to hug me and tell me how great it was see me and could I believe how it all worked out. It was such a great feeling."

Apparently the Bay Area love for Molina extends beyond the clubhouse. He got a big cheer from the crowd when he was introduced as part of the Texas lineup before Game 1, and tapped his chest in response.

-- David Andriesen

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter or subscribe to the RSS feed.
Posted on: October 27, 2010 5:31 pm

Jays pick up Molina option

Jose Molina
The Blue Jays have picked up its option on catcher Jose Molina for 2011. Jordan Bastian of MLB.com says via Twitter the option was for $1.2 million, though Cot's Baseball Contracts says it's $1 million.

Unless the Jays plan to trade Molina, this is a pretty good indication Toronto is going to let John Buck leave in free agency and install J.P. Arencibia as the starter, with Molina remaining the backup.

Molina, 35, the middle of the three catching Molina brothers (Bengie of the Rangers is 36, Yadier of the Cardinals is 28). He batted .246/.304/.377 in 57 games last season.

-- David Andriesen

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Posted on: October 25, 2010 8:06 pm

Umpires set for Series

Gary Darling So, while betting on the World Series, why not take odds on which umpire is going to become a household name this Fall Classic with a blown call?

The Associated Press reports Sam Holbrook, Bill Miller, John Hirschbeck, Gary Darling, Mike Winters and Jeff Kellogg are the umpiring crew for the World Series.

Holbrook and Miller are umpiring in the World Series for the first time, but my (imaginary) money's on Darling (pictured).

Giants manager Bruce Bochy has been had two run-ins with Darling. In 2008, Darling called a balk against Tim Lincecum to bring home the go-ahead run in a game against the Rockies just as Bengie Molina called timeout. Darling seemed to raise his hands to call the timeout, but then called the balk. Bochy was ejected after arguing.

Last season, Darling ejected Bochy in the second inning of a game against the Dodgers and then ejected bench coach Ron Wotus in the ninth inning of the same game.

This season, Orioles first baseman Ty Wigginton was suspended and fined after arguing a call botched by Darling. Darling admitted after the game that he missed the call.

Hirschbeck was behind the plate for Roy Halladay's no-hitter, and was criticized by the Reds' Orlando Cabrera for his strike zone.

Winters is best known as the umpire that Milton Bradley was arguing with when he tore his anterior cruciate ligament in 2007.

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter or subscribe to the RSS feed.

Posted on: September 21, 2010 10:05 pm
Edited on: September 21, 2010 10:06 pm

Marlins on hunt for No. 1 catcher

Brad Davis The Marlins are dead-set on acquiring a No. 1 catcher in the offseason, Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald reports .

John Baker has missed the majority of the year to injury and recently underwent Tommy John surgery. While Baker's agent said the catcher is "cautiously optimistic" about being ready for spring training, that's no sure thing. In addition, Ronny Paulino is in the doghouse after being suspended for 50 games (eight of which must be served at the beginning of 2011) and Florida is expected to look elsewhere before deciding whether or not to tender the arbitration-eligible Paulino a contract.

Yorvit Torrealba, Bengie Molina and John Buck will be considered for the opening, Jackson reports. Just don't bet on Victor Martinez joining the team -- both due to his subpar defense and large pricetag. Miguel Olivo, an ex-Marlin, could also be a possibility if Colorado doesn't pick up his option.

Other names that popped up were Jason Varitek, David Ross, Matt Treanor (another ex-Marlin) and Rod Barajas, but these players would only play part-time.

That leaves the No. 2 job to be won between Baker, Brad Davis (pictured) and Brett Hayes, with Paulino given the pink slip.

Another possibility to lead the Marlins is Ivan Rodriguez, who led Florida to the 2003 World Series. Although he is under contract with the Nationals for 2011, I-Rod has said he wants to finish his career in Florida, plus the Nats are suddenly deep in young catchers. The Nats and Marlins could link up in a trade, much like when Florida sent outfielder Josh Willingham north prior to the 2009 season.

 -- Evan Brunell

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter or subscribe to the RSS feed .

Posted on: June 30, 2010 10:58 pm
Edited on: June 30, 2010 11:29 pm

Rangers acquire Molina from Giants

Bengie Molina The San Francisco Giants have traded catcher Bengie Molina to the Texas Rangers for reliever Chris Ray and a player to be named later, USA Today reports .

The deal is pending approval from commissioner Bud Selig and should be official shortly.

The deal makes sense from both sides. The Rangers are hurting at catcher and have had to go with Matt Treanor and Max Ramirez as the backstops after Jarrod Saltalamacchia had his season derailed by injury and the yips while Taylor Teagarden has been a mark of offensive futility so far.

Treanor is a 34-year-old backup catcher while Max Ramirez is an unproven rookie with questions about defense.

Molina, at .257/.312/.332 through 221 plate appearances, isn't exactly lighting the world on fire but does have a history of being able to hit the longball and should find the going easier after moving to Rangers Ballpark in Arlington. Defensively, Molina is also a strong defender, which is no surprise given the Molina pedigree in the bigs.

Saltalamacchia does deserve to head back to the majors and figures to do that at some point, but its clear the team isn't ready to rely on him just yet. As for Ramirez, his defense has been considered a liability for quite a while. Back in the offseason, the Rangers were reportedly poised to send Ramirez to Boston for Mike Lowell and the sense was that Boston would shift him out from behind the dish.

For San Francisco's part, the trade frees up the catcher's spot for Buster Posey to move there full-time. It will allow the Giants to upgrade their offense by either moving Aubrey Huff back to first base and giving Nate Schierholtz and Aaron Rowand more playing time, as Andrew Baggarly of the San Jose Mercury News notes . Another alignment would be moving Pablo Sandoval to first and moving Juan Uribe to third base. That would free up regular playing time for Edgar Renteria.

Chris Ray was dealt for Kevin Millwood in the offseason and has pieced together a 3.41 ERA over 31 2/3 innings. He would likely pitch out of the Giants' bullpen, although he may have an option left, according to Baggarly. That would allow San Francisco to ship him to Triple-A in the event of a roster crunch.

Molina is on a one year, $4.5 million deal with about $2.3 million left to be paid. If the Rangers are assuming much of Molina's contract, Selig may be examining the move closely thanks to Texas' financial straits. The sale from owner Tom Hicks is constantly being held up and MLB is responsible for the team's finances until the sale goes through.

-- Evan Brunell

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter.

Category: MLB
Posted on: June 27, 2010 7:13 pm
Edited on: June 28, 2010 1:16 am

Another day, another injury for Red Sox

Victor Martinez Victor Martinez was the latest Red Sox player to leave a game in San Francisco early with an injury, breaking his left thumb.

Martinez took a foul ball off the left foot off the bat of Giants catcher Bengie Molina, but stayed in the game.

Martinez flew out in the third, but was replaced behind the plate by Jason Varitek in the bottom of the fourth.

The Red Sox are off Monday and he will be re-evaluated when the team returns to Boston.

Dustin Pedroia left Friday's game after fracturing a bone in his left foot when he fouled a ball off of it. Starter Clay Buchholz left Saturday's game in the second after hyperextending his left knee running the bases.

Boston did receive good news, as Buchholz's injury may not be as serious as once thought and he could still make his next start.

"He's a little black and blue in his knee, which means there's a little bit of bleeding," Red Sox manager Terry Francona told reporters . "Saying that, he feels pretty good. Pretty good range of motion."

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter.

Posted on: June 8, 2010 2:15 pm

Giants not giving up on slumping Molina

Giants manager Bruce Bochy said starting Buster Posey behind the plate Monday night against the Reds was not a signal that the team is moving toward replacing struggling Bengie Molina, according to the San Francisco Chronicle . Molina has just four hits in his past 50 at-bats.

Bochy revealed Monday that Molina had a cortisone injection in his left elbow during the Reds' previous homestand because of lingering pain from an old foul tip injury. The manager said Molina would be in the lineup today.

Category: MLB
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