Posted on: July 28, 2010 6:35 pm
Edited on: July 28, 2010 7:07 pm

Tigers get Peralta

Jhonny Peralta And we've got a trade. It's been a slow deadline week, but at long last, we've got something.

The Tigers have acquired Jhonny Peralta from the Indians for left-hander Giovanni Soto, MLB.com's Anthony Castrovince reports .

The Tigers had been looking for a third baseman since Brandon Inge went down and find it in Peralta, who has played exclusively at third base this season after switching from shortstop last year.

Peralta is hitting .246/.308/.389 this season with seven homers and 43 RBI. Those numbers are all below his career line of .264/.329/.422.

Soto, 19, is 6-6 with a 2.61 ERA for the West Michigan Whitecaps of the Class A Midwest League. He was a 21st-round pick by the Tigers in 2009.

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

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

Posted on: July 23, 2010 4:22 pm

Indians add Choo, lose Laffey

Aaron Laffey The Indians were happy to welcome back outfielder Shin-Soo Choo on Friday, but the good news was tempered with bad news on left-hander Aaron Laffey.

The return of Choo, out since spraining his thumb July 2, was expected. Laffey going on the disabled list was a bit of a surprise after an MRI on his shoulder came back clean. He was scheduled to start Sunday, but the Indians are hoping extended rest will solve Laffey's "dead arm" issue.

Laffey's fastball, which is usually in the 87-89 mph range, had dropped to the 81-82 range. Laffey said the arm fatigue was a result of being switched from reliever to starter midseason.

"All the stuff I normally experience in Spring Training, I experienced when I went back as a starter [in Columbus in June]," he told MLB.com. "Now, it's just kind of lingering around."

Because of an off day Thursday, the Indians won't need to add a starter until next Tuesday. Justin Masterson will take Laffey's Sunday start on regular rest.

-- David Andriesen

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

Posted on: July 20, 2010 9:53 am

Fading Dodgers searching for arms

The Dodgers are looking for pitchers -- any pitchers, starters, relievers, batting practice… it doesn't matter. If you can throw a baseball 60 feet, 6 inches, the Dodgers are interested.

So far, the team has been "very aggressive" in their pursuit of pitching, Yahoo!'s Tim Brown writes . The Dodgers have called about Houston's Roy Oswalt, Chicago's Ted Lilly, Arizona's Dan Haren and Cleveland's Jake Westbrook and Fausto Carmona.

The team has also called Toronto about their reliever trio of Scott Downs, Jason Frasor and Kevin Gregg.

Los Angeles was just swept in St. Louis and dropped their opener against San Francisco last night. The team is now 49-44 and with 12 of its next 16 against San Francisco and San Diego -- two of the three teams ahead of them in the National League West, L.A. could quickly be out of the race. If a move isn't made soon -- and even then, if it doesn't work immediately -- the season could be lost.

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter.
Posted on: July 19, 2010 5:49 pm
Edited on: July 19, 2010 7:35 pm

Mets have eye on Guthrie

Jeremy Guthrie The Mets are on the hunt for a starting pitcher. They weren't willing to pay the cost to acquire Cliff Lee and Roy Oswalt seems like a mirage to the Mets.

As a result, the team is turning to the next tier of starting pitchers. While Jake Westbrook has been connected as a possibility to the Mets for months, there's zero indication that New York has interest. For a while, a Ted Lilly-Mets marriage seemed all but certain, but no longer.

AOL Fanhouse's Ed Price says that the Mets aren't sold on Lilly being an upgrade over Hisanori Takahashi and thus have turned their attention elsewhere -- from Chicago to Baltimore.

The Mets scouted Jeremy Guthrie's last start and may be considering making a play.

Guthrie, 31, has a 4.58 ERA in 118 innings over 19 starts for the Orioles and dazzled in Saturday's start despite ending up with a 3-2 loss. The righty held Toronto's homeriffic offense in check, walking one and whiffing six over 6 2/3 innings, allowing just one run and seven hits.

The question begs, however, why the Mets are interested in Guthrie but not Westbrook. Westbrook, just a year older, has a 4.67 ERA in 19 starts as well and is on a team that would love to ship him out and get quality building blocks for the future. Even xFIP suggests Westbrook is the better get: His 4.35 mark far outpaces Guthrie's 5.10. Guthrie has been rather lucky on BABIP so far on the year although one thing he has going for him is that his 1.22 home runs per nine innings would be suppressed in Citi Field, balancing any possible regression in BABIP.

The two are remarkably similar pitchers, with similar strikeouts and walks per nine inning and also with a similar reportoire -- although Guthrie doesn't have a cutter and uses his slider more liberally as a result. He also has a few extra ticks of velocity on his fastball, which the Mets may feel will play better in the NL.

In addition, Guthrie is just two years removed from a two-year stretch of being a quality workhorse. From 2007-08, he combined for a 3.66 ERA in 366 innings, starting 56 games and relieving in six. In addition, scouts feel that Guthrie can be better than he is, according to FOX Sports' Ken Rosenthal.

“He should be better than he is." a scout told Rosenthal. "He used to have a plus curveball. Now he hardly throws it. He’s not big [6-1]. He’s a fastball-slider guy with no depth or downward movement. Everything is hard. Everything is on the same plane. He needs the curveball.”

Guthrie's curveball usage has sank from an offering used roughly 12 percent of the time in his early career to a career-low of 2.3 percent in 2010. That's not going to fly, but the fix could be as simple as being told to throw it more.

And don't forget contract status -- that's a biggie.

The Mets maxed out with a payroll almost at $150 million in 2009 and began opening day with a $126.5 million payroll. The team has some flexibility to add, but not all that much, especially as the Metropolitans already have $108 million committed to next year's roster.

Westbrook is finishing up a three-year deal that pays him $11 million, and is then an unrestricted free agent. Guthrie is making just $3 million and has two more years of arbitration control, which is a biggie.

Add it all up, and Guthrie looks to be more valuable than Westbrook -- someone with potential to be better than he is currently instead of being who he is (ala Westbrook) and who has two more years of team control.

The only question left is if the Mets want Guthrie enough to pry him from Baltimore.

-- Evan Brunell

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

Posted on: July 19, 2010 5:42 pm
Edited on: October 22, 2010 4:03 pm

This week in free stuff: July 19-26

What's better than a day at the ballpark? A day at the ballpark and free stuff.

I remember as a kid going to a Tidewater Tides (as the Norfolk Tides were called then) and getting a Tides batting glove. I wore that batting glove even though it was for my left hand and I was a left-handed hitter. I loved that thing, with the Tides logo and elastic wristband. Since then, I've loved ballpark giveaways (or SGA as you can find them on eBay) and have a collection of odds and ends such as an Endy Chavez bobblehead or a Macon Braves batting helmet (I only get them now as a paying fan, not as part of the job). As a proud owner of a Savannah Sand Gnats Gnic the Gnat bobblehead, I often check around to see what's being given away at ballparks around the country. So here it is, this week in free stuff, from the majors and minors. Keep in mind, this isn't a complete list, just the ones I find most interesting, and even if many think bobbleheads are passe, I'm still a big fan and you'll see most of them here.

Tonight, July 19
Chicago Cubs -- a Cubs mouse pad… if you still use one of those. Ask your parents, kids.
Johnson City Cardinals (Rookie Appalachian League) -- seat cushion. One of the more underrated and classic give-aways, you don't see them as much anymore, yet your butt could still use a cushion after nine innings.

Tuesday, July 20
Los Angeles Dodgers -- James Loney bobblehead
New Hampshire Fisher Cats (Eastern League) -- Dustin Pedroia bobblehead
Richmond Flying Squirrels (Southern League) -- logo ball. I'm not usually a big logo ball fan, but this logo is a flying squirrel.
Lakewood BlueClaws (South Atlantic League) -- paint your own Clawd bobblehead. Clawd is the team's mascot.
State College Spikes (New York-Penn League) -- eco-friendly cooler bag. I was at a Marlins game once and they gave out gas cans. I'm usually a big fan of practical give-aways, but I didn't take that one.

Brookly Cyclones Wednesday, July 21
Baltimore Orioles -- foam finger. A classic. I'd love to see the foam finger make a comeback, even if a No. 1 is a little unrealistic for the Orioles.
Chicago Cubs -- key chain. This one is actually a nice, simple design, something that can often be done wrong and is done well here.
Brooklyn Cyclones (New York-Penn League) -- "Jersey? Sure!" Jersey. It's actually kinda great. The Cyclones are one of the minor league leaders in both quantity and quality of giveaways.

Manny Ramirez Thursday, July 22
Pittsburgh Pirates -- T-shirt. I don't normally get too excited by free t-shirts, but this one has a nice Pirate theme with a ship and all.
Los Angeles Dodgers -- Manny Ramirez action figure. Action figures are this year's attempt at replacing bobbleheads. The Dodgers went the extra mile and made each of their three action figures as superheroes, but it still doesn't quite work.
Bowie BaySox (Eastern League) -- Nolan Reimold bobblehead. The Orioles prospect is getting his own bobblehead.
Iowa Cubs (Pacific Coast League) -- Casey Blake bobblehead. Blake is an Iowa native.
Portland Sea Dogs (Eastern League) -- Adrian Gonzalez bobblehead.
Corpus Christi Hooks (Texas League) -- Aussie hat. Not bad for a day at the beach on North Padre Island.
Lakewood BlueClaws (South Atlantic Laegue) -- Dusty Wathan bobblehead. Wathan, son of former Royals manager John "Duke" Wathan, was the manager of the BlueClaws last season when the team won the South Atlantic League title and like most of his players, got called up. He's now the manager of the High-A Clearwater Threshers in the Phillies organization.
Great Lakes Loons (Midwest League) -- Bill Freehan bobblehead. The Loons are honoring Tiger legends with bobbleheads this season and Freehan is Michigan through-and-through. Freehan was born in Detroit, played football and baseball at the University of Michigan and then spent his entire 15-year career with the Tigers.
Orem Owlz (Frontier League) -- Torii Hunter bobblehead.

Friday, July 23
Evan Longoria Baltimore Orioles -- tankard. More realistic than the foam finger, Orioles fans can drink away their problems in style.
Houston Astros -- gym bag. Again, one of the practical giveaways. I have a Braves bag I still use.
Montgomery Biscuits (Southern League) -- Evan Longoria bobblehead.
Clearwater Threshers (Florida State League) -- Mike Schmidt bobblehead.
West Michigan Whitecaps (Midwest League) -- Larry Herndon bobblehead. It's a big week for former Tigers, apparently. Herndon caught the last out of the 1984 World Series.
Brooklyn Cyclones (New York-Penn League) -- Fireman Sandy bobblehead. A bobblehead of the mascot Sandy in a fireman's uniform.
Vermont Lake Monsters (New York-Penn League) -- Champ bobblehead. A friend of mine has a large collection of bobbleheads and says the mascot ones go for the most money on the secondary market.

Saturday, July 24
New York Yankees -- lunch box. I love the metal lunch boxes, they're a popular giveaway -- and for good reason.
Grady Sizemore Cleveland Indians -- Grady Sizemore bobblehead. One of the few chances to see Grady Sizemore in action at Progressive Field.
Houston Astros -- rainbow sleeve t-shirt.
Milwaukee Brewers -- grill master apron.
Las Vegas 51s (Pacific Coast League) -- wall clock.
Inland Empire 66ers (California League) -- James Loney bobblehead.
Visalia Rawhide (California League) -- beach blanket.
Kinston Indians (Carolina League) -- Lonnie Chisenhall bobblehead. The Indians prospect is nearly ready for the big leagues and he already has a bobblehead.
Hagerstown Suns (South Atlantic League) -- Little Heiskell bobblehead. Little Heiskell is a German soldier weathervane figure that has become a symbol of the city.
Rome Braves (South Atlantic League) -- Tommy Hanson bobblehead.
West Michigan Whitecaps (Midwest League) -- glow-in-the-dark baseball.
State College Spikes (New York-Penn League) -- kids fielding glove giveaway. As a kid, these always kinda bummed me out, because it's not like they have a left-handed option. Sure, they're never good enough to actually use, but that's little consolation to a sad little left-handed kid.
Everett AquaSox (Northwest League) -- fleece blanket. One of my favorites, although many teams are moving toward Snuggie-like blankets instead of the usual throw.

Sunday, July 25
Philadelphia Phillies -- Chase Utley action figure. Like the real Utley, this one no longer has a cast on his hand.
Milwaukee Brewers -- Robin Yount bobblehead. Not only is Yount wearing a great old Brewers uniform, the Yountstache is in full effect.
Albuquerque Isotopes (Pacific Coast League) -- Orbit bobblehead. Another great mascot bobblehead. Most minor league mascots are better in bobblehead form than mascot form.
Reno Aces (Pacific Coast League) -- skateboard deck. Another new one this season, the Aces deck is one of the best.
New Britain Rock Cats (Eastern League) -- paint your own bobblehead.
Greensboro Grasshoppers (South Atlantic League) -- Chris Coghlan figurine.
Bowling Green Hot Rods (Midwest League) -- lunch box.
Lake County Captains (Midwest League) -- Skipper leg lamp bobblehead. It's the leg of the mascot, Skipper, and it's a leg lamp, just like Cleveland's own A Christmas Story.
Lowell Spinners (New York-Penn League) -- Allie Gator bobblehead.

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

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

Posted on: July 18, 2010 4:22 pm
Edited on: July 18, 2010 9:28 pm

Two Indians on comeback trail

Asdrubal Cabrera Finally, something goes right for the 38-54 Indians.

The Indians' offense, while not world-beating at full strength, will welcome back shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera and outfielder Shin-Soo Choo shortly.

Cabrera has been sidelined for over two months after fracturing his right forearm. He has been playing in rehab games and has at least three more Double-A games to cross off his list before he can return to the bigs.

Cabrera hit .287/.322/.368 in 149 plate appearances before biting the dust. He had a career season in 2009, as the then 23-year-old hit .308/.361/.439 in 581 PA.

Joining him on the comeback trail is star outfielder Choo, whose original prognosis had Choo out for up to two months. Instead, he may only miss three weeks.

Choo insisted on going to Double-A for a rehab stint to see live pitching, according to MLB.com, and will do so before rejoining Cleveland for the team's series opener against the Rays on Friday.

-- Evan Brunell

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter.
Posted on: July 17, 2010 12:26 pm

Indians place Wood on DL

Kerry Wood In a market bullish on relievers, one more is unavailable until just before the trade deadline, as the Indians placed closer Kerry Wood on the disabled list with a blister on his right index finger.

According to MLB.com's Anthony Castrovince , the move is retroactive to June 12, making him eligible to return before the trade deadline.

However, as with more than $4 million left on his contract, the real trade deadline for Wood is the Aug. 31 date. He will likely clear waivers because of the combination of the money still owed to him and his 1-4 record and 6.30 ERA. Wood does, however, have 18 strikeouts in 20 innings. He has eight saves this season in 11 opportunities and this is his second trip to the DL this season.

In Wood's absence, Chris Perez will take over the closer's role and Jensen Lewis has been called up from Triple-A Columbus for his third stint in Cleveland this season. Perez has seven saves this season and a 1-0 record with a 3.94 ERA.

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter.
Posted on: July 16, 2010 8:15 pm

Twitter may cost Indians minor leaguer

Twitter has at least one fewer user today, as Indians minor leaguer David Huff deleted his account after a the team was unhappy someone using his account announced he'd start for the Indians on Sunday.

Dennis Manoloff of the Plain Dealer has the details :
A message from David Huff's twitter account Friday afternoon stated that he will be the Indians' spot starter Sunday against the Tigers.

But Huff, who is with Class AAA Columbus, told The Plain Dealer later in the day that he never tweeted as such and that somebody must haveimpersonated him. Huff said he was reaching out to the Indians to explain.

Tribe manager Manny Acta, informed of Huff's tweet during his pregame meeting with reporters, said: "We're going to need a spot starter for Sunday. We're still working through it. It's not finalized, and David is one of the candidates."
That account, @DHuff11m has been deleted and pitching coach Tim Belcher tells MLB.com's Anthony Castrovince that Huff's call-up "may or may not happen" as a result of the Twitter affair. If Huff doesn't start Sunday, Josh Tomlin could get the call.

The lesson -- which should have been very clear by now -- is if your boss tells you not to announce something, don't put it on the interwebs.
There are smart ways for athletes to leverage social media -- Chad Ochocinco went from a malcontent to a TV star in one season on Twitter - it's even a good way to keep fans, family and friends up to date with your comings and goings, but you must remember that even your bosses know about Twitter, Facebook and MySpace -- oh, and if you're still on MySpace, you may not want your bosses to know about that. Or Chris Hansen.
Category: MLB
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com