Tag:Hot Stove League
Posted on: January 18, 2011 9:56 am
Edited on: January 18, 2011 3:45 pm
 

Dodgers agree with Thames

Marcus Thames
The Dodgers have reached agreement with Marcus Thames to be Jay Gibbons' platoon partner, giving them some pop but not much defense in left field.

Thames, who spent last season with the Yankees, flirted with the idea of playing in Japan, but will man left for the Dodgers against left-handed pitching. The move provides Los Angeles with some outfield flexibility given their uncertainty about Tony Gwynn Jr.'s offense and the possibility of Gibbons being unavailable or ineffective. Gibbons, who has postseason eye surgery, recently came home from a winter ball assignment in Venezuela after experiencing vision problems.

Thames batted .288/.350/.491 last season with 12 homers in 212 at-bats.

The Los Angeles Times reports that the Dodgers are also close to a minor-league deal with veteran outfielder Gabe Kapler.

-- David Andriesen

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Posted on: January 17, 2011 4:47 pm
 

Report: Mets, Young close

Chris Young
The Mets have been mentioned as a likely suitor for right-hander Chris Young, and it looks like it is coming to fruition, as ESPNNewYork.com reports a deal is done pending Young passing a physical.

Young, 31, missed most of the 2010 season with shoulder problems following season-ending sugery in 2009. He made just three late-season starts, and a history of injuries has lowered his value considerably -- the Padres declined an $8.5 million option for next year, and recent reports have said Young might sign for under $2 million.

New Mets general manager Sandy Alderson, formerly with the Padres, knows Young's potential when healthy, and this could turn out to be a low-risk, high-return signing if he can give New York some innings.

-- David Andriesen

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Category: MLB
Posted on: January 17, 2011 3:28 pm
Edited on: April 18, 2011 12:09 pm
 

Giambi coming back to Rockies

Jason Giambi At age 40, Jason Giambi isn't ready to call it a career. The Rockies announced that he'll be back next season on a minor-league contract with an invitation to major-league spring training. The Denver Post reports the deal is for $1 million.

It's not clear where Giambi is going to get at-bats given Colorado's glut of infielders. Todd Helton will be back, and the Rockies also have Ty Wiggington, Jose Lopez and Mike Jacobs as options at first base. He could be just a spare kept waiting in the wings in case Helton breaks down again, but it's tough to see Giambi, a 40-year-old who has made more than $130 million, toiling in the minors.

Giambi played in 87 games for the Rockies last season, batting .244 with 35 RBI and six homers.

Also Monday, the Rockies gave reliever Matt Lindstrom a two-year deal worth $2.8 million next season and $3.6 million for 2012. The club has a $4 million option for 2013, which would be his first year of free agency.

UPDATE: The Post spoke with general manager Dan O'Dowd, who said the Rockies could make a spot for Giambi on the big-league roster by going with four outfielders, which they have the flexibility to do because Wigginton can play in left and right field if needed.

-- David Andriesen

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Posted on: January 17, 2011 12:58 pm
Edited on: January 17, 2011 5:20 pm
 

Nats sign Alex Cora

Alex Cora
The Nationals are signing infielder Alex Cora to a deal worth $900,000 plus $600,000 in incentives, according to Adam Kilgore of the Washington Post. He says it's a minor-league deal, but unless they're planning on paying a 13-year veteran $900,000 to play at Syracuse, it looks like Cora will take the big-league utility spot that opened up when Willie Harris signed with the Mets.

Kilgore also makes the interesting observation that Cora is the ninth member of the Nationals roster represented by agent Scott Boras. By my quick math, those nine players will make a little under $20 million in salary this year. If you figure conservatively that Boras takes 5 percent, that means the Nationals alone are putting a million dollars into Darth Vader's pocket this year. I bet Nationals general manager Mike Rizzo gets a nice Christmas gift from Boras this year.

-- David Andriesen

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Category: MLB
Posted on: January 17, 2011 11:15 am
 

Angels not signing Manny


In an example of what a house of cards the mile-a-minute modern news world is, one prankster using a fake Twitter account managed to disseminate a rumor Sunday night that the Angels were about to sign Manny Ramirez.

Several news organizations, including the Toronto Star, ran with the item posted on Twitter by someone faking the identity of an ESPN reporter. But it's not true -- at least not now. The Angels have been mentioned as having interest in Ramirez, but he doesn't seem like a great fit there.

-- David Andriesen

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Posted on: January 16, 2011 5:17 pm
Edited on: January 16, 2011 9:58 pm
 

A's add Fuentes to bullpen

Brian Fuentes The A's have continued to bolster their bullpen this offseason, adding former Angels closer Brian Fuentes to a two-year deal, the Associated Press reports.

According to a tweet from FOXSports.com's Ken Rosenthal, the deal is worth $5 million per year, with incentives for finishing games.

On Friday, the A's added Grant Balfour and then re-signed the arbitration-eligible Brad Ziegler. With Balfour, our own Evan Brunell ranked the A's bullpen as the fourth-best in baseball with its only weakness being a "lack of a top left-handed option." With Fuentes, the A's now have that and one of the best bullpens in the game.

Fuentes wasn't the best closer around, but with the Andrew Bailey finishing out games for Oakland, he won't be asked to do that for the A's, leaving him as a setup man, which is likely a better role for him. Left-handers hit just .128/.222/.149 against him last season.

Fuentes, 35, had 23 saves for the Angels last season before an August trade to the Twins for a player to be named (Loek Van Mil). The lefty appeared in nine games for the Twins, earning a save and allowing no runs in nine games. Overall, he was 4-1 with a 2.81 ERA with 24 saves in 48 appearances in 2010, striking out 47 batters in 48 innings while walking 20.

In 2009, Fuentes led the American League with 48 saves. He signed a two-year deal before the '09 season worth $17.5 million.

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

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Posted on: January 15, 2011 6:54 pm
 

Royals bring back Chen

Bruce Chen
Hey, check out the Royals getting all spendy with the free agents. Two days, two signings, as today it's being reported that they are following their signing of Jeff Francis with a deal to bring back Bruce Chen.

Jon Heyman of SI.com reports via Twitter that Chen will sign a $2 million deal with $1.5 million in possible performance bonuses. Chen made 33 appearances, 23 of them starts, for the Royals last season, with a team-leading 12 wins and 4.17 ERA. Considering the departed Zack Greinke (10-14) was the only other Royal to win more than eight games last season, bringing back Chen at that price is a no-brainer.

This also gives the left-hander a chance to do something he's never done: spend three full seasons in the same city. The Royals are Chen's 10th team in a 12-year career.

-- David Andriesen

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Posted on: January 14, 2011 4:41 pm
Edited on: January 14, 2011 4:42 pm
 

Twins, Pavano closing in


We all know Carl Pavano is probably going to sign with the Twins, but for some reason the process is taking forever. Well, it looks like our wait might be over soon, as Joe Christensen of the Minneapolis Star-Tribune reports the Twins expect an answer from the right-hander early next week.

There have been concerns Minnesota might not be able to spring for both Pavano and Jim Thome, but with the Twins bringing Thome back at a somewhat reasonable $3 million and no recent chatter about anyone else actively pursuing Pavano, it looks like he'll be back at Target Field.

-- David Andriesen

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Category: MLB
 
 
 
 
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