Tag:Michael Bourn
Posted on: January 17, 2012 2:22 pm
Edited on: January 17, 2012 3:14 pm

Ellsbury, K-Rod top MLB's other signings

Tuesday was the last day for arbitration-eligible players to sign 2012 contracts before the arbitration process begins with an exchange of salary figures. Thus, it was a deadline day for some MLB teams teams that have a policy of not continuing negotiations after arbitration numbers are exchanged.

The big arbitration news involved two aces, the Phillies' Cole Hamels and the Giants' Tim Lincecum. Hamels avoided arbitration by agreeing to a one-year, $15 million deal for 2012 with the Phillies, while Lincecum is headed to arbitration.

The biggest signing beyond Hamels was Dodgers outfielder Andre Ethier, who got $10.95 plus incentives from the Dodgers.

Among other signings Tuesday:

-- Jacoby Ellsbury got $8.05 million from the Red Sox.

-- Francisco Rodriguez got $8 million plus incentives from the Brewers.

-- Michael Bourn got $6,845,000 from the Braves.

-- Delmon Young got $6.75 million from the Tigers.

-- James Loney got $6.375 plus bonuses from the Dodgers.

-- Mike Pelfrey got $5,687,500 from the Mets, with incentive bonuses based on innings pitched.

-- Jair Jurrjens got $5.5 million from the Braves.

-- Francisco Liriano got $5.5 million from the Twins.

-- Erick Aybar got $5.075 million from the Angels.

-- Shin-Soo Choo got $4.9 million from the Indians.

-- Jason Vargas got $4.85 million from the Mariners.

-- David Price got $4.35 million from the Rays.

-- Geovany Soto got $4.3 million from the Cubs.

-- Brandon League got $5 million from the Mariners.

-- Justin Masterson got $3.825 million from the Indians.

-- Max Scherzer got $3.75 million plus bonuses from the Tigers.

-- Luke Hochevar got $3.51 million from the Royals.

-- Tom Gorzelanny got $2.7 million from the Nationals.

-- Jordan Zimmermann got $2.3 million from the Nationals.

-- Joba Chamberlain got about $1.675 million from the Yankees.

-- David Robertson got $1.6 million plus incentives from the Yankees.

-- Glen Perkins got $1.55 million from the Twins.

-- Wilson Valdez got $930,000 from the Phillies.

-- Don Kelly got $900,000 from the Tigers.

-- John Baker got $750,000 from the Padres.

Posted on: January 17, 2012 12:54 pm
Edited on: January 17, 2012 2:23 pm

Hamels avoids arbitration, Lincecum doesn't

Cole Hamels signed a new contract Tuesday. Tim Lincecum didn't.

Hamels will get $15 million plus performance bonuses from the Phillies. Lincecum will exchange arbitration numbers with the Giants.

And none of that changes the big picture, because neither Hamels nor Lincecum has a new long-term contract yet.

As of now, Hamels is still eligible for free agency after the 2012 season. Lincecum is eligible after 2013.

And both can (and certainly will) continue to discuss long-term deals that will keep them off the market.

Hamels, who made $9.5 million in 2011, agreed to 2012 contract just before the deadline for arbitration-eligible players to exchange contract figures with their teams. Lincecum will go through the arbitration process, although he and the Giants can continue to work on a deal while awaiting a hearing.

According to CBSSports.com's Jon Heyman, Hamels' new deal also would pay him $100,000 if he's named the Most Valuable Player, $250,000 if he wins the Cy Young Award, $100,000 for World Series MVP and $50,000 each for LCS MVP, Gold Glove, Silver Slugger or an All-Star appearance.

Tuesday was a deadline day for some teams that have a policy of not continuing negotiations after arbitration numbers are exchanged.

Posted on: August 5, 2011 8:33 pm
Edited on: August 5, 2011 9:26 pm

Bourn fit the Braves, just as Uggla did

NEW YORK -- Trades are supposed to be about filling needs.

Give the Braves credit. They filled needs.

They hadn't anyone hit 30 home runs since 2006, so they needed a power hitter, preferably right-handed. Last winter, they got Dan Uggla.

They hadn't had anyone steal 20 bases in a season since 2005, so they needed a leadoff man who could run. Last Sunday, they got Michael Bourn.

Sure enough, Uggla has 23 home runs, well on his way to a fifth straight year with 30-plus, even though he was lost at the plate for nearly three months. He has 54 RBI, and he has a 26-game hitting streak, too.

And sure enough, Bourn has 40 steals, although 39 of those came when he was still with the Astros.

Two years ago, Bourn stole 61 bases. That same year, the entire Braves team stole 58.

"I had no idea," Bourn said Friday.

Looking back, it makes perfect sense now that the Braves got Bourn, rather than Carlos Beltran, Josh Willingham, Ryan Ludwick, Hunter Pence, Carlos Quentin or any of the other outfielders they were linked to.

They have the middle of the order straightened out, or at least they will once Chipper Jones and Brian McCann rejoin the lineup to go with Uggla and Freddie Freeman. What they didn't have was someone to go at the top.

"Those guys are hard to find," Braves general manager Frank Wren said.

He knows. He's been looking.

Wren said that when he got his top scouts together for a late June conference call, Bourn's name kept coming up. There was a thought last week that the Braves switched tracks and started focusing on center fielders once Nate McLouth and Jordan Schafer went on the disabled list, but Wren said they were always looking for someone like Bourn.

"This guy fit our needs," he said.

The Braves, with their outstanding pitching, play a lot of low-scoring, close games. They realized that they were too dependent on the home run, and that they needed other ways to score runs. But they had so little speed that they ranked 27th in baseball in steals.

The last few days, with exciting rookie Jose Constanza batting ninth and Bourn leading off (as manager Fredi Gonzalez experiments with the pitcher batting eighth), the Braves might have the two fastest players in the game hitting back-to-back.

It's a different look, and one Gonzalez likes.

"[Bourn] creates situations," Gonzalez said. "The defense is uncomfortable. The pitcher is uncomfortable, and sometimes that creates a not-so-good pitch."

It all goes to make the Braves a lot more dangerous offensively, and it makes them a much more dangerous team going into the playoffs.

And, since they got Bourn without surrendering any of their four prized pitching prospects, it makes them dangerous for the next few years.

They have someone who should hit 30 home runs every year. They have someone who should steal 40 bases or more every year.

They traded to fill their needs.

And isn't that how it's supposed to work?

Category: MLB
Posted on: July 31, 2011 9:57 am
Edited on: July 31, 2011 10:30 am

Braves get Michael Bourn from Astros

The Braves have acquired center fielder Michael Bourn from the Astros.

After starting out looking for a big outfield bat (the Braves were one of the teams most interested in Carlos Beltran), the Braves shifted their focus some after putting two center fielders (Jordan Schafer, Nate McLouth) on the disabled list. Bourn, regarded by some as the fastest player in baseball, should help.

In return for the 28-year-old Bourn, who leads the National League with 39 steals, the Astros get Schafer and three minor-league pitchers, Brett Oberholtzer, Paul Clemens and Juan Abreu. Thus, the Braves were able to add an outfielder without surrendering any of their top pitching prospects (as they would have had to do to get Beltran, Hunter Pence or Carlos Quentin). The Astros also included cash to pay part of Bourn's $4.4 million contract.

Bourn will be under Braves control through next year, when he can become a free agent.

Schafer, still just 24 years old, was once considered one of the Braves' top prospects, but he has mostly struggled in the big leagues, with a .223 career batting average and .613 OPS. The Braves put him on the DL this week with a chip fracture in his left middle finger.

"Michael Bourn is a perfect fit for our club, which focuses on speed and defense to match up with our strong pitching," Braves general manager Frank Wren said in a statement.

The Astros have traded away Pence and Bourn, after trading Roy Oswalt and Lance Berkman last July. They could still move pitchers Wandy Rodriguez and Brett Myers, although interest in the two was described as light as recently as Saturday night. New owner Jim Crane, who has yet to officially take over from Drayton McLane, plans to cut the major-league payroll to about $60 million next year (from $70 million at the beginning of this year), and hopes to totally rebuild the organization.
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