Storylines: Could the Rays, Indians revisit trade talks?
In this MLB News and Notes segment, I will be giving occasional reports on the latest news and rumors throughout the MLB. I also will try to tweet news and rumors as I see them, so feel free to follow me on Twitter: @AndrewIBI.
Here are the stories from Friday, July 11.
- Scouts for the Indians have been told to focus their attention on Rays minor leaguers, MLB Daily Dish's Chris Cotillo reported, and Cotillo has wondered if this could suggest that Cleveland is revisiting talks for David Price. Cleveland and Tampa discussed a Price trade during the offseason, as Terry Pluto of the Cleveland Plain Dealer reported, that involved Carlos Santana and Danny Salazar going to the Rays. (Tampa Bay also had interest in Francisco Lindor but the Indians consider Lindor virtually untouchable in any trade.) A new trade package, Cotillo speculated, could be Santana/Salazar for Price and a couple of Rays prospects, hence the Tribe's interest in scouting Tampa's farm system.
News and Notes:
- Red Sox hurler Jon Lester said yesterday that extension talks could open back up "tomorrow or four months from now," but Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com reported that the former option seems highly unlikely. In fact, Heyman said, the likeliest outcome now is that no serious run at a new deal will take place until after the season.
- Padres closer Houston Street expects to be dealt, he told Jim Bowden on MLB Network Radio on Sirius XM. The club has already approached him to discuss that possibility, he added. San Diego has had enough discussions regarding Street that a deal does indeed appear likely, according to Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com. The club is, however, somewhat hesitant to part with both Street and set-up man Joaquin Benoit, Heyman added.
- The Angels are one club looking at Street, Jon Heyman reported. The club's interest was reported Sunday by Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports. Los Angeles has also considered Jonathan Papelbon of the Phillies, but his contract is an obvious turn-off. (On the other hand, of course, he would presumably require less of a prospect return to acquire.)
- Rafael Soriano needs 32 more games finished to cause his $14 million club option to vest, but the Nationals closer says that vesting option or not, he wants to return to Washington in 2015, MLB.com's Bill Ladson reported. Soriano would need to get up to the 62-finish mark (a career high) to make it.
- The Mets have made Bartolo Colon available in trades, ESPN New York's Adam Rubin reported. The team isn't thought to be seriously negotiating a Colon trade at this time, though a Major League source thinks the Mets will start hearing more offers on the veteran right-hander over the next week. It was reported last week that the Mets were listening to offers for the 41-year-old Colon, who fits as a trade chip given his contract ($3.75 million remaining this season and $11 million in 2015) and the fact that New York has the young pitching depth to take Colon's spot in the rotation both this season and next. The Mets could wait until past the July 31st deadline to move Colon and "it is not a foregone conclusion that he will be dealt" at all, Rubin wrote.
- Kendrys Morales' first venture into free agency lasted much longer than the switch-hitter would have liked, and after signing a one-year deal with the Twins in June, it sounds as if he's very open to signing a contract that would prevent him from hitting the free agency again this winter. Darren Wolfson of 1500 ESPN spoke with Morales' agent, Scott Boras, who "gushed" about how much his client loves playing for the Twins. A long-term deal is "certainly in play," Wolfson added. Of course, it remains to be seen whether the Twins themselves are open to such a proposition.
- Red Sox outfielder Jonny Gomes is on the Royals' list of targets as the team continues its search for a right-handed bat, ESPN's Jerry Crasnick reported. Kansas City has been rumored to be looking for outfield and bench depth in the wake of Nori Aoki's struggles as the everyday right fielder.
- Rangers assistant GM A.J. Preller will receive a second interview for the Padres' general manager job, Gerry Fraley of the Dallas Morning News reported. Of the dozen or so candidates known to have interviewed for the job, Preller is thought to be the first to receive a second meeting with San Diego's upper management team.
- David Robertson said there have "been zero talks" between his representatives and the Yankees about a contract extension, Anthony McCarron of the New York Daily News reported.
- The Blue Jays acquired first baseman Brett Wallace from the Orioles, David Hall of the Virginian Pilot reported. Roch Kubatko of MASNsports.com reported that the O's will be receiving cash considerations in return. This will be Wallace's second stint with the Blue Jays organization, as Toronto originally acquired him from the A's in exchange for Michael Taylor, only to flip him to the Astros seven months later, in exchange for Anthony Gose.
- The Blue Jays released right-hander Frank Francisco, Baseball America's Matt Eddy reported.
Fact is, Naquin is blocked in this org. Bourn/Brantley short term and then there's Zimmer/Frazier right behind him, who have higher ceilings. Naquin may turn out to be the best CF of them, who knows, but from a GM perspective it makes sense to include him in a deal, as it would be dealing from a strength.
Similarly, I'd be willing to deal Erik Gonzalez too. Would have the added bonus of freeing up a 40 spot.
Santana is regressing. He has power vs LHP and OBP as his strengths, but I honestly think that a rotation of Aguilar/Urshela and Perez can make up the most of it, esp. vs LHP.
I still would be willing to do whatever it takes to retain Salazar and offer Santana, Naquin, Frazier, House + (BP arm or low A arm, maybe Kime or M.Brown if they want more upside or B.Price/Sturdevant). If you value Frazier+House+BP arm/low A arm over Salazar than the deal offers more value than just Santana/Salazar.
Price, Kluber, Salazar for 2015 does sound like a deep PO run. I'd be willing to give up a lot for that, even for only one season.
As for the money, with Masty, ACab and Santana off the hook (~25mil) , the Tribe can easily afford to pay Price for one season. I can't think of a MLB team that would not sign Price in his prime for basically 1y/17-20mil, it's a no brainer.
It also explains why multiple CF (Allen & Zimmer) and looking to Papi as an OF this year in the draft after Frazier last year and Naquin two years ago....
This team does not hit enough to win this year.
Blake Snell - LHSP
Ryne Stanek - RHSP
Jose Mujica - RHSP
Jose Castillo - LHSP
Jeff Ames - RHSP
Mike Montgomery - LHSP
Grayson Garvin - LHSP
Richie Shafer - 3b/1b
Jake Hager - Inf.
Kean Wong - 2b
Hunter Lockwood - LF/1b/DH
I still believe in Salazar, as I do think he needs more time to really realize the consistency of the potential he has shown in spurts. If the Indians are not as convinced (and recall that they were convinced a few years ago when many others, including Tony, wondered what the Indians were doing putting Salazar on the 40-man roster- how smart was that move? Plus, you have to wonder if the Indians have really soured that much on Salazar that quickly, as they know full well that Price won't be here longer than 2015, so it's really the prospects that will make this deal, not Price- it's debatable the Indians can even reach the postseason in 2014, even with Price onboard, leaving only one shot beyond that in 2015 to reach the postseason and win the World Series with Price), then I could see why they might entertain this idea.
Let's be clear, though: Price will only be here through 2015 at the latest- there's no good reason for him to take a two-year extension when he'll be 30 in 2015- he'll want what could be his last big contract when 2015 is up, and there's no reason to think the Indians will be the ones to pay that large contract.
In truth, the real key for this deal to go down is the prospects the Indians would get back from Tampa, and that might be why, as inexplicable as that might be, why prospects would be coming back to the Indians in this proposed deal. The Rays would get three cost-controlled solid at least, if not more (borderline spectacular for Santana, potentially spectacular for Salazar, potentially a decent backup in Naquin, possibly more), while the Indians would get a higher, more consistent player in Price, but only for the next year-and-a-half.
And, while a first-round supplemental pick for Price would seem likely in the 2016 Draft or a major haul in a 2015 Deadline trade if the Indians fall out of contention, the prospects would still need to be included in the unfortunate event something happened to Price that would heavily negate either of those aforementioned scenarios (either a massive drop in performance, or a more realistic possibility, a serious injury).
The question is, if this scenario is legitimate, and the Indians are seriously considering it, who might the Indians be looking at from the Tampa system, and who can they realistically expect to get along with Price for the presumed price of Santana, Salazar, and Naquin (as a PTBNL)?
Then go after hitters in offseason with the money u get back when cabby and masty leave. About 20 mill. Promote Lindor and off we go. And get naquin here to so trade Murphy. Avg hitter at best with no speed.
So if the Indians do trade Santana than Tony is right in suggesting that the Indians need to find a middle of the order bat to replace him.
Lets get this straight Andrew...
BA-.207 / Runs-39 / HR-14 / RBI-37
IP - 40 / Wins - 1 / K's - 47 / ERA - 5.53 / WHIP - 1.62
IP - 147.2 / Wins - 9 / K's 164 / ERA - 3.23 / WHIP - 1.07
If the Indians didn't do this trade they would be the biggest FOOLS in baseball.
Price replaces Salazar who is still unproven.
Gomes already replaced Santana behind the plate
You can get anyone to fulfill that "TREMENDOUS" .207 BATTING AVERAGE that we would lose with Santana!!!
One thing that makes me wonder about this rumor--Santana is signed through 2016 with a 2017 team option. But his salary takes a big bump next year and 2016, at least by Tampa standards (I think it goes from 2.5M this year to 6M next year and 8M in 2016). Maybe that's cost-controlled enough by Rays standards but their payroll is significantly lower than the Tribe's.
Santana hits LHP, but the Indians could do without him and hope that Aguilar/Perez/Urshela deliver, especially vs LHP. If the Rays are high on Santana as a C, then they probably value him more than the Indians, so he should be included, if they want and value him. Gomes/Perez should be the C for the foreseeable future. As a 1B/3B/DH Santana clearly has lesser value. He is controllable for 2-3 more seasons for fair money.
The question then becomes: how do you value Salazar? He's just 24yo, controllable for 5 more years and already flashed greatness. I fully expect him to have 2-3 really great/AS-caliber seasons, but I doubt he will ever become a consistent FOR. Inconsistency and injuries will probably ruin some seasons.
So, under those premises the equation becomes: 1.5 great seasons of Price vs. 2.5 AVG seasons of Santana and 2.5 good-great seasons of Salazar.
Not sure the Rays need to add prospects, as the Indians will get a supp 1st in the 2016 draft for losing Price in FA.
Not sure I would do it. I'd like to keep Salazar, though I understand that no deal will happen withour one of him, Bauer or Lindor. I would rather overpay and give them Santana+Frazier+House+Lugo or Colon, simply because a rotation of Price, Kluber and Salazar has the sound and upside of a World Series winning one. Dream big
Why would the Rays need to send "prospects" with Price to acquire Danny and Carlos?.. Where ever this story originated, it didn't have common sense or reality attached to it.. The only reference to this story is a vague interest "story" from at least some time ago by a non-referenced source that who's name attached says "This is BS!!" that Chris Cotillo (who is that?) at a blog known for BS picks up and writes a follow up story to the BS..
Less than zero