Storylines: Stanton, Marlins discussing record deal
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 Thursday, Nov. 13.
- The Marlins and superstar right fielder Giancarlo Stanton are discussing a record-breaking $300 million contract extension that would span "at least" 10 seasons, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reported. Jon Heyman of CBS Sports heard that the $300 million+ deal being discussed could span as long as 12 years. That deal would run through Stanton's age-36 season. The two sides have also discussed shorter contracts, according to Rosenthal's sources, but it's not surprising to see Stanton's agent, Joel Wolfe of the Wasserman Media Group, eyeing a record-setting figure. Stanton, who somewhat incredibly just turned 25 years old last week, is under team control through the 2016 season as things currently stand and is projected to earn $13 million in arbitration next year.
- Angels center fielder Mike Trout and Dodgers lefty Clayton Kershaw won the American League and National League MVP Awards, respectively. The 23-year-old Trout won in unanimous fashion — the first to do so since Ken Griffey Jr. in 1997. Trout's 420 points were the most possible, and rounding out the top 10 in the AL were Victor Martinez (229), Michael Brantley (185), Jose Abreu (145), Jose Bautista (128), Robinson Cano (124), Nelson Cruz (102), Josh Donaldson (96), Miguel Cabrera (82) and Felix Hernandez (48). Kershaw edged out Marlins slugger Giancarlo Stanton, finishing with 355 points to 298. Behind Kershaw and Stanton in the top 10 were Andrew McCutchen (271), Jonathan Lucroy (167), Anthony Rendon (155), Buster Posey (152), Adrian Gonzalez (57), Adam Wainwright (53), Josh Harrison (52) and Anthony Rizzo (37).
- The Indians are kicking the tires on a familiar name, as Paul Hoynes of the Cleveland Plain Dealer reported they've reached out to Justin Masterson about a potential return. The Indians are likely interested in Masterson only on a one-year deal, which, as Hoynes noted, may be the preferred option for Masterson anyway. Masterson pitched through a number of injuries last season, and if he's healthy in 2015, he could be a prime rebound candidate and position himself for a much nicer deal on the open market in 2015-16.
- Hoynes also refuted previous reports that the Indians would have some interest in buying low on Ubaldo Jimenez. Though Jimenez had one of his best seasons in Cleveland under pitching coach Mickey Callaway, the organization isn't interested in trying to fix the inconsistent righty.
News and Notes:
- The Rangers extended general manager Jon Daniels and assistant GM Thad Levine, according to Jon Heyman of CBS Sports. Daniels' contract was slated to expire at the end of the 2015 season. Both extensions are believed to be five-year deals, according to Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News, who added than an official announcement of the extensions could come as soon as today.
- The Red Sox are trying to set up a visit to Boston for Pablo Sandoval, perhaps as early as next week, according to the Boston Globe's Nick Cafardo. Sandoval has drawn interest from four clubs, per Cafardo, but the Red Sox and Giants are the two most serious suitors. David Ortiz has been pitching Boston to Sandoval and trying to persuade him away from San Francisco, Cafardo heard.
- Jon Heyman of CBS Sports wrote that the Dodgers are serious about making a run at Russell Martin but still facing competition from the Cubs, Pirates and Blue Jays. The Pirates, Heyman heard, are said to have already made a strong bid to retain Martin. Despite their acquisition of Francisco Cervelli, he noted, the Pirates are not out on Martin.
- The Angels remain open, but not committed, to dealing second baseman Howie Kendrick or third baseman David Freese if they can bring back an arm, according to Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com. The former is unsurprisingly drawing more interest at the moment, with the Yankees and Blue Jays among the teams that have inquired into his availability. Heyman said that the Halos are more likely than not to keep Kendrick. The 31-year-old is coming off of perhaps his best season as a professional. He will earn $9.5 million this year before hitting the open market. Nevertheless, the team is still listening to proposals that would help bolster its rotation depth, which remains an area of focus. The club is comfortable considering that possibility due to the presence of Gordon Beckham, Heyman said, though he also seems to be a plausible non-tender candidate. Presumably, Grant Green could be a factor as well if the Angels create an opening up the middle.
- Talks picked back up yesterday between the Orioles and free agent Nick Markakis, according to Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com, and there is renewed optimism that a four-year pact can be reached. The sides are discussing a deal that would pay Markakis between $10 million and $12 million a year, Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports reported, who said it "should get done."
- The Nationals made Ian Desmond a seven-year, $107 million extension offer last year, Adam Kilgore of the Washington Post reported, though that also included contract deferrals that would have reduced its true value. Negotiations are expected to pick back up in the months to come, per Kilgore, and that offer will presumably be the starting point. Desmond, who put up another strong year and is now one year away from the open market, is one key piece of the team's increasingly pressing long-term strategic questions.
- The Mets do not have any near-term intentions to approach second baseman Daniel Murphy about a contract extension, GM Sandy Alderson told ESPNNewYork.com's Adam Rubin. At the same time, the team is "reluctant" to deal him away at present, said Alderson. That could change, of course, if the club adds a new shortstop or otherwise adds offense, per the report.
- After sitting out the 2014 season, left-hander Barry Zito is looking to make a comeback in 2015, agent Scott Boras told reporters, including ESPN's Jerry Crasnick, at the GM Meetings in Phoenix this week. Crasnick quoted Boras: "He called me on the phone in August and said, 'I'm ready to go. I want to pitch.' He set up the plan and did all of that."
- The Phillies inked left-hander Elvis Araujo to a major league deal, the club announced yesterday. The towering lefty never moved past the Double-A level with the Indians, but was hard to score on at that level and has looked good in the Venezuelan Winter League. Araujo, 23, has struggled with control at times in his minor league career, including over his 21 Double-A frames, over which he walked 15 batters. But he did miss bats, posting a career-high 9.0 K/9 at both the High-A and Double-A level last season.
The best case scenario with Masterson would be he rebounds to 2013 form (which is certainly possible if healthy) and potentially offer him a QO next year and lands us an extra pick. A realistic scenario is that he ends up under performing or struggles with health issues, but in that scenario I could see him being pushed to the bullpen where he could play a major factor as a late inning power arm who dominates righties and keeps the ball on the ground. For 7-8 million plus incentives, it seems to be worth the risk.
My head hurts reading some of these comments.
I think they can RF affordably via trade (Scott Van Slyke $500k) or with a FA signing (Rios 2/$18M?) and the corresponding trade of David Murphy.
Salazar or House is likely bumped in this scenario, but perhaps it makes Salazar or Bauer an enticing trading chip. .If that were the case, I like both, but would hope to keep Bauer.
If Tomas is the power hitting RF he's rumored to be then he'd be worth a shorter team. But that would be a big gamble for a team like the Tribe. I suspect they'll make a run at Kang instead, unless the price has really dropped on Tomas.
Yoan Moncada is the IFA that really intrigues me, he's 20 yrs old and could be the best talent to come out of Cuba yet, but there's now way the Tribe will invest in the speculated amount ($30-40M) he will likely sign for.
Masterson reportedly dealt with impingement in his throwing shoulder and knee problems. I suspect the big guy got messed up a little and one injury may have been the result of another, that's hard to say or know. I have had impingement in my shoulder. It can lead to a rotator cuff tear - like mine did. However, with a cortisone injection and a cautious approach I suspect he'd be fine.
As for Fausto Carmonandez, he'll likely also have a market, enough so I hope the Indians stay away.
As to Masterson returning......please, God, no! Sign Fausto instead on a one year deal.