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Free Agency and Trades
Dodgers acquire Octavio Dotel and Cash from Pirates PDF Print E-mail
Free Agency, Trades, and Signings
Written by Joe Tetreault   
Saturday, 31 July 2010 16:44

Fox Sports Ken Rosenthal tweeted the news of the deal that sent Octavio Dotel to the Los Angeles Dodgers in exchange for James MacDonald and minor leaguer Andrew Lambo. The Dodgers also picked up $500,000 to cover part of the money still owed to their new setup man.

Dotel spent saved 21 games during his first season in Pittsburgh, appearing in 41 contests with an ERA of 4.28. His peripheral numbers were consistent with his career averages, making him an excellent addition to the Dodger pen. But even with the included cash, he did not come cheaply.

MacDonald was rated Los Angeles number two prospect by Baseball America prior to the 2009 season. He appeared in 63 big league innings in 2009, but his inconsistent control sent him back to Triple A to work on his issues for the 2010. He was called up to the big leagues less than two weeks ago, and had been hit hard in his only start and two of his three relief outings.

Lambo was the only prospect more highly regarded by Baseball America prior to the 2009 season. But a lackluster season as a 20 year old with the Dodgers Double AA club and a 50 game suspension for a second positive test for marijuana has dulled his standing with the club. Lambo's bat helped him leap from Rookie ball to Double A in one season. Pittsburgh picked up two quality players.


Joe TetreaultJoe Tetreault is Managing Editor of the Business of Sports Network, which includes The Biz of Baseball, The Biz of Football, The Biz of Basketball and The Biz of Hockey. He can be contacted here through The Biz of Baseball

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Post-Trade Deadline Round Up PDF Print E-mail
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Free Agency, Trades, and Signings
Written by Joe Tetreault   
Saturday, 31 July 2010 16:40

Giants Add Reliever Javier Lopez

Lefty Reliever Javier Lopez is on his way to the city by the bay in exchange for John Bowker and Joe Martinez. Lopez has appeared in 50 games, winning two games with an ERA of 2.79.  He's primarily a lefty specialist.

Bowker came to San Francisco after putting up huge power numbers in their farm system. But after struggling as a 24 year old rookie, Bowker never got a full-season shot with the Giants.  For his big league career he owns a slash line of .238/.285/.394 in 513 plate appearances.  As a lefty in PNC park, he could breakout in a very big way.

Martinez worked as a starter in the minors, but split between starting and relieving in his limited major league experience.  At 27, he's hardly a prospect, but he could be called on to give the Pirates a different look in the rotation for the balance of 2010.

Red Sox Send Ramon Ramirez to Giants

The Giants weren't done, sending minor leaguer Daniel Turpen to the Red Sox in exchange for Ramon Ramirez.  The Red Sox righty reliever had a 0-3 record with a pair of saves for Boston this season.

Turpen pitched primarily for Double AA Richmond in the Eastern league.  He was 5-5, 4.09 ERA in 37 relief appearances with solid but unremarkable peripherals.  The 23 year old righty likely will be organizational depth for Boston.

Marlins Add to Pen with Will Ohman

The Florida Marlins picked up Will Ohman from the Orioles for Rick Vanden Hurk. Ohman in his first season with the Orioles had an ERA of 3.30, but had a WHIP of 1.600 in 30 innings.

Vanden Hurk has bounced back and forth between Triple and the majors for the last four seasons. In that time he has started 32 games for the Marlins and pitched 155.2 innings, while striking out 152 batters and giving up 174 hits.  The Orioles have optione dhim to Triple AAA Norfolk to groom him for a role in their rotation.

Braves pick up Minor Leaguer Wilkin Ramirez

The Braves acquired outfielder Wilkin Ramirez fromt he Detroit Tigers for a player to be named later or cash considerations which will be determined no later than November 20, 2010.

Ramirez hit .216 with four doubles, two triples, four home runs and 14 RBI in 41 games with Triple A Toledo of the International League.  In 56 games with Double A Erie this season, he hit .241 with 10 doubles, four triples, 15 home runs and 41 RBI.  Ramirez had been designated for assignment on July 28th.

Details of the other deadline moves are coming shortly.


Joe TetreaultJoe Tetreault is Managing Editor of the Business of Sports Network, which includes The Biz of Baseball, The Biz of Football, The Biz of Basketball and The Biz of Hockey. He can be contacted here through The Biz of Baseball

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Dodgers Deal for Ted Lilly, Ryan Theriot PDF Print E-mail
Free Agency, Trades, and Signings
Written by Joe Tetreault   
Saturday, 31 July 2010 13:14

The Cubs disappointing season prompted this afternoon's deadline deal that sent Ted Lilly, Ryan Theriot and $2.5 million to the Dodgers for Blake DeWitt and prospect Kyle Smit and Brett Wallach. The Dodgers needed the money included due to the uncertainty of the clubs financial situation. The New York Post's Joel Sherman had first word that the deal was done.

Lilly has been a mainstay in the Cubs rotation since 2007 posting the best numbers of his career in his three and a half seasons in Chicago's north side. In his Cubs career, Lilly owns a 3.70 ERA and very strong peripherals. His 3-8 record on the year is the product of poor run-support. In the more spacious Dodger Stadium, with a better offense on the field, Lilly can expect more satisfying results.

Theriot went from starting shortstop to starting second baseman when the Cubs called up Starlin Castro. His underperformance at the plate spelled his eventual doom in Chicago. This season the numbers are dreadful - the worst of his career. His batting average looks respectable at .284, but his OBP is just .320 and his slugging percentage (.327) illustrates that many of his hits were singles.

For them, the Cubs get an immediate improvement at second base. DeWitt has a lower batting average, but his overall slash line is superior at .270/.352/.371. In addition, DeWitt turns 25 later this month. He's under team control until 2014. Alongside Castro, he give the Cubs an interesting, young and talented double play duo.

Wallach has won all six of his decisions for Great Lakes in the Single A Midwest League. A third round pick of the Dodgers in the 2009 draft, he's put up solid peripherals and stands out as a projectable pitcher with a big league pedigree.  His father, Tim, played 17 seasons for the Expos, Dodgers and Angels.

Smit washed out as a starter early last season. He was just promoted to Double A Chattanooga after a year and a half of almost exclusive work in the bullpen. The numbers are promising as a reliever with a K-rate of 8.2 K/9 IP at both Advanced A Inland Empire and Single A Great Lakes over the last two seasons.


Joe TetreaultJoe Tetreault is Managing Editor of the Business of Sports Network, which includes The Biz of Baseball, The Biz of Football, The Biz of Basketball and The Biz of Hockey. He can be contacted here through The Biz of Baseball

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Three Team Trade Lands Ryan Ludwick in San Diego, Jake Westbrook in St. Louis PDF Print E-mail
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Free Agency, Trades, and Signings
Written by Joe Tetreault   
Saturday, 31 July 2010 11:09

The Cardinals, Indians and Padres consummated a three-team deal this afternoon. San Diego shored up their offense adding Ryan Ludwick. The Cardinals picked up Jake Westbrook and Padres pitching prospect Nick Greenwood as well as cash. The Indians will get Padres prospect Corey Kluber.

The Padres add Ludwick's .281/.343/.484. batting line as they push to stay atop the NL West. He'll take over in right field and hit right behind Adrian Gonzalez and ahead of Chase Headley in the Padres lineup. Ludwick had a breakout season in 2008 his first full year with the Cardinals.  He's never replicated the great numbers of that year, but has provided plenty of production behind Albert Pujols in the Cardinals lineup.

Ludwick became somewhat expendable in St. Louis with the play of Jon Jay who will take over right field.  While Jay cannot sustain his .396/.447/.604 batting line, St. Louis gains a starting pitcher to move Jeff Suppan out of the rotation (and possibly off the roster). With the money they receive from the Padres, they cover some of the salary differential between Ludwick and Westbrook.

Westbrook is coming off a pair of injury plagued seasons. He's chewed up innings for Cleveland, but has been mostly average in the process.  His peripheral numbers are at or below average, but may improve in the National League. His 6-7 record and 4.65 ERA will slot in after Chris Carpenter, Adam Wainwright and Jaime Garcia.

In addition, they pick up Greenwood, who is in his first full season of minor-league ball and has made 17 starts for single A Fort Wayne in the Midwest League. He has split eight decisions with a 4.15 ERA in 95.1 innings pitched.  His peripherals are middling, though the low home run rate and solid walk rate offer hope that he can blossom into a serviceable back of the rotation starter.

Kluber was also not among the notable Padres minor leaguers as ranked and rated by the prospect watchers this spring. But has had a solid season for the San Antonio Missions. He leads AA Texas League in strikeouts per 9 IP (9.98 K/9 IP). With 30 starts between this year and last at AA, the Indians may be aggeressive and see what their new 24 year old righty can do at AAA Columbus.


Joe TetreaultJoe Tetreault is Managing Editor of the Business of Sports Network, which includes The Biz of Baseball, The Biz of Football, The Biz of Basketball and The Biz of Hockey. He can be contacted here through The Biz of Baseball

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Trade Deadline Round Up PDF Print E-mail
Free Agency, Trades, and Signings
Written by Joe Tetreault   
Saturday, 31 July 2010 11:02

With four hours to go before the the non-waiver trading period ends, teams are still discussing deals for the stretch run.  Since our last report four deals have been finalized so here's a quick look at the doings that went on last night and this morning.

Rays Add Chad Qualls

MLBlogger Steve Gilbert reports Tampa Bay took on the entirety of the $1.48 million still owed to Chad Qualls, agreeing to ship a player to be named later to the Diamondbacks for the reliever with the terrible results, but solid peripherals.  Qualls lost the closer job in Arizona after a horrible start to the season.  Part of that was luck influenced as Qualls saw his hit rate skyrocket to 14.4 H/9 IP.  That's borne on the back of a .434 BABIP.  The flurry of hits does not explain the increase in his walk rate, unless he began nibbling to compensate for the number of balls that were dropping for hits.  Possible, but difficult to say definitively.  Qualls seems a likely candidate to bounce back and if he does gives the Rays another quality arm in their bullpen.

Little word has circulated on the Player to be named later.  It is entirely possible that the player will be named after season ends.  If the player is a draft pick signed within the last 11 months, he would not be eligible to be traded until after the beginning of the waiver period this afternoon. Rather than attempt passing the player through waivers, the Rays would simply hold onto the player and deal him when regualr transactions resume.  The player may also be conditional on Qualls' performance.  More details as they become available.

Arizona Ships Chris Snyder to Pirates

The dismantling of the Diamondbacks continues apace. Chris Snyder was sent to Pittsburgh and in exchange the Diamondbacks pick up a pair of spare parts with little discernible value.  According to Jack Magruder of Fox Sports Arizona, Bobby Crosby and Ryan Church are the return on Snyder, who lost the starting catching job last season to Miguel Montero and could not reclaim it when Montero was injured this season.  For his career, Snyder has posted a .233/.335/.402 batting line. On the season he's shown better platye discipline and power than his career averages.  Pittsburgh may choose to hold onto Snyder or flip him.  According to Magruder, the Diamondbacks will send some cash to cover a portion of the $5.75 million owed to Snyder for 2011.

Crosby signed with the Pirates this offseason and produced a putrid batting line of .224/.301/.295 in 175 plate appearances. His excellent first season and a half in Oakland ran aground on the shoals of injury.

Church suffered famously with concussion-related symptoms in New York before being dealt to the Braves for Jeff Francoeur last July. The Braves non-tendered him rather than go to arbitration. He's eligible for arbitration at the end of this season as well, but thanks to his horrid .182/.240/.312 batting line is likely to be non-tendered by the Diamondbacks as well.

Yanks Grab Austin Kearns

After picking up Lance Berkman, the Yankees agreed to send Cleveland a player to be named later or cash for outfielder Austin KearnsFox Sports Ken Rosenthal reported the deal.  Kearns enjoyed a mild revival of his career after signing with the Indians this offseason for $750,000. In 342 plate appearances he put up a .272/.354/.419 batting line while playing all three outfield positions.  He gives the Yankees more depth as they push for back to back titles.

Mets Deal Mike Jacobs to Jays

Andy McCullough of the Newark Star-Ledger has the details.  Mike Jacobs has been in AAA since April.  His batting line in Buffalo is a solid if unremarkable .260/.313/.478 illustrating his reputation for prodigious power and inability to get on base remains intact.  The Mets will get a player to be named later.


Joe TetreaultJoe Tetreault is Managing Editor of the Business of Sports Network, which includes The Biz of Baseball, The Biz of Football, The Biz of Basketball and The Biz of Hockey. He can be contacted here through The Biz of Baseball

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Rangers To Add Cristian Guzman for Two Prospects PDF Print E-mail
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Free Agency, Trades, and Signings
Written by Joe Tetreault   
Friday, 30 July 2010 19:10

Jon Daniels continued his aggressive pursuit of a Rangers postseason, swinging his fourth trade of the season and landing the Nationals' Cristian Guzman to fill in for the injured Ian Kinsler and provide depth up the middle. MLB.com's Bill Ladson broke the story of the latest Rangers deal. Texas is also expected to receive some cash to cover part of the remaining money on Guzman's contract which was for a guaranteed $8 million for 2010.  Guzman has 10-5 no trade protection, so the deal will not be official until the 24-hour approval period passes.

Guzman had been exclusively a shortstop prior to this season whent he emergence of Ian Desmond pushed him over to second base.  His fielding has been all over the charts, varying from adequate to good to poor, often changing from year to year.  At second he has been below average based on John Dewan's plus/minus system.  Texas however hopes that Guzman's bat is intact. While not super adept, Guzman owns a career batting average of .272 but it's largely empty as his slugging percentage (.385) is nothing special and his on-base percentage (.308) is rather poor.  Playing in a hitter's paradise may help his batting average and slugging percentage.

In exchange the Rangers will send Double A pitching prospects Ryan Tatusko and Tanner Roark to the Nationals. Tatusko is enjoying good results in Frisco. But at age 25, he is old for the Texas League. His 9-2 record and 2.97 ERA are undergirded by shaky peripherals.  He has a strikeout rate of just 5.2 K/9 IP.  His walk rate is hardly impressive at 3.6 BB/9 IP.  The saving grace comes int he form of just two home runs in exactly 100 innings pitched.

Roark's 10-5 record and 4.20 ERA don't look as impressive compared to Tatusko. Using the peripheral numbers, however, Roark is the superior prospect. He has better strikeout (6.4) and walk (2.8) numbers, but in his 105 innings, he's allowed six more home runs accounting in part for the larger ERA.  The biggest advantage that Roark holds is his age.  He's 23 and age-appropriate for AA.


Joe TetreaultJoe Tetreault is Managing Editor of the Business of Sports Network, which includes The Biz of Baseball, The Biz of Football, The Biz of Basketball and The Biz of Hockey. He can be contacted here through The Biz of Baseball

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Yankees Poised to Pick Up Lance Berkman PDF Print E-mail
Free Agency, Trades, and Signings
Written by Joe Tetreault   
Friday, 30 July 2010 18:59

Houston stepped up their efforts to break up their expensive group of veteran players. Their deal to send Lance Berkman to the New York Yankees is very different from the one that sent Roy Oswalt to the Phillies. In this case Houston solely sought salary relief.  According to Tim Brown of Yahoo Sports, the deal is finalized but Berkman's no trade clause includes a 24-hour window when he can change his mind and elect to block the deal. The deal will be official Saturday afternoon.

Houston is expected to send $4 million to the Yankees to cover much of the almost $7.4 million owed to Berkamn between 2010 salary and his $2 million buyout of his 2011 option.  In exchange the Astros will receive Mark Melancon and Jimmy Paredes.

Berkman has truly entered his decline phase. His .245/.372/.436 is well-removed from his mid twenties to early thirties when his average slash line was .303/.415/.563. He still has excellent plate discipline and good power. He'll slot in as DH and occasionally spell Mark Teixeira at first. As a switch hitter, he'll be able to take advantage of Yankee Stadium's welcoming right field stands against right handed pitchers.

Melancon rose through the Yankees system as a reliever, making his big league debut last season at age 24.  He has had good strikeout numbers and exhibited good command with very good walk rates.  His big league numbers have been less impressive, but his 20.1 innings pitched are by definition a small sample size.  In those 20.1 innings, he's struck out 13 and walked ten while giving up 20 hits and 13 runs.  He's expected to join the Astros bullpen.

Paredes fits the profile of a utility infileder. He's played all over the infield and his bat doesn't profile as a starter on a contending team. His slash line is .282/.312/.408 at Charleston in the Sally League (Class A). He may have some upside but he'll need to breakout soon to have a chance at realizing it. He could eventually become a younger, cheaper Jeff Keppinger.


Joe TetreaultJoe Tetreault is Managing Editor of the Business of Sports Network, which includes The Biz of Baseball, The Biz of Football, The Biz of Basketball and The Biz of Hockey. He can be contacted here through The Biz of Baseball

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Edwin Jackson Heads to Chicago White Sox PDF Print E-mail
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Free Agency, Trades, and Signings
Written by Joe Tetreault   
Friday, 30 July 2010 15:18

But Will It Just Be a Quick Layover?

According to a pair of tweets from Sports Illustrated's Jon Heyman, the White Sox have acquired Edwin Jackson from the Arizona Diamondbacks for pitchers Dan Hudson and David Holmberg. Speculation is rampant that Jackson will be flipped as part of a second deal that will net them Adam Dunn from the Nationals. The second deal has not been confirmed.

Jackson is onto his fourth team since 2008. In his only season with the Diamondbacks, Jackson owns what is likely the highlight of the Diamondbacks season - an ill-advised 149 pitch 1-0 no-hitter against the Rays on June 25th. Since then he's given up a .330/.412/.496 batting line to opposing batters in five starts which has generated a 7.24 ERA in 27.1 innings pitched. On the season he's given up nearly a baserunner and a half per inning and leads the NL in earned runs allowed and wild pitches. His best success came last season in Detroit. If he is moved to the Nationals, a return to a pitcher-friendly park will certainly help.

Hudson recently returned to the big leagues for the White Sox replacing the injured Jake Peavy in the rotation. Hudson was regarded highly among prospect watchers, consistently in the top three among White Sox minor leaguers. His brief major league experience consists of a call up last September and his three starts this year. In that time, he's been wild, allowing 5.2 BB/9 IP but with good hit, strikeout and home run rates. If he can command his pitches better, he could be a solid number two starter in Arizona.

Holmberg just turned 19 and in his second season of professional ball. In eight starts he's compiled a 1-1 record and a 4.46 ERA. His peripherals are middling at best, but he's a young lefty who may blossom as he continues to grow and develop.

The trading deadline is less than 24 hours from now, with deals coming in waves. As alluded to above, Chicago and Washington remain in discussions surrounding Jackson and Dunn. As details break, we'll keep you up to date.


Joe TetreaultJoe Tetreault is Managing Editor of the Business of Sports Network, which includes The Biz of Baseball, The Biz of Football, The Biz of Basketball and The Biz of Hockey. He can be contacted here through The Biz of Baseball

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Minnesota Secures the Services of Matt Capps, Nats Grab a Pair of Prospects PDF Print E-mail
Free Agency, Trades, and Signings
Written by Joe Tetreault   
Friday, 30 July 2010 08:38

Minnesota shored up their bullpen for the stretch run striking a deal with Washington for their All-Star closer Matt Capps. In exchange the Nationals receive Twins prospects Wilson Ramos and Joe Testa. MLBlogger Bill Ladson has the details of the deal. The Twins also received cash from the Nats to cover some of the remaining salary owed to Capps for 2010.

Capps signed with Washington this offseason after he was non-tendered by the Pirates. In 47 appearances with the Nationals this season, Capps was 3-3, 2.74, allowing 51 hits with nine walks and 38 strikeouts. His 26 saves were the fourth most in the National League and seventh most in all of baseball. Capps was also selected to the 2010 National League All-Star team. His walk rate was a nifty 1.8 BB/9 IP, which is significantly better than a regular reliever. Because he doesn't rely on strikeouts, though is K-rate is a very good at 7.8 K/9 IP he is dependent on his defense. He'll fit right in with Minnesota and their pound the zone philosophy of pitching.

Ramos is among the better catching prospects in the game, but was effectively blocked in perpetuity by Joe Mauer. He has spent most of the 2010 season at Triple-A Rochester. In 71 games with the Red Wings, he batted .241 with 14 doubles and five home runs. He also appeared in seven games for the Twins this season, batting .296 with three doubles. His career minor league line is a solid .284/.331/.427 as he's advanced through the Twins system.

Testa, signed by the Twins as a non-drafted free agent in 2008, began this season at Double-A New Britain. In 21 games with the Rock Cats, he had a 1-4 record, 8.25 ERA, allowing 28 hits with 16 walks and 21 strikeouts. Since being demoted to Single-A Ft. Myers, Testa appeared in 15 games for the Miracle, splitting two decisions with an ERA of 3.30 allowing 39 hits with 12 walks and 29 strikeouts. At 24, his momentum blunted in his first try to breach the AA level, Testa's prospect status is seriously in doubt.


Joe TetreaultJoe Tetreault is Managing Editor of the Business of Sports Network, which includes The Biz of Baseball, The Biz of Football, The Biz of Basketball and The Biz of Hockey. He can be contacted here through The Biz of Baseball

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Padres Pick Up Miguel Tejada for Pennant Chase PDF Print E-mail
Free Agency, Trades, and Signings
Written by Joe Tetreault   
Thursday, 29 July 2010 18:48

Back to the National League goes Miguel Tejada. Dan Connolly of the Baltimore Sun tweeted the news first that Baltimore had dealt him after a disappointing half season back in Camden Yards. In exchange San Diego sends AA pitching prospect Wynn Pelzer to the Orioles. The Padres also get cash to help cover the balance of $2 million still owed Tejada on the contract he signed this offseason to rejoin Baltimore.

Tejada's shorter stint saw him play exclusively at third base after spending the entirety of his career at shortstop. It's unclear how the Padres plan to use Tejada but it's been reported he'll see time at shortstop and possibly at third. With Everth Cabrera struggling with injuries and ineffectiveness in his sophomore season, the Padres have a pronounced need at short. Chase Headley could also shift to the outfield to give Tejada occasional starts at third.

Tejada has not fared well in his return to Baltimore.  His decline has been a difficult sight at times. Hitting .269/.308/.362 in 428 plate appearances put him very close to replacement level for third basemen. San Diego is hoping that a playoff push will spark a return to the .313/.340/.455 he posted in 2009 for the Astros.

The Orioles have elected to promote Josh Bell to take over at third. Bell came to the club from the Dodgers in a deadline deal for reliever George Sherrill last season.

Pelzer was highly regarded by prospect watchers appearing in the top ten lists among Padres' prospects. He's struggled with control in the Texas League issuing 56 walks in 94.1 innings pitched. At 24 he is not young for AA, nor is he old for his league.  Connolly speculated that Baltimore may shift him back to relief duties, in particularly closing, which was his role in college. If the Orioles can help him harness his command he could be up with the big club in a year.


Joe TetreaultJoe Tetreault is Managing Editor of the Business of Sports Network, which includes The Biz of Baseball, The Biz of Football, The Biz of Basketball and The Biz of Hockey. He can be contacted here through The Biz of Baseball

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