Back to business

December, 4, 2007
The first day of the winter meetings came and went without a blockbuster move. What will the second day in Nashville bring? Stay tuned.

All times ET

1:12 a.m., from Jayson Stark
• Even though the Angels lost out on Miguel Cabrera, they've been telling other clubs that that won't necessarily inspire them to pursue another third baseman such as Miguel Tejada or Scott Rolen. In fact, despite rumors that they had interest in Tejada, they hadn't even met with the Orioles as of Tuesday night.

• How did Cabrera find out he'd been traded? Ozzie Guillen's wife told him. Guillen's wife and Cabrera's wife are close friends. So when Guillen called his wife to tell her that Cabrera had just been traded, she replied: "Guess what? He's sitting right next to me. I'm driving him to the airport."

• The latest starting-pitching name to be linked to the Mets: A.J. Burnett. There were indications that the Mets have inquired about Burnett, whose contract allows him to opt out of his deal next winter if he so desires.

• Nine teams have inquired about Kris Benson, who is recovering from shoulder surgery. So Benson will work out for all interested teams Dec. 17.

10:52 p.m., from Enrique Rojas
• The Diamondbacks are listening to trade offers for closer Jose Valverde, who led the National League with 47 saves in 2007. If Arizona deals the 27-year-old right-hander, Tony Pena, another Dominican, would take over the closer role. Pena went 5-4 with a 3.27 ERA last season and led the club with 75 appearances.

9:56 p.m., from Peter Gammons
• If Darin Erstad doesn't find a job that suits him, there is word that he could return to the University of Nebraska, his alma mater, and be an assistant coach for the football team. A punter in college, Erstad was part of the Cornhuskers' 1994 national championship squad and remains one of Tom Osborne's favorite players.

9:52 p.m., from Jerry Crasnick
• The Cubs don't have much hope of prying loose center fielder Josh Hamilton from Cincinnati. The Reds are willing to trade Hamilton, but they would prefer not to deal him to another club in the National League Central.

• The Cubs, who received almost no power production from the left side in 2007, want to add two left-handed hitting outfielders to their lineup. If they can sign Kosuke Fukudome from Japan, that would fill one spot. They've inquired about Geoff Jenkins, and some people in the organization want to see GM Jim Hendry pursue a trade for the Angels' Chone Figgins, a switch-hitter. But the Cubs probably don't have what it takes to land Figgins. The Angels value Figgins so highly, one person with ties to the Los Angeles organization said the team might ask the Cubs for third baseman Aramis Ramirez in return.

• Scott Boras spent the day meeting with clubs about Andruw Jones, Kyle Lohse and his other free agents. "Some clubs are taking a long-term approach, and some are short-term," Boras said, when asked about Jones. "But those one- and two-year deals people are talking about are not what we're looking for."

9:34 p.m., from Jerry Crasnick
• There's been some speculation that free-agent outfielder Shawn Green might retire if he doesn't find the right fit this winter, but agent Greg Genske said that Green wants and expects to play in 2008. One possible fit: Tampa Bay, where the Rays are looking for a left-handed bat in right field. Tampa has also looked at Geoff Jenkins and Cliff Floyd. Green's defense has slipped in recent years, but he hit .291 for the Mets last season and put up a 1.069 OPS in September.

• Now that the Tigers are on the verge of acquiring Miguel Cabrera from Florida, the consensus is that Detroit will have to trade third baseman Brandon Inge. But Inge has three years and $19.1 million left on his contract, so the Tigers would almost certainly have to assume a portion of that. The Giants, Phillies, Twins, Angels and Brewers are among the clubs in the market for a third baseman. One NL manager said he thinks Inge could return to catching, since he's a fine athlete and broke into the big leagues behind the plate. But Inge hasn't caught since 2004, so that's probably a long shot.

8:44 p.m., from Peter Gammons
• Here are the three pitching prospects the Tigers will send to the Marlins: right-handers Eulogio De la Cruz (3.62 ERA in the minors with a blazing fastball), Dallas Trahern (13-6 between Double-A Erie and Triple-A Toledo) and Burke Badenhop (12-6 between Lakeland and Erie).

8:12 p.m., from Steve Phillips
• The Mets offered Aaron Heilman, Carlos Gomez and Philip Humber for Erik Bedard.

6:20 p.m., from Peter Gammons
• The Tigers have won the Miguel Cabrera sweepstakes. Detroit will get Cabrera and Dontrelle Willis from Florida for six players -- Cameron Maybin, Andrew Miller, catcher Mike Rabelo and three minor league pitching prospects. The deal is expected to be announced later tonight when the physicals and paperwork are completed.

6:10 p.m., from Jayson Stark
• The Royals seem as if they're in on every free agent in baseball. And they're now talking to left-handed reliever Ron Mahay, who is coming off a great year and has a string of bidders that includes the Yankees, Astros, Giants and Rays.

• Since the Padres offered free-agent catcher Michael Barrett arbitration, the Rays and Marlins have both had second thoughts about surrendering the No. 2 pick they would lose because Barrett is a Type A free agent. The Orioles would have interest if they deal Ramon Hernandez. So would the Giants if they trade Bengie Molina. And Barrett always has the option of accepting arbitration from San Diego.

• Officials of two clubs that have been in contact with the Mets used the same expression -- "in trouble" -- to describe their efforts to deal for a starting pitcher. It's believed they haven't talked to either the A's (about Dan Haren) or Orioles (about Erik Bedard) since they arrived in Nashville. And there are indications that they aren't as interested in free agents Livan Hernandez or Carlos Silva as they've been portrayed to be, either.

• The Braves are looking for a backup catcher, and they have kicked the tires on free agent Damian Miller.

• Rockies GM Dan O' Dowd on pitcher Jose Capellan, obtained from the Tigers on Tuesday in a trade for his mirror image, hard-throwing enigman Denny Bautista: "Relievers are like the stock market. Hopefully, we'll hit on this one."

5:55 p.m., from Buster Olney
• Both the Diamondbacks and Dodgers have talked to the A's about Dan Haren. Oakland wanted young pitching in return for the ace.

• The Angels are denying that they're in on Johan Santana.

4:49 p.m., from Jayson Stark
• The Twins and Angels continue to talk about a Johan Santana trade. Many of the same players mentioned in the Miguel Cabrera sweepstakes -- Howie Kendrick, Brandan Wood, Nick Adenhart and possibly Jeff Mathis or Reggie Willits -- would be included in a package for Santana.

• It is believed that the Angels haven't talked with the Marlins since last night, and Miguel Cabrera is off their radar screen -- at least for now.

4:13 p.m., from Jerry Crasnick
• Chris Capuano isn't the only left-handed starter on the Cardinals' shopping list. St. Louis has talked to Cleveland about Cliff Lee, with Anthony Reyes and/or catching prospect Bryan Anderson mentioned as possibilities to return to the Indians. Arizona recently talked to the Indians about Lee, but the teams don't look like a match anymore now that the Diamondbacks have traded outfielder Carlos Quentin to the White Sox.

• San Francisco has expressed some interest in trading for first baseman Ben Broussard, who is being shopped by the Mariners. But the Giants might decide to wait and see if Seattle non-tenders Broussard on Dec. 12, and he becomes available as a free agent.

• Kip Wells isn't likely to attract much interest as a starter after going 7-17 with a 5.70 ERA for St. Louis, so his agents, Alan and Randy Hendricks, are marketing him as a set-up man this winter. Wells has always had a strong arm, and the hope is he might blossom in a new role.

• You can rule out any talk of Pittsburgh trading Jason Bay to Cleveland for a Kelly Shoppach-Cliff Lee package. That one is dead. Bay is Pirates GM Neal Huntington's main trade chip, and the Bucs aren't going to give him away after he's coming off such a down year. Contrary to reports, Pittsburgh has no plans to non-tender outfielder Xavier Nady, who hit .278 with 20 homers and 72 RBIs last season.

3:44 p.m., from Enrique Rojas
• The Royals have expressed interest in Sammy Sosa, according to a source. Sosa's agent, Adam Katz, also represents Jose Guillen, and the two sides are trying to determine some financial numbers that make sense.

3:34 p.m., from Buster Olney
• The Blue Jays continue to talk with the Orioles about left-hander Erik Bedard. Toronto probably has the young pitching to anchor a deal.

3:28 p.m., from Peter Gammons
• The Twins and Red Sox could be getting closer to a Johan Santana deal. Boston has sweetened its offer by adding a fifth player to the trade proposal -- outfield prospect Ryan Kalish, a ninth-round draft pick in 2006 out of Red Bank Catholic High School (Shrewsbury, N.J.).

• The Marlins are still serious about moving Miguel Cabrera to the Angels. Florida would get second baseman Howie Kendrick, young right-hander Nick Adenhart, catcher Jeff Mathis and one other prospect for the third baseman.

3:12 p.m., from Buster Olney
• The Yankees and Twins haven't talked so far Tuesday about Johan Santana, amid increasing indications Santana is going to be dealt to Boston. The Twins are also talking to the Angels, however.

• The Astros and Padres have talked about a trade that would send outfielder Luke Scott to San Diego. And it appears the teams were moving toward a resolution.

• The Rangers continue to talk to the Cubs about Mark Prior. The Padres also have expressed interest.

• The Padres have talked about free-agent pitchers Glendon Rusch and Shawn Estes, and are expected to make a strong effort to sign both players after Thursday's Rule 5 draft.

3:08 p.m., from Jayson Stark
• Talks between the Cardinals and Brewers about third baseman Scott Rolen have cooled because the Cardinals are hesitant to trade Rolen within the division. The clubs were talking about a deal that would have sent Rolen to Milwaukee for pitcher Chris Capuano and a top prospect. The Brewers also would have paid all of the $33 million in salary Rolen is owed over the next three years, while the Cardinals would have assumed the $14 million in deferred salary and what remained of Rolen's $5 million signing bonus. That trade is unlikely to get finalized, but the Cardinals are talking with the Giants and Dodgers about Rolen. It's possible, though not probable, they could complete a deal with one of those teams before the meetings end Thursday.

• A half-dozen teams are waiting for Japanese pitcher Hiroki Kuroda to decide where he'll play. The Mariners are believed to be the front-runners for Kuroda, with the Diamondbacks, Mets, Phillies, Dodgers and Cubs all interested as well. There are indications the Mariners made Kuroda an offer in the neighborhood of four years, $45 million. No other team is known to have offered him more than a three-year deal.

2:56 p.m., from Amy Nelson
• The Orioles and Dodgers may be close on a deal that will send left-hander Erik Bedard to Los Angeles, a baseball source said. The O's are in need of a center fielder and a closer who can play at the major league level, and the Dodgers seem willing to part with outfielder Matt Kemp and reliever Jonathan Broxton, who could come in a close in lieu of Chris Ray, out for the year after Tommy John surgery. "They want Bedard bad," said the source.

2:33 p.m., from Amy Nelson
• The A's are looking to move Dan Haren -- but only for the right deal. They reached out to the Tigers and asked for Cameron Maybin and Andrew Miller, but Detroit won't trade both, two baseball sources said. Oakland won't come to the table without those two players included in any talks.

2:24 p.m., from Jerry Crasnick
• According to one National League executive, the Cardinals are getting "a lot of play" on pitcher Anthony Reyes, a former top prospect who has failed to click with manager Tony La Russa and pitching coach Dave Duncan. "He's a four-seam guy, and they want him to be a sinkerballer," the executive said of Reyes. Last year, Reyes went 2-14 with a 6.04 ERA in 107 1/3 innings with the Cardinals.

• The Cardinals have also made it clear that they're willing to talk trade about any of their outfielders other than No. 1 prospect Colby Rasmus. That means Rick Ankiel, Chris Duncan and Jim Edmonds could all be in play here in Nashville. Edmonds, however, has a no-trade clause and would have to sign off on any deal. He's from Southern California, and the Padres have been mentioned as a possibility.

1:58 p.m., from Steve Phillips
• The Blue Jays and Giants have floated the idea of an Alex Rios trade for Tim Lincecum or Matt Cain. Another name that's come up in discussions is third baseman Troy Glaus. But there are some health issues surrounding Glaus, who had surgery in September to repair a nerve in his left foot. If the Jays move Glaus, they would have to consider adding offense.

•  The Jays are kicking the tires on Erik Bedard, and Toronto could include A.J. Burnett in a package for the Orioles' ace. Bedard is Canadian, and Burnett, who could opt out of his contract next winter, has family ties to the Baltimore area -- something that is important to O's owner Peter Angelos.

1:10 p.m., from Jerry Crasnick
• The Rockies touched base Tuesday with Joe Bick, the agent for free-agent second baseman Marcus Giles.

12:55 p.m., from Jerry Crasnick
• Contrary to speculation, the Astros have little to no interest in free-agent pitcher Jon Lieber, a club official said. Houston needs to upgrade behind staff ace Roy Oswalt, but the Astros already owe Woody Williams $6.5 million for 2008. Houston is inclined to give young pitchers Troy Patton and Matt Albers a shot at the back end of the rotation.

• The only one of the injury-rehab pitchers who interested Houston at all was Matt Clement who is coming back from shoulder surgery, but the Astros have decided to pass on him as well.

• Houston and Colorado have discussed a deal that would send second baseman Chris Burke to the Rockies, but the two teams don't appear to be a good match. The Astros would like to add a closer, but they are not interested in paying Brian Fuentes more than $6 million next season. They would rather just plug Chad Qualls into the closer role and try to add a set-up man.

• Andruw Jones' options have dwindled in the past week. First, the Nationals filled their center-field void by acquiring Lastings Milledge in a trade with the Mets. Then, the Royals signed Jose Guillen to play right, making it likely that they'll just keep David DeJesus and Joey Gathright as their center-field combination. Right now, the Dodgers and Giants look like the best fits for Jones, but only at the right price. One baseball official who knows Jones said the outfielder would prefer to stay in the National League. "Comfort is important to Andruw, and he's comfortable in the National League," the official said.

12:50 p.m., from Peter Gammons
• The Twins and Red Sox are supposed to meet this afternoon to continue discussions on the Johan Santana deal. Sources indicate the Twins are still trying to decide between a 3-for-1 trade for center fielder Jacoby Ellsbury, infielder Jed Lowrie and pitching prospect Justin Masterson and a 4-for-1 swap that substitutes lefty starter Jon Lester and center fielder Coco Crisp for Ellsbury.

12:43 p.m., from Jayson Stark
• The Phillies and Ryan Howard's agent, Casey Close, plan to meet and resume discussions about a long-term contract for the slugger. Those talks broke down in spring training, and the Phillies ended up renewing Howard's contract for $900,000. This year, Howard is arbitration-eligible and hopes to get a deal done similar to the one Albert Pujols (seven years, $100 million) signed with Cardinals in 2004.

12:30 p.m., from Peter Gammons
• The Tigers and Marlins have had preliminary talks about a blockbuster trade -- Miguel Cabrera and Dontrelle Willis to Detroit for a package of young players that reportedly could include outfielder Cameron Maybin and left-hander Andrew Miller -- but Florida GM Larry Beinfest needs a lot more and doesn't think it's serious.

12:28 p.m., from Enrique Rojas
• The Mets are interested in pursuing Livan Hernandez, if they are unable to land a big-name starter. "Livan is one of the Mets' most important priorities," said a source. "He's the main Plan B if they don't get a stellar pitcher in a trade."

11:45 a.m., from Amy Nelson
• The Mariners have expressed an interest in Mark Loretta, a source said. The Mariners met with Loretta's agent on Tuesday morning and said they'd like to sign him as a utility infielder. Seattle will likely offer the veteran what the Rockies would offer, somewhere in the neighborhood of $2 million for one year. Loretta was offered arbitration by the Astros and could take a 50 percent pay cut if he signs with another team.

11:25 a.m., from Amy Nelson
• The Orioles and Dodgers met last night and discussed Miguel Tejada, according to sources. But according to one source, the match between the two teams did not appear to be there. Tejada has let it be known that he is only willing to move to third base if he goes to a contending team.

• Teams inquiring about Erik Bedard have been told that it's going to take a superior package of prospects, and the Orioles are telling clubs they already have four teams with very promising packages.

• Brian Anderson hasn't stepped on a big league mound since since May 2005, when he was with Kansas City, but the left-hander is attempting a comeback. The Rockies reportedly have an interest, and Anderson also pitched an NL manager for a job at the hotel bar last night. He's working out twice a day and expects to be throwing off a mound by mid-December. After having Tommy John surgery in July 2006, Anderson feels he has unfinished business and doesn't want to walk away from the game. He's currently in Nashville with his cable access sports show, broadcasting a half-hour live every day.

11:03 a.m., from Buster Olney
• The Red Sox are looking for a left-handed hitting corner infielder who can back up first baseman Kevin Youkilis and third baseman Mike Lowell and have expressed serious interest in free agent Mike Lamb. In 124 games last season, Lamb hit .289 with 11 homers, 40 RBIs and a .366 on-base percentage. Lamb, 32, is drawing interest from other teams, and may have to make a choice between having a chance to play regularly for another team or be a part-time player with Boston.



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