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MLB News and Rumors: Marcum, Indians agree on low risk deal

MLB News and Rumors: Marcum, Indians agree on low risk deal
December 17, 2013
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With the offseason now in full spring, news will continue to become more and more frequent. 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: @ajnicholsIBI.

Here are the stories from Monday, December 16th.

Top Stories

  • One day after agreeing to a contract with closer John Axford, the Indians and pitcher Shaun Marcum came to terms on a Minor League contract with an invite to Spring Training. Marcum will earn $1 million dollar if he makes the big league roster, with a potential to earn up to $4 million. The righty also has an opt-out clause if he is not on the Opening Day 25-man roster. Marcum is coming off of surgery for thoracic outlet syndrome, but is expected to be healthy and competing for the 5th rotation spot come February.
  • The Diamondbacks acquired closer Addison Reed from the White Sox in exchange for third base prospectMatt Davidson. Reed is expected to assume the closer's role in Arizona, while Davidson will offer some solid pop from the hot corner in Chicago in 2014.
  • Reliever J.P. Howell reached an agreement to return to the Dodgers on a two-year, $11.25 million contract. The deal also includes a mutual option for 2016.

Other News and Notes

  • Mark Gonzalez of the Chicago Tribune reports the Cubs are interested in Jonathan Sanchez as a reliever.
  • Buster Olney tweeted that the Phillies have expressed to teams that they are very willing to move shortstopJimmy Rollins.
  • Ken Rosenthal reported that the Astros agreed to a one-year, $2.45 million deal with former Indian relieverMatt Albers. The contract also contains a club option for 2015.
  • Rosenthal also said that the Yankees are likely to sign former Orioles second baseman Brian Roberts.
  • MLB.com's Steve Gilbert says the Diamondbacks are hopeful that they can work out a new contract for free agent Eric Chavez before the holiday.

User Comments

Hermie13
December 18, 2013 - 3:11 PM EST
Two other pieces I think that could interest the Cubs in a potential Samardzija trade:

Nick Hagadone and our 1st round competitive balance pick. Hags I believe was drafted by Epstein. We got him from Boston when he was there. Epstein and company have traded for prospects they dealt in the past. 1st round comp pick...well Cubs are rebuilding so an extra pick can always help.
Hermie13
December 18, 2013 - 9:11 AM EST
@Joe

I agree if they want a guy like Lindor, Salazar or Frazier then I pass on Samardzija. I think he is a great fit in Cleveland though. Not an Ace but pretty solid #2. Well over 200 innings and struck out over a batter an inning. Great fit behind Masterson IMO and good replacement for Ubaldo. Under control thru 2015 as well.


No way the Cubs do it straight for Samardzija, but I do wonder if Bourn could interest them. Rumor was they were interested in Ellsbury at one point. OF isn't that great right now, do have some nice specs but a vet in there could help ease the young guys in. Bourn is no Ellsbury but would anchor CF for the next 3 years. Right now Ryan Sweeney is in CF and Junior Lake in LF. I'd probably try and use Bourn in lieu of Brantley even if you still have to throw in prospects.

Do think Boston still makes sense for Bourn....think they also make sense for Cabrera potentially. Sounds like they are open to using Boegarts at 3B again...
Hermie13
December 18, 2013 - 8:59 AM EST
I don't know if this is true, but what I saw as the Rays request for Price...

Santana, Salazar, and Lindor....for Price.

If that's really the asking price then Price won't be moved. I know you ask for the moon and work your way down, but that's pretty damn ridiculous IMO. Santana alone is pretty close to Price.
Joe Chengery
December 17, 2013 - 9:11 PM EST
Willie,

Is there a link about the Indians' inquiry for Price and the reported asking price? Just curious.

Also, is Knapp still under Indians' control? If Knapp can give us anything at this point, I'd consider that a bonus. Would he start at Instructionals, then if all went well, would it be Lake County or Carolina?
Willie
December 17, 2013 - 7:14 PM EST
Reports the Tribe inquired re:David Price is no surprise. Nor is the extremely high price they reportedly requested in return.

That said, I think it's reasonable to say, the price is going to high for more 'affordable' pitching in comparison to the FA mkt, which is slow developing with the upper tier of pitching. I'd really like to see Tanaka posted already, just to see how things are going to shake out.
Joe Chengery
December 17, 2013 - 6:39 PM EST
Whoops, my bad- I wondered if you meant Samardzija, so, essentially, Brantley and Bauer are being added for him, and Schierholtz is essentially a throw-in.

I agree it would probably be more for prospects for Samardzija. Not sure I'm totally convinced about Samardzjia being the answer, especially for what would be quite a high price. I'm not sure Brantley and Bauer would be enough, even with Ramirez. They would probably one of Lindor, Salazar, Frazier, or Brady included. I would not do it for that price. Still would work Bourn toward the Red Sox and Cabrera toward the Mets if possible.
Willie
December 17, 2013 - 6:29 PM EST
Per mlbtraderumors.com Jason Knapp, 23 is back throwing into the 90's and is preparing to make a comeback attempt.
Hermie13
December 17, 2013 - 4:46 PM EST
@Willie

Definitely think a trade could happen. Still can't envision all 3 of Bourn, Brantley, and Stubbs being on the opening day roster. Lots of money there and Stubbs doesn't really fit unless he's platooning with one of Brantley/Bourn and that doesn't seem likely.

That said, do think there's still some guys you could let go. Hermann signed a deal but think he could easily be DFAed and kept around. Same with Wood. Barnes could be an option though being a lefty could keep him around.
Willie
December 17, 2013 - 4:22 PM EST
Who loses their 40 man spot to add Axford? Might we see the Tribe delay this a few days, while they work a trade?
Jim
December 17, 2013 - 11:49 AM EST
Brantley and Bauer for those two would be a fair deal. I know the Cubs like Jose Ramirez as well...

I would have to imagine that the Cubs would want more than those two...but would contemplate almost any deal that would bring a starter of his caliber right now with two years of control
Hermie13
December 17, 2013 - 11:44 AM EST
@Joe

No one was saying Brantley and Bauer for Shcierholtz. I said I would maybe do if Shcierholtz was "included" in a deal (meaning for Samardzija). So it'd be Brantley and Bauer for Schierholtz and Samardzia. Could argue against that...for both sides. Still think prospects are what the Cubs would want.
Joe Chengery
December 17, 2013 - 11:21 AM EST
No way do I do Brantley and Bauer for Schierholtz. Look at his baseball-reference stats here: http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/s/schiena01.shtml

He may have finally cracked double-digit HRs last year (he never hit 10 in a season before last season, same as Brantley), but Wrigley Field is a hitters' park, Schierholtz has a poor K/BB ratio (94/29), and has never played regularly in the AL. I don't see that as an upgrade over Brantley- the power output would be marginally better at best, he's not as good defensively as Brantley (forget about Schierholtz playing CF at all), his plate discipline is much worse, and he'll be 30 next year. I can understand the Brantley is replaceable argument, but Schierholtz is not that guy. I wouldn't do that trade straight-up, let alone include Bauer into it too. Plus, Schierholtz is 3rd-year arbitration eligible and a FA after this season- no way I see the Indians doing that deal.
Dennis
December 17, 2013 - 11:14 AM EST
How tradable is Jose Ramirez since his injury?
Hermie13
December 17, 2013 - 9:33 AM EST
I wouldn't trade Kluber or McAllister for Samardjiza as I think that doesn't really fill a hole.

I've suggested Bauer and an infielder not named Lindor...maybe Jose Ramirez. Bauer's stock is down but think he still could intrigue the Cubs.

Brantley though I think would be an interesting idea for a trade. Wouldn't get it done himself but if you could get Schierholtz included in the deal and move Brantley and maybe a guy like Bauer....I'd do it probably. Schierholtz and Stubbs can platoon in RF with Murphy and Raburn in LF. Shierholtz/Stubbs platoon very well would outhit Brantley.

Maybe try expanding the deal and get a guy like Vogelbach too if you're Cleveland. In any case, I think the Cubs and Tribe match up pretty well. Indians and Epstein n company have matched up on some big trades in the past (Crisp, Martinez, etc)...
Willie
December 17, 2013 - 9:26 AM EST
Just curious, what kind of pkg would it take to get Jeff Samardzija from the Cubs?

Who would you trade?
Corey Kluber, Zach McAllister, Michael Brantley, Drew Stubbs, Lonnie Chisenhall, Jose Ramirez, Cody Anderson, Tyler Naquin?

At this point, it looks like any serious upgrade will have to come through trade(s). Samardzija seems like the type of arm the Indians would inquire on.

Might they be better suited to make a minor trade or two and acq. young SP like Burch Smith (Padres). I would suggest maybe Jose Ramirez for Burch Smith might get a deal done. The Mets are also reportedly in the mkt for a young controllable SS, would they be a match? Maybe Ramirez for Rafael Montero?

From an isolated Tribe fan...
Willie
December 17, 2013 - 9:11 AM EST
Mike Adams of the Phillies had TOS surgery and returned last yr pitching pretty effectively.
Pete
December 17, 2013 - 8:28 AM EST
I understand Marcum is coming off Thoracic Outlet Syndrome surgery. My wife had to have that done, if Marcum's surgery is anything like hers he'll never throw a pitch in the Majors again. Hope for the best but don't count on him.

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