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Even fresher batch o' rumors- Padilla seeks 36 million

Hot Stove Report: Will Moose be loose?

Yanks right-hander could become free agent on Nov. 15

By Jim Street / MLB.com


The future of veteran right-hander Mike Mussina is a hot topic in New York.

The 15-game winner, who compiled the lowest ERA among Yankees starters last season with a 3.51 mark, could become a free agent on Nov. 15. That is the deadline for the Yankees to pick up a $17 million option. If not, Mussina would receive a $1.5 million buyout.


Several reports indicate that Mussina's agent, Arn Tellem, has started contract talks with the Yankees for a new deal, but the talks are in the early phases.


While the Yankees probably would want to re-sign the rotation mainstay for a lower price, he has, according to the New York Post, told friends that the crosstown rival Mets would be a welcome option. The newspaper also noted that the Philadelphia Phillies would be appealing to Mussina, a Pennsylvania native.


In other Hot Stove League developments on Friday:



American League



Red Sox: While the Red Sox have been extremely quiet regarding free-agent players they might be interested in this offseason, it is believed the club is seriously considering bidding for the rights to Japanese pitching sensation Daisuke Matsuzaka.


The deadline for entering a bid in the posting process is next Wednesday at 5 p.m. ET. The Boston Globe reports that the MVP of the World Baseball Classic and Seibu Lions ace right-hander has been scouted by Boston's international scouting department, led by director Craig Shipley.


The Red Sox coaching staff continues to change. The Globe reported on Friday that first-base coach Bill Haselman rejected an offer to manage the Class A Lowell Spinners, citing family considerations, and is leaving the organization. Among those thought to be under consideration for the first-base coaching job in 2007 is Triple-A Pawtucket skipper Ron Johnson, who worked with the big-league club in September. Haselman would join Dave Wallace [pitching coach] and Ron Jackson [hitting coach] as members of Terry Francona's staff not returning next season.


Yankees: Another sizzling topic in the Big Apple is the future of outfielder Gary Sheffield. The New York Daily News reported that Sheffield's advisor, Rufus Williams, has contacted the Yankees to ask about their intentions.


According to sources, the agent was informed that the organization would let their plans be known by Sunday. The Yankees will likely pick up the $13 million option, then trade Sheffield, possibly to the Cleveland Indians.


The New York Times reports that there are indications the AL East champions will cut ties with right-hander Jaret Wright by paying a $4 million buyout on his $7 million contract.


Indians: The Plain Dealer reports that the Indians' interest in re-signing former second baseman Ronnie Belliard has waned.


Belliard's numbers fell off after his July 30 trade from the Indians to the Cardinals, and the Indians are concerned about the lack of range they saw from a middle infield of Belliard and shortstop Jhonny Peralta last season.


The newspaper also reported that the Indians have expressed an interest in free-agent outfielder Moises Alou, figuring he could complement a lineup that includes left-handed batters Grady Sizemore and Travis Hafner. Other possibilities could be Sheffield or -- according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch -- Luis Gonzalez. But Gonzalez bats left-handed, which makes him less of a target at this point.


Tigers: Club president/general manager Dave Dombrowski said in an interview with WDFN that while he wouldn't completely close the door on free agent Barry Bonds, he's not the kind of player the Tigers are looking at this offseason. Contrary to rumors linking Bonds with his old manager Jim Leyland, the Tigers aren't planning to make a run at the 42-year-old slugger, or anybody who would be a full-time DH.


White Sox: Brian Anderson returned home early from winter ball in Venezuela after losing 20 pounds due to a reported stomach ailment, according to the Chicago Tribune,


Anderson had planned to stay in Venezuela for only a month, focusing on becoming more of a power hitter and improving his base-stealing ability.


He batted .225 and had a .290 on-base percentage this past season, his first as the starting center fielder. Coupled with this latest setback in Venezuela, it could put the stellar defensive player on the hot seat. Rookies Ryan Sweeney and Josh Fields are making strides and could challenge Anderson for the final outfield starting job, assuming Anderson isn't used as part of a trade.


Rangers: Texas is looking into the possibility of making a bid for Matsuzaka. The Rangers are eager to begin taking advantage of Akinori Otsuka and start dipping into the Far East market.


The organization also is pushing hard trying to re-sign outfielder Gary Matthews Jr., pitcher Vicente Padilla and utilityman Mark DeRosa. They expect Matthews to test the free-agent market and have had their most dialogue with Padilla and his agent.


Angels: The Angels will not pursue Bonds in their search for a power bat, according to the Los Angeles Times, which cited several sources. Bonds could possibly solve the club's lack of offensive punch and lives nearby in Beverly Hills, but the Angels will turn their attention and resources elsewhere.


Devil Rays: Right-hander Brian Meadows became a free agent on Friday when the Devil Rays declined the option on his contract. The 30-year-old went 3-6 with eight saves and a 5.17 ERA in 53 relief appearances for the Rays last season.


National League



Phillies: Left fielder Pat Burrell is willing to waive his no-trade clause to play for the San Francisco Giants, according to the Philadelphia Daily News. Burrell, who is owed $27 million over the next two seasons, has been shopped for the past year. He blocked a proposed trade to Baltimore in July by exercising his no-trade clause, telling the Phillies he would accept a deal only to New York or Boston.


The Daily News report said the Giants might want to include Armando Benitez in the deal, and could ask Burrell to move back to first base. Burrell could also remain in left field if Bonds doesn't return to San Francisco.


Also, the Phillies aren't thrilled with the price tag expected to be placed on free agent Aramis Ramirez, and may seek lower-cost alternatives at third base, according to the Bucks County Courier Times. Wes Helms and Mark DeRosa have topped their list.


Meanwhile, PhillyBurbs.com reports that free-agent catcher Mike Piazza could fit into the Phillies' offseason picture. If he signs with the Phils, the future Hall of Fame receiver could finish his career near his childhood home of Phoenixville, a Philadelphia suburb.


Cubs: Ramirez says he hopes to stay with the Cubs, telling the Associated Press in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic that several teams have contacted his agent to discuss his availability. Ramirez established career highs in home runs (3http://forum.brewerfan.net/images/smilies/glasses.gif and RBIs (119) this season. He recently exercised an opt-out clause in his contract and filed for free agency.


"The Cubs are my first choice, but I'm a free agent because I had to give myself the opportunity," Ramirez told the AP.


He was to have been paid $11 million in 2007 and $11.5 million in '08. However, there was an opt-out clause that gave him the option of terminating the deal after the '06 season.


"I don't feel that I'm taking a risk by becoming a free agent," he said. "I don't know how much I'm going to sign [for] because I don't like to discuss figures, but it would have to be more than the $11 million."


Rockies: Kenny Lofton and Steve Finley have been added to the growing list of possible free-agent targets in center field, according to The Denver Post. Dave Roberts, Gary Matthews Jr. and Darin Erstad also have been mentioned.


Manager Clint Hurdle told MLB.com about the Rockies' interest, saying, "Right now Dan [O'Dowd, the Rockies' general manager] is making calls, but any decision won't come for awhile, until we know what the market is. It's just too early to tell. We're exploring free agency and we're going to explore trades. It's a situation where if we don't find what we're looking for, we'll stick with what we have."


Mets: General manager Omar Minaya said during a conference call that he has started negotiations with free-agent pitchers Orlando "El Duque" Hernandez and Chad Bradford, and expressed optimism that an agreement would be reached with both right-handers.


Astros: Contrary to some rumors, the Astros are not interested in trading for Sheffield or signing Sean Casey as a free agent. Regarding Casey, the Astros want Lance Berkman to play first base permanently and would not have a place for Casey, also a first baseman.


Cardinals: General manager Walt Jocketty confirmed that he's had contact with nearly all of the team's pending free agents. St. Louis' top priority in the near term is addressing Jim Edmonds' situation, since Edmonds has an option that must be exercised or declined by Nov. 15. Additionally, the Cardinals have at least an interest in Matsuzaka, though the GM did not say that the club has decided for sure to bid in the posting process.


Padres: Veteran middle infielder Craig Counsell is a free agent of interest to the Padres, who also are looking for a manager to replace Bruce Bochy.


Giants: Alou told the Associated Press in the Dominican Republic that he is, "more than 99.9 percent sure" he won't be back with the Giants next year. "I think I still have a chance to play another year or two, but it will be with another organization."


Alou, 40, hit .301 with 22 home runs and 74 RBIs this season. In 14 years in the Majors, he also has played for the Pirates, Expos, Marlins, Astros and Cubs.


Dodgers: General manager Ned Colletti has indicated he will not be aggressively pursuing Matsuzaka, but he does seek a middle-of-the-order bat and a starting pitcher. He is rumored to have interest in Japanese pitcher Kei Igawa, along with free agents Alfonso Soriano, Carlos Lee and Ramirez.


Gary Carter is being considered for the manager job at Triple-A Las Vegas.

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These are all just preliminary broad speculation. The "Hot Stove" reports don't start getting good for a while. Probably some time closer to the Winter meetings, they'll start including stuff that any average Joe could have just guessed on their own.


The only thing that either of the two list of rumors posted here brings to light is that there are a ton of free agent signings, and trades that need to be made before some poor, desperate sucker will be willing to take Jenkins. Also, it appears that none of the big market GM's even look at stats, as evidenced by the fervor that they are chasing Soriano. Honestly Sheffield would be a far better acquisition due to his better offense, and only one year left on his cheaper deal compared to th 5-7 year, and $75-$119 million Soriano will get. It means that someone may actually WANT Jenkins, and give something up for him.

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and is now a butcher in the field
So, to a lesser extent, is Soriano. And in 4 years, when Soriano is in the twilight of his career, but still has a couple of years at $16-$19 million per year, Shef will be not costing the team that gets him a dime, and that team can use the saved money on a free agent younger and better than Soriano, like Jason Bay.
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I understand that. I just don't think Sheffield is worth $15 million next year.


And in the outfield, Soriano's defense is far superior. BP had Soriano at 9 runs above average while Sheffield was 2 runs below in only 39 games between first and the outfield.

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Jason Schmidt has reportedly narrowed his choices to the Giants and Mariners. Those of you who were dreaming in that direction may stop now.


http://forum.brewerfan.net/images/smilies/frown.gif http://forum.brewerfan.net/images/smilies/frown.gif http://forum.brewerfan.net/images/smilies/frown.gif http://forum.brewerfan.net/images/smilies/frown.gif

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So, referencing the thread title -- where exactly is the "Jason Schmidt update" in that article? And why is his status relevant, seeing as how there's no plausible way the Brewers can keep up with the impending bidding war for his services? Dude is gonna be up for markets like NY, Bos, LA, Chi, Stl. Not pessimism, but realism -- the Milwaukee Brewers have NO SHOT, and CANNOT COMPETE with the kind of money he's going to command
Stearns Brewing Co.: Sustainability from farm to plate
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The latest update lists 8 teams who are interested in Mark Mulder, St Louis is the only NL Central team mentioned.


The DRays update says the Mets may be ready to deal Heilman, and says TB wants him as a starter if he's available.


There's mention, again, of Boston's willingess to deal Manny, but that does not seem likely.


Japanese 3B, Akinori Iwamura, age 27, will be "posted" next week, watch for him in MLB next season.



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I just don't see the Brewers actively pursuing a FA SP. If the best available SP's come from a list like Ted Lilly, Jason Marquis, Ramon Ortiz, Mark Redman, Aaron Sele, or John Thomson, we could probably just try to resign Ohka.


Other "name" SP's are probably not going to be worth the $$ they command or simply be more than we can afford (i.e. Mussina, Mulder, Schmidt, Suppan, Weaver, Zito).


A few intriguing names (depending on $$ of course) could be Vicente Padilla (maybe falls through the cracks after the "name" guys are gone?), Steve Traschel (one year stopgap?) or Randy Wolf?


But I would guess we'll either be going with what we already have or picking something up via trade.

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If Dotel is considering a Non-roster invitation to Spring Training with the Mets isn't there a team out there that would offer a little bit more? I have no idea of his health status and it may be that the best he can hope for is a NRI, but given the name I'd guess someone will bite on potential.
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