Mets Merized Online » MLB News & Notes Thu, 12 Jan 2017 01:57:15 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Orioles Pessimistic On Trumbo, Interested In Bourn Tue, 10 Jan 2017 20:27:38 +0000 mark-trumbo

According to Roch Kubato of MASN, the Orioles and Mark Trumbo have not made any progress in their contract discussions.  While it was noted the Orioles remain interested in re-signing Trumbo, it is believed the two sides are not going to be able to reach a deal.

In a separate report from Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports, the Orioles are interested in signing free agent outfielder Michael Bourn to address the team’s outfield defense.

The Orioles signing either player could have an impact on the Jay Bruce market.  Earlier in the offseason, it was reported the Mets were interested in trading Bruce for Orioles reliever Brad Brach.  According to reports, the Orioles were more interested in Curtis Granderson, and they wanted the Mets to pay part of the salary of either outfielder that would have been traded in a potential deal.

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Teams Are Still Asking About Andrew McCutchen Sun, 08 Jan 2017 20:35:50 +0000 mccutchen

Despite repeated statements by Pirates GM Neal Huntington that Andrew McCutchen is not available, teams continue to ask about the Bucs center fielder, according to what sources are telling Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe.

Cafardo says the Seattle Mariners could be one of those teams despite recently acquiring Jarrod Dyson after dealing Seth Smith to the Baltimore Orioles.

McCutchen, 30, is a five-time All-Star and finished in the top five of the NL MVP voting every year from 2012-15, while actually winning the award in 2013.

However, last season was not very kind to McCutchen as he endured the worst season of his career, batting .256/.336/.430 with 24 homers and 79 RBI. His defense in center field has also reached an all time low.

McCutchen is owed $14 million in 2017 and he comes with a team option worth $14.5 million for the 2018 season. That’s not too bad for teams that may want to gamble that last year was a fluke and that Cutch will bounce back.

Huntington created a real problem for himself as it was no secret he was aggressively shopping McCutchen at the Winter Meetings. It’s going to tough to see a star like McCutchen, who wears his heart on his sleeve, face all those trade questions in spring training, and that’s why many believe there’s still a chance he will be dealt.

The Mets reportedly checked in on McCutchen last month, but there was never any traction between the two teams and talks never progressed to anything serious. One MLB insider told MMO that the Mets were simply “kicking the tires.”

With GM Sandy Alderson admitting that the team expects payroll to be lower than the current $150 million level by Opening Day, the Mets would have to move both Jay Bruce and Curtis Granderson to make room for McCutchen, and quite honestly they are having a problem just moving one of them.

Eventually, the Mets will find a team that will take Bruce off their hands even if they have to eat $5 million dollars. That will leave the Mets with Yoenis Cespedes in left, Michael Conforto in right, and a platoon of Curtis Granderson and Juan Lagares in center.

And you know what? I believe the Mets outfield will be one of the top producing outfields in 2017. Cespedes could have his best season yet, Conforto is too good not to bounce back with a breakthrough season, and a Grandy & Lagares platoon in center will be more productive than you think.

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Rosenthal: Mets Now Likely To Include Cash In Bruce Deal Fri, 06 Jan 2017 21:31:58 +0000 jay bruce

In a new report from Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports, one ”rival GM” says the New York Mets should have declined the $13 million option on Jay Bruce. He also asserts that not only is Bruce in low demand now, but he was also in low demand when the Mets acquired him for Dilson Herrera and Max Wotell at the trade deadline.

Based upon the statements from this rival GM, Rosenthal speculates the Mets will likely have to include cash in any potential Bruce trade. Moreover, Rosenthal states that even with the Mets including money in a deal, the return for Bruce is still likely to be minimal.

It should be noted that earlier this offseason Joel Sherman of the New York Post reported the Mets were not interested in eating any of Bruce’s or Curtis Granderson‘s contract as part of any trade. At the time of this report, the Mets were rumored to have been involved in trade discussions with the Orioles. Earlier today the Orioles traded for left-handed hitting outfielder Seth Smith.

Even with this latest bit of bad news on the Bruce trade front, the Mets picking up his $13 million option has served a purpose. According to one Mets official, picking up his option did give them insurance in the event they lost Yoenis Cespedes and also gave the Mets some leverage in contract negotiations. “When you buy insurance, it doesn’t come for free,” said the Mets official.

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Reds Agree To One-Year Deal With Drew Storen Tue, 03 Jan 2017 21:34:53 +0000 drew storen 2

According to Chris Cotillo of MLB Daily Dish, the Cincinnati Reds have reached an agreement with free agent reliever Drew Storen on a one year deal worth $3 million dollars. He can earn an additional $1.5 million via incentives for appearances and games finished.

Storen, 29, had a down year in 2016, going 4-3 with a 5.23 ERA (4.21 FIP) and a 1.335 WHIP in 57 appearances for Toronto and Seattle. However, from 2010 to 2015 he was an integral part of the Washington Nationals bullpen, serving as their closer at times and posting a 3.02 ERA and 1.129 WHIP in 164 relief appearances while racking up 164 saves.

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Rob Manfred Looking at Ways to Improve Pace of Play Thu, 29 Dec 2016 11:00:07 +0000 manfred-rob

Major League Baseball commissioner, Rob Manfred, is continuing to explore ways in which he may be able to speed up the pace of play in today’s game. The commish spoke with John Harper of the NY Daily News about the possible ways he may look to do this.

In Minor League baseball, a 20-second pitch clock is utilized to help speed up the pace of play. If a pitcher does not start his windup before this 20-second clock ticks to zero, a ball is awarded to the batter.

“The reason I like the clock is not that I’m looking to force somebody to do something, but I think it is a constant reminder of the need to move things along, and I think that’s really important in terms of dealing with the pace-of-play issues,” Manfred said.

“It’s had great results in the minor leagues. Quantitative data shows that it made the games go faster, but equally important, players don’t complain about it. They get used to it and they work within it.”

This could be a decent rule to implement to the Major League level as it is not too intrusive to changing the integrity of America’s pastime. It will help to speed things along quite a bit while upping the pressure on a pitcher in high leverage situations. No longer will they be able to stalk around the mound and compose themselves while readying to face a batter in a key moment of the game.

On the more controversial front, Manfred has explored limiting the usage of relievers.

“I don’t want to pre-judge these issues. The easiest things to deal with are dead time. How much time does it take a batter to get into the box? How much time is there between pitches? How much time does it take to effectuate a pitching change? There are lots of things around the concept of a pitching change. How quickly does the guy get in from the bullpen? How many warm-up pitches does he need?

“Those are all non-competitive things. When you get into dictating the use of a particular kind of player that affects the competition more directly, you have to go slower.”

The commissioner does not go into detail on what this may look like but it is hard not to ponder what this could mean. Could we see a minimum on how many batters a reliever must face when entering a game? Could this eliminate the lefty specialist who just comes in to face that one batter? It is interesting to think where this may go and how it effects a team’s philosophy of putting together a bullpen.

Pitching changes and pinch hitters have been the ultimate game of chess between opposing managers for years. Changing this rule would certainly be a controversial one to say the least. It though cannot be argued on the impact it may have in the change of pace in a game where at times you may see four pitching changes in just one inning.

With Manfred continually looking for ways to keep baseball up with the times, there is certain to be more changes coming. At times though it also hard not to worry at just how much change Manfred may be looking to do with our favorite game.

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Angels Sign Free Agent Outfielder Ben Revere Sat, 24 Dec 2016 01:16:43 +0000 ben-revere

The Los Angeles Angels have agreed to a one-year, $4 million dollar contract with free-agent outfielder Ben Revere, as reported by’s Buster Olney. Incentives could increase the total value of the deal to $6.25 million.

Revere, 28, had a career worst season for the Washington Nationals in 2016, after suffering an oblique injury to begin the season. He batted just .217/.260/.300 with 44 runs scored and 14 stolen bases in 375 plate appearances.

A career .306 hitter entering last season, the speedy center fielder will look to bounceback next season with the Angels where he’ll likely serve as their fourth outfielder.

A former first rounder with the Minnesota Twins, Revere had some value as the long end of a platoon with his left-handed bat. Given his .234 BABIP and excellent contact rate, a return to his previous form is not out of the question.

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Phillies Acquire Clay Buchholz Tue, 20 Dec 2016 16:59:35 +0000 clay-buchholz

According to Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports, the Philadelphia Phillies have acquired Clay Buchholz from the Boston Red Sox in exchange for second base prospect Josh Tobias.

The 32 year old Buchholz has had an uneven career with the Red Sox posting a career 81-61 record with a 3.96 ERA and a 1.303 WHIP.  Notably, Buchholz struggled last season, and he was demoted to the bullpen for a stretch.  Overall, Buchholz would make 21 starts and 16 relief appearances going 8-10 with a 4.78 ERA and a 1.328 WHIP.  Buchholz is scheduled to be a free agent after the season.

Tobias was the Phillies 2015 10th round draft pick out of the University of Florida.  Last season, Tobias split time between the Sally and Florida State Leagues.  In his combined 127 games at these levels, he hit .291/.362/.422 with nine homers and 69 RBI.

Given Buchholz’s $13.5 million salary next year, the Phillies have presumably obtained him to round out their starting rotation.  With the Phillies giving up a former 10th round draft pick, the move seems like a low risk high reward move for a rebuilding team.

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Orioles Pull Offer to Mark Trumbo Off the Table Sun, 18 Dec 2016 14:54:24 +0000 mark-trumbo

Negotiations between the Baltimore Orioles and free agent Mark Trumbo may have come to an abrupt end as the O’s have decided to pull the offer to their former slugger, according to reporter Roch Kubatko of MASN Sports. The deal the O’s had on the table was reportedly for four years and worth $52 million dollars, far short of the $80 million that Trumbo is believed to be seeking.

Trumbo, who turns 31 next month, led the league with 47 home runs last season while batting .256/.316/.533 and posting a 120 OPS+ and collecting 108 RBIs in 159 games for the Orioles. He played 95 of those games in right field, but his poor defense relegated him to the DH spot for more than a third of his playing time.

The Orioles reportedly had the best offer on the table to Trumbo and were very aggressive in trying to bring him back after a solid offensive campaign with the team. Kubatko mentions that last year, the O’s and first baseman Chris Davis had a similar breakdown in negotiations, but the two sides ultimately came to an agreement.

So at least for the time being, Trumbo remains a part of a large group of power-hitting first basemen and outfielders that are still unsigned almost two months into the offseason. Edwin Encarnacion, Jose BautistaPedro AlvarezMike NapoliAdam LindBrandon MossMark Reynolds and Chris Carter are among some of the big bats still available in the free agent market.


The breakdown in negotiations with the Orioles might open the door for the Colorado Rockies who are reportedly very interested in trying to land Trumbo to play first base and allow them to move the recently signed Ian Desmond to the outfield. The Rockies signed Desmond to a five year, $70 million dollar contract last week and forfeited their first round pick (No. 11 overall) in next year’s draft in the process.

If the Rockies are able to land Trumbo, they would then certainly deal one or two of their current outfielders which include David DahlCharlie BlackmonCarlos Gonzalez and Gerardo Parra. It’s believed that Blackmon or Gonzalez will be flipped for some help in the rotation despite ownership’s assurances to both players recently that they are not being actively shopped. Certainly, the addition of Trumbo would change that.

Both CarGo and Blackmon are coming off very solid offensive campaigns with the latter looking like a nice option for the Mets who lack a true everyday center fielder. What makes Blackmon all the more impressive is his .939/.926 home/road splits in OPS.

Blackmon, 29, batted .324 last season with 35 doubles, five triples, 29 home runs, 111 runs scored and 17 stolen bases while batting leadoff for the Rockies. He still has two years of team control.

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Brad Ziegler Signs With Marlins Sat, 17 Dec 2016 01:43:26 +0000 brad ziegler

The Miami Marlins have signed free agent reliever Brad Ziegler to a two-year, $16 million contract according to Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports.

Ziegler could earn more money through incentives and the deal is pending a physical. The Marlins added reliever Junichi Tazawa on Thursday night on a two-year deal as well.

The Mets were one of nine teams that reportedly showed interest in the right-hander.

Original Report – 6 am

Free agent right-handed reliever, Brad Ziegler, is said to be weighing multiple offers as he looks for his new team as Chris Cotillo tweeted on Thursday.

Ziegler, 37, is coming off back-to-back brilliant seasons split between Arizona and Boston. In 2015 with Arizona, Ziegler pitched to an incredible 1.85 ERA while making 66 appearances. He accumulated 30 saves in that season while pitching to a 0.96 WHIP.

This past season, Ziegler split time between Arizona and Boston where he combined for 69 appearances while pitching to a 2.25 ERA. He accumulated 22 saves last season while pitching to a 1.37 WHIP between the two teams.

It is currently believed that the Mets, Yankees, Diamondbacks, Rockies, and Marlins have all shown interest in the righty. The Mets though have said that some payroll must be shed in order to obtain any free agents at this point.

Ziegler is believed to have multiple two-year offers in hand but is currently awaiting a three-year deal as per Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports.

If he ends up with a two-year pact, it is expected that it will be for $17 million total. It seems though it may come down to whichever team blinks first in offering a three-year deal as relievers continue rack up longer contracts as of late.

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]]> 0 Orioles Agree On One Year Deal With Catcher Welington Castillo Wed, 14 Dec 2016 20:58:39 +0000 welington-castillo

Jon Heyman reports via Twitter that the Baltimore Orioles have signed free agent catcher Welington Castillo to a one year deal worth $6 million dollars, that includes a player option for 2018 worth $7 million.

Castillo, 29, batted .264/.322/.423 last season with 24 doubles, 16 home runs and 68 RBIs in 457 plate appearances. He gives the Orioles a bat with some power and has pretty solid splits against left-handed pitching, owning a career .840 OPS against them in his career and a .868 OPS in 2016.

The former D’Back will replace longtime Orioles catcher Matt Wieters, who remains a free agent and is essentially done as the O’s catcher.

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Rockies In Discussions With Mark Trumbo Sat, 10 Dec 2016 15:32:33 +0000 mark-trumbo

According to Bob Nightengale of USA Today, the Colorado Rockies remain interested in signing 1B/OF Mark Trumbo despite having recently signed Ian Desmond to a five year, $70 million dollar deal to play first base next season.

Should the Rockies sign Trumbo, the team may ultimately trade one of their outfielders.  Last season, the Rockies outfield was primarily comprised of Gerardo Parra, Charlie Blackmon, and Carlos Gonzalez.  Parra has two years and $18 million remaining on his contract with a $12 million team option for 2019.  Blackmon is second year arbitration eligible and is scheduled to be a free agent in 2019.  Gonzalez will earn $20 million in the last year of a six year deal he has with the Rockies.

If the Rockies put their outfielders on the market, it could further complicate the Mets chances to move Jay Bruce this offseason.  At the moment, there have not been any rumors with respect to Bruce.

Earlier in the offseason, it had been reported the Orioles had some interest in Bruce but were more interested in Curtis Granderson. They are also still in the mix for Trumbo, reportedly. 

Ultimately, a deal between the Mets and Orioles fell apart.  However, it is possible that if Trumbo signs with a new team, the Mets and Orioles could rekindle their trade discussions. At the time, the Mets were interested in O’s reliever Brad Brach.

Brach posted a 2.05 ERA and recorded 24 holds in 71 games. The 29-year-old righty had 92 strikeouts in 79 innings.


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Cubs Close To Signing Reliever Koji Uehara Thu, 08 Dec 2016 21:57:46 +0000 koji-uehara-jim-davis-globe-2013-09-03

According to Evan Drellich on Twitter, the Chicago Cubs are close to signing former Boston Red Sox closer Koji Uehara. The deal is reportedly for one year, $6 million.

Uehara, 41, had a 3.45 ERA, 0.96 WHIP, seven saves and a 5.73 SO/W ratio for the Red Sox in 2016. He did miss time during the season with a pectoral strain and saw diminished velocity on his fastball.

During his eight season major league career, the dominant right-hander has 93 saves, 2.53 ERA, 0.86 WHIP and has struck out 522 batters in 437.2 innings compared to only 66 walks.

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NL East News: Nationals Acquire Catcher Derek Norris Fri, 02 Dec 2016 22:17:01 +0000 usatsi_9539736_154511658_lowres

The Washington Nationals announced that they have traded right-handed pitching prospect Pedro Avila to the San Diego Padres for catcher Derek Norris.

Norris, 27, hit just .186/.255/.328 with 17 doubles, 12 home runs and 42 RBI in 2016 for the Padres.

Norris is a career .223/.309/.380 hitter and fills the Nationals hole at catcher with Wilson Ramos now a free agent.

The right-handed hitter was drafted by the Nationals in 2007, but was traded by Washington to the Oakland Athletics in 2011 along with A.J. Cole, Tommy Milone, and Brad Peacock for Gio Gonzalez.

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NL East News: Braves Acquire Starter Jaime Garcia Thu, 01 Dec 2016 23:16:35 +0000 jaime garcia

The Atlanta Braves have acquired left-handed starter Jaime Garcia from the St. Louis Cardinals in exchange for prospects according to Mark Saxon of ESPN.

The Braves will send former Mets prospect John Gant, infield prospect Luke Dykstra (son of Lenny), and right-handed pitching prospect Chris Ellis to the Cardinals according to Chris Cotillo of SB Nation.

Garcia, 30, went 10-13 with a 4.67 ERA and a 1.375 WHIP in 171.2 innings for the Cardinals during the 2016 season. In his eight year career, all with the Cardinals, he is 62-45 with a 3.57 ERA and has a 3.97 ERA in seven postseason starts.

The veteran lefty will join former Mets R.A. Dickey and Bartolo Colon in the new look Braves 2017 rotation.

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Milwaukee Brewers to Non-Tender Chris Carter Tue, 29 Nov 2016 18:30:02 +0000 chris-carter

In a somewhat surprising move, Bob Nightengale of USA Today has reported via Twitter that the Milwaukee Brewers have decided to cut ties with power-hitting first baseman, Chris Carter.

After being non-tendered by the Houston Astros last offseason, Carter blasted onto the scene in Milwaukee, hitting a league leading 41 homers. He ended his season with a .222/.321/.499 batting line to go along with 94 RBI.

He has never been one to hit for a high average, with career numbers of .218/.314/.463, but he has become a player known to smash the ball with ease. He enters the market as one of the premier power hitters available.

His high strikeout rates do not help his cause though, as he lead the National League with 206 punch-outs in 2016. He is somewhat of an all-or-nothing type hitter but can come through clutch in the right spot.

Carter, 29, is intriguing in the aspect that he could be the perfect platoon first baseman to go with the left-handed bat of Lucas Duda. Carter would give the Mets another tremendous threat from the right side of the dish, something they could surely use.

Defensively though he is not the greatest, and trending downwards, his glove is not what it once was. He could be more fitting for an American League team in need of a designated hitter at this point of his career.

That being said, with the type of offense he is capable of producing, it is hard not to wonder what he could be had for at this point. MLB Trade Rumors projected Carter to fetch $8.1 million through arbitration this season. If the price is right, he is an interesting player that the Metropolitans may want to take a look at.

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Tigers To Shop J.D. Martinez At Winter Meetings Tue, 29 Nov 2016 16:43:55 +0000 J.D. martinez

According to a report by John Perrotto of FanRag, the Detroit Tigers are expected to shop outfielder J.D. Martinez at the Winter Meetings next week. He’s one of several high priced veterans the team is looking to deal as they seek to get younger while shedding some payroll.

Martinez, 29, batted .307/.373/.535 this past season for the Tigers with 35 doubles, 22 home runs and 68 RBI with a 144 OPS+ in 517 plate appearances.

In three seasons with Detroit, Martinez has averaged 33 doubles, 27 homers and 82 RBI while batting .299 and producing a .898 OPS.

A former All Star and Silver Slugger in right field, Martinez will earn $11.75 million in 2017 and is eligible for free agency at the end of the season.

“You’re not going to get a ton for a guy with one year of control but he’s a right-handed hitter who can pop you 30 home run and that’s a valuable commodity,” a scout from an AL team said. “He’s one guy they should be able to get something for.”

With a scarcity of right-handed power bats available in free agency after Yoenis Cespedes and Edwin Encarnacion, Martinez could prove to be a very attractive option for many teams.

According to Jon Heyman, the Mets could be one of those teams if they fail to re-sign Yoenis Cespedes. But don’t count on that…

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MLB News: Braves Sign First Baseman Sean Rodriguez Fri, 25 Nov 2016 13:30:25 +0000 usa-today-8820448-0

(Photo Courtesy of Ron Chenoy – USA Today)

According to Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports, the Atlanta Braves have signed former Pittsburgh Pirates first baseman, Sean Rodriguez. The deal is for two years at $11 million per Rosenthal and is pending a physical.

Rodriguez, 31, is coming off a fine season for Pittsburgh, hitting to a .270/.349/.510 batting line with 18 homers and 56 RBI. All of this production was over the course of just 300 at-bats, and was a career year for Rodriguez..

The Atlanta Braves continue to beef up their team, looking to build off of a strong second half in the 2016  season.

Earlier this month, Atlanta signed a pair of former Mets to boost their rotation, adding veteran right-handers Bartolo Colon and R.A. Dickey via free agency.

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]]> 0 Is Adding a 26th Roster Spot a Good Idea? Fri, 25 Nov 2016 12:00:46 +0000 mlb_e_manfred11_600x400

As both the owners and players continue their talks on a new collective bargaining agreement, one of the main issues brought up was adding a 26th roster spot. Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports reported on the possible change which included adding a 26th man to the everyday roster of a team.

One extra player could make all the difference for a team, especially in an extra-inning situation. This also helps to eliminate the “taxi squad,” for situations when a player or two needs to be brought up just in case someone else is unable to go.

Adding the 26th man also gives opportunity to those who may have been overlooked in the minors previously. Whether it be carrying that one player who can hit but cannot field, or that one extra lefty specialist in the bullpen, that extra player can be quite beneficial.

It also gives the opportunity for a team to carry a player who can purely be used for pinch running situations in tight games. That extra player opens up so many possibilities.

On the flip side of things, it is believed that if MLB goes this route that they may indeed bring stricter regulations to September call-ups. Something that to me anyway is much needed.

The 40-man roster in September seems odd at times. You’ll have some teams playing with 30 players and other teams like the Mets who packed their active roster with 38 players. Some players get called up and never even see an at-bat for the entire month.

The current CBA is set to expire on December 1, and there are reports of progress between the two sides but nothing appears imminent at this time. What are your thoughts on adding the 26th man to the everyday roster for each team?

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MLB News: Twins Sign Catcher Jason Castro Wed, 23 Nov 2016 00:20:45 +0000 jason-castro

According to Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports, the Minnesota Twins have signed former Houston Astros catcher Jason Castro. The deal is worth 3 years, $24.5 million per Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports

Castro, 29, hit .210/.307/.377 with 16 doubles, 11 home runs and 32 RBI in 113 games for the Astros in 2016. On the defensive side, he posted a positive dWAR (0.4) for the sixth straight season and was a good pitch framer in 2016.

Despite a possible need at the catcher position, the Mets never showed interest in Castro and seem willing to head into the season with Travis d’Arnaud as their primary backstop.

The remaining free agent catchers include Wilson Ramos, Matt Wieters and Nick Hundley.

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Encarnacion Rejects Four Year, $80 Million Offer From Blue Jays Mon, 21 Nov 2016 22:51:58 +0000 edwin-encarnacion

According to Jon Heyman of Fan Rag Sports, the Toronto Blue Jays offered Edwin Encarnacion a four-year contract worth $80 million dollars earlier this offseason, but were turned down. Still, Heyman says that Toronto is still open to re-signing him despite signing Kendrys Morales a week ago.

“The Jays didn’t entice Encarnacion to make a quick decision to return with their offer, but their continuing interest suggests the deal they offered is likely still on the table, at the least.”

A three time All Star, Encarnacion has been one of the premier power hitters in the game for a while now. Since 2012, he hasn’t hit less than 34 home runs, and that year he only played in 128 games.

In those five seasons, he has hit .272/.367/.544 with 193 home runs, 553 RBI, and 27 stolen bases. The former Cincinnati Reds third baseman played 160 games for the Blue Jays in 2016, belting 42 home runs and leading the American League with 127 RBIs.

The question is does the Encarnacion want more dollars or a fifth year? There are only three premier right-handed power hitters in this free agent market, so in a market that is so often driven by scarcity and demand, perhaps there’s a fifth year out there for Encarnacion despite the fact he’ll be 34 next spring.

However, I’m guessing he’s looking for an average annual salary of $25 million which isn’t exactly out of the question for his production. The other thing could be that Yoenis Cespedes is the linchpin to this offseason for power hitters and they are waiting to see what he signs for.

The Red Sox, Yankees and the suddenly free spending Astros have all been connected to Encarnacion who mostly DH’ed last season.

Of course this news is going to bring on an onslaught of posts saying that Cespedes is as good as gone as far as the New York Mets are concerned. It’s horse shit of course and just a nice way to get a bump in traffic for 15 minutes.

I am still hearing from more than one baseball insider that Sandy Alderson and his front office are in close negotiations with Cespedes and his agents, as they look to get something done before the Winter Meetings.

And one person I spoke with says that talks have advanced to a level he described as “serious.” I still believe an announcement is very close.

Encarnacion turning down his offer from the Blue Jays will have little to no bearing on what the Mets and Cespedes will ultimately do.

And as for that Cespedes to the Yankees rumor that one site keeps perpetuating every single day, you can use it to wipe your ass with in case you run out of Charmin. There is no real buzz on that other than an obligatory check-in almost a month ago.

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Astros Acquire Brian McCann From Yankees Thu, 17 Nov 2016 22:34:08 +0000 brian mccann

The Houston Astros have acquired catcher Brian McCann from the New York Yankees, bursting any hopes that that he would be acquired by the New York Mets. Aww shucks…

The Yankees have made trading McCann a top priority as phenom Gary Sanchez took over the catching position and hit the ground running in the second half.

McCann, 32, batted .242/.335/.413 with 20 home runs in 492 plate appearances last season, but has hit at least 20 home runs for nine straight seasons. He has two years and $34 million left on his deal, which also has a $15 million team option.

The ‘Stros send a pair of pitching prospects, RHP Albert Abreu and RHP Jorge Guzman, to the Bombers in return for McCann and some cash considerations.

Not a bad move for our crosstown rivals who unload a bunch of unwanted salary and get themselves a top Astros prospect and a kid who throws 100+ mph with potential.

Meanwhile the Mets have done nothing as the Hot Stove Season just passes them by. Stop sitting on your hands, Sandy… :-)

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