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February 16, 2012 9:00 am

Overthinking It: The All-NRI Team

8

Ben Lindbergh

Non-roster invitees are swarming to spring training, but do these players ever pan out? Ben looks for an answer in the best of last season's NRI crop

"I’ve always said when it comes to a minor-league contract there’s no such thing as a bad one. There’s no guarantee from the club’s standpoint other than a flight to and from spring training."—Alex Anthopoulos, January 2012

While you’re busy celebrating Presidents Day in traditional American fashion—crossing the Delaware, roadtripping to Mt. Rushmore, trying to keep your anticipation for next week’s 87th Republican primary debate in check—pitchers and catchers will be reporting to training camps across Florida and Arizona. Not quite all of the pitchers and catchers or all of the camps—Mariners pitchers, catchers, and position players reported about a week before everyone else, so Mariners non-roster invitees have already been ostracizing members of their 40-man for days.

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February 24, 2011 8:38 am

Purpose Pitches: NL NRIs of Note

3

Christina Kahrl

From the "they also played" gang, those few who have jobs to win and trips to Fresno to avoid.

Arizona Diamondbacks
Pitcher(s): Just 11 years, a bad press conference, and all sorts of money since he was last a front-end rotation asset, Mike Hampton is in camp. This has to be one of those bad-penny propositions, where everyone who operates a franchise has to take a turn paying for a Hampton surgery, otherwise you haven't really made the grade as an owner. And they've got Micah Owings back, four years since he gave the Snakes cause to believe he might be a rotation stalwart. Given that this is the team that puts Zach Duke or Hampton in cleats, what's several bad seasons in a row between friends?
Hitter(s): I already touched on the most obvious impact NRI, Russell Branyan, on Tuesday, but he's not alone. Wily Mo Pena makes for an interesting platoon possibility in left field with Brandon Allen if Kirk Gibson decides to build something that could bop. And we can always double-count Micah Owings, since he's one of the only active players who genuinely extends a roster to 26 by contributing as both a pinch-hitter—or maybe even a spot starter at first?—and as a pitcher.

Atlanta Braves
Pitcher(s): From the “necessary evils” pile, there are veterans Kenshin Kawakami and Rodrigo Lopez, both knocking around in case Mike Minor or Brandon Beachy can't keep the fifth slot in the rotation to themselves. If you prefer something younger with a better chance of being a long-term Brave, watching top prospect Julio Teheran and Vazquez robbery prize Arodys Vizcaino makes for a great way to pass the time.
Hitter(s): Nobody really stands out or figures to get an extended look-see; I don't think FEMA could clean up whatever mess would have to be made to get Brent Clevlen onto the Opening Day roster, for example.





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February 16, 2011 6:33 am

Purpose Pitches: AL NRIs to Watch

6

Christina Kahrl

An assemblage of prospects, vagabonds, and tough-luck stories, but some are sure to stick.

Come the opening of every camp, there's always going to be some wiggle room for a non-roster player or two to make the club. But who has the best shot as we just get started, and/or who's worth noting for his own sake? Starting with the AL, let's look at the names you might want to note in the inevitable spring training boxscores and the equally inevitable camp rumors to come.

Baltimore Orioles
Pitcher(s): Opportunities already existed in the bullpen, but there may be more than one job to be won, especially with Alfredo Simon on the wrong side of the law and still locked up in the Dominican on an involuntary manslaughter charge. The pen could also use a second lefty better than Pedro Viola, while the rotation might need a long-relief helpmate until questions about Justin Duchscherer and Jake Arrieta are resolved (not to mention a slimmed-down Jason Berken). From among the NRIs, for situational duties Rangers castoff Clay Rapada could wind up getting taken seriously, while swing sponge Mark Hendrickson was born to absorb middle innings in lost causes or after quick hooks.


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January 11, 2011 12:44 pm

Transaction Analysis: Bartlett's Price Quote

15

Christina Kahrl

With a side of Gregg, plus 40-man floaters and more.

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April 6, 2010 2:13 pm

Transaction Action: AL Roster Cleanup

12

Christina Kahrl

A rundown on all the Opening Day decisions in the junior circuit.

ANAHEIM ANGELS
Team Audit | Player Cards | Depth Chart

Purchased the contract of 4C-R Robb Quinlan from Salt Lake (Triple-A); placed LHP Scott Kazmir on the 15-day DL (hamstring), retroactive to 3/31; placed RHP Anthony Ortega (triceps) and OF-S Reggie Willits (hamstring) on the 15-day DL, retroactive to 3/30; placed OF-R Chris Pettit on the 15-day DL (labrum), retroactive to 3/26; optioned C-R Ryan Budde and CF-R Peter Bourjos to Salt Lake. [4/3]
Designated C-R Ryan Budde for assignment. [4/5]

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March 30, 2010 4:07 am

Transaction Action: We Three Giants

5

Christina Kahrl

Plus clambering up the Fish ladder, an Athletic reunion, and more.

BOSTON RED SOX
Team Audit | DT Cards | PECOTA Cards | Depth Chart

Optioned C-R Dusty Brown and INF-R Kevin Frandsen to Pawtucket (Triple-A). [3/29]

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March 22, 2010 7:26 pm

Transaction Action: Weekend Mayhem Edition

11

Christina Kahrl

The new Super Joe, worthy of the price, plus the full slate of roster churn as cuts get tough.

BALTIMORE ORIOLES
Team Audit | DT Cards | PECOTA Cards | Depth Chart

Optioned LHP Wilfrido Perez to Bowie (Double-A). [3/19]
BOSTON RED SOX
Team Audit | DT Cards | PECOTA Cards | Depth Chart

Optioned LHP Felix Doubront and C-R Mark Wagner to Pawtucket (Triple-A); signed LHP Alan Embree to a minor-league contract. [3/20]
Received Rule 5 pick 3B-R Jorge Jimenez back from the Marlins. [3/21]

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February 2, 2010 1:38 am

Transaction Action: Thome, Taveras, and 10,000

19

Christina Kahrl

The Reds get a shortstop, the Mariners a fourth outfielder, and the Twins a shot at franchise history?

LOS ANGELES ANGELS
Team Audit | DT Cards | PECOTA Cards | Depth Chart

Agreed to terms with LHP Joe Saunders on a one-year, $3.7-million contract, avoiding arbitration. [2/1]

MINNESOTA TWINS
Team Audit | DT Cards | PECOTA Cards | Depth Chart

Signed DH-L Jim Thome to a one-year, $1.5 million base contract; noted the loss of UT-R Steve Tolleson on a waiver claim by Oakland. [2/1]

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November 23, 2009 2:53 pm

Prospectus Today: Outfield and Catcher Free Agents Review

24

Joe Sheehan

Sorting through the available mercenaries in the outfield and behind the dish.

There are lots of free-agent catchers and outfielders, many of whom provide little or no bang for the buck. Again, these players are listed roughly in order of what I see as their chance of providing value for the contract they'll sign.

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November 22, 2009 2:07 pm

Prospectus Today: Infield Free Agents Review

23

Joe Sheehan

Checking out who's in the pool at first, second, third, and short.

There are currently 170 free agents. John Grabow was the 171st, but that was before signing with the Cubs right after the list became official. Over the next couple of days, I'll cover every single one of the 170, with the infielders coming first. Players are listed by position, and ranked within their position subjectively by how good a value I think each can be as a free agent.

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April 10, 2009 10:37 am

Transaction Analysis: AL Roster Roundup

11

Christina Kahrl

Plus the Rockies, because they got themselves an AL pitcher for their troubles.

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April 2, 2009 7:16 pm

Transaction Analysis: Senior Circuit Shuffling

11

Christina Kahrl

Filling in the blanks and changing the names as the final roster decisions roll in.

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