Deadline day. That should mean sweet relief for some teams, a bitter
pill for others, and some sleep for the poor scribes who have been
following this all week. Let’s see whats grinding this morning:
As of 10:30 ET this morning, the teams involved in the Manny
Ramirez deal have taken a bit of a break. The holdup continues to be
sorting out the prospects, specifically which ones the Marlins will
get and will give up. The framework, agreed to early last night, has
expanded a bit, including John Grabow and, in some iterations, Jack
Wilson. The Marlins have switched up on what prospects are available
and which aren’t. It looks like slugger Mike Stanton is definitely out
and that Ryan Tucker is out unless the Marlins get a “plus prospect”
such as Justin Masterson in addition to Ramirez. This one could go
down to the wire.
Regarding the framework sent to the Commissioner’s Office, it
appears that was not an approval but an “informational” discussion.
Manny Ramirez waived his 10-and-5 rights, and both the Red Sox and
Marlins inquired as to whether the $7 million that would be
transferred would be approved. According to multiple sources, the
Commissioner’s Office cannot approve or disapprove a deal until that
deal is completed, but it will often be involved on a consultative
basis, much the same way that it’s consulted on free agents, draftees,
and arbitration cases.
The Rays remain Plan B with Jason Bay, but they haven’t put up the
prospects in quality or quantity that the Pirates want in return. The
Rays have also made some inquiries regarding Adam Dunn, though they
were very cursory. It’s unclear whether Dunn could still be traded,
assuming that the Ken Griffey deal is completed. Don’t expect much to
happen here—the Reds would want “three premium prospects” in return
The Mariners sound a little desperate today, wanting to do something to improve their team. Jarrod Washburn is likely
headed out, with the Rockies and Yankees the most likely. J.J. Putz’s
name came up in a couple places, but sources say the price is
“astronomical,” especially given his arm problems. Raul Ibanez is
possibly outbound, though as yet the M’s haven’t heard the right names
in return. The Mets and Cubs both made cursory inquiries. Adrian
Beltre remains in play as well, though again, the return is, as yet,
not close to the demand.
The Braves are expected to trade Will Ohman, who’s really the top
reliever still available. They’re also asking about Mark Kotsay, Kelly
Johnson, and Jeff Francouer. There’s nothing to the Bay-to-Braves
rumors. In fact, the Pirates seem to be working on nothing other than
the aforementioned three-way.
The Ivan Rodriguez deal was expected to kick-start the catcher
market, but it looks like it’s the same as yesterday, with as many
teams buying and selling, and no one matching up on price and need.
Several sources think we’ll have to have one more deal to really
create the kind of pressure on the other teams and no one seems to
think that any of them will make that first move.
The Astros continue to troll the market, looking for pieces and
parts. They seem willing to take on a little salary for a player
that’s under control for next year and beyond, which could put them in
a position that few other teams are in. One FOT told me that the
Astros are setting themselves up to be “a safety net—if you don’t get
your first deal done, come to me and we will.”