Player News

Date: Team: Pos:

According to Matt Eddy of Baseball America, the Dodgers have released Jose Miguel Fernandez.

Fernandez was signed for a $200,000 bonus out of Cuba last January and went on to bat .306/.367/.496 with 16 home runs and 65 RBI in 93 games between Double-A Tulsa and Triple-A Oklahoma City, but he basically disappeared in late July. There are no stats on the record for him after July 29. We'd guess there's a lot more to the story here, but the Dodgers haven't released any details.
Nov 23 - 3:04 PM

Giants signed OF Luigi Rodriguez to a minor league contract.

Rodriguez posted a .276/.319/.497 batting line with 13 home runs and eight stolen bases in 82 games this past season for the Indians' Double-A affiliate. The 25-year-old outfielder has yet to play in a major league game and he probably won't get that opportunity with San Francisco.
Nov 23 - 2:37 PM

Yankees signed C Chace Numata to a minor league contract.

Numata batted just .249/.318/.351 with four home runs and 28 RBI in 84 games this summer for the Double-A affiliate of the Phillies. The 25-year-old catcher is nothing more than minor league depth for the Yankees.
Nov 23 - 2:31 PM

Rockies signed RHP Scott McGough to a minor league contract.

McGough registered a 2.75 ERA in 55 2/3 innings of relief this past season between the Double-A and Triple-A affiliates of the Orioles, though that came with a less inspiring 1.49 WHIP. The 28-year-old right-hander is doubtful to make a significant impact with Colorado.
Nov 23 - 2:27 PM

White Sox signed RHP Dustin Antolin to a minor league contract.

Antolin was dumped from the Nationals' minor league system around the middle of the 2017 season after struggling badly in four starts and 20 relief appearances at Triple-A Syracuse, but he went on to post good numbers for the Somerset Patriots of the independent Atlantic League. The 28-year-old right-hander will likely open the 2018 season at Triple-A Charlotte.
Nov 23 - 2:23 PM

According to Mike Puma of the New York Post, the Mets are "keeping tabs" on free agent reliever Joe Smith.

They're also said to be monitoring the markets for Addison Reed, Bryan Shaw, and left-hander Mike Minor. Smith is a favorite of former Indians pitching coach Mickey Callaway, who became the Mets' manager earlier this month. The sidearming right-hander registered a sharp 3.33 ERA, 1.04 WHIP, and 71/10 K/BB ratio in 54 innings this past season between Toronto and Cleveland.
Nov 23 - 1:34 PM

In a new team podcast, Mariners general manager Jerry Dipoto said the club will make a "full-court press" for Shohei Ohtani.

Dipoto mentioned on that same topic that the team would be willing to play slugger Nelson Cruz a few days in the outfield to accommodate Ohtani being able to DH on the days he's not pitching. The Mariners have long been considered a candidate for Ohtani because of their history with Japanese players (Ichiro Suzuki, Hisashi Iwakuma, Kazuhiro Sasaki, just to name a few), but also because they have an obvious need for starting pitching. The fact that the M's would also be willing to let Ohtani hit, at least according to the podcast, is something that could serve them well in their bid for the 23-year-old two-way talent. It wouldn't be a major upset at all if Ohtani ends up playing for the Mariners, though it's too early to list them (or any other team) as a frontrunner.
Nov 22 - 10:02 PM

Jose Martinez is using the Venezuelan Winter League to familiarize himself at first base.

Martinez has spent most of his career in the outfield, and while first base may not be as hard as Ron Washington said it was in that movie, there's still a learning curve. The move is another way to get Martinez in the lineup, as he was one of the few pleasant surprises at the big league level for St. Louis this past year. He did get some action at the position but looked shaky at times.
Nov 22 - 9:43 PM

The Phillies are considering Chase Utley to become their new bench coach, according to FOX 29's Howard Eskin in Philadelphia.

The Phillies still have two more spots on their coaching staff to fill after hiring Pedro Guerrero to be the assistant hitting coach on Wednesday. Utley hasn't actually retired yet, but if he were to hang up his playing cleats, this would be a fun move. Utley was one of the best second basemen in the sport during his time with Philadelphia and he is still one of the most popular players in the city. He also has a long reputation of being a smart, respected presence in the clubhouse, so a transition into coaching could be a natural fit.
Nov 22 - 9:17 PM

Pedro Guerrero was named assistant hitting coach of the Phillies on Wednesday.

Guerrero comes to the Phillies after spending the last two years as a minor league bench coach in the Dodgers system. At 28 years old he'll be one of the youngest coaches on a major league roster. The move also likely signifies that Rick Kranitz will be the pitching coach in Philadelphia under new manager Gabe Kapler. Kranitz was hired two weeks ago but wasn't given a specified role.
Nov 22 - 8:28 PM

Baseball America's Bob Dutton reports that outfield prospect Kyle Lewis is still dealing with lingering issues in his right knee.

Lewis was forced to leave the Arizona Fall League at the end of October because of soreness in his surgically-repaired knee, and while there wasn't any structural damage found it sounds like this could be a chronic issue. The 2016 first-round pick has more talent than any prospect in the Mariners system, but there's a looming question about whether he will ever be able to truly recover from the horrific ACL tear that has seen him miss all but 49 games in his two years as a pro. There's just as much risk in Lewis's profile as there is reward at this point.
Nov 22 - 7:44 PM

The representatives for free agent Todd Frazier are pitching him as an option to play either third or first base.

Frazier has spent almost his entire career at third base, but presenting his ability to play first base -- a spot he's appeared at 94 times in his seven-year career -- obviously makes sense for marketing purposes. The right-handed-hitting 31-year-old is coming off a season in which he slugged 27 homers with a .772 OPS between the White Sox and Yankees, and given that right-handed power is always at a premium, he could receive a significant payday at either position for a team that believes he can bat in or near the middle of the order.
Source: MLB.com
Nov 22 - 4:34 PM

Darren Wolfson of 1500 ESPN in Minneapolis reports that the Twins have shown interest in relievers Brad Hand and Alex Colome.

Minnesota was previously reported to have contacted the Reds in regards to the availability of Raisel Iglesias. The Twins clearly want to upgrade their bullpen and all three of these possibilities would be major improvements over their current closer situation. A trade for Hand might be the most logical, as the Padres are still clearly in rebuilding mode and the right-hander is coming off a career year where he registered a 2.16 ERA and struck out 104 batters in just under 80 innings. Hand is arbitration-eligible for the second time this winter.
Source: 1500 ESPN
Nov 22 - 4:09 PM
Jon Jay - OF - Cubs

According to Mark Feinsand of MLB.com, there is "momentum" toward an agreement between the Mariners and free agent outfielder Jon Jay.

Jay has never shown much power, but he can play all three outfield spots and he batted .294 with an excellent .374 on-base percentage in 141 games this past season for the Cubs. The 32-year-old former second-round pick of the Cardinals signed a one-year, $8 million deal with Chicago last winter and figures to land something similar this offseason. Seattle has an opening in center field with Jarrod Dyson no longer under contract. This could come together quickly.
Nov 22 - 3:48 PM

Mike Puma of the New York Post hears the Mets are making a play for free agent reliever Bryan Shaw.

Puma adds that "it wouldn't be surprising if the Mets moved soon" on adding a new bullpen piece. Shaw boasts a career 3.13 ERA over 475 major league appearances and has been among the most durable and reliable relievers in baseball over the last four seasons. The 30-year-old right-hander would make sense for just about any club seeking relief help.
Nov 22 - 3:39 PM



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