Results tagged ‘ winter meetings ’
The Pirates officially announce a two-year deal with outfielder Matt Diaz. The news of the agreement came a week ago, during the winter meetings. The contract is reported to be worth $4.2 million ($2M in 2010 and 2012 plus a $250,000 signing bonus). Diaz has a career .335 batting average and .533 slugging percentage against left-handers over eight major league seasons.
Diaz will platoon in right with Garrett Jones (.282 hitter against right-handers). Ryan Doumit and John Bowker are also back-up options for the Bucs.
Diaz says he is excited to join the Pirates:
On why the Pirates were the right choice:
“Really Clint Hurdle. Met with him at the winter meetings. I talked to him once on the phone before that. He and Neal Huntington came In and gave a great presentation on where the organization is heading. So that was very important for me to go back and ask them for a second year to be a part of it. I think we are going to surprise some people. I really think by 2012, you’re really going to see this young core of players really mesh together and really make a run at this thing.”
Diaz, who has known Andrew McCutchen since he was in 8th grade, said, “He is the most underrated superstar in baseball.”
On what he thinks about playing at PNC Park: “I like hitting the ball to right center and I like the way the ball carries here. Hopefully it will be a friendly park for me to hit in, a friendly park for me to play defense in and hopefully produce some runs so we can win some games.”
On his dream of playing in a world series: “I know people in Pittsburgh nation will laugh, but, hopefully in the next couple of years we can do that.”
Other News and Notes:
- The Pirates two-year deal with pitcher Kevin Correia should be finalized later this week. In order for him to be put on the 40-man roster, the Bucs must remove someone, as it is full.
- Rob Biertempfel of the Trib reports: The Pirates are stepping up efforts to trade Ryan Doumit, who’s bumped down now to a $5.1 M bench player, backup catcher.
- According to Jesse Behr of Baseball Prospectus, he is “Hearing whispers of a Ryan Doumit-for-Marco Scutaro deal”. Scutaro in 2010 with the Red Sox hit 11 home runs, 56 RBI with a .275 average.
The winter meetings may have ended but the Pirates are not done. There are still talks between the Bucs and the Braves for starter Kenshin Kawakami. The Baltimore Orioles are no longer interested in the right-hander.
It is uncertain how much money Atlanta would be willing to eat in the trade. Kawakami is due to earn $6.67 million.
Kawakami, 35, has a 8-22 record with a 4.32 ERA over the past two seasons.
General Manager Neal Huntington discussed Day three of the Winter Meetings with the Pittsburgh Media.
On whether pending acquisitions are opening up potential moves: “I think we’re looking through creative alternatives. I think people are intrigued with what we’re doing and maybe it’s opening some more doors. People are inquiring, based on what we’ve been able to do, to try and see if there might be some trade fits with some of the other alternatives. I guess one thing could be leading to another.”
On whether Garrett Jones is the everyday first baseman for 2011: “Yes and no. Garrett is strongest against right-handed pitching. I think if we can protect him some then it makes a lot of sense for us as an organization. Do we have that piece right now? Steve Pearce could be that piece. It depends upon the rest of the bench and how it comes together.”
On whether deals will be finalized by the end of the Winter Meetings: “No. We’ve still got some things to put in motion. We still have some last minute details to put together before we finalize any of the rumors that are circulating.”
Thoughts on the Rule 5 draft on Thursday: “We’re kicking around some names. Teams have called to see if we would trade – either trade the pick completely or trade down. It’s a lot of fun talking about trading down. There are guys out there that we are interested in. It’s not something that we’re over the top excited about this year. But there are guys that we feel like can help us and have a legitimate chance to make the team.”
On whether it make financial sense to pay Ryan Doumit $5.1 Million to platoon next season: “As you sit and put it together from scratch, probably not. But as you try to tackle what your resources are and what your options are, you try to make the best of it.”
Picture credit by @BucsInsider
Picture credit by @RaysRenegade
- According to Dejan Kovacevic of the Pittsburgh-Post Gazette, the Pirates are offering Paul Maholm in trade market.
- MLB.com Reporter Jen Langosch says: The Pirates have not decided on who to take with the first pick in the Rule 5 draft. It could be a pitcher. Could be a position player. Could trade pick.
- Sources indicate that if the Pirates signed Bill hall he would not play second base.
- Shortstop Jason Bartlett was traded to the Padres. The Pirates and San Diego were the final two choices for the Rays to work out the deal with.
- Rob Biertempfel of the Trib said: Pirates could have inside track on Bartlett if Rays drop demand for right handed pitcher Joel Hanrahan in swap.
- Buster Olney of ESPN reports: The guy widely expected to be first pick in the Rule 5 draft is Mets Right hand pitcher Elvin Ramirez, who was clocked at 94-98 mph this winter.
- Rob Biertempfel of the Trib reports: Pirates are considering trading the player they take with the first overall pick in the Rule 5 draft. They could also trade down.
- Sources: Pirates and Orioles are talking to the Twins about shortstop J.J Hardy. Both need to upgrade.
- Rob Biertempfel of the Trib reports: Braves trying to see whether Pirates or Orioles would pick up more of Kawakami’s $6.7 million salary in trade.
- Dejan Kovacevic of the Pittsburgh-Post Gazette reports: National League executive: Pirates are pushing hard on Ryan Doumit trade.
- Dejan Kovacevic of the Pittsburgh-Post Gazette says the Pirates are still talking trade for Kawakami.
General Manager Neal Huntington discusses day two of the winter meetings with Pittsburgh media.
- On what the Pirates are looking for in a starter: “At this point, we’d like to find some stability in the rotation. We need a guy who we feel comfortable with, who is going to take the ball every fifth day. You never know with pitchers. But we’ve looked at track records. And maybe there is a guy out there that’s got some upside that is coming back from injury in the last couple of years that may be a fit or maybe we have two stabilizers. We need to eat some innings. We need to lighten the load on our bullpen. We need to get deeper into the games as a rotation. We need to give ourselves some options.”
- On how Huntington wants to build his bullpen: “A little bit of everything. We’re exploring the free agent market. We’re exploring the trade market. We’re looking at the 4-A free agent market. We’ve got a lot of internal options as well. If we add more starters than we need, we’ve got some additional bullpen options. Maybe then that pushes a guy who has had some success as a starter, maybe it pushes him back in the bullpen again and we deepen our bullpen. Maybe it pushes some of our internal options to come into camp in a little bit better shape. Too many options is never a bad thing, and that’s where we’re trying to go. We’re trying to add depth. We’re trying to give ourselves choices to make. We love power with strikeouts, but short of that, sometimes a variety of looks and a variety of stuff can help give a manager options.”
- On whether he expects to have an upgrade at shortstop after the winter meetings: “Maybe not out of the Winter Meetings. We have laid some groundwork on some things that we can improve upon defensively.”
- Ronny Cedeno’s future with the ball club: “Ronny is still the guy, but at some point you have to stop talking about potential and you have to talk about performance. We’re getting to that point with Ronny. The consistency was there for a good portion of the year. He struggled at the end, no question.”
- On the status of Jeff Clement, Steve Pearce and Kevin Hart: “Everybody is on schedule. Nobody has had any significant setback. Everyone is on schedule for where we thought they would be. As we sit here today, yes, [all will be ready for Spring Training].”
- On possible internal bullpen options: “I think a lot of people are beating up our bullpen because of the unknown. There is some power there. There is also some risk. It makes us feel like we don’t have to go seek an upgrade. But if there is one there that makes sense for us, we’ll certainly look.”
- On Kevin Hart and his best fit in the Bucs bullpen: “Given Kevin coming off the injury, it looks that way. It would be awfully hard to stretch him back out and expect him to eat 200 innings. We want to see where he is physically. We want to see where he is as his rehab continues to progress. Sitting here today, it’s a lot harder to envision him as a 200-inning starter next year. Maybe somewhere back down the road, but his quickest path back may be as a reliever. He’s also out of options, and that’s going to be the other challenge.”
After a busy first day at the Winter Meetings, the Pirates already reached a tentative agreement with Scott Olsen and now, according to ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick the Pirates are close to a two-year $8 million deal with Kevin Correia.
General manager Neal Huntington confirmed interest in Correia, but didn’t answer more.
“There is nothing official to report at the present time,” Huntington said. “We are engaged in conversation and are optimistic, but nothing has been finalized.”
Correia, 30, went 10-10 with a 5.40 ERA in 28 games (26 starts) for the Padres during the 2010 season. Correia pitched 145 innings while walking 64 and striking out 115. 2009 was a better year for Kevin, he struck out 142 and walked 64 through a career-best 198 innings. He finished with a 12-11 record and a 3.91 ERA.
Don’t expect the Pirates to be done yet. They are continuing to peruse more pitching as well as a right fielder/first baseman and a shortstop.
“You ideally want to go [to Spring Training] with more than five guys,” Huntington said, commenting on the need to improve the starting pitching depth. “With the young guys coming, and with some of the guys we’ve got under contract and with some of the guys we’re talking about trying to acquire, we may have a pretty good competition in Spring Training.”
After day one of the Winter Meetings, General Manager spoke to Pittsburgh Media on busy day:
On progress from day one: “Much like the first day of the Winter Meetings –always a lot of conversations. Some lead to dead ends. Some lead to fruition. A lot of dialogue.”
On whether the Pirates would be open to giving up prospects for a trade: I think we’re open to the right deal. In a perfect world, we’d love to hold every prospect that we have, but we know to get good players that are the right fit, it’s going to take some players in return.”
On trading Joel Hanrahan or Evan Meek: “We like both guys a lot. We think both are capable of closing at the Major League level, and we’re looking for value in return.”
On what Ryan Doumit’s role would be for next season: “As we sit here right now, Ryan will be our right fielder with some time behind homeplate to supplement Chris Snyder. Sitting here right now, Ryan is going to play a lot. It’s up to him to play well and to continue to play, but sitting here, that’s the plan.”
On whether Ryan Doumit could be a part of the platoon situation in right field: “If there is a right-handed complement to be had… we have Steve Pearce internally that we feel comfortable with. But we continue to explore the trade market as well as the free agent market to see what else is out there. Sometimes clubs in our market have to be creative to maximize the roster and maximize the production of the roster. ‘Platoon’ seems to be a negative word. But the reality is that if it helps us put quality production on the field, it’s something that we’ve got be open to.”
On which position has the most options, first base or right field: “There’s options at both. There are some established Major League veterans out there. There are some players that are available in a trade. We’ve got two guys that we feel comfortable with, so it would have to be a situation of trying to find an upgrade if that is possible out there.”
On whether the Pirates have made a decision on who will be the Bucs closer: “The tough part is that it’s not going to be a Spring Training competition. So if we do decide on one – and there have been multiple conversations that Clint [Hurdle] and I have had and we’ve got to continue to have – we have to decide before Spring Training. In early conversations, we’re open to moving both guys depending on situations and how they match up. But it is an ongoing dialogue internally as to whether we’ll settle on one or go with both.”
On whether the Rule 5 draft has good players: “No.”
On whether the players who were non-tendered are still of interest to the Pirates: “Yeah. We’ve made contact on a good number of players and continue to be open to find different ways to help our club continue to move forward.”
I will continue to update this post throughout the day on any rumors and signings that happen during the Winter Meetings in Orlando, Florida.
Ken Rosenthal tweeted this: Pirates looking at free-agent RHP Kevin Correia, among others.
Correia went 10-10 with a 5.40 ERA in 28 games (26 starts) with the San Diego Padres. In eight seasons (combined with the San Francisco Giants and Padres) he has a record of 36-43 with a 4.57 ERA. Correia,30, averages 6.6 strike outs per nine innings.
Pirates General Manager Neal Huntington when asked about reports that teams have asked about Andrew McCutchen: “I wouldn’t always believe what you read.”
General Manager Neal Huntington says Ryan Doumit is Pirates starting right fielder for 2011 “as we sit right now”. He also would do some catching.
According to Dejan Kovcevic of the Pittsburgh-Post Gazette, the Pirates are “deeply interested” in right hand pitcher Jeremy Accardo.
Accardo, who turns 29 on December 18th, appeared in five games (6.2 innings) with the Toronto Blue Jays during April 2010. He allowed six runs on 12 hits with three strike outs and three walks. Accardo was non-tendered by the Jays on December 3rd and was due to make $1.08 million.
In 41 games with the Blue Jay’s Triple-A team, Accardo went 2-2 with a 3.64 ERA and had 24 saves. In 42 innings pitched he allowed just one home run, walked 14 and struck out two.
According to Gordon Edes of ESPN Boston, A couple of teams have approached the Pirates about Andrew McCutchen (not the Red Sox) Bucs would have to be “overwhelmed” in order to trade the center fielder.
Agent for Scott Olsen told MLB Trade Rumors that “nothing is done yet” on one-year deal with the Pirates.
According to Jen Langosch of MLB.com, The Pirates have tentatively agreed to a one-year contract with Scott Olsen. The deal is pending a physical (which would happen later this week) and is incentive-laden.
Olsen, 26, became a free-agent in November after being out righted off the Washington Nationals roster.
In 17 games (15 starts) with the Nats in 2010, he went 4-8 with a 5.56 ERA.
Olsen is coming off two injury plagued seasons with Washington. In his previous three seasons with the Florida Marlins he had at least 31 starts and pitched at least 176.2 innings.
His career stats (six seasons) is 37-49 with a 4.85 ERA in 130 games (127 starts).
An official announcement could come by Friday.
According to Jen Langosch of MLB.com, the Pirates have shown interest in Kenshin Kawakami. The Braves right hander is set to make $6.667 million in 2011, but Atlanta are interested in parting ways with the starter, covering most of the salary. It’s possible the Bucs could pay $1-2 million and not have to trade any player in the deal.
Kawakami, 35, went 1-10 with a 5.15 ERA in 18 games (16 starts) with the Braves in 2010.
The Pirates are also rumored to be eyeing shortstop (he can also play second and third base) Brendan Ryan of the Cardinals. Ryan hit .223 with two homers and 36 RBI in 139 games.
The Pirates talks with starting pitcher Brandon Webb have gone cold according to sources. The Bucs have not contacted Webb since November 22nd. Justin Duchscherer, Jeff Francis and Scott Olsen are still on the Pirates radar.
The Pirates are willing to trade Evan Meek or Joel Hanrahan for a “significant offer” but they are not shopping them around.
According to Dejan Kovacevic of the Pittsburgh-Post Gazette, an informed source told him the Pirates “would love” to trade Ryan Doumit.
Monday kicks off the first day of the Winter Meetings held at the Walt Disney World Swan & Dolphin Resort in Orlando, Florida.
The Pirates have several gaps to fill for the 2011 season: a starting pitcher (or two), a first baseman/right fielder, shortstop and bullpen help for Evan Meek and Joel Hanrahan.
The young Bucs can be penciled in for next season: Jose Tabata, Neil Walker, Pedro Alvarez, Andrew McCutchen, and James McDonald.
“We feel it’s important to provide this young group of players weapons that will help them experience success in 2011,” President Frank Coonelly said. “More help is coming quickly through the much improved minor league system, but there are needs that we’re trying to address now to enable us to win in 2011. If we can address these needs without giving up prospects who we believe will be a part of our long-term success and without impeding our ability to lock up the young players who we are developing to long-term agreements, we need to do that.”
“We are targeting players on the market who will address these needs without jeopardizing our longer-term goals,” Coonelly said. “We have the financial resources available to address these needs, and we are looking forward to adding more talent to the improving young talent that has joined the roster over the past two years.”
The Pirates reportably were interested in Jorge De La Rosa (who re-signed with the Rockies) and first baseman Lance Berkman (who signed with the Cardinals). But there are many other players the Bucs could peruse: first baseman Derek Lee and Carlos Pena, right fielders Jeff Francouer, Jack Cust and Matt Diaz, shortstops J.J. Hardy and Jason Bartlett.
Steve Pearce and Lastings Milledge (who was non-tendered) could also be filled from within the organization to play first base/right field.
We are comfortable with Steve Pearce filling a role on the major league club,” General Manager Neal Huntington said. “We continue to be open to Lastings Milledge returning, too, but we are also exploring other potential fits.”
Starting pitching is the most important for the Pirates to fill. Scott Olsen is rumored to be in serious talks with the Pirates. Other options include: Brandon Webb (reports that the talks have gone cold with the cy-young award winner), Justin Duchscherer and Jeff Francis.
Thursday marks the Rule 5 draft and the Pirates have the first pick. Starter Aneury Rodriguez is the favorite, The right-hander went 6-5 with a 3.80 ERA and 94 strikeouts in 113.2 innings in Triple-A (Tampa Bay Ray’s organization).
The 40-man roster currently has four spots open.