Dec 7, 2011; Dallas, TX, USA; Atlanta Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez answers question for a press conference during the MLB winter meetings at Hilton Anatole. Mandatory Credit: Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

MLB GM and Owners Meetings: Live Blog Day 3


Today is the final day of Major League Baseball’s GM and Owners winter meetings for November.  There will be more meetings next month.  As we’ve already mentioned, little generally occurs during the November meetings, at least in terms of monumental players moves.  So far, little has occurred that we didn’t already know would happen.

Brian McCann was reportedly given a Qualifying Offer, which he reportedly turned down.  We also heard some rumors that the San Francisco Giants might have some keen interest in Tim Hudson, especially in light of rumors at least, that the Braves offered Tim less than he made this past season.  None of those rumors have been substantiated, but it did lead to some interesting discussions in our Live Blog yesterday.

A couple of days ago, MLB Trade Rumors reported that…..

  • If the Braves lose Tim Hudson via free agency, they could do worse than to look into John Lackey of the Red Sox, the Atlanta Journal Constitution’s David O’Brien tweets. The Red Sox have Lackey signed for $15.25MM in 2014. They also have an option on his services for 2015 at a league-minimum salary, thanks to a contract clause that gave the Sox an extremely cheap option if Lackey’s existing elbow injury caused him to miss significant time. After a strong season in 2013, two years and $15.75MM looks like a bargain, which means Lackey should have significant value if Boston chooses to deal him.

That rumor leads to even more discussion about the possibilities the Braves may be looking into if Tim is no longer a Brave in 2014.

We’ve heard little if anything in the way of any other trades or moves, but there is the chance during today’s final November meetings, that some major moves could be made.  Could we see a move made with Dan Uggla this early?  Who knows, but we’re going to be here to discuss it and report whatever may happen, throughout the day.

 

LIVE BLOG

Join us in our discussions today.  Even if no moves are made today, the fun is in just discussing, prognosticating, and trying to figure out ahead of times what will happen.  Scroll down to our comments section, and join the fray!

 

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  • http://tomahawktake.com/ carpengui

    John Kincade @JohnKincade tweet (10:20am)
    [Phillies GM Reuben] Amaro just paid $38 for a bagel and coffee at the GMs meetings because obviously money is no object.

    • http://www.tomahawktake.com/ Chris Headrick

      That must be one “ace” of a bagel and cup o’ joe.

      • Benjamin Chase

        Nah, just your regular old Byrd’s bagel.

  • http://www.tomahawktake.com/ Chris Headrick

    Morning Fans! Will this last day of the November Winter Meetings yield any drama, finally? If not, we’ll create our own. :-) Join Alan, Jeff, myself, and possibly others as we cuss and discuss baseball around our digital version of the Hot Stove.

  • http://tomahawktake.com/ carpengui

    Early rumor wrap:

    1. Joey Bats to Philly for Dom Brown? Sounded like a hot rumor last night; not so much this morning.
    2. White Sox: in past couple of years, ‘nobody’ was untouchable. Now Chris Sale, Jose Abreu, Avisail Garcia, Jose Quintana are unavailable.
    3. DBacks think the Cubs’ Schierholtz represents a gritty ‘corner bat.’
    4. The Twins are in serious talks with Bronson Arroyo.
    5. The Dodgers have signed former Brave J.C. Boscan, and invited him to Spring Training.

    • http://tomahawktake.com/ carpengui

      Oh, and the Phillies signed Marlon Byrd because they’re trying to get younger.

      • http://www.tomahawktake.com/ Chris Headrick

        To me, that’s a good get for the Phillies. I’ve always like Byrd’s hustle and his ability at the plate.

        • http://tomahawktake.com/ carpengui

          Yeah… though if I’m a Phillies fan:
          1. I’d wonder if his 2013 was a last flurry, and doomed to regress.
          2. I’d think the money was too much (though we keep getting new details about the deal trickling out).
          3. I’d shoot myself.

          • http://www.tomahawktake.com/ Chris Headrick

            Well all that really just hinges upon whether it was a last flurry. The way he played, I doubt it. Phillies are in that, “we need to do something” mode.

          • http://tomahawktake.com/ carpengui

            “we need to do something” <– Exactly when GM's get into trouble.

          • http://www.tomahawktake.com/ Chris Headrick

            LOL. Can they get into more trouble? I saw their age creeping up on them 2-3 years ago, and knew they would have a season like 13 sooner or later. I think it was mostly pitching hiccups that hurt them. Talent, but no delivery outside of maybe Lee.

      • http://tomahawktake.com/ carpengui

        Jerry Crasnick @jcrasnick
        No basis to Jose Bautista-Domonic Brown trade report, say people familiar with the situation. #phillies #bluejays

        Follow-up tweet: Phillies willing to listen on Brown.

  • http://www.tomahawktake.com/ Chris Headrick

    Will the White Sox go for Salty – who is a better fit than others for them at Catcher, thus opening more of a door for Bmac in Boston?

    • http://www.tomahawktake.com/ Chris Headrick

      Per MLB Trade Rumors: White Sox have a clear need at catcher after their incumbent backstops combined to bat just .195/.237/.323 in 2013. WhileBrian McCann would seem to clash with their long-term plan, a younger free agent catcher without a draft pick attached would be the switch-hitting Jarrod Saltalamacchia, who thrives from the left side of the dish. Tim Dierkes, Mark Polishuk and I each predicted that Saltalamacchia would sign with the White Sox in MLBTR’s Free Agent Prediction contest, and Tim projected a four-year, $36MM deal for Salty in his free agent profile.

      • http://www.tomahawktake.com/ Chris Headrick

        My guess on Salty is the Twins may really go after him.

        • http://tomahawktake.com/ carpengui

          Sure is a perfect storm of a year for him, huh? Does that speak volumes about the value of C. Bethancourt, or what?

          • http://www.tomahawktake.com/ Chris Headrick

            Couldn’t have said that better myself. Off topic a touch I know, but I still hope for a great winter and spring showing for CB, and a sooner than expected starting spot with the Braves for him in 2014. I just love his arm.

  • http://www.tomahawktake.com/ Chris Headrick

    Got a few morning errands to run. Back in a bit.

  • http://tomahawktake.com/ carpengui

    MLBTR/Jon Heyward reports that Baltimore tried to get Shelby Miller from the Cards… and failed. Sounds like it didn’t get very far, but… J.J. Hardy would have helped them quite a bit. Hard for me to compare the value of pitchers and SS’s, but that might very well have helped replace some lost offense and stabilize the position. The problem: Hardy only signed through 2014; Miller is under control for several years.

    • http://www.tomahawktake.com/ Chris Headrick

      Yeah, that’s a difficult comparison to make. Would they actually fare better giving up Miller w/ how he pitched, to get Hardy. You get some offensive help, but do you hurt your pitching? Decisions like that, made wisely, separate good GMs from great GMs

      • http://tomahawktake.com/ carpengui

        Honestly, the Cards oughta re-engage on this… perhaps with a privso that Hardy sign an extension. But there are other pitchers to bait the Orioles with:

        In 2013, the Cards used 10 starters, 8 with 40+ innings, 7 with an ERA under 4. Wainwright, Miller, Wacha, Kelly, and (anybody – maybe Garcia) are a solid 1-5. If I’m them, I’d use Lance Lynn as the first counter for Hardy.

        • http://www.tomahawktake.com/ Chris Headrick

          Yeah I could get behind that if I were them. Cards were strong this year, as usual of late, and a little shoring up of both their offense, and defense, would help them again compete in 2014.

    • Benjamin Chase

      I hear Miller’s name mentioned as a keystone in a trade for Troy Tulowitzki. I would much rather use him as a piece for Tulo than Hardy if I’m the Cardinals.

  • http://www.tomahawktake.com/ Chris Headrick

    Check out the Braves Clubhouse report today at 2:30 on 680 The Fan to hear from EVP of Business Ops Mike Plant speak about the new stadium. This from a tweet by the Braves Twitter account.

  • http://tomahawktake.com/ carpengui

    So Ervin Santana wants ‘Greinke money’: 5 yrs/$112m or so. That’s $22.4m/yr.

    Thanks. Will pass.

    • http://www.tomahawktake.com/ Chris Headrick

      haha I’d pass as well. Santana is no Greinke! Stringfellow, White, and Alou (sounds like a law firm) are really pushing their argument for this, but to me – ludicrous.

      • http://tomahawktake.com/ carpengui

        His last 7 years of ERA+: 127, 74, 111, 102, 87, 127, 79
        Career average? 97
        Yeah, he’s got decent innings per year, but in my book, a 97 guy doesn’t even get a qualifying offer.

  • http://tomahawktake.com/ carpengui

    Word on Catcher Collisions is that they was “100% agreement” in the room that such plays oughta to be outlawed (see the David Ross play in ALCS Game 5 for example). Only question appears to be getting a rule written, getting an acceptable penalty, and getting the players’ association on board in time for the 2014 season.

    Sure hope the guy who wrote that Infield Fly and/or Obstruction definitions has retired.

  • http://www.tomahawktake.com/ Chris Headrick

    Here’s an intriguing question… would you rather have Giancarlo Stanton as a Brave, or Jason Heyward? I’m sure you know why I’m even entertaining the question….

    • http://tomahawktake.com/ carpengui

      I’m not sure we know yet. Stanton on a club with some protection (2012 Marlins) slugged .608/.969 OPS. On the 2013 Marlins, it was .480/.845 – and he hit 50 pts lower.

      Overall _today_, I still take Jason: much better defender, smart player. But this year might be a make-or-break season with him in Atlanta. If he breaks out, he has a monster career. If ‘stuff’ still happens to him, then it could all be about the ‘potential’ when you talk about him.

      • http://www.tomahawktake.com/ Chris Headrick

        Yeah, I agree with your take on him. When I think of Jason, I think of him as a player who is still trying to break out and really start being a superstar. At the same time, I’m not sure he ever will be. I agree that his future with the Braves may hinge on the 2014 season, but with GS in arb talks, it is at least intriguing to think about a possible trade w/ Uggla thrown in for power, and some un-named Fish. Not very feasible, but then it’s the Hot Stove.

        • http://tomahawktake.com/ carpengui

          Although the Fish probably need Uggla back, I don’t think there’s any chance… unless Loria ends up thinking of such a deal as a revenge move against Dan with Loria looking like he ‘wins’ the deal. From everything I’ve seen, that would mesh with his personality – it wouldn’t be about a baseball decision, it’s all about winning the deal… or making money.

          • http://www.tomahawktake.com/ Chris Headrick

            Look up Loria in the dictionary, if it were there, would read: Owners that baffle you.

          • http://tomahawktake.com/ carpengui

            .

          • http://www.tomahawktake.com/ Chris Headrick

            Yeah, I meant that… will amend.

  • http://www.tomahawktake.com/ Chris Headrick

    The stream of so-called racist BS is already rearing it’s ugly head, with vitriol about Cobb not wanting to Marta in city folk to the county. Excuse me, frankly, while I go puke!

    • http://tomahawktake.com/ carpengui

      When you return, please elaborate.

      • http://www.tomahawktake.com/ Chris Headrick

        There’s streams of tweets fromf liberals on Twitter, talking about how Cobb county has a history of being openly hostile to the city of Atlanta, and how the GOP led government there doesn’t have any interest in trying to help ensure any MARTA type railing of downtown Atlanta folk to the new stadium. I don’t want to get overly political here, but imo… complete and total BS.

        • http://www.tomahawktake.com/ Chris Headrick

          Cobb County GOP chairman said this, and it is being interpreted, by some, as racist:

          “It is absolutely necessary the solution is all about moving cars in and around Cobb and surrounding counties from our north and east where most Braves fans travel from, and not moving people into Cobb by rail from Atlanta.
          “The other important part of the formula is for the citizens of Cobb not to experience any kind of tax increase. The influx of people into the county for the games should provide the revenue needed to make this a successful venture.”

          • http://tomahawktake.com/ carpengui

            Those who want to view things through a racial prism, can (and unfortunately will) find it in almost any situation.

            Politics are indeed relevant here: Fulton Cty went almost 2:1 for Obama in 2012; Cobb went 55/43 for Romney, so you can make a reasonable judgment on the Dem/GOP ratios of each county.

            Given that, it’s going to be vital for Cobb officials to do this without modifying the tax burden at all… and certainly the Braves would know this going in.

            The MARTA statement could have been stated a lot better, but the 2nd paragraph is the important bit. Down the road, some enterprising soul might do the math and present the case for bringing new tax dollars from Atlanta in the form of a rail line. But (a) that’s gonna take a while before anybody might listen; and (b) mass transit projects are never found in the GOP playbook; it’s conversely a typical play for the Dems.

          • Elonbrave

            Ok, why is this total BS? Be specific.

          • Elonbrave

            I’m just saying… Major League Baseball has struggled for decades to increase the number of blacks playing the game and attending games. It doesn’t make the Cobb County folks racist that they’re not trying to get MARTA to run out there, but it does seem like they’re unconcerned with alienating a significant portion of their fan base that happens to be black.

          • http://tomahawktake.com/ carpengui

            Looking at that ticket-buyers map plus the economics about keeping up with Turner Field costs, it would seem to be a financial decision more than anything else.

          • Elonbrave

            Yeah, I’ve seen the heat map, but I can’t help but think that they’d be able to get more red in the southwestern portion of that map if getting to the park wasn’t so freakin’ hard.

            Sorry to belabor the point, I just want to see them do this right. One of the biggest complaints about Turner was access, and I don’t see why they’re not using every means necessary to make the new park (Bobby Cox Doritos Campbell’s Chunky Soup Bank of America Park) ridiculously accessible. If I were them I’d want it to be TOO accessible – get turned around in Underground Atlanta, end up in the park.

          • http://tomahawktake.com/ carpengui

            Love that stadium name. Maybe add “brought to you by Flo and Progressive Insurance”.

            No doubt: access is the challenge. The civil engineers will be working overtime for this one.

          • http://www.tomahawktake.com/ Chris Headrick

            As I said, I don’t want to engage in a raging political debate that has little to do with the focus of our site. I’ll just say this and be done with it. As Alan said below, unfortunately some people will always view most things through certain prisms, whether it’s racial or otherwise, and politics is always relevant, in any situation. The reason I call it BS to label the Cobb Co. GOP board chairman’s comments as racist is this:

            The larger issue for Cobb County is the tight squeeze of traffic you already have at the interstate intersection there, and so the issue of getting cars into the area, particularly from the north and east, is much more crucial and problematic than the rail from the city. The chairman is addressing what he feels is the most crucial problem w/ the new stadium, not his specific feelings toward the City of Atlanta.

            There will always be that racial prism in anything though, and interpretations will vary. Most anything anyone says can be interpreted to mean a wide variety of things. That’s my .02 on his statements, and I’ll let this rest.

          • Elonbrave

            Wouldn’t the point of rail from the city be to decrease car traffic from the city? I just don’t understand why it’s an either/or.

          • http://tomahawktake.com/ carpengui

            You’re right – it would be the point; the problem (and I commented on this yesterday) is that there is no route from the existing rail lines that would be cheap at all: it would require about 8 miles of new track to get up to the new site… and that’s a bunch. It would be extremely costly, and thus until somebody (maybe a Ga Tech study) can make the case for the economics, I can’t see that happening.

          • http://www.tomahawktake.com/ Chris Headrick

            I hear what you’re saying, and I agree Marta may be relevant to the citizens of Atlanta. The chairman said “The influx of people into the county for the games should provide the revenue needed to make this a successful venture.” So.. while we may not all agree with his focus, it’s economics, not personal. He feels that solving traffic issues so the influx of cars can easily make it to the stadium will pay the bills, as opposed to assuming you will get that much revenue from people railed in to Cobb.

            I don’t interpret what he said as not caring at all about Marta, but simply that it’s not his focus as someone paid to care more about Cobb Co. needs. It’s simply a huge assumption to call his concerns or statements racist in my opinion.

          • http://tomahawktake.com/ carpengui

            Yes, and Cobb will be expected to provide a bunch of infrastructure monies to this project regardless: new highway accesses, new/improved roads in the area… all of that.

            Fact is, they already don’t have MARTA… a bus shuttle is truly the only link, and one that the Braves already had to subsidize themselves to keep THAT running. So really, while access may not be a lot better at the new site, it was already poor – so this probably can’t be a lot worse by moving…. regardless of mass transit options.

            The ones hurt the most? Likely the ticket buyers from the downtown area and those south of the city. They seem to be far outnumbered by those north of the perimeter.

          • http://www.tomahawktake.com/ Chris Headrick

            Agreed. In any move like this, there will always be those that benefit, and those that do not, but I think the majority will benefit, and so I still say it’s a win-win for most Braves’ fans. For the few that don’t benefit from it, that’s life, not racism, and those who won’t like it come in a variety of colors.

  • http://tomahawktake.com/ carpengui

    Wow – this is odd…
    MLBTR: Orioles willing to trade Weiters.
    MLBTR: Mariners interested in Matt Kemp (and almost every other breathing hitter, for that matter.

  • http://tomahawktake.com/ carpengui

    With all the interest (it seems) in Ruiz, Peralta, and Cruz – is there truly a sufficient penalty in place for PED use?

    • http://www.tomahawktake.com/ Chris Headrick

      No, the only sufficient penalty, in my humble opinion, is set rules that can be as closely followed and interpreted as reasonably possible, and provide bans for breaking them. MLB is not serious about PEDS, yet anyway…

  • http://tomahawktake.com/ carpengui

    Listening to a Georgia State economics professor (Bruce Seaman) on XM/MLBNetworkRadio right now:
    “No Atlanta Metro resident uses the terms ‘I-75/85 and Easy Access’ in the same sentence.”
    “Lot of push-back in Cobb County about public transportation.”
    “The last thing we need in Atlanta is more cars on the road – the Braves are well cognizant of that fact.”

    • http://www.tomahawktake.com/ Chris Headrick

      Well, it certainly should never have been thought of by anyone as a “hurdle free” affair, this moving to Cobb. We’re just getting a small taste of all the hurdles to come I suspect.

      • http://tomahawktake.com/ carpengui

        This. At the same time, I also have to believe – said this a couple days ago – that there would have been no announcement without expectation of significant buy-in/approval of the project from Cobb. Yes – this will be a process, not a momentary event.

        • http://www.tomahawktake.com/ Chris Headrick

          Yeah, I agree. It won’t be simple, but I think both parties are fully committed at this point to making it happen. In the end, it will be an economic win for Cobb county, and they’ll be working hard to make sure it’s nothing but.

  • http://tomahawktake.com/ carpengui

    Can I haz some actual baseball news now?

    • http://www.tomahawktake.com/ Chris Headrick

      Yeah haha, sorry for my political tangent. I’ve now fully stepped off my soapbox, although I suspect you just mean… literally…. you wanna see some moves like me. :)

      • http://www.tomahawktake.com/ Chris Headrick

        I’m going to take a lunch break. Back in a bit, and hopefully with a full stomach will come some filling news stories.

      • http://tomahawktake.com/ carpengui

        No worries: it’s relevant to the team and future economic considerations… like it or not :/

  • http://tomahawktake.com/ carpengui

    Gordon Edes @GordonEdes
    FWIW, one baseball source said Texas pushing hard for McCann. ‘”They’re knocking his door down,” source said

  • http://tomahawktake.com/ carpengui

    A’s have signed Nick Punto. $2.75m with a vesting option for the same in 2015.

    • http://www.tomahawktake.com/ Chris Headrick

      Beane’s nerds saw some magic in punto most other teams eye tests couldn’t pick up? Hehe

      • Benjamin Chase

        It’s the headfirst slides into first base.

    • Benjamin Chase

      This will be what pushes the A’s over the top! The new market inefficiency is having 5,342,542,234,221 middle infielders!

  • http://tomahawktake.com/ carpengui

    Braves Exec VP Mike Plant on 680 TheFan at 2:45 EST. Internet streaming available.

  • http://tomahawktake.com/ carpengui

    SIGNED: Jonny Venters is back with us for 2014. Reportedly at $1.625 million.