Archive for the ‘ Trades ’ Category

BREAKING: More (Reported) Trades!

Here are the latest two trades breaking this morning:

(with a hat tip to Lookout Landing who heard of the discussions yesterday)

Nothing announced yet on that one.

The other deal, as first reported…

…has been announced.

BREAKING NEWS: Carlos Gomez Reportedly Traded (This is not a repost)


So after we got done talking to Carlos Gomez, Doug Melvin, and Craig Counsell all about the Gomez-to-Mets trade that got called off last night, and sitting at Miller Park preparing to watch Gomez man centerfield at least one more time, word is breaking that he’s been traded after all.

But not to the Mets. Melvin said earlier this afternoon that he doesn’t see any trades happening with the Mets anytime soon.

So where is he headed?

And the return?

Hey Ken, you got anything on the return?

But what about potential medical issues?

Friends, when it comes to Scott Boras clients, Jon Heyman is seldom never wrong.

More soon.

Gomez to Mets? Not So Fast (Or At All)


Sandy Alderson, who is the General Manager of the New York Mets, told reporters following their game tonight that Carlos Gomez is not now and will not by Friday be a New York Metropolitan.

This is too convoluted to put together after midnight now, but here’s the short version of all the reports:

  • The deal (Gomez to NYM, Zack Wheeler & Wilmer Flores to MIL) was agreed to, pending physicals.
  • Gomez was informed while on the Brewers charter flight back to Milwaukee from San Francisco by manager Craig Counsell that a deal was in place, pending medicals, once the news was breaking on Twitter.
  • Flores was informed at some point during Wednesday evening’s game but remained in the game, an uncommon practice for a player in an agreed upon trade.
  • Word started coming out that the hold up was pending review of medical reports.
  • After the game, Alderson met with the media at CitiField to tell them that there was no trade for Gomez. Media talked to Flores who said he was told that there was no trade after all.
  • Assumptions were apparently made that it was Wheeler’s post-Tommy John surgery medicals that were the issue and that the Brewers backed out of the deal.
  • Reports then started to come out (likely leaked by the Mets) that they bailed on the deal over concerns about Gomez’s hip.
  • Those concerns were characterized as slight. Also, that they shouldn’t have nixed the deal.
  • Scott Boras (Gomez’s agent) was quoted that Gomez has no hip issue, never has, and anyone claiming otherwise is being untruthful.

Got all that? Good. I’m going to sleep at some point.

BREAKING NEWS: Carlos Gomez Reportedly Traded


Joel Sherman of the NY Post was first to confirm that Carlos Gomez has been traded to the New York Mets, back where Gomez began his professional career.

The reported return?

Full thoughts coming soon.

Official Release: Brewers Send Ramirez to Pittsburgh


Brewers Acquire Right-Handed Reliever Yhonathan Barrios

The Milwaukee Brewers have acquired right-handed pitcher Yhonathan Barrios from the Pittsburgh Pirates in exchange for third baseman Aramis Ramirez and cash. The announcement was made by President of Baseball Operations and General Manager Doug Melvin.

“Aramis has had a great career, and we have had the opportunity to be a part of it,” said Melvin. “He is still a very respected hitter when there is a chance to drive in runs. We wish Aramis and his family the best.”

Barrios, 23, has split the season between Double-A Altoona (20g, 0-1, 1.48 ERA, 10 saves) and Triple-A Indianapolis (13g, 1-2, 4.60 ERA, 1 save). He went a combined 1-3 with a 2.68 ERA and 11 saves in his 33 relief appearances (40.1 IP, 36 H, 15 R (12 ER), 17 BB, 21 K, 1 HR). Barrios will be assigned to Double-A Biloxi.

Barrios, who began his professional career as an infielder, was originally signed by Pittsburgh as a non-drafted free agent on July 5, 2008. He converted to pitcher in 2013. He led all Pirates farmhands in saves (15) last season while pitching at Class-A West Virginia (26 games, 4 saves) and Class-A Bradenton (15 games, 11 saves).

Ramirez, 37, batted .284 with 65 HR and 262 RBI in 455 games as a Brewer (2012-15). He was signed by Milwaukee as a free agent on December 14, 2011. He is batting .247 with 11 HR and 42 RBI in 81 games this season.

Ramirez, who has announced his intention to retire following the 2015 season, ranks fifth on the all-time Major League list for home runs as a third baseman (375). He returns to Pittsburgh where he began his Major League career (1998-2003). Overall, Ramirez is a career .284 hitter with 380 HR and 1,384 RBI in 2,138 games between Pittsburgh, Chicago-NL (2003-11) and Milwaukee.

Rumor: Brewers In Trade Talks to Acquire Papelbon?


According to a tweet that came in just after midnight CT on Friday morning, the Brewers are in “serious discussions” to acquire Jonathan Papelbon from the Philadelphia Phillies.

The Phillies have been selling off several of their high-priced veterans, and Papelbon fits that M.O. The 6’4″ veteran closer is set to make $13 million in 2015 and has a vesting option for 2016 as a part of his contract as well. The Brewers did just save ~$9 million when they traded Yovani Gallardo, so conventional logic would seem to infer that the Phillies might be paying a portion of Papelbon’s contract in any deal.

The now 34-year-old Papelbon saved 39 games for a Phillies team that only won 79 all season. He pitched to a 2.04 ERA in 66.1 IP. He struck out 63 batters and walked just 15. In stark contrast to the outgoing Brewers closer of 2014, Francisco Rodriguez, Papelbon gave up only two (2) home runs last year. His FIP (2.53) and WHIP (0.905) are encouraging peripherals as well.

Papelbon does have a 17-team no-trade list, but it’s unknown whether the Brewers are on the list.

An acquisition of Papelbon would certainly satisfy Doug Melvin’s oft-stated desire to have multiple guys in the his bullpen who have experience closing games. In fact, Papelbon was a rumored target for the Brewers last season before they ultimately acquired Jonathan Broxton from the Cincinnati Reds. At the time, the idea of Papelbon in Milwaukee was panned due to the financial commitment due him. For the record, his 2016 option (also at $13 million) vests if Papelbon finishes 48 games in 2015 as that would bring his two-year total up to 100.


As often happens when one baseball writer breaks news, others react to it by checking in with their own sources and then share what they’ve learned. So far today, that role has been filled by’s Ken Rosenthal and’s Jayson Stark.

So all that seems to counter, to a degree, what Jeff Passan originally reported. However, Jayson Stark then chimed in.

Stay tuned.

Gallardo Trade Details



As first reported by Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports (and since confirmed by several respected writers), the Milwaukee Brewers are receiving three players in return for Yovani Gallardo who was traded to the Texas Rangers.

The three players are a shortstop, a relief pitcher and an 18-year-old starting pitching prospect.

The shortstop is 21-year-old Luis Sardiñas who was suggested by Ken Rosenthal as potentially being involved as the Rangers had offered the Venezuelan in other trade ideas this off-season. He’s a guy who some still regard highly (7th overall Rangers prospect according to Baseball America) while others (MLB Pipeline, unranked) don’t have him nearly as high anymore. He’s considered a true shortstop defensively which is never a bad thing to have in the system.

The relief pitcher is Corey Knebel, a 23-year-old former 1st round pick (2013, 39th overall) of the Detroit Tigers. Knebel made his MLB debut in May of 2014, appearing in a total of eight games for the Tigers. He was later traded to the Rangers in the Joakim Soria deal. Knebel was listed as the Rangers’ eighth-best prospect prior to the deal. Of Knebel’s abilities, the website says:

Knebel definitely has the weapons and competitive makeup with which to close games. His fastball ranges from 91-98 mph with tailing action, and he uses his height to throw it on a downhill plane. When he stays on top of his curveball, it can be just as nasty as his heater, arriving in the low 80s with sharp downward break.

There’s some funkiness to Knebel’s delivery, but it adds more deception than it detracts from his ability to throw strikes. He flashes a decent changeup, which had the Tigers initially considering trying him as a starter, but his future definitely is as a reliever.

Knebel is 6’3″, was a closer at the University of Texas, and quite clearly skyrocketed through the minors and into The Show. If healthy (he was shut down in August with a UCL injury), he joins a murky if somewhat crowded Brewers bullpen situation.

The youngster of the trio is Marcos Diplan, (20th Rangers prospect, MLBPipeline). He can reportedly touch 98 MPH and sits in the low 90s but has room to add power onto his young frame. Diplan was the consensus top pitcher in the 2013 international class coming out of the Dominican Republic, that coming from

All told, this is a quality return for the Brewers. There is no surefire superstar in the group, but for one guaranteed season of Gallardo, and a chance to sign him to an extension or at least extend a qualifying offer, this was probably about as strong a return as could have been hoped. Oh, and as I reported yesterday, the Brewers kicked in some money to Texas. Reports have it as $4 million. That could explain some of the delay as a dollar amount of that size would need approval from the commissioner’s office.

Both Sardinas and Knebel were on the Rangers 40-man roster. Gallardo leaving opens one spot.

***UPDATE: To clear the other needed spot, former organizational player of the year Hunter Morris was designated for assignment.***

Rumor: Yovani Gallardo Headed to Rangers In Trade


As first pinpointed by’s Ken Rosenthal and Jon Paul Morosi, the Brewers followed through on my report from early last week and are reportedly on the verge of trading away homegrown starting pitcher Yovani Gallardo to the Texas Rangers.

Gallardo, as you may recall, became the Brewers’ career strikeout leader late in 2014 and was on pace to overtake several statistical categories in Brewers history in the near future. It now appears as though the man we call “Yo” will finish where he currently sits.

I’m writing to discuss why I think this trade went down, some of the logistics without yet knowing all the names involved for sure, as well as my generalized thoughts about trading Gallardo from a macro level.

First, the Brewers are basically maxed out on their payroll as the day begins. Principal owner Mark Attanasio has been flexible over the years in adding payroll in season when the chance to compete is there. Just look at 2014. He authorized acquiring Jonathan Broxton (the likely closer to begin 2015) and Gerardo Parra (a pricey current 4th outfielder) after all. But entering a season where they sit after avoiding arbitration with all three of their eligible players (~$97 million committed to 12 players per Milwaukee Journal/Sentinel beat writer Tom Haudricourt), it’s not that far of a stretch to understand why Attanasio might want to trim a little payroll fat. Gallardo is set to make $13 million in the final season of a six-year, $42.5 million contract he signed before the 2010 season. This is also pretty strong evidentiary support of the idea that the Brewers had no plans to offer Gallardo another long-term contract or even a qualifying offer after the season.

That’s just one of the logistical points of this situation. Another that I’ve been told is that the Brewers might not be moving all of Gallardo’s $13 million. There is chatter that they’ll be paying a portion of his deal. That’s normally done to offset the cost to the acquiring team, thereby increasing the return in quality and/or quantity of players.

But why now? Why move Gallardo at all? He was drafted by the Brewers, after all. I’ve heard all this and more since the trade rumor was first floated out. To those questions, I answer thusly.

Gallardo rebounded a bit in 2014 and actually had a better overall season than many give him credit for. He still struggled against St. Louis, had a poor May after an excellent April and limped through September when everything around the team seemed to be collapsing together, but his season was strong as a sum of its parts. Gallardo’s fastball came back to life and he posted a career-best BB/9 ratio of 2.5 overall. With a full season of control, Gallardo is more valuable to the Brewers to move now than he would be at any other point in 2015. And outside of the money issues, Gallardo is the most moveable piece among the pitchers. He’s the best combination of return, savings, and striking while the iron is hot on the team.

You aren’t moving the cheap Wily Peralta, Mike Fiers or Jimmy Nelson. Kyle Lohse is the oldest of the group and wouldn’t bring as much in return since there’s less projectability left on his arm than that of Gallardo. And after bringing in Matt Garza on an expensive deal, that’s not changing yet, plus the fact that Garza is already on pace to providing an extremely inexpensive contract option.

You also can’t let yourself worry about the fact that he was drafted and developed by the Brewers. So was Rickie Weeks. So was Prince Fielder. So was Corey Hart. There is a time for the vast majority of players in the era of free agency to move on from their original teams. If Gallardo isn’t in the long-term plan and he can bring you back someone who is, you move him. It can be a hard thing for a franchise like Milwaukee to do when homegrown talent under team control is a necessity to win, but when that talent prices themselves out of town decisions must be made regardless of the potential public relations hit. In a perfect world every Brewer is Robin Yount, but a perfect world this ain’t.

As for the return, well that just might be another column once we learn the particulars. Rosenthal speculates that Luis Sardiñas might be involved, but as of Sunday afternoon Gallardo hadn’t even been informed that he’d been traded. A principal agreement could be in place without all the details sorted out. I’m told that Gallardo’s agent leaked the report though so somebody knows something. Understandably, both front offices are upset as the track record exists for both to operate quietly.

In regards to the next step that so many people wanted to jump to on social media already, the agent for James Shields wouldn’t be doing his job if he didn’t reach out to the Brewers to discern their plan and see if his client might fit. After all, the talk for a bit now is how nobody is in on Shields at the number he wanted. Engaging the Brewers could get things a bit more towards where Shields would like them to be. Then again, the conspiracy theorists point to how shortly after the Gallardo news broke, the Nationals agreeing to a contract with free agent pitcher Max Scherzer came out. They are pointing to the coincidence to indicate that maybe the Brewers desiring to trade for Wisconsin-native starting pitcher Jordan Zimmermann and needed to free up a rotation spot and some money to do it and that now that the Nationals feel confident in trading Zimmermann, they could fully engage on Scherzer. While that’s all plausible, it certainly feels like a couple of steps past where things stand as the sun comes up on Monday, January 19th.

Stay tuned. I have a feeling that things could get fun today.

Trade News: Brewers Trade Marco Estrada


Multiple reports and confirmations (including one by the Brewers) have come out this early Sunday afternoon which have the Milwaukee Brewers trading RHP Marco Estrada away.

Estrada, 31, gave up a league high 29 home runs in 2014 splitting time between the starting rotation and bullpen. He was much more effective as a relief pitcher in 2014, something that’s a bit of a disconnect from earlier in his career. Estrada was originally acquired by the Brewers off of waivers from the Washington Nationals after the 2009 season. Estrada made $3.325 million in 2014 and in his upcoming third time being arbitration eligible, he was set to receive a significant enough raise that he may have ended up as a non-tender candidate. That’s because the Brewers didn’t have a spot for him in the starting rotation where he’s a bargain. He’s quite pricey as a long-reliever.

He will finish his Brewers career with a 23-25 record in 139 games (70 starts). He’s amassed a 4.11 ERA in 521.0 innings pitched.

Doug Melvin struck a deal with the Toronto Blue Jays, who he has dealt with in the past. In return, the Brewers have acquired 1B Adam Lind.

Lind, also 31, has had an up-and-down career in Toronto, the only organization he’s known as a professional since being drafted in the 3rd round of 2004. Lind debuted as a 22-year-old in 2006.

In 2014, Lind spent some time in the  minor leagues to get his groove back, more or less. In his 96 games on Toronto’s roster, Lind slashed .321/.381/.479 in 318 plate appearances. That includes an incredibly hefty platoon split though. In 2014 he his .354/.409/.533 against right-handed pitching (which is the majority as we all know) but an incredibly different .061/.161/.061 in 37 plate appearances. That’s four walks, just two hits (both singles), and 11 strikeouts.

The Brewers are hardly strangers to platooning. They carried season-long platoon at both first and second base last season and due to some injury concerns, they basically played with one in left field down the stretch as well. They might be committing to Scooter Gennett full-time at the keystone in 2015 (though I think they’ll wind up in a soft platoon at best), so it would allow them room to have another first base platoon next season. Looking at the numbers, they almost have to. New hitting coach Darnell Coles can only do so much, after all.

Lind will makes $7.5 million in 2015. His contract carries a 2016 option as well valued at $8 million with a $500 thousand buyout.

Five Minutes With Jonathan Broxton’s Agent, BB Abbott

I wanted to give you a little something extra today as it relates to the newest Milwaukee Brewers, Jonathan Broxton, so I reached out to his agent, BB Abbott, for a couple of quick questions to gauge how the big right-hander has taken to the news.

BB Abbott with client Chipper Jones

The first thing I asked Mr. Abbott was when they learned about the waiver claim and that the trade had been agreed to. Abbott told me that they “just found out today” when the Reds “brought Jonathan into the office and told him about 1:30 (eastern time).”

I then asked about how Broxton was taking to the news of being traded at all, and specifically to Milwaukee given their position relative to Cincinnati’s. Abbott said that Broxton was “surprised to get traded in the middle of a long-term deal”, mentioning how a player kind of puts down roots in those kinds of situations. But as it set in, Abbott said that Broxton “has realized it’ll be a good spot for him.” He said that Broxton is understandably “excited” to be joining a pennant race and “respects the organization” a great deal given their history on the field over the years.

Finally, I asked Abbott about 2015 and whether that was a thought yet for Broxton. Abbott admitted that being in the closer’s mix makes sense but assured me that Broxton’s “focus is to [join the team] and help the Brewers in any way that they want.” Abbott also stated that Broxton “certainly hasn’t looked past this year and helping the [Brewers].”

BB Abbott is a licensed athlete agent and MLBPA certified baseball agent living in Tampa, FL. He works for Jet Sports Management. He also represents a pair of Brewers prospects, pitcher David Goforth and 2012 Organizational Minor League Player of the Year, Hunter Morris.

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