Royals Agree To Minor League Deal With Tyler Collins

Jan 18, 2018 | No Comments

The Royals and outfielder Tyler Collins are in agreement on a minor league pact, tweets SB Nation’s Chris Cotillo. He’s represented by the Beverly Hills Sports Council. Collins, 28 in June, is no stranger to the AL Central after spending parts of the past four seasons with the Tigers. The former sixth-round pick (2011) at times looked like he could lock down a fairly significant role in Detroit. The 2015 campaign saw Collins take 207 plate appearances with the big league club and post a solid, if unspectacular .266/.316/.417 slash. At the very least, the Tigers’ confidence in his ability to play all three outfield spots made him a candidate to stick around as a fourth outfielder. From 2016-17, though, Collins’ offensive production tumbled in significant fashion (.213/.291/.357) — a decline that prompted the Tigers to designate him for assignment midway through the 2017 campaign. Collins cleared waivers and stuck with the organization, returning later in the year only to be outrighted once again in October, at which point he filed for minor league free agency.

Braves Acquire Shane Carle

Jan 17, 2018 | No Comments

The Braves announced that they’ve acquired right-hander Shane Carle from the Pirates in exchange for a player to be named later or cash considerations. Pittsburgh had designated the 26-year-old Carle for assignment over the weekend in order to clear space on the roster for the players acquired from Houston in the Gerrit Cole trade. Carle made his Major League debut with the Rockies in 2017, tossing four innings and surrendering three runs on six hits and no walks with four strikeouts. It’s not a lengthy sample, to be sure, but Carle’s fastball averaged a healthy 93.6 mph in that short time. The 2013 10th-round pick (by the Pirates) spent the bulk of the year in Triple-A in Colorado, where he struggled to a 5.37 ERA in a hitter-friendly setting.

The Inner Monologue of @DimTillard Giveaway Nights

Jan 16, 2018 | No Comments

It’s 8:13am on Tuesday January 16th, 2018.   My name is Tim Dillard.  Some of my personal achievements include, and are probably limited to… possessing more than twenty-seven free tee-shirts, owning six Star Wars coffee mugs, highjacking Tim Kurkjian’s microphone, beating Super Mario Bros. in under nine minutes, and was once given beard-care advice from Canada’s The Bachelor.  I’ve also been a pitcher in professional baseball for the last fifteen seasons.  With a HUGE majority of that experience being spent in the Minor Leagues.  However, this one time in the Big Leagues, I did make fun of Trevor Hoffman’s cutoff sleeves… he laughed.

Giants, Pirates Agree To Andrew McCutchen Trade

Jan 15, 2018 | No Comments

The Pirates and Giants are in agreement on a trade that will send outfielder Andrew McCutchen from Pittsburgh to San Francisco, Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic tweets. The deal is pending review of medical records.. Jon Heyman and Robert Murray of FanRag had recently reported that talks between the two sides were intensifying. The McCutchen agreement comes just days after the Pirates shipped right-hander Gerrit Cole to the reigning World Champion Astros, further signaling the end of an era in Pittsburgh, though the pair of trades does not necessarily indicate that a full-scale tear-down is on the horizon for the Bucs. Both Cole (controlled through 2019) and McCutchen (a free agent next winter) were short-term and relatively high-priced assets — especially for a Pirates team that operates on a notoriously thin budget. McCutchen is slated to earn $14.75MM in the final season of his contract, whereas Cole had settled at $6.75MM in order to avoid arbitration. The Pirates, then, will be saving a combined $21.5MM with this pair of swaps — money that could, in theory, be reinvested into the 2018 roster. The Pirates have, after all, opened each of the past three season with payrolls in excess of $90MM but now project for a payroll of roughly $82MM in 2018

MLBTR Poll: Grading The Gerrit Cole Swap

Jan 15, 2018 | No Comments

Gerrit Cole is a highly visible player — a former first overall pick who landed fourth in the National League Cy Young vote in 2015 — so it’s natural there will be strong opinions about the return he drew in the recent swap between the Pirates and Astros. We have already seen a variety of industry opinions pour in (see here, here, here, and here), but I thought it’d be worth taking the temperature of the MLBTR readership. There’s little reason to full describe the elements of the agreement. (MLBTR’s Conny Byrne discussed all relevant elements in detail in his post on the Cole trade.) But here’s a brief account for purposes of facilitating today’s poll: Astros receive: 2 years of control over SP Gerrit Cole ($6.75MM for 2018; arbitration for 2019) — following aforementioned 2015 season, Cole was limited by injury in 2016 and pitched to a 4.26 ERA with 8.7 K/9 and 2.4 BB/9 in a healthy 2017 season Pirates receive: 4 years of control over RP Michael Feliz — carries 5.13 ERA (allowing 1.5 HR/9) through 121 MLB innings, but has averaged 12.8 K/9 against 3.6 BB/9 5 years of control over SP/RP Joe Musgrove — former first-round pick has been tagged for a .288/.339/.506 slash and 5.37 ERA over 25 MLB starts, but worked to a 1.26 ERA with 39:6 K/BB ratio in 35 2/3 innings last year after moving to the bullpen 6 years of control over 3B Colin Moran — former sixth overall draft pick slashed .308/.373/.543 with 18 home runs in 338 plate appearances at Triple-A last year, but has yet to receive significant time in the majors 6 years of control over OF Jason Martin — 22-year-old reached Double-A for first time in 2017, slashing .273/.319/.483 with 11 home runs in 320 plate appearances Since there are two teams involved with their own set of needs, we’ll ask for grades from each organization’s perspective. For Pittsburgh, clearly, the move was designed to add multiple assets that can deliver value over a longer time frame

Ranking 2018’s top 5 starting rotations

Jan 15, 2018 | No Comments

Gerrit Cole put the Astros in the conversation for MLB’s top starting rotation. Here is an early guess at this year’s top five.

Poll: Which Team Will Sign Yu Darvish?

Jan 14, 2018 | No Comments

Two-plus months into what has been an abnormal MLB offseason, right-hander Yu Darvish remains one of several high-profile players without a contract. In general, the open market hasn’t been kind to rotation pieces this winter, as righty Tyler Chatwood’s fairly modest deal with the Cubs (three years, $38MM) ranks as the largest guarantee given to a starter thus far. He signed that pact Dec. 7, and it seemed unthinkable then that every one of the elite free agent starters – Darvish, Jake Arrieta, Alex Cobb and Lance Lynn – would still be available over a month later. And yet, all are without teams on Jan. 14. Darvish is likely the best of the bunch, someone MLBTR predicted would land a six-year, $160MM contract entering the offseason, and has drawn the most headlines of the group this winter. Earlier this week, the 31-year-old top-of-the-rotation arm was reportedly deciding among six teams – the Rangers and Dodgers (his two previous employers) as well as the Yankees, Twins, Cubs and Astros. Houston is probably out of the race after acquiring righty Gerrit Cole from the Pirates on Saturday, thus giving the reigning World Series champions yet another quality starter in a rotation packed with them

More Reaction & Fallout To The Gerrit Cole Trade

Jan 14, 2018 | No Comments

The Astros and Pirates swung a major trade yesterday, with the World Series champions acquiring Gerrit Cole in exchange for a package of four players (Joe Musgrove, Michael Feliz, Colin Moran, Jason Martin).  We’ve already published one batch of reactions to the deal, and now here are some additional details about the trade talks and further analysis about what this deal means for Houston, Pittsburgh, and other clubs… The Astros were able to land Cole without giving up any of their top prospects, as ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick reports that Houston wasn’t willing to offer Forrest Whitley, Kyle Tucker, Derek Fisher, or Yordan Alvarez.  Musgrove and Moran were seen as the top two pieces of the trade by the Pirates, and they pulled the trigger on the deal since Pittsburgh felt no other team was offering two top prospects of better quality in exchange for Cole.  Musgrove, Feliz, and Moran give the Bucs 15 years of controllable talent, which was also a factor in their decision. Also from Crasnick, the Yankees were willing to include one of Clint Frazier or Chance Adams in a potential Cole trade, but not both.  New York was also intent on holding onto its top minor leaguers, as Gleyber Torres, Miguel Andujar, Justus Sheffield, and Estevan Florial were considered off-limits in trade talks. The Yankees’ unwillingness to move its best prospects could be due to a belief that Yu Darvish could be signed for a “reasonable” price, John Harper of the New York Daily News writes.  This could be a contract in the range of five years and $80MM-90MM, which would represent a stunning discount from the six-year, $160MM deal MLBTR predicted for Darvish at the start of the offseason.  Even with the unprecedentedly slow nature of this winter’s free agent market, it’s hard to believe Darvish would settle for such a relatively small deal, especially with at least five other teams known to be vying for his services.  Harper also notes that even a five-year/$80MM pact would put the Yankees over the luxury tax limit, unless they were to move another big contract to create payroll space.