It's a new year and time for the first hot stove report of the new year. It also means nearly two months have gone by since players filed for free agency and there are still big names to be had. Manny Ramirez, Adam Dunn, Derek Lowe, Bobby Abreu, Trevor Hoffman, and Ken Griffey Jr. are just some of the players still looking for work.
Needless to say Lowe was not impressed by the Mets' 3-year, $36 mill offer.
Last off-season, Orioles second baseman Brian Roberts had to listen to continuous rumors about his pending departure to the Chicago Cubs. Now MASN (Mid-Atlantic Sports Network) reports that Orioles are talking to the Chicago White Sox about Roberts' availability. Gavin Floyd's name has been mentioned, though we don't understand trading a 17-game winner when winning is all about pitching.
Don't Let the Door Hit You....
Jon Heyman is reporting that the Dodgers and outfielder Andruw Jones are working to restructure the Curacao native's deal to allow them to move him to another team. Jones would be agreeing to defer half of the $20 million remaining on his contract. Seems like everyone except Ned Colletti knew the Dodgers should give Jones his contract. The restructure would also free up money to help try to resign Manny Ramirez.
Tony Clark has agreed to a 1-year, $800,000 deal that will keep him in Arizona, his baseball home since 2005.
Giants Among Men
The Giants were reportedly quietly looking into signing Manny Ramirez, but then shot down those rumors (or was that a ploy?). Now, according to Heyman, they're taking a look at the medical records of White Sox 3rd baseman Joe Crede to possibly fill their hot corner needs. It's been all downhill for the Giants since they signed Barry Zito. Bonds Karma perhaps?
Please Don't Follow me, Joe
Scott Proctor has escaped the clutches of Joe Torre for the second time, agreeing to a one year deal with the Marlins. Proctor had been non-tendered by the Dodgers.
Moor or Less
Former player Jeff Moorad can now add former Diamondbacks head honcho to his resume. Moorad resigned in order to pursue purchasing the Padres.
Twins' catcher Joe Mauer has undergone minor kidney surgery (is there such a thing?) to remove an obstruction. The Minneapolis-Star Tribune reports that the situation is not serious and Mauer will be ready for Spring Training.
In case you missed it, the Angels got themselves a new closer the other day, free agent pitcher Brian Fuentes. To replace K-Rod, Fuentes was given a 2-year, $17.5 million deal. If things don't work out, Fuentes could be moved into a set up role with Scot Shields or Jose Arredondo assuming the closing duties.