The St. Louis Cardinals are expected to lose catcher Yadier Molina to the disabled list, but a source says they do not plan to pursue a catcher in a trade. Molina, who has been battling discomfort in his right knee for weeks, left the second game of Tuesday’s doubleheader against the Pittsburgh Pirates with what the team called a right knee strain.
The Boston Red Sox needed a starting pitcher. The Detroit Tigers were looking for infield help. The Chicago White Sox wanted more prospects for the future.
And that’s why baseball’s biggest trade of the season came together.
The Red Sox acquired Jake Peavy from the White Sox in a blockbuster three-team deal on Tuesday night that also sent shortstop Jose Iglesias to the Detroit Tigers. Read more
A’s get 3B Callaspo from Angels
Oakland General Manager Billy Beane was looking to shore up his infield, both offensively and defensively.
He got what he was looking for in Alberto Callaspo.
The Athletics acquired Callaspo from AL West rival Los Angeles Angels for infield prospect Grant Green on Tuesday night.
"We needed some infield help, particularly somebody who could help swing it from the right side," Beane said. "Just a little bit of a hedge at every position and help from the right side against left-handed pitching."
Callaspo was removed from the Angels game against the Texas Rangers after the fourth inning on Tuesday night. Green was a late scratch from Triple-A Sacramento’s lineup. Read more
Indians acquire Rzepczynski from Cards
The St. Louis Cardinals announced Tuesday that they traded LHP Marc Rzepczynski to the Cleveland Indians for minor league shortstop Juan Herrera.
Rzepczynski has a 7.84 ERA in 11 appearances for the Cardinals this season. He had been optioned to Triple-A Memphis earlier Tuesday.
Herrera, 20, was batting .275 in 39 games this season for Mahoning Valley of the New York-Penn League (A).
Sources: Young will only approve trade to Texas
Phillies general manager Ruben Amaro isn’t confident of trading either left-hander Cliff Lee or third baseman Michael Young before the non-waiver deadline at 4 p.m. ET.
Amaro said on MLB Network Tuesday that there was "very little chance" that the Phillies would trade Lee and "pretty remote" that they would trade Young.
Young, who has a full no-trade clause, only will approve a trade to the Rangers, sources say.
He spent the first 11 years of his major league career with the Rangers until signing as a free agent last offseason with the Phillies.
On Tuesday, the Phillies promoted Cody Asche, their top 3B prospect, which, in theory, could force Young to the bench.
The Phillies could use that as leverage, but they like Young and what he means to the lineup and the clubhouse. It’s doubtful the Phillies would force a confrontation with Young; it’s not their style and they already have clubhouse issues. Besides, they also could use Young at first base.
On Monday, veteran closer Jonathan Papelbon, who signed a four-year, $50 million contract in November 2011, vented his frustration with the Phillies after the team extended its skid to eight games.
"I definitely didn’t come here for this," Papelbon told MLB.com.
For the past several years, the Texas Rangers’ approach to the trade deadline has been the same: buy, buy, and buy some more, using prospects from one of the top farm systems in baseball.
This season, it’s a little more complicated.
Yes, they’ve already acquired Matt Garza from the Chicago Cubs. But they’re only 9-15 this month and have fallen six games behind Oakland in the American League West. Now major-league sources tell FOXSports.com that the Rangers are willing to listen to offers for “anyone” on their roster, including shortstop Elvis Andrus.
That’s a potentially significant development, since Andrus signed an eight-year, $120 million contract extension at the beginning of the regular season. With Andrus, second baseman Ian Kinsler and shortstop/second baseman Jurickson Profar, the Rangers have a surplus of middle infielders.
The Rangers also must prepare for the possibility that All-Star outfielder Nelson Cruz will be suspended because of his reported link to the Biogenesis investigation.
More than anything, the Rangers’ willingness to consider such a broad range of proposals suggests they view this year’s deadline as an opportunity to reshape their roster rather than focus on incremental upgrades for the pennant race.
Earlier, the Rangers surprised many in the industry by making closer Joe Nathan available. They also checked in with the Atlanta Braves on catcher Brian McCann, a free-agent-to-be who might be of interest to them for next season.
— Jon Paul Morosi and Ken Rosenthal
Dodgers acquire Wilson
The Dodgers have signed free-agent reliever Brian Wilson to a one-year deal. Read more.
The Texas Rangers keep downplaying their expectations for the non-waiver deadline. But according to major-league sources, they keep trying to do something big.
Specifically, with right fielder Nelson Cruz facing possible suspension, the Rangers are trying to acquire a hitter who is better than the top two known to be available, the Chicago White Sox’s Alex Rios and San Francisco Giants’ Hunter Pence, sources said.
The Miami Marlins’ Giancarlo Stanton would fit that description. The Rangers have asked about him again in recent days, only to be told — again — that Stanton would not be moved, sources said.
Either the Toronto Blue Jays’ Edwin Encarnacion or Jose Bautista also would make sense for the Rangers. But the Jays, sources said, will not trade either unless they get comparable major-league talent in return.
One possibility, particularly with the Rangers willing to move closer Joe Nathan, would be a deal with the Los Angeles Dodgers for one of their outfielders, either Andre Ethier or Carl Crawford.
The Dodgers, however, are still without Matt Kemp, who is on the disabled list for the third time for this season. The recent injury troubles of both Kemp and Crawford likely would make the team reluctant to trade an outfielder in the middle of a pennant race.
For the Rangers, the idea of moving Nathan might be better in theory than in practice. The Rangers are indeed deep in late-inning relievers, making it possible for them to deal from strength. But teams that need closers generally are contenders, and such clubs rarely wish to subtract from their major-league club in trades.
One source with knowledge of the Rangers’ discussions said it was "very unlikely" that the team would make a major acquisition before the non-waiver deadline at 4 p.m. ET Wednesday. The source said the club was struggling to negotiate even smaller deals.
The Tampa Bay Rays have acquired Chicago White Sox relief pitcher Jesse Crain. The sides will negotiate a cash/player combo going to Chicago over the next several weeks. Read More
— Ken Rosenthal
Talks stall for White Sox pitcher Peavy
The Chicago White Sox are telling teams that they might not trade starting pitcher Jake Peavy, though it remains to be seen if they are just posturing for a better deal.
Among the teams interested in Peavy are the Boston Red Sox, St. Louis Cardinals and Oakland Athletics, who have already moved on to other pursuits. The A’s will dangle some of players they would have traded for Peavy in an effort to get bullpen help and a middle infielder.
Chicago’s desire to get a quality return for Peavy remains the most significant obstacle to a deal. Talks have stalled for now, but anything can happen in the next couple of days.
— Ken Rosenthal
Sox in talks for multiple pitchers
The Boston Red Sox remain engaged in talks for multiple pitchers, including Philadelphia Phillies starter Cliff Lee and Chicago White Sox starter Jake Peavy, according to sources.
Lee is 10-4 with a 3.05 ERA in 20 starts, while Peavy is 8-4 with a 4.28 ERA in 13 starts.
— Jon Paul Morosi
Indians lose out on Downs, still in market for lefty specialist
The Cleveland Indians, according to major-league sources, were one of the finalists for left-handed reliever Scott Downs, who on Monday was traded from the Los Angeles Angels to the Atlanta Braves.
The Indians also are looking at San Diego Padres lefty Joe Thatcher and virtually every other left-handed specialist on the trade market, sources say.
Other than that, though, the Indians are fairly quiet. In something of an upset, they are not actively seeking starting pitching, in part due to a shortage on the market, in part due to their newfound depth.
The Indians are coming off back-to-back shutouts of the Texas Rangers in games started by right-handers Justin Masterson and Ubaldo Jimenez. Though they rank only 10th in the American League in rotation ERA, their starters’ ERA in the past 16 games is just 1.75.
Equally comforting, from the Indians’ perspective: They’ve got three alternatives at Triple A – right-handers Danny Salazar, Carlos Carrasco and Trevor Bauer – if something goes awry with one of the major-league starters.
Salazar was especially impressive in his start Sunday, allowing just three hits in five scoreless innings, striking out 11, walking one – and touching 99 mph, according to a source.
— Ken Rosenthal
Source: Dodgers, Phillies quiet on a Lee deal
The Dodgers and Phillies have not discussed a trade involving pitcher Cliff Lee recently, according to a source.
— Jon Paul Morosi
Braves, Angels swap pitchers
The Braves have acquired left-handed pitcher Scott Downs from the Angels in exchange for right-handed pitcher Cory Rasmus.
This is a strong add to the bullpen by Atlanta, which has been looking for lefty reliever since Eric O’Flaherty and Jonny Venters went down with injuries. Read more
— Ken Rosenthal and Jon Paul Morosi
Rangers interested in Braves’ McCann
Don’t be surprised if you see Brian McCann at the winter meetings this December donning a Texas Rangers cap and jersey as a free-agent signee.
The Rangers’ search for offensive help is so extensive, they recently contacted the Atlanta Braves about a trade for McCann, according to major-league sources.
The Braves, leading the NL East by 8.5 games, had no interest in trading their starting catcher, who will be a free agent at the end of the season.
The Rangers’ inquiry, however, was at least their second on McCann since the end of last season — and their current catcher, A.J. Pierzynski, also is eligible for free agency this winter.
Texas seemingly has asked on virtually every hitter in the game, available and not available. They call the Miami Marlins about right fielder Giancarlo Stanton "every week," sources say. They also recently scouted the Blue Jays’ Jose Bautista and Edwin Encarnacion, according to CBSSports.com. And as their interest in McCann shows, they are even checking with other contenders about potential free agents.
McCann, batting .284 with a .884 OPS, is expected to be out of the Braves’ price range as a free agent.
— Ken Rosenthal
Tigers add reliever Veras
Tigers GM Dave Dombrowski makes his first move of trade-deadline season.
Now Tigers fans will have to wait to see if it’s his last.
The Tigers acquired veteran reliever Jose Veras from the Astros on Monday in exchange for minor-league outfielder Danry Vasquez and a player to be named later.
Veras, 32, has been serving as Houston’s closer this season, picking up 19 saves in 42 games. He has a 2.93 ERA and 44 strikeouts in 43 innings this season. He’s allowed 29 hits and 14 walks. Read more