Among the Reds starting pitcher Aaron Harang has figured prominently in trade rumors as July 31 nears. Harang said he has a partial no-trade clause but was hazy on Tuesday with the details about which teams.
“I don’t know which teams I put,” Harang said. “I put them down a couple of years back.”
Harang, who is starting on Wednesday, has one guaranteed left on his contract beyond this season. He’s making $11 million this year and $12.5 million in 2010 with a $12.75 million option for 2011.
“You can’t let it bother you, especially being a veteran guy, your name is going to come up more times than not,” Harang said of the rumors. “You just can’t let it affect how you go out and play every day. I’m going to show up at my locker each day. You really don’t know. I will know if they ever call me into the office and tell me. I’m not worried about it.”
— Mark Sheldon
The Yankees are apparently not satisfied to go forward keeping Sergio Mitre as their fifth starter, not after the recent callup has surrendered 17 hits in 10 2/3 innings over his two starts for New York. While the Yankees have won both of Mitre’s starts, there may be better options available on the trade front, and general manager Brian Cashman is checking them out.
AOL Fanhouse reported Monday that the Yankees and Reds are in “serious discussions” about Bronson Arroyo, the former Red Sox right-hander, and that the Bombers have two scouts in Cincinnati who could be on hand for Arroyo’s scheduled start on Tuesday.
New York has also engaged the Mariners in discussions concerning Jarrod Washburn, a familiar target – the hurler was linked to the Yankees during the winter as well. The Yankees did scout Roy Halladay’s last start in Toronto but are still considered long shots to get involved in the bidding derby.
The Yankees have a void because Chien-Ming Wang is set to visit Dr. James Andrews on Tuesday and faces the prospect of season-ending shoulder surgery, and continue to monitor an innings limit on Joba Chamberlain. They have also been reluctant to extract starters Phil Hughes and Alfredo Aceves from the bullpen, where each has found success in helping the Yankees enter play Monday 22 games over .500 at 60-38.
Cashman said last week: “Offense is not an area right now at all that I’m focused on. We’ll continue to look at the pitching. The obvious injury to
Wang right now has hurt. Ian Kennedy’s aneurysm has hurt. The
transferring of Hughes and Aceves to the bullpen has taken away
immediate choices for the rotation. There is a depth issue that is
— Bryan Hoch
A report from AOL Fanhouse says the Reds are looking to sell veterans and cite a source that the team is “close to doing something.”
Veteran pitchers Bronson Arroyo, Aaron Harang, David Weathers, Arthur Rhodes and Francisco Cordero were mentioned as possible chips to deal. Arroyo, according to SI.com, has interest from the Yankees if they can’t work something out for Roy Halladay.
The Dodgers would also be interested in Arroyo or Harang if they can’t land Cliff Lee, according to the AOL story.
Selling rumors about the Reds are not shocking, especially after they just concluded a 0-6 road trip through L.A. and Chicago. They are 44-53, a season-high nine games below .500 entering Monday’s game vs. the Padres.
— Mark Sheldon
With an owner, Arte Moreno, who obviously doesn’t worry about rolling the dice – recall the Mark Teixeira acquisition last year at this time — the Angels remain actively involved in the Roy Halladay sweepstakes. But they can’t be too optimistic.
The Jays clearly are asking for the moon and the stars, judging by the package they rejected in the Phillies’ counter-proposal according to ESPN.com: southpaw A.J. Happ and three highly-regarded prospects from Triple-A Lehigh Valley, outfielder Michael Taylor, pitcher Carlos Carrasco and shortstop Jason Donald. It is believed the Jays would insist on one of the Angels’ young starters – Joe Saunders, Ervin Santana or Jered Weaver – along with Brandon Wood and several other premium prospects.
Weighing against such a dramatic and costly move are several factors. One, the Angels are 20 games above .500 with the third worst team ERA in the American League, but the pitching has been much improved of late with Sean O’Sullivan and Matt Palmer delivering quality work in the No. 5 slot. John Lackey has shown in his past eight starts that he’s back in prime form as a lead dog in a rotation
Finally, they don’t have to look too far to recall how much valuable talent the Mariners surrendered to land Erik Bedard from Baltimore. All-Star center fielder Adam Jones alone, in reflection, wasn’t worth it, and there’s a possibility Wood could reach something approaching that level with consistent playing time.
There are other front-line starters who could appeal to the Angels by Friday’s non-waiver Trade Deadline, including the Indians’ Cliff Lee and the Reds’ Aaron Harang and Bronson Arroyo. The Reds also have several set-up men – veterans Arthur Rhodes and David Weathers and young right-handers Nick Masset and Josh Roenicke – the Angels could find attractive at a lesser price tag than a durable starter. Roenicke, who throws in the mid-90s, is the nephew of Angels coach Ron Roenicke.
The Reds reportedly would be interested in an everyday shortstop and power. Maicer Izturis’ brilliant play of late might be taking him out of trade consideration, but the Angels are loaded in the middle infield. Sean Rodriguez, with superior defensive tools and 23 homers in 75 games at Triple-A Salt Lake, could have huge appeal in Cincinnati with his powerful right-handed bat, along with outfielder Terry Evans (21 homers in 94 games at Salt Lake).
— Lyle Spencer
Reds manager Dusty Baker heard about trades today involving Julio Lugo from Boston to St. Louis and Adam LaRoche going from Pittsburgh to Boston. He was asked if GM Walt Jocketty had brought anything up to him about possible Reds deals in the works.
“No, we’re not close on anything. We’re looking,” Baker said.
Are the Reds still hoping to make additions, rather than subtractions?
“I hope so. That’s where my mind is at,” Baker said.
Jocketty said the Reds’ rough run lately hasn’t altered his mood from buying to selling.
“Nothing’s changed,” Jocketty said. We’re still trying to improve the club. We’re not looking for any short term fixes. I think if we do anything, it would probably be closer to the deadline because that’s where these things seem to develop. I’m going to try and do something that’s going to improve the club for the long haul.”
The Reds are still seeking a bat to improve the 14th ranked offense out of the 16-team NL.
“We need someone to help pick up the pace and pick up the production,” Jocketty said.
— Mark Sheldon
Starting pitcher Bronson Arroyo wants Reds management to keep this team together and not sell. He knows the situation and it’s been reflected in his performance. Arroyo has thrown 16 scoreless innings over his last two starts, including seven scoreless for a 4-0 win over the Brewers on Friday.
“We’re on the brink of sliding downhill or fighting our way back into this thing,” Arroyo said. “Every game for the rest of the year is going to be huge for us. Everybody knows July 31 is always around the corner and looming. We want to continue to keep this team together. [Manager] Dusty [Baker] said in a meeting the other day that if you continue to win, they can’t remove pieces.”
When asked about that meeting on Saturday, Baker said ithe Trade Deadline is a natural thing to think about this time of year.
“It’s something on every team’s mind at this point,” Baker said on Saturday. “There are buyers and sellers. The closer you are in the race, the tighter things are, you’re more in buying mode than selling mode. Everybody has a budget. Some budgets are larger than other budgets.”
Baker wasn’t trying to indicate the Reds were on the brink of doing something – either way.
“That’s something that I tell every team I’m on, not just this team. I always say that every All-Star break. The Trade Deadline is only two weeks away. It wasn’t something that pertains to this team. It’s just a fact that’s true.”
— Mark Sheldon