· Reports swirled on Wednesday that the Indians have intensified their pursuit of free agent first baseman Edwin Encarnacion. They are reportedly pulling out all the stops, but will there be a happy ending? In order for the Tribe to sign him, they would have to spend more money than they’re used to. Encarnacion turned down a four-year, $80MM offer from the Toronto Blue Jays--which means even if he was to sign a one-year deal with the Tribe, it would be costly. While he is the main focus, the Indians are also in the market for other free agent power hitters such as Chris Carter, Michael Saunders, Mark Trumbo, Jose Bautista and Adam Lind. However, the Indians could still re-sign Mike Napoli to a deal, but it’s not likely at this point. According to Encarnacion’s agent Paul Kinzer, he’s receiving three-and-four year offers from up to five teams. Is this a way of using leverage for the Tribe to up their price? We’ll find out in the upcoming days as the market may soon start to clear up for the first basemen and we begin to see where they all end up signing.
News and Notes
· Buster Olney of ESPN reports that the Pittsburgh Pirates have “worked hard” to trade for Chicago White Sox lefty Jose Quintana. If the trade were to happen, it would be for numerous top prospects.
· The Pittsburgh Pirates have DFA’d righty Brady Dragmire. This move clears space for newly signed righty Daniel Hudson.
· Eduardo E. Encina of the Baltimore Sun reports that Baltimore Orioles righty Hunter Harvey will potentially begin throwing next week. He underwent Tommy John surgery on his elbow last season.
· The Texas Rangers have claimed lefty David Rollins off waivers from the Philadelphia Phillies. Righty Tyrell Jenkins was DFA’d.
· According to Jon Heyman of Fan Rag, talks between the Los Angeles Dodgers and Minnesota Twins on second baseman Brian Dozier have not progressed.
· According to Jerry Crasnick of ESPN.com, veteran outfielder Jonny Gomes intends to sign with a club in 2017. He played with the NPB’s Rakuten Golden Eagles last season.
· Jon Heyman of Fan Rag reports that the San Diego Padres are considering making a move for veteran righty Jered Weaver.null