NL West Round-Up: Free Agency Gets Underway As Options Are Decided
With free agency well underway now that the Boston Red Sox defeated the St. Louis Cardinals in six games for their third World Series title in 10 years, here’s what the NL West was up to this week.
The Diamondbacks named a new third base coach as Matt Williams took the managerial job with the Washington Nationals. Glenn Sherlock was chosen as the D’Backs also have a new hitting coach as they promoted Turner Ward to hitting coach and added first base coach Dave McKay, who had most recently served in that capacity with the Cubs.
There wasn’t much else on the news front this week for the D’Backs, but they did claim infielder/outfielder Matt Tuiasosopo off waivers from the Detroit Tigers to help with their outfield depth.
The Diamondbacks don’t have much payroll flexibility in 2014 but are willing to backload free agent contracts for 2015 and beyond in order to get the help they need.
The Rockies made their first important move of the off-season and that was declining would-be closer Rafael Betancourt’s option worth $4.25 million. It came as no surprise as Betancourt, 38, recently underwent Tommy John surgery.
The other big news this week for the Rockies was when Rockies senior vice president of Major League operations Bill Geivett came on MLB Network Radio with Jim Bowden and said he’d have to listen if the Cardinals came knocking with an “overwhelming” offer for superstar shortstop Troy Tulowitzki. Nothing is imminent and there are no plans of trading Tulo, but it’s worth noting that they would listen.
San Diego Padres
The Padres made a few minor moves this week as they designated three pitchers for assignment: Clayton Richard, Colt Hynes and Tommy Layne.
Richard went ahead and rejected his outright assignment, choosing to become a free agent instead. The move means the Padres have no one in their system left from the Jake Peavy trade a few years ago.
The Padres then traded left-hander Hynes to the Indians in exchange for cash considerations.
In search of a power bat, Bill Shaikin of the Los Angeles Times reported on Twitter that the Padres have strong interest in Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim first baseman Mark Trumbo. The Angels are known to be seek pitching for their young players, but the Padres might not have what it takes to make a trade happen.
San Francisco Giants
The Giants first order of business was competed as they chose to decline options on Barry Zito and Andres Torres. Zito’s option was for $18 million and he’ll receive a $7 million buyout. It comes as no surprise since Zito never came close to expectations after inking a seven-year $126 million contract before the 2007 season.
The Giants’ next order of business was declining the $6.5 million option on pitcher Ryan Vogelsong as he’ll become a free agent. Vogelsong went 4-6 with a 5.73 ERA while battling injuries last season.
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