Tomorrow is the start of the Winter Meetings in Las Vegas and things are going to get crazy-stupid when it comes to rumors and people who saw people talking to people. It was at the winter meetings last year (a year ago last Thursday to be exact) when the Tigers traded for Miguel Cabrera and Dontrelle Willis. It was a move that came out of nowhere, so you never know what will happen. With that in mind, here is a cautious look at Tigers related rumors before the meetings begin.
As mentioned Friday, it looks like the Tigers and the Mets are both interested in former Cubs closer Kerry Wood. The Mets however favor K-Rod which would work in the Tigers favor. But Buster Olney says that the Mets will throw offers out to multiple closers and the first that accepts will get the gig. Nice to be in a buyers marker.
Wood very well could be better than both Francisco Rodriguez and Brian Fuentes, but health concerns could make him affordable from a dollars and years stand point. Motor City Bengals notes that while Wood’s numbers were terrific, his door-slamming ability wasn’t really tested in ’08.
Another closer with injury concerns is being linked to the Tigers today as well in the form of J.J. Putz. It’s not the first time Putz’s name has come up. This time it is Nick Cafardo (purveyor of Robertson for Lugo rumors) raising the issue, but it sounds like he’s talking more from a fit perspective than actual rumors.
UPDATE 12:01 a.m. John Perrotto reports that the Tigers would like to use Jeff Larish as part of a deal for Putz.
While there are mixed feelings about him as a closer, I’m still a fan of Brandon Lyon as bullpen help. I’m in favor of snapping up a player who won’t cost draft picks as compensation, and who generally doesn’t offer up walks. He’s also a buy-low candidate coming off a year in which he was hurt by a high batting average on balls in play. There’s no rumor here except for me stating my interest. Of course it could be a moot point if Lyon elects to accept arbitration which he is seriously considering. Today is the deadline though so we should know soon enough.
UPDATE 10:55 p.m. Lyon has rejected arbitration.
UPDATE 12.08.08 5:08 a.m. David Weathers, another named linked to the Tigers has accepted arbitration.
Gerald Laird is still the name the Tigers are pursuing. Morosi mentions pitchers like Guillermo Moscoso, Brandon Hamilton, Luis Marte, and Jon Kibler as possible trading chits.
UPDATE 10:45 p.m. The Tigers and Rangers may be nearing a deal involving Guillermo Moscoso
The Pittsburgh Post Gazette indicates that the Pirates may be looking for either Matt Joyce or Jeff Larish in return for Jack Wilson. Joyce is a definite no, Larish is a maybe in my book. Our friends at Pirates Revolution run down the pro’s and con’s of a Wilson trade.
The Tigers will meet with Adam Everett this week in Vegas.
UPDATE 12:01 a.m. Perrotto reports the Tigers interest in Wilson has cooled and that they view Everett as his equal.
And while the Tigers aren’t being linked at all to Rafael Furcal or Orlando Cabrera, it’s worth noting the shift in the shortstop market with Furcal not signing with the A’s and Cabrera declining arbitration. I see both of these moves benefiting the Tigers indirectly.
This should serve as a nice repository for rumors. If there are updates to any of the names mentioned here, I’ll post the update when I get a chance. If something more concrete comes about, we’ll get up a post about that as well. Hang on. This could be a fun week.