Riding the Pine… Baseball Update 10/31/2007

News
Mike Cameron will be suspended for 25 games for using a banned substance; since he said it was a stimulant, he won’t face the normal 50 game suspension. This is coming directly from him and has not been announced by MLB yet. More on this as it develops.
UPDATE: MLB has officially announced his suspension.

Andy Pettitte has stated that he will either pitch for the Yankees or retire next season. He has a $16 mil player option that he can pick up; he hasn’t said if he will yet. He’d definitely get a good contract on the open market.

Cardinals announce that current acting GM John Mozeliak will be the permanent GM. This is a very uninspired moved; the one bright spot is Mozeliak is used to working in a fragile front office and can hopefully unite everyone. Indian’s assistant GM Mark Antonetti passed on the job after terms could not be reached. It was rumored he also didn’t like the fact that he wouldn’t have any control over the scouting/minor leagues.

Rumors
Source: MLB Trade Rumors and Fox Sports.

The Mets have strong interest in Jorge Posada; the Yankees are believed to be offering 3 years @ $40 mil to retain their catcher.

Curt Schilling has stated that if he doesn’t return to the Red Sox next season, he’ll either pitch for a contender or a team where he can mentor young pitchers. He said he would consider 12 teams: Indians, Tigers, Angels, Mets, Phillies, Braves, Dodgers, Padres, Diamondbacks, Cubs, Cardinals and Brewers. Boston is only rumored to offer a low base 1-year deal with incentives.

The Angels are the front-runners for A-Rod; so much so in fact that they have already begun talks with Scott Boras. Don’t believe the stance of owner Arte Moreno when he says they won’t pay over $25 mil for a players – he’s using that for negotiations. Other teams rumored are the Phillies, Red Sox, Mets, and Dodgers; all seem unlikely.

The Astros are interested in adding an outfielder; their top targets are Torii Hunter and Aaron Rowand. They would like a center fielder to move Hunter Pence to right, where he is better suited; they wouldn’t be against adding a right fielder depending on the market. I don’t agree that this is a need; they should instead trust Luke Scott with an every day job.

Expect Mariano Rivera to be re-signed in the next couple of days; he and his agent are meeting with the Yankees this week. The deal is rumored to be in the 3 year, $40 mil range.

Greg Maddux is close to a deal to bring him back to the Padres; salary terms are supposed to be close to his previous deal.

Transactions
The following players have filed for Free Agency:
Jeremy Affeldt, Antonio Alfonseca, Sandy Alomar Jr, Marlon Anderson, Tony Armas Jr, Paul Bako, Michael Barrett, Armando Benitez, Geoff Blum, Barry Bonds, Aaron Boone, Milton Bradley, Russ Branyan, Doug Brocail, Miguel Cairo, Luis Castillo, Ramon Castro, Shawn Chacon, Jeff Cirillo, Tony Clark, Matt Clement, Francisco Cordero, Elmer Dessens, Mike DiFelice, Damion Easley, David Eckstein, Darin Erstad, Sal Fassano, Pedro Feliz, Robert Fick, Julio Franco, Chris Gomez, Tony Graffinino, Shawn Green, Marc Gwyn, Jerry Hairston Jr, Livan Hernandez, Eric Hinske, Jason Jennings, Jorge Julio, Jason Kendall, Bobby Kielty, Ray King, Corey Koskie, Mike Lamb, Jon Lieber, Scott Linebrink, Paul LoDuca, Kenny Lofton, Mark Loretta, Ron Mahay, Jose Mesa, Eric Milton, Jose Molina, Mike Myers, Russ Ortiz, Josh Paul, Troy Percival, Neifi Perez, Mike Piazza, Arthur Rhodes, David Riske, J.C. Romero, Glendon Rusch, Curt Schilling, Rudy Seanez, Aaron Sele, Sammy Sosa, Mark Sweeney, David Wells, Rondell White, Chris Woodward.

The following players had options declined and are now free agents:
Geoff Jenkins, Odalis Perez.

The following players were acquired thru waivers:
Kurt Birkins – By Tampa Bay from Baltimore
Nick Gorneault – By Texas from Los Angeles Angels

The following have been designated for assignment or optioned to the minors:
Andres Blanco (KC), Alvin Colina (CIN), Marc Gwyn (LAA – refused), Mike Koplove (CLE), Tom Shearn (CIN),

The following player has been suspended:
Luther Hackman (TEX) – 50 games for violating the MLB Drug Program.

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