Wednesday, November 25th, 2015
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Content provided by Rotoworld Player News - Wednesday, November 25th, 2015

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Erik Johnson on track to earn rotation spot 11-25-2015
Erik Johnson P CWS
White Sox GM Rick Hahn indicated that Erik Johnson's a front-runner to be part of the White Sox rotation in 2016.
Said Hahn, "So if Opening Day were today, then I think Johnson is penciled in to that spot in the rotation right now. In all probability, once we get closer to spring, there will be some competition for him to earn that spot." The spot in question is the one vacated by free agent starter Jeff Samardzija. Chris Sale, Jose Quintana, Carlos Rodon and John Danks are already slotted into the rotation. Johnson, 25, made six starts for the White Sox in 2015 and held a 3.34 ERA, 1.40 WHIP and 30/17 K/BB ratio across 35 innings.
Braves sign Bud Norris to one-year contract 11-25-2015
Bud Norris P SD
Braves signed RHP Bud Norris to a $2.5 million one-year contract.

Atlanta Braves on Twitter
Norris was designated for assignment by the Orioles in early August and finished out the 2015 campaign in a Padres uniform. Between the two clubs, the 30-year-old right-hander held a bloated 6.72 ERA and 1.57 WHIP across 83 innings. He appeared in 38 games overall, with 11 starts in that mix. Norris has had serviceable seasons in the past, but there's no real fantasy upside here.
Brandon Gomes elects free agency 11-25-2015
Brandon Gomes P TB
Brandon Gomes has elected free agency.

Roger Mooney on Twitter
Gomes, who was designated for assignment last week, chose free agency after refusing an outright assignment to Triple-A Durham. The 31-year-old is coming off a 4.27 ERA and 44/15 K/BB ratio over 59 innings this past season and will hope to find a bullpen job elsewhere.
Gordon has talked to Marlins about extension 11-25-2015
Dee Gordon 2B MIA
Dee Gordon said on MLB Network's "Hot Stove" show Wednesday morning that his agent has been in discussions with the Marlins about a contract extension.
"My agent is doing the talking," said Gordon. "They're just keeping me in the loop. I think it's going pretty well right now. We'll see how that goes. I'm just playing the waiting game. We're going to do the right thing." Joe Frisaro of hears that talks only recently started and are in the preliminary stages. Gordon is arbitration-eligible for the second time this winter and is under team control through 2018.
Orioles have been in touch with Gallardo 11-25-2015
Yovani Gallardo P TEX
CBS Sports' Jon Heyman reports that the Orioles have reached out to the representatives for free agent right-hander Yovani Gallardo.

CBS Sports
Gallardo declined a $15.8 million qualifying offer from the Rangers, so signing him would require giving up a first-round pick. While the Orioles like him, they might not be willing to go there. Gallardo is coming off a solid season where he posted a 3.42 ERA and 121/68 K/BB ratio over 184 1/3 innings. The Diamondbacks and Tigers are among the other teams who have reportedly expressed interest.
CHC, STL, LAD, SF, BOS top suitors for Price 11-25-2015
David Price P TOR
FOX Sports' Ken Rosenthal reports that the Cubs, Cardinals, Dodgers, Giants and Red Sox have the most interest in free agent left-hander David Price.

FOX Sports
For what it's worth, the Blue Jays aren't expected to be a major factor. ESPN's Buster Olney reported earlier Wednesday that there's a "high expectation" among executives involved in the bidding for Price that the Red Sox will have the highest offer. However, Rosenthal notes that Price "values comfort even more than most players" and Boston might not be his ideal fit. That could obviously change if Boston blows him out of the water with an offer, but with the number of teams involved in the bidding, it would be a shock if he doesn't land a contract north of $200 million.
Rays outright Gomes to Triple-A 11-25-2015
Brandon Gomes P TB
Rays sent RHP Brandon Gomes outright to Triple-A Durham.

Marc Topkin on Twitter
Gomes cleared waivers after being designated for assignment last week. He has three days to decide whether to accept the minor league assignment or refuse and test free agency. The 31-year-old posted a 4.27 ERA and 44/15 K/BB ratio over 59 innings this past season.
Daniel Nava elects free agency 11-25-2015
Daniel Nava RF TB
Daniel Nava has elected to become a free agent.

MLB Roster Moves on Twitter
Nava cleared waivers after being designated for assignment last week and ultimately refused a minor league assignment. The 32-year-old figures to land a spring training invite somewhere.
Cubs acquire Rex Brothers from Rockies 11-25-2015
Rex Brothers P CHC
Cubs acquired LHP Rex Brothers from the Rockies for LHP Wander Cabrera. Brothers was designated for assignment by the Rockies last week. The 27-year-old was once thought of as a future closer, but control problems have been a major issue for him. Getting out of Colorado should be a good thing for him, as well as hooking up with Cubs pitching coach Chris Bosio. It's a smart flier for Chicago.
Indians designate Choice for assignment 11-25-2015
Michael Choice RF CLE
Indians designated OF Michael Choice for assignment. Choice gets the boot off the 40-man roster after Wednesday's acquisition of Kirby Yates. The former top prospect was acquired from the Rangers back in August and could soon be with his third organization in the past four months.
Indians acquire Kirby Yates from Rays 11-25-2015
Kirby Yates P CLE
Indians acquired RHP Kirby Yates from the Rays for cash considerations. Yates was designated for assignment last week after posting an ugly 7.97 ERA in 20 appearances with the Rays this season while allowing 10 home runs in just 20 1/3 innings. The 28-year-old was much better in 2014 and the Indians will try to get him back on track.
Mariners outright LHP Hultzen to Triple-A 11-25-2015
Danny Hultzen P SEA
Mariners sent LHP Danny Hultzen outright to Triple-A Tacoma. Hultzen cleared waivers after being designated for assignment last Friday. While the 2011 No. 2 overall pick is a familiar name, it's not surprising that he's staying put. Shoulder problems have limited him to just 43 2/3 innings over the past three seasons.
A's still see Semien as their shortstop 11-25-2015
Marcus Semien SS OAK
Athletics general manager David Forst indicated Wednesday that he still sees Marcus Semien as their starting shortstop.

Joe Stiglich on Twitter
With Jed Lowrie back in Oakland, it's only natural that Forst would be asked about Semien, who led the majors with 35 errors this past season. However, it appears that they didn't acquire Lowrie with shortstop in mind. It's possible he could play second base or third.
A's release RHP A.J. Griffin 11-25-2015
A.J. Griffin P OAK
Athletics released RHP A.J. Griffin. Griffin was designated for assignment last week after the Athletics signed free agent left-hander Rich Hill. The 27-year-old showed promise from 2012-2013, but required Tommy John surgery in April of 2014 and encountered numerous setbacks while trying to make in back this past season. Someone will surely take a chance on him, but he might have to settle for a minor league deal at this point.
Athletics designate Coulombe for assignment 11-25-2015
Daniel Coulombe P OAK
Athletics designated LHP Daniel Coulombe for assignment. The move clears a spot for the newly-acquired Jed Lowrie on the 40-man roster. Coulombe was just claimed off waivers from the Dodgers in September after spending mos of the 2015 season in the minors.
Report: Wei-Yin Chen aims for 5-yr, $85M deal 11-25-2015
Wei-Yin Chen P BAL
CBS Sports' Jon Heyman reports that Wei-Yin Chen is seeking a deal worth $85 million over five years.

CBS Sports
It sounds crazy on the surface, but Chen owns a 3.72 ERA (110 ERA+) over his first four seasons in the majors while calling the American League East home. The 30-year-old is arguably the second-best left-handed starter on the market behind David Price. Chen's agent Scott Boras will surely remind teams of this as he attempts to reach the lofty asking price.
Report: Dodgers have contacted Ryan Madson 11-25-2015
Ryan Madson P KC
CBS Sports' Jon Heyman reports that the Dodgers have contacted free agent reliever Ryan Madson.

CBS Sports
While Kenley Jansen is an excellent closer, the bridge to the ninth inning proved to be a shaky one in 2015. The Dodgers have been mentioned as a possible trade partner for Aroldis Chapman and a fit for Darren O'Day in free agency, but Madson makes for an appealing alternative after reviving his career with a 2.13 ERA and 58/14 K/BB ratio over 63 1/3 innings with the Royals this season. The Long Beach, California native could land a multi-year deal in a weak market for relievers.
Athletics reunited with Jed Lowrie in trade 11-25-2015
Jed Lowrie SS OAK
Athletics acquired INF Jed Lowrie from the Astros for RHP Brendan McCurry. Lowrie signed a three-year contract with the Astros last winter, but he's headed back to Oakland after just one season. The 31-year-old got off to a great start in 2015 before suffering a thumb injury in late April and just couldn't get back on track with the bat after returning during the second half. It's unclear what the Athletics have in mind for him, but he's likely to receive regular playing time in 2016.
O's designate Wilkins for assignment 11-25-2015
Andy Wilkins 1B BAL
Orioles designated 1B Andy Wilkins for assignment.

Roch Kubatko on Twitter
The move clears a spot for L.J. Hoes for assignment. Wilkins was claimed off waivers from the Dodgers in September and now he could be on the move once again.
O's acquire L.J. Hoes from Astros 11-25-2015
L.J. Hoes LF BAL
Orioles acquired OF L.J. Hoes from the Astros for cash considerations.

Roch Kubatko on Twitter
Hoes was designated for assignment by the Astros last week and the Orioles jumped at the opportunity at a reunion. The 25-year-old has struggled in sporadic opportunities in the majors, but he's coming off a strong season in Triple-A where he batted .295/.383/.400 over 99 games. He figures to compete for a bench job in the spring.
White Sox sign Alex Avila to one-year deal 11-25-2015
Alex Avila C CWS
White Sox signed C Alex Avila to a one-year, $2.5 million contract. CBS Sports' Jon Heyman passed along the contract details. Avila, who turns 29 in January, struggled through injuries this season while batting just .191 with four home runs and a .626 OPS over 67 games. However, he's a gamble at this price. Avila figures to share playing time behind the plate with Tyler Flowers in 2016.
Pirates acquire Allen Webster from D'Backs 11-25-2015
Allen Webster P PIT
Pirates acquired RHP Allen Webster from the Diamondbacks for cash considerations. Webster was designated for assignment last week after a disastrous season between the majors and the minors. Still, he won't be 26 until February and isn't far removed from being considered a top prospect. He'll be an intriguing project for Pirates pitching coach Ray Searage, who obviously has a number of success stories at this point. If there's any chance of him meeting his potential, it's probably here.
Report: A's acquire Jed Lowrie from Astros 11-25-2015
Jed Lowrie SS OAK
Jane Lee of reports that the Athletics have acquired Jed Lowrie from the Astros.

Jane Lee on Twitter
No word yet on who is headed back to Houston. Lowrie, who previously played with the Athletics from 2013-2014, batted .222 with nine home runs and a .712 OPS in 69 games this past season. He's owed $7.5 million in 2016 and $6.5 million in 2017 while his contract includes a $6 million club option or $1 million buyout for 2018. He's yet another moving part for Oakland's infield.
Braun (back) expects to be 100 pct. by spring 11-25-2015
Ryan Braun RF MLW
Ryan Braun (back) said Wednesday that he expects to be 100 percent when spring training begins in February.

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
"That's the plan," explained Braun, who underwent surgery in October to repair a herniated disc in his lower back. "All the rehab stuff is something I'll probably incorporate every day when it comes to my preparation and routine. I'll figure it out as I go. It's obviously still new to me. As I get back into baseball stuff, I'll figure out which exercises I'll want to continue to do and be a part of my routine." Braun underwent a cryotherapy procedure on his right thumb last October and again this June, but there are no plans for another one this offseason unless he feels discomfort when he begins swinging a bat in January.
Pirates sign 1B/OF Jake Goebbert 11-25-2015
Jake Goebbert 1B SD
Pirates signed 1B/OF Jake Goebbert to a one-year contract. No word on the terms involved, but he has been added to the team's 40-man roster. Goebbert, 28, batted .294/.392/.452 with 10 home runs and 62 RBI over 122 games this season with the Padres' Triple-A affiliate. He appeared in 51 games with the Padres back in 2014. With his experience between first base and the outfield, Goebbert figures to compete for a bench spot in the spring.
Report: Pirates' Pedro Alvarez open to trade 11-25-2015
Pedro Alvarez 1B PIT
CBS Sports' Jon Heyman reports that Pedro Alvarez would be open to a trade.

CBS Sports
It's a real possibility, as the Pirates are shopping him, as well as Neil Walker and Mark Melancon. While there's nothing to indicate that they are interested, Heyman speculates that the Orioles could be a fit. Alvarez turns 29 in February and batted .243/.318/.469 with 27 home runs and 77 RBI over 150 games this past season. He made $5.75 million in 2015 and will be arbitration-eligible for the final time this winter.
Bradley penciled in as CF in 2016 11-25-2015
Jackie Bradley Jr. RF BOS
Red Sox manager John Farrell indicated on WEEI's "Hot Stove Show" on Tuesday night that Jackie Bradley is penciled in as the starting center fielder for 2016.
What Bradley brings defensively can't be questioned, so the Red Sox are hoping that the progress he showed with the bat down the stretch is for real. The 25-year-old continues to pop up in trade rumors, but assuming he stays put this winter, Farrell envisions having Mookie Betts in right field and Rusney Castillo in left.
Report: 'Nothing is imminent' on Ozuna trade 11-25-2015
Marcell Ozuna CF MIA
Joe Frisaro of reports that "nothing is imminent" on a possible trade involving Marcell Ozuna.

Joe Frisaro on Twitter
This comes on the heels of a report from ESPN's Jerry Crasnick on Tuesday night that the Mariners are working on a trade for Ozuna, who has fallen out of favor with Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria. Nothing is close, but the Marlins are reportedly willing to move him for a young starter. It's hard to imagine that Ozuna will begin 2016 with the team given all of the drama that has occurred until now, so it's highly likely he's moved at some point soon. Stay tuned.
Report: Cardinals interested in Ben Zobrist 11-25-2015
Ben Zobrist 2B KC
CBS Sports' Jon Heyman reports that the Cardinals are interested in Ben Zobrist.

Jon Heyman on Twitter
Really, who isn't these days? Zobrist would be a great fit for just about anyone, with teams like the Nationals and Mets reportedly among the most aggressive. The Cardinals already have their infield in place, so they are presumably looking at him as a super utility-type. Zobrist, who turns 35 next May, appears likely to land a three- or four-year deal this winter.
Jays agree to send Hague to Japanese team 11-25-2015
Matt Hague 1B TOR
According to Ben Nicholson-Smith of, the Blue Jays have agreed to send Matt Hague to the Hanshin Tigers of Japan's Central League for $300,000.
The deal is not yet official, but Hague has been removed from Toronto's 40-man roster. Hague earned a September call-up with the Blue Jays this season after winning the International League MVP Award by batting .338/.416/.468 with 11 home runs and 92 RBI over 136 games with Triple-A Buffalo. He turned 30 in August.
Red Sox expected to have high offer for Price 11-25-2015
David Price P TOR
ESPN's Buster Olney reports that there's a "high expectation" among executives involved in the bidding for David Price that the Red Sox will have the highest offer.

Buster Olney on Twitter
There's a strong belief that Price will end up with a deal in excess of $200 million, which could give him the biggest free agent contract of the offseason. The Red Sox have an obvious need at the top of their rotation and new team president Dave Dombrowski has acquired him before with the Tigers, so it's a logical fit. However, teams like the Cubs and Dodgers have been considered the early favorites until now. With these kind of numbers being thrown around, a return to Toronto sounds unlikely.