3:55 p.m. -
After a crazy hour or so of J.J. Hardy-related rumors, things have slowed down considerably. The biggest news this afternoon? Boof Bonser has signed a minor-league deal with the Mets.
If you're looking for updates on the Hardy situation, we've started a separate thread above.
1:10 p.m. -
According to Dan Connolly of the Baltimore Sun, the Twins and Orioles are in "serious negotiations" over J.J. Hardy. According to Connolly, the discussed deal involves two minor league pitchers, including Brett Jacobson. Jacobson is a 24 year old reliever, who was pitching in high-A in 2010
More on Jacobson: he was drafted by the Tigers, and then traded to the Orioles in August 2009 in exchange for Aubrey Huff. He's tall - 6'6" - and throws in the mid to upper 90s. He's posted good K/9 rates (albeit as a 23-24 year old in high-A) but walked 3 batters per nine last year. In 71 innings, he posted a 2.79 ERA and a 3.86 FIP.
UPDATE: Kelsie Smith of the Pioneer Press confirms the Twins and Orioles are discussing Hardy, but adds that the players being sent to Minnesota "have not been defined."
10:40 am -
As noted in the comments, the White Sox have signed Paul Konerko to three-year, $37.5 million deal. It seems like the signing has pushed them near their limit on payroll - Kenny Williams told Jayson Stark "we're at the point where we need to get creative because we're about tapped out." Williams also told Stark that he'd consider trading a starting pitcher (like Danks or Floyd), but isn't looking to "subtract" from the Major League roster "if he can help it."
9:40 am -
Jerry Crasnick tweets that the Twins are "stepping up" their pursuit of Carl Pavano. LEN III says Pavano was impressed when yesterday's meeting with the Twins involved Bill Smith, Rob Antony and Terry Ryan.
That's old-school baseball tactics right there. If you want a guy, you let him know it.
Now, as long as the deal isn't too cumbersome...
5:08 am -
Is it just me, or has this been an exceptionally slow Winter Meetings for the Twins this year? I know last year was special, what with the massive payroll bump, the Joe Mauer extension on everyone's mind and signing Carl Pavano during the meetings, but at least we've had an interesting morsel or two...a name or two dropped of interest. So far this year those names have been Koji Uehara and Rich Harden. Those aren't interesting.
Anyway, here's your breakfast catch-up.
- It sounds like the Nationals are out of the bidding for Pavano. Guess what, Twins fans: Minnesota just became the odds-on winner for a Pavstache in 2011. Washington isn't comfortable giving him more than a one-year contract. To be fair, had they signed him the Twins would have only returned their third rounder in addition to the sandwich pick. Be sure to check out my redux on how the Twins could snag a first-rounder for Pavano, but right now the best fits appear to be (and this is all just speculation and probably a bit of a stretch): the Cardinals, the Padres, the Rangers. None of them really need a guy like Pavano, but that's about the size of it. I'd place chances of Pavano's return to Minnesota at greater than 67% even though he met with two other teams besides the Twins and Nats yesterday: he was a leader in the clubhouse, and the Twins have been keeping tabs on him pretty thoroughly.
- La Velle's late update from yesterday covers, apart from Pavano, Tsuyoshi Nishioka as well as 1) the Twins staying in touch with Jim Thome, whose other destinations may include Oakland, Texas and Baltimore, and 2) the Twins keeping in touch with Zack Greinke. I'll make a bold prediction right now: Greinke will not be a member of the Twins next year.
- Looks like the outfield won't be changing in 2011. Not much of a shock, but we can stop speculating about upgrading defense in the corners now.
6:02 am -
Just a quick update to Jesse's post: Matt Diaz, the outfielder who was recently non-tendered by the Braves, signed a two-year deal with the Pirates early this morning. Diaz is a lefty-mashing right-handed hitter, and would have been a very good bench bat (or Kubel platoon partner) for the Twins. Terms of his deal haven't been released, but I'm guessing his asking price was well above what the Twins were able to offer.
Stick around, Beau will be provoding your updates today.