Winter Meetings ‘06: Day Two Rumor Roundup
Submitted by Rob G. on Tue, 12/05/2006 - 10:42am
I was going to start this yesterday but the servers decided to spontaneously combust. I figure besides the July tradeline, the Winter Meetings are the best time for unfounded rumor mongering and I'm more than happy to help. So I've got ESPN News on, about 25 tabs open in my browser, the Score streaming and an IV drip of coffee. I'll see if I can keep it up. I'm going to try and keep it mostly Cub related, even if it's players that have been connected with the Cubs talking to another team. New posts will go above the old posts. 5:25 PM - Bruce Miles gives us a quick update and has a Cubs source saying that Jacque Jones did not "formally" ask for a trade. Also some whispers of a Kevn Mench for Jon Lieber swap. 4:28 PM - Steve Phillips wasted ten minutes of my time just now on ESPN News. - Lilly's agent Larry O'Brien says the Blue Jays will need to get creative to land Lilly and that the Cubs have stepped up their offer on Lilly and are willing to pay him what he wants. Piniella called Lilly to entice him to the Northside as well. - Maddux deal seems to be done. 4:15 PM Probably the last update for a bit, but Rosenthal puts the Mariners in the Zito sweepstakes, and gives the Dodgers the lead for Schmidt citing his ties to Colletti and trainer Stan Conte (recently hired by the Dodgers). 3:39 PM - Ryan Church is on the block and the Cubs may be interested. Nats are probably looking for young pitching and Church isn't going to get a blue-chipper in return. I say cough up Carlos Marmol or someone similar and see if they bite. At worst, Church is a good 4th OF with good plate discpline and decent power from the left side. 2:56 PM - Rosenthal is back on the Maddux to Padres rumors stating that they're at the "dotting-the-i's-and-crossing-the-t's stage" on a one year deal with a 2nd year option. 2:44 PM - Jacque Jones just did an interview on ESPN News and did a fantastic job of dodging questions. Asked directly if he asked for a trade, he said "I don't know about that, you know what I mean?" accompanied with a sly smile that indicated he didn't want to dig too deep a hole. He did say he had a rough go in Chicago last year with the fans, that some folks even got a hold of his phone number, received some hate mail, etc. As far as he's concerned he signed for three years as a Cub, but you got a sense he'd be thrilled to get out of here. He also said he hasn't spoken to Lou yet this offseason. 2:27 PM - The Mariners met with Lilly's agent on Tuesday, no word on an offer but Lilly does have motivation to go to the West Coast as I believe his wife is going to veterinarian school in California. 2:18 PM Julio Lugo's people and Boston have a meeting this afternoon, the Mets seem to be the only other suitor at this point. The Boston Globe writer says that there are "strong indications" that the Cubs are out of the running. 2:09 PM - Yawn, I'm losing faith in baseball GM's to pull off any noteworthy trades anymore. ESPN News had a report that the Pirates are making a push for Trot Nixon. I know, stop the presses. Speaking of ESPN, my DirecTV says a special edition of "Baseball Tonight" is supposed to be on, instead Skip Bayless is attempting to explain something regarding college football, although I'm fairly certain he didn't even know Lousville had a football team until a producer whispered it into his ear. 1:49 PM - The rumor mill seems to have dried up for a bit, but a Canadian paper indicates that Gil Meche's camp is intent on getting a deal done by the end of the meetings, while Lilly's people may wait until Zito signs in hopes that teams that missed out on Zito join the bidding. 12:37 PM - Rosenthal mentions the Cubs and Blue Jays as lead suitors for Gil Meche and that the Royals have offered Batista three years for $24 million. The previous ESPN link also says the Mets aren't interested in anyone but Zito at this moment although they don't seem willing to go beyond four to five years on a deal. 12:13 PM - Jayson Stark completely debunks the 3-way deal with the Rockies. 11:39 AM - Miguel Batista is drawing strong interest from the Royals, Mets and Braves. The article also gives the Cubs the upper hand on signing Gil Meche due to the Piniella connection. 11:32 AM - Bruce Miles rumor roundup gives us Noah Lowry possibly being on the block as well as Tim Hudson. 11:14 AM - Greg Maddux to the Padres is gaining steam once again. Looks like a one year deal with a second year option although with Scott Boras as his agent, expect this one to drag out for awhile. 11:04 AM - Kenny Lofton is drawing interest from the Rangers. - Mark Loretta has a 2 year offer from the Reds for $6 million total. Tuesday Morning Round-up - By now you've heard about the Jacque Jones rumors, the latest being a 3-team swap of Brad Hawpe to the Pirates for Paul Maholm and Jones and Marmol to the Rockies for sinker-baller Jason Jennings. In my book, that's not a 3-way deal, just two separate deals, but you can't expect Steve Phillips to think these things through. While it seemed odd the Cubs were searching for a left-handed bat, while simultaneously shopping one, word is now that Jones asked for a deal, the Sun-Times citing the departure of Dusty Baker as the reason, although racist bleacher fans I'm sure weighed into it as well. Jones apparently has a partial no-trade clause although the Rockies aren't on that list. - Speaking of Jennings, Twins and Astros are interested as well. - The same articles says the Royals are going to make a push for Gil Meche and Rockies are looking at Kenny Lofton. - Ted Lilly apparently has offers from the Cubs and Blue Jays at the moment and his agent is meeting with other teams today. - Same article has Hendry stating that Julio Lugo is "leaning" towards signing with a team that will let him play shortstop, likely the Red Sox. - Ryne Sandberg will be managing the Peoria affiliate next year. Oh, and I hate to be a hard-ass about this, but if you can't be bothered to read the comments then do not post in the comments. Far too many double posts of the same rumor and links are going on so please check before you post. And with this group, chances are if it's anything older than 10 minutes, you're probably late to the party.