News and Notes: Prior To Get Big Contract?

Monday, December 17, 2007

Mark Prior knew what he was doing when he left the Cubs because instead of making a little less than 3 million dollars, he is expected to get a big pay day. I am not sure why, but teams are looking for pitching and if they can land someone who put up 18 wins just a couple years ago, they will do it and hope he can recover. A report said that eleven teams had expressed interest so I called around and was able to get a couple more teams beyond the Padres, Yankees, and Mets. The list includes the Mariners, Rangers, Cardinals, Phillies, Astros, Nationals, Reds, and Indians. I'm not sure who I consider the front-runner, probably the Padres, then the Reds, then the Yankees or Mets. I think the Reds have a good chance because Mark Prior had a good relationship with Dusty Baker, the Reds new manager. I'm sure he will sign in the next couple of weeks, and it should make for a pretty big story when he does.

Mariners very serious about Bedard: I've been saying it since the beginning that the Mariners are going to make a big splash, and we'll see if they can follow through. It would probably cost them Brandon Morrow and either Adam Jones or Yuniesky Betancourt, or both.

Jenkins likely heading to Philly:
I talked today with a former Phillies executive who told me the Phillies have had their eye on Jenkins for awhile, so look to them to close in on him.

Diamondbacks plan to shop Orlandon Hudson?: Since the Diamondbacks acquired Dan Haren, they have two potential big contracts in their rotation that leaves little room for Hudson.

Pirates still hot on Barrett:
The Pirates still have interest in Michael Barrett and are willing to offer up two prospects for him.

Benson workout "successful": I talked with the agent of Kris Benson who told me that "there were at least twenty scouts on hand. Kris threw very well, about sixty pitches. I can't speak for any teams, but he had a successful workout which showed that he was healthy and we are confident that he will sign."

Javy Lopez back with Braves:
The Braves signed Javy Lopez to a minor league deal and invited him to Spring Training.


Anonymous 11:35 AM CST  

Any team would be CRAZY to sign Prior to more than a one year deal with a team option for a 2nd year. I've heard he will only take a multi year deal...Don't what the Cubs offered. But 3 million for 2008 with sizable bonuses if he passes certain benchmarks and a team option with a substantial pay raise if he meets the incentives for 2008 seems reasonable.

Anonymous 4:22 PM CST  

Apparently you heard wrong......most signs point to Prior only wanting to sign a 1 year deal so he can test FA after 08. The Cubs wouldn't budge off of their demand that Prior give them an 09 option and as a result he was let go.

I don't see Prior signing with any NL Central team. First off, there have been many rumors that Prior and his family hold Dusty responsible for overusing him earlier in his career and as a result putting him in the position that he's in now, at this point, with his career literally hanging in the balance signing on with pitcher abuser Baker is the last thing he'll do.

If I had to guess (I'm not sure if SD has offered him a contract).....I'd imagine he ends up in either SD or NY.

Eli 4:31 PM CST  

i think he will wind up in either california or new york

Anonymous 5:28 PM CST  

There was an article about a week ago in the San Diego Union Tribune that mentioned the Padres had gotten ahold of Prior's medical records and their interest in him had cooled as a result. While I'm sure Prior's preference is return to San Diego, there might not be a genuine desire on the Padres part to bring him in. I would have to think that if Prior's intent was to return to SD all along and the feeling was mutual, that a deal would already be done.

I see him landing with the Yankees. They're perennial WS contenders, which obviously makes them more attractive than just about every team that has shown interest in him so far and for a guy who was consistently trashed by the Chicago media for being soft, what better place or team is there to prove those misconceptions to be false? Plus don't forget Joe Girardi and Prior were teammates in his rookie year, that could very well play a factor.

Anonymous 5:37 PM CST  

I think Prior didn't want to be on the Cubs period. And I think in a way, the Cubs really didn't want him back at any price. My feeling is that psychologically he is tied to the 2003 collapse. He won't get passed that in Chicago. And the fans see him as a china doll.

I am surprised that so many teams are interested in him. I wouldn't be surprised if he comes back and has a good career. And of course the media will say its another symptom of the Cubs curse. Everyone the Cubs let go ends up in the hall of fame. (Not really but the media make it seem like that.)

Personally, it ticks me off that he didn't take a discount like Wood. Shows you the difference in their character.