Iwamura deal just about done
As the Rays worked Thursday to finalize details of their three-year contract with Japanese infielder Akinori Iwamura, Major League Baseball nullifed a deal the Rays made earlier in the week.
The Rays claimed pitcher Bobby Livingston off waivers from Seattle and then immediately traded him to the Phillies in return for about $50,000. MLB ruled that the move essentially allowed the Phillies to circumvent the waiver process and nullified both the trade and the waiver claim. Livingston was then awarded to the Reds, who were next in line to claim him after the Rays.
The deal with Iwamura, which will include an option, is expected to be completed Friday morning and announced shortly thereafter. The Rays face a midnight Friday deadline. Iwamura is likely to be guaranteed between $7.5- and $8-million, and will have the right to become a free agent at the end of the contract.
The Rays are also expected to re-sign reliever Al Reyes to a minor-league deal and will bring him to spring training with a chance to win a job in the bullpen.