Make us your home page
Instagram

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Tampa Bay Rays still have catching issues to sort out

INDIANAPOLIS — Rays officials accomplished Job 1 at the winter meetings, acquiring closer Rafael Soriano in a trade with the Braves on Thursday. But they still have considerable work to do in shaping their roster for what apparently will be a serious bid to return to the postseason.

They have to clarify their catching situation, deciding whether to keep both Dioner Navarro and Kelly Shoppach. And they are still open to acquiring OF Milton Bradley from the Cubs for DH Pat Burrell, but on their financial terms.

"We've had a lot of good conversations," executive vice president Andrew Friedman said.

The next order of business is the Saturday night deadline to decide whether to tender contracts to all 10 of their arbitration-eligible players, with OF Gabe Gross and Navarro seemingly the biggest questions. The others are RHPs Grant Balfour, Lance Cormier and Matt Garza; LHPs Randy Choate and J.P. Howell, OF B.J. Upton, SS Jason Bartlett and Shoppach.

BY THE RULES: The Rays didn't lose or gain much in the Rule 5 draft of unprotected minor-leaguers. They took LHP Armando Zerpa from the Red Sox and sold him to the Dodgers in the major-league phase. Then the Rays took RHP Miguel Sierra from the low end of the Cubs organization and lost LHP Mike Wlodarczyk (to the Nationals) and RHP Douglas Salinas (to the Reds).

Red Sox get Bonser

On the final day of the winter meetings, the Twins traded RHP Boof Bonser, a Gibbs High grad, to the Red Sox for a player to be named later or cash. The 28-year-old was designated for assignment earlier this week after RHP Carl Pavano agreed to go to arbitration with the team. Bonser missed all of last season after having surgery on his pitching shoulder. He was 18-25 in his career with the Twins with a 5.12 ERA.

report: Red Sox ready to trade lowell to rangers: The team reached a preliminary agreement on a trade that would send 2007 World Series MVP Mike Lowell, 35, to the Rangers for C Max Ramirez, ESPN.com reported. The Red Sox reportedly would pay $9 million of Lowell's $12 million salary, a cash transfer large enough to require approval from the commissioner's office. Lowell, a third baseman, hit .324 with 21 homers and 120 RBIs in 2007. But he slumped to 73 RBIs in 2008 and 75 RBIs last season, hitting 17 homers each season.

Mets make offers to bay, molina: Looking to fill two holes and add power to their lineup, the Mets made contract offers to a pair of free agents: LF Jason Bay and C Bengie Molina. The team's bid for Bay was between $60 million and $65 million over four years. Molina would cost much less. Bay batted .267 with 36 homers and 119 RBIs last season for Boston. Molina, 35, hit .265 with 20 homers and 80 RBIs for San Francisco.

Astros: The team agreed to a $4.5 million, one-year contract with 3B Pedro Feliz, 34. He hit .266 with 12 homers and 82 RBIs last season for the Phillies, who declined a $5.5 million option for 2010 and opted to pay a $500,000 buyout.

Nationals: The team is expected to announce today the signing of C Ivan Rodriguez, 38, to a two-year, $6 million deal. The 14-time All-Star split last season between Houston and Texas, hitting .249 with 10 homers. He is slated as backup to Jesus Flores.

Pirates: Former AL rookie of the year infielder Bobby Crosby, 29, and the team agreed to a $1 million, one-year deal.

Rangers: RHP Rich Harden and the team completed the one-year deal that guarantees him $7.5 million.

Yankees: The team would like OF Johnny Damon back, but if the free agent is not willing to bend, the club said it will look into utility man Mark DeRosa, CF Mike Cameron and their own DH, Hideki Matsui.

Information from the Associated Press contributed to this report.

Tampa Bay Rays still have catching issues to sort out 12/10/09 [Last modified: Thursday, December 10, 2009 10:32pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Tiki Barber will join his brother, Ronde, on Fox broadcast for Bucs-Giants

    Bucs

    FOX announced Monday night that former Bucs cornerback Ronde Barber will have a familiar face joining him as a guest analyst for the Oct. 1 Bucs-Giants game in Tampa: his twin brother Tiki, who will join …

    Tik Barber, right, will join his brother, Ronde, left, as a guest analyst on the Oct. 1 Bucs-Giants broadcast on FOX. [Times files (2006)]
  2. Cannons will fire again when Bucs return to Raymond James Stadium

    Bucs

    As good as the Bucs looked in their season-opening 29-7 win against the Bears on Sunday, fans couldn't help but notice that the success didn't sound the same at Raymond James Stadium.

     Ron Gutschmidt is perched on top of the Buccaneer pirate ship ready to activate the ship's cannons with the press of a button after a Buccaneer touchdown. [LUIS SANTANA | Times]
  3. Rick and Tom podcast: How should Joe Maddon be remembered tonight?

    The Heater

    Rick Stroud and Tom Jones talk about Joe Maddon's return to Tropicana Field for the first time since he left the Rays in 2014 in the latest edition of our Rick and Tom podcast. They discuss the mixed emotions …

    Joe Maddon returns to Tropicana Field tonight for the first time since he left the Rays in 2014. [Getty Images]
  4. Cubs bring some other ex-Rays to Trop such as Wade Davis, Ben Zobrist

    Blogs

    Joe Maddon's first trip back to the Trop is getting most of the headlines tonight, but there are several other familiar faces among the eight former Rays now wearing Cubs uniforms.

    Two-time Rays MVP Ben Zobrist is finishing strong after a slow start to his second season in Chicago.
  5. Oleg Sosunov brings intrigue to Lightning exhibition opener

    Blogs

    When Hall of Famer Phil Esposito first saw Lightning prospect Oleg Sosunov, he joked he thought the 6-foot-8 Russian would hit the ceiling of Amalie Arena.

    Oleg Sosunov's ability to skate for his size, his reach, and his style have drawn comparisons to Zdeno Chara.