UPDATE: The Mets are off the hook with the Oliver Perez DL assignment


Oliver Perez headshot.JPGUPDATE:  Guess not. Andy Martino reports that Major League Baseball is “comfortable” with the Ollie Perez DL stint and has closed its investigation.  Apparently Perez suffered the most conveniently-timed knee injury in baseball history.

I’m inclined to think that teams abuse the DL for roster management purposes all the time. As far as I know, however, no team has ever gotten busted for it.

Oh well. Stay tuned for Ollie suddenly coming down with a terrible case of Badcontracism sometime soon, necessitating his move to the 60-day DL.

1:17 P.M.: As was reported over the weekend, eyebrows were raised when the Mets put Oliver Perez on the disabled list after a couple of weeks of trying to get him to accept a minor league assignment and at the exact moment his roster slot was needed for Jon Niese’s callup.  We learned on Saturday that MLB was reviewing it, but MLB reviews all roster moves so no biggie, right?

Maybe not.  Matthew Cerrone of MetsBlog reports that he has heard from two MLB sources who characterize this as “a serious
investigation,” and that there’s a chance the transaction
gets reversed.

I don’t know what reversing the roster move would really entail. Certainly it would mean the Mets have to place Perez back on the roster and make a corresponding roster move to make room.  It’s doubtful that anything happens as a result of Niese getting  a start that was later adjudged to have been occasioned by an illegal roster move.  We’re probably talking a fine or something.

I’d have to think that if the move was found to be wrongful that the Mets would simply have to DFA Perez, right? I mean how can you keep a guy that you hate so much that you’d cheat the system to be rid of?

Red Sox president Dave Dombrowski is reportedly trying to trade Hanley Ramirez

Hanley Ramirez
AP Photo/Charles Krupa, File

Nick Cafardo provides this interesting nugget in his Sunday notes column at the Boston Globe

Hanley Ramirez, 1B-DH, Red Sox — There’s now talk in the front office that Dave Dombrowski is trying to move Ramirez in a deal. The Mariners, Orioles, and Angels seem to be the targets, and all three make sense.

Cafardo notes that “there are huge hurdles to cross” before a trade could happen — like how much of Hanley’s remaining salary the Red Sox would have to eat and what positions the soon-to-be 32-year-old is able to play defensively at this point in his career.

Boston’s higher-ups have asked Ramirez to learn first base and drop 20 pounds this winter. Whatever team is looking to acquire him would probably have to be comfortable with him serving primarily as a designated hitter.

Hanley is owed $68.2 million over the next three seasons and he carries a $22 million vesting option for 2019. He batted just .249/.291/.426 in 105 games this past year.

Ben Zobrist is the “Mets’ No. 1 target”

Ben Zobrist
AP Photo/Charlie Riedel

Ben Zobrist posted a cool .809 OPS (120 OPS+) in 126 games this summer between Oakland and Kansas City while appearing defensively at second base, third base, and both corner outfield positions.

His steady bat and defensive versatility make him a fit for just about every club in Major League Baseball, and the defending National League champions are among the teams in hot pursuit …

It’s a little odd to see the rebuilding Braves listed there given that Zobrist is 34 years old, but Rosenthal says the interest stems from a “desire for him to serve as [a] model for younger players” as the club prepares to open a new ballpark in 2017. Wasn’t that supposed to be Nick Markakis‘ job?

Zobrist and his agent Alan Nero are believed to be seeking a four-year deal.

Tigers agree to deal with starter Jordan Zimmermann

Jordan Zimmermann
AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais

Hey, the hot stove is finally generating some real fire …

CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman reports that the Tigers have agreed to terms on a contract with free agent starter Jordan Zimmermann. It’s a five-year deal worth around $110 million, per Jon Morosi of FOX Sports.

This should have a domino effect on a loaded starting pitching market. David Price, Zack Greinke, Johnny Cueto, Mike Leake, and Jeff Samardzija are just a few of the names still out there.

Zimmermann, 29, posted a 3.66 ERA, 1.21 WHIP, and 164/39 K/BB ratio in 201 2/3 innings this past season for the Nationals. He had a 2.66 ERA in 2014 and threw a no-hitter on the final day of the regular season.

Zimmermann’s free agency is tied to draft pick compensation because he rejected a one-year, $15.8 million qualifying offer from Washington, but the Tigers finished with one of the 10-worst win-loss records in 2015 so their first-round pick in 2016 is protected. Detroit will give up its second-round pick instead.

Video: Statcast’s 10 longest home runs from 2015

Giancarlo Stanton
AP Photo/Joe Skipper

Here’s a pretty good way to finally break out of that turkey-induced Thanksgiving tryptophan coma.

It’s a compilation of the 10 longest home runs from the 2015 season, with MLB.com’s Statcast technology providing data along the path of each blast …