UPDATE: Joe McDonald of ESPN.com is reporting that the Red Sox have claimed Napoli off waivers from the Angels but are unlikely to
trade for him by Monday’s deadline.
The Red Sox may have put in the claim to block the power-hitting Napoli
from reaching the Rays, Yankees and Twins, who could all use a little
12:33 AM: The Manny Ramirez negotiations aren’t very active at the moment. But there might be another major waiver deal in the works.
According to FOXSports.com’s Jon Paul Morosi, an unknown team has claimed Angels catcher Mike Napoli off waivers. The Angels have until Monday afternoon to work out a deal with that claiming club.
Who might it be? Well, probably a club from the American League. Those teams get first pick and Napoli has a fairly high amount of value as a hitter. In just 369 at-bats this year for the Angels he boasts a team-leading 21 home runs, 60 RBI and a .480 slugging percentage.
Morosi notes that Napoli would make sense for Red Sox, Rays, Twins, White Sox and Rangers as a first baseman or designated hitter. And he would also fit in Detroit, where the Tigers are seeking a starting catcher for 2011.
It will take a decent prospect, that’s for sure, but a deal involving Napoli could most definitely happen either Sunday or closer to the Monday afternoon deadline.
Here are the Rangers and Blue Jays lineups for Game 1 of the ALDS in Toronto:
CF Delino DeShields
RF Shin-Soo Choo
3B Adrian Beltre
DH Prince Fielder
1B Mike Napoli
LF Josh Hamilton
SS Elvis Andrus
2B Rougned Odor
C Robinson Chirinos
SP Yovani Gallardo
With left-hander David Price on the mound for Toronto the Rangers are going with Mike Napoli at first base over Mitch Moreland. Beyond that it’s a pretty standard lineup for Texas, or at least standard for what manager Jeff Banister used down the stretch once Josh Hamilton was healthy enough to play left field.
LF Ben Revere
3B Josh Donaldson
RF Jose Bautista
DH Edwin Encarnacion
SS Troy Tulowitzki
1B Justin Smoak
C Russell Martin
2B Ryan Goins
CF Kevin Pillar
SP David Price
After returning from the disabled list for the final weekend of the regular season Troy Tulowitzki is in the lineup and batting fifth. That allows Ryan Goins to play second base in place of the injured Devon Travis. Justin Smoak gets the nod over Chris Colabello at first base against a right-hander.
Houston made one unexpected change to the roster for the ALDS, leaving off veteran reliever Chad Qualls.
Qualls warmed up but never appeared in the Wild Card game win over the Yankees and during the regular season the 36-year-old right-hander logged 49 innings with a 4.38 ERA and 46/9 K/BB ratio. Qualls was on the Astros’ last playoff team in 2005.
Utility man Jonathan Villar has been bumped off the roster in favor of outfielder Preston Tucker, as the Astros opted for a good left-handed bat off the bench versus the Royals rather than Villar’s speed.