Last week Carlos Beltran admitted that he “would have to listen” if the Mets approached him about switching positions, but Andy McCullough of the Newark Star Ledger reports that Beltran and general manager Sandy Alderson spent Saturday together in Puerto Rico and the topic wasn’t broached.
“The trip to Puerto Rico was not to accomplish a position change,” Alderson told McCullough. “It’s not necessarily that the subject is only broached after spring training begins, but I think it’s only fair to think about that and deal with it in the context of real information.”
In other words, the Mets may want to actually get a look at Beltran and his surgically repaired knee in some game action before determining whether he should remain in center field. That approach certainly makes sense, but Beltran has indicated that he’d like to know the team’s plans sooner than later, saying: “If the organization has different things in mind, then we have to talk about that.”
Rian Watt of Baseball Prospectus is hearing that a trade that would send Aroldis Chapman to the Cubs involves prospect Gleyber Torres and more going to the Yankees. He adds that the holdup in the trade talks is centered around a contract extension for Chapman, believed to be around four years in length and $60 million total. The deal may not be finalized if the Cubs don’t get him signed to an extension they like. In Watt’s words, “Package is set. Extension is not.”
We learned earlier on Sunday that the Yankees were working hard to trade Chapman, reportedly in contact with at least four teams. The Cubs were not believed to be the front runners but certainly upped the ante by offering Torres.
Torres, 19, is rated the Cubs’ #1 prospect and #24 overall in baseball by MLB Pipeline. The shortstop has spent the season with Single-A Myrtle Beach, batting .275/.359/.433 with nine home runs, 47 RBI, 62 runs scored, and 19 stolen bases in 409 plate appearances.
Torres is currently roadblocked at shortstop by Addison Russell, and 21-year-old Ian Happ is rated #3 in the Cubs’ system, so the club would be dealing from surplus.
Prior to Sunday afternoon’s game against the Mariners, the Blue Jays designated reliever Drew Storen for assignment and recalled reliever Ryan Tepera from Triple-A Buffalo.
Storen, 28, had a nightmare of a time with the Jays, leaving with a 6.21 ERA and a 32/10 K/BB ratio over 33 1/3 innings. The Jays acquired him in January from the Nationals in exchange for outfielder Ben Revere and a player to be named later.
Storen is owed the remainder of his $8.375 million salary, which makes it likelier that the right-hander will pass through waivers unclaimed. He’ll be eligible for free agency after the season.