Andrew Baggarly of the San Jose Mercury News heard from a “secondhand” source Wednesday evening that the Giants are attempting to reacquire infielder Juan Uribe from the Dodgers.
Uribe inked a three-year, $21 million free agent contract with Los Angeles in November that the Dodgers surely already regret. The 31-year-old is batting just .206/.275/.304 with 51 strikeouts in 236 plate appearances this season and spent time on the disabled list in May with a strained hip flexor.
Most teams would want to avoid a hefty contract and an unproductive, injury-prone player, but Giants GM Brian Sabean is known for operating in mysterious ways and always seems to have a craving for veteran players. It should be noted that ESPN’s Buster Olney heard the Dodgers have not engaged in any “substantive” trade talks yet and don’t plan to for another couple weeks.
The Giants lost second baseman Freddy Sanchez to a dislocated shoulder in early June and can’t yet be sure if he is going to avoid season-ending surgery. Mike Fontenot is also sidelined with a strained left groin.
UPDATE, 8:43 PM: Sabean called the Wrigley Field press box moments ago to personally shoot down the rumor, according to Baggarly. So, uh, that’s that.
Free agent outfielder/slugger J.D. Martinez is reportedly seeking an outfield gig, says Michael Silverman of the Boston Herald. According to Silverman’s sources, Martinez’s suitors have been informed that the veteran slugger would give preference to teams that can offer a corner outfield spot, rather than a DH-only role.
That could spell trouble for the Red Sox, who appear to be Martinez’s biggest suitors so far this offseason. Outfielders Mookie Betts and Andrew Benintendi are firmly established at the corners, and prior reports from club president Dave Dombrowski suggest that center fielder Jackie Bradley Jr. is not going anywhere anytime soon (thereby eliminating the possibility of reshuffling the outfield). The DH spot is still wide open for Martinez, who doesn’t seem to be totally closed off to the idea, but any full-time or part-time role on the field is likely off the table at this point.
Of course, the Red Sox aren’t the only ones pursuing Martinez’s services this winter. The 30-year-old slugger has been linked to both the Diamondbacks and Giants in weeks past, and while they have the roster flexibility to accommodate his preferences, they’ll need to clear another massive hurdle: the seven-year, $250 million contract he’s said to be seeking. Both clubs will need to get creative to make such a deal work. The Diamondbacks are rumored to be shopping right-hander Zack Greinke in an attempt to free up some room on their payroll for Martinez, while the Giants appear more inclined to scour the trade market for outfield help than shell out cash for another hefty contract in free agency.