But that could change next month, agent Paul Kinzer told FOXSports.com’s Ken Rosenthal on Monday.
According to Kinzer, while Ramirez is currently unwilling to accept any deal that would take him out of Chicago, he might agree to something after his wife and children return to the Dominican Republic next month.
Even more interesting is that Kinzer said Ramirez would want to waive his 2012 option as part of any deal. Ramirez has a $16 million club option for 2012 that the Cubs aren’t expected to exercise, but that option would automatically become guaranteed as part of any trade.
Kinzer said Ramirez would rather become a free agent at season’s end than accept a $16 million salary for 2012, and if that’s the case, he’d become quite a bit more attractive to suitors. Most teams would be scared off by that kind of payout.
Contenders needing help at third base include the Angels, Tigers, Brewers, Pirates, White Sox and Diamondbacks. The Yankees could also qualify, having Alex Rodriguez might be about ready to return from knee surgery by the time Ramirez is willing to accept a trade.
Ramirez would have to be placed on waivers in order to be dealt in August.
CSN Philly’s Jim Salisbury reports that Phillies outfielder Nick Williams has been working out daily with free agent starter Jake Arrieta in Austin. The right-hander, who won the 2015 National League Cy Young Award, still remains teamless with spring training less than a month away. Williams has been trying to sell Arrieta on joining the Phillies.
Williams said of Arrieta, “He loves it here [Austin]. He has told me he likes working with young guys. I’m like, ‘All right, come on up.’ But I’m not writing the check. I don’t know what he wants. I don’t really dig into that because I’m not really in his position.”
On GM Matt Klentak’s hunt for pitching help, new manager Gabe Kapler said, “The pursuit is very real. I have a lot of trust that we’ll either go in [to spring training] with a new toy or we will pass on the opportunity because we’re better off giving this collection of pitchers a really healthy look because we thought that we could go acquire that piece a little bit later on this season or in the offseason next year.”
Arrieta, who turns 32 years old in March, went 14-10 with a 3.53 ERA and a 163/55 K/BB ratio in 168 1/3 innings last season with the Cubs. The Cubs, Cardinals, and Brewers have been linked to Arrieta this month.
Presently, the Phillies’ starting rotation figures to include Aaron Nola, Jerad Eickhoff, and Vince Velasquez along with some combination of Nick Pivetta, Ben Lively, Zach Eflin, Mark Leiter, and Jake Thompson. Arrieta would certainly amount to a big upgrade in the starting rotation and could make the Phillies a more attractive landing spot for Bryce Harper or Manny Machado, who become free agents after the 2018 campaign. The Phillies are expected to be in the mix for either or both players.