Ryan Spilborghs

Red Sox show interest in Colorado’s Ryan Spilborghs

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For about three years now, the Red Sox have alternated between showing interest in Ryan Spilborghs and Chris Iannetta from the Rockies.  Maybe they’ll actually get one of the two this time.

A NL source confirmed to CSNNE.com’s Sean McAdam that Boston is again interested in Spilborghs and that the Rockies have a scout at Fenway Park tonight.  That last part doesn’t make a whole lot of sense — it’s hard to see the Red Sox dealing someone from the current major league roster for Spilborghs — but who really knows?

Spilborghs’ trade value is as low as it’s ever been.  He’s hit just .223/.303/.324 with three homers in 179 at-bats this season, and he’s at a totally unacceptable .135/.196/.202 in 89 at-bats away from Coors Field.

Still, the 31-year-old Spilborghs has turned in a few excellent seasons as a part-timer.  He finished with OPSs of .848 in 2007, .875 in 2008 and .797 last year while averaging about 270 at-bats per season.  He’s used most often against lefties, but he hit righties just fine, too, with a career .751 OPS (.811 versus southpaws).

If the Red Sox get him, it would like to be serve as a right fielder against left-handers.  Both Josh Reddick and J.D. Drew are left-handed hitters and Darnell McDonald has been a pretty big bust in his chances to face lefties this season, though he has picked it up of late.

The Red Sox, though, wouldn’t give up much for him.  While Spilborghs is under control for next year, he’ll cost a bit more than $2 million in arbitation, so he would be a non-tender candidate.  The Rockies would have been far more likely to get a legitimate prospect for him had they moved him last year.

Update: McAdam added some clarification on his previous tweet:

Should have made clear: Rockies scout at Fenway not looking for return on a Spilborghs deal. Would be mid-level prospect only on exchange

UPDATE: Barry Bonds tentatively plans to accept the Marlins hitting coach job

Barry Bonds

UPDATE: Bob Nightengale reports that while negotiations are not yet finalized, Barry Bonds “tentatively plans to accept the Marlins’ offer to be hitting coach with Frank Menechino.” Which is a good reminder that Menechino is still the Marlins’ hitting coach. Who would be the assistant and who would be the coach — or if they’d be co-coaches — is unclear.

12:00PM: The matter of Barry Bonds as the Marlins hitting coach has gone from “consideration” to “offer,” reports Bob Nightengale. The Marlins now await Barry Bonds’ response.

The biggest mystery in all of this is whether Bonds is actually interested. No one has reported that he was willing or even that there have been serious conversations between the Marlins and Bonds. That could be because Bonds, as has always been his practice, doesn’t talk too much to the media. Indeed, we learn more about him from his social media presence than anything reported about him. So it’s possible that Bonds and Jeff Loria have been in contact about all of this and he’s strongly considering it as well.

It’s also possible that this is all nothing and the Marlins are just trying to make a long shot happen.

MONDAY, 5:01 PM: This shouldn’t cause any controversy, lead to a lot of people saying dumb things or provide fodder for jokes at all. Nope, none whatsoever:

In what promises to be a bombshell move, if executed, all-time great slugger Barry Bonds is under consideration to become Marlins hitting coach.

Team higherups have quietly been discussing this possibility for weeks.

That’s Jon Heyman, who reminds us that Bonds has worked with the Giants in the spring in recent years. And who, no matter what else you can say about him, was one of the greatest hitters the game has ever seen. Also worth remembering that despite his controversial past, that greatness came not just from physical gifts, naturally or artificially bestowed. It came from his approach, preparation and strategy at the plate. No one can teach a hitter to hit like Barry Bonds, but you’d think that hitters could be taught to try to approach an at bat the way Barry Bonds would. And who better to do it than Barry Bonds?

That is, if Bonds is willing to drop his seemingly ideal retired life in San Francisco, move to Miami and work for Jeff Loria for nine months a year. Which, eh, who knows? But the possibility of it is pretty fascinating to think about.

Royals avoid arbitration with Tim Collins for $1.475 million

Tim Collins Getty
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Left-hander Tim Collins, who missed the entire 2015 season following Tommy John elbow surgery, will remain with the Royals after avoiding arbitration for a one-year, $1.475 million contract.

Collins was a non-tender candidate due to his injury and projected salary via arbitration, but the Royals are convinced he can bounce back to be a valuable part of the bullpen again in 2016 and beyond. He agreed to the same salary he made in 2015.

Prior to blowing out his elbow Collins posted a 3.54 ERA with 220 strikeouts in 211 innings from 2011-2014 and he’s still just 26 years old. He figures to begin 2016 in a middle relief role.

Joba Chamberlain signs with the Indians

Joba Chamberlain

When you think “Joba Chamberlain” and “Cleveland” you think of the then-Yankees phenom being attacked by midges in the 2007 ALDS. If you don’t remember that somehow, the video evidence is below.

But all of that changes now, as the Indians have just announced that they have signed Chamberlain to a minor league deal with an invitation to big league spring training. That’s no promise of a big league job, but the Indians did make at least one promise to him:


I can vouch for that. The Indians’ Triple-A team is in Columbus and we don’t have midges here.

Chamberlain split time with the Royals and the Tigers in 2015, posting a composite ERA of 4.88 in 36 games of mostly mopup work.

Mariners trying to trade Mark Trumbo by Wednesday

Mark Trumbo

Seattle making Mark Trumbo available has been known for a while now, but Bob Dutton of the Tacoma News Tribune reports that the Mariners are trying to trade the first baseman/outfielder before Wednesday.

That’s the deadline to tender 2016 contracts to arbitration eligible players and with Trumbo set to make around $9 million via that process the Mariners would rather move on before any decision needs to be made. In other words: They don’t want to be stuck with him.

Trumbo has elite power, averaging 30 homers per 160 games for his career, but that power comes with a .250 batting average, poor plate discipline and a .299 on-base percentage, and sub par defense. Mariners general manager Jerry Dipoto has already traded Trumbo once, dealing him to the Diamondbacks back when he was the Angels’ general manager, and now he’s working hard to part ways again.

Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com reports that the Rockies are among the interested teams.