Via the Sports Agent Blog we learn that journeyman reliever Roman Colon is suing his former agents, the Hendricks Brothers, alleging that they did not tell him about an offer which would have allowed him to continue pitching in Korea following the 2010 season.
Colon — whose Baseball-reference.com page refers to as “Roman” but who is identified as “Ramon Colon” in the complaint in this case — pitched for the KIA Tigers in Korea in 2010 and did a pretty decent job. He alleges that following the 2010 season KIA made him a contract offer to come back in 2011, but that his agents didn’t tell him about it.
He says, had he known, he would have come back and pitched for KIA. Instead, he signed a minor league deal with the Dodgers before the 2011 season during which he made $12,500 a month. The KIA offer was for 75% of his 2010 salary, which isn’t stated in the body of the complaint, but one assumes was much more than $12,500 a month.
Colon never made the bigs with L.A. He spent most of 2012 in Triple-A with the Royals too, making three appearances for the big club. The rules in Korea are such that, as a result of Colon effectively rejecting the qualifying offer, KIA retains his rights in that league for five years, so he can’t sign with other teams over there.
If what he alleges is true, he’s got a righteous claim.
With the 2017 World Baseball Classic around the corner, Team Israel has reportedly reached out to Indians second baseman Jason Kipnis, per MLB Network’s Jon Morosi. Tournament rules stipulate that a player’s roster eligibility can be achieved in one of several ways: they were born in the country in question or hold citizenship/permanent legal residence there (or are simply capable of qualifying for citizenship), or one of their parents was born in the country or holds citizenship/permanent legal residence there.
For Kipnis, it’s the latter. Kipnis’ father, Mark Kipnis, is Jewish. That gives Kipnis the status he needs to suit up for Team Israel, despite the fact that he is a practicing Roman Catholic. He has yet to confirm or deny his participation in the competition.
Fifteen players have confirmed for Team Israel so far, including Mets’ infielder/outfielder Ty Kelly and free agents Sam Fuld, Nate Freiman, Jason Marquis and Jeremy Bleich. Per MLB.com’s Chad Thornburg, eight minor leaguers will also appear for the team. Like Kipnis, at least three other major leaguers are eligible for Team Israel’s roster but have yet to accept or decline involvement in the WBC: Dodgers center fielder Joc Pederson, Mariners infielder/outfielder Danny Valencia and free agent left-hander Craig Breslow.
Free agent first baseman James Loney has reportedly signed a minor league deal with the Rangers, per FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman. The deal includes an invite to spring training and a $1 million salary if he makes the major league roster in 2017.
Loney picked up a one-year stint and starting role with the Mets in 2016, slashing .265/.307/.397 with nine home runs in 336 PA. While his numbers were down a hair from the .280/.322/.357 batting line he produced with the Rays in 2015, he provided the Mets with a necessary, if underwhelming upgrade over an injured Lucas Duda through most of the season.
The 32-year-old infielder is expected to have some competition at first base, with at least five other candidates in the mix: Jurickson Profar, Ronald Guzman, Ryan Rua, Joey Gallo and Josh Hamilton. Rumor has it that the team is planning on platooning Rua and Profar in 2017, barring any impressive breakouts or injuries during spring training, though Loney could still provide the club with some veteran depth and a decent left-handed bat off the bench.