If you want Brian Dozier, now’s the time to make your pitch. At least, that’s the message the Twins appear to be sending to the second baseman’s suitors this week. La Velle E. Neal III of the Minneapolis Star-Tribune reports that the club’s patience is wearing thin, and a source says that if a deal can’t be worked out during the next few days, the team will prepare to keep him on board for the 2017 season.
The 29-year-old hit his stride in Minnesota during 2016, turning in career-best numbers with a .268/.340/.546 batting line, 42 homers and 99 RBI over 691 PA. Dozier has incurred plenty of interest from teams this offseason, including the Giants, Cardinals and Nationals. The Dodgers appeared to be frontrunners for the infielder, though negotiations stalled earlier this month after their proposed one-to-one swap for pitching prospect Jose De Leon underwhelmed Minnesota brass, who were seeking at least one more prospect for Dozier.
The Twins seem unlikely to budge on their desired return package for the star second baseman, which makes it hard to believe that a trade will be pushed through anytime soon. Per Neal’s report, had the club been open to a one-to-one trade at any point this offseason, it would already have happened by now.
John Wisely of the Detroit Free Press reports that current free agent reliever Francisco Rodriguez is being sued by his former landlord for damage to the rented property as well as missing artwork. The landlord is asking for $80,000 after having kept Rodriguez’s $15,000 security deposit.
The lawsuit says that Rodriguez damaged a bedroom TV, a crystal floor lamp, glass shelves in the bar, glass tiles in the master bath, and a Moroccan mirror in the powder room. Additionally, the suit claims that the bedding is stained and paint has chipped, as well as other damages. And the piece of art that is allegedly missing, which depicts a tiger, is valued at more than $10,000.
Rodriguez has not yet been served with the suit, but the landlord has been speaking to his managers.
The Nationals released Rodriguez, 35, two weeks ago after having signed him to a minor league contract in late June. He started the season with the Tigers, but struggled to a 7.82 ERA over 25 1/3 innings before being released.
MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand reports that the Rays have acquired first baseman Lucas Duda from the Mets. The Mets will receive pitching prospect Drew Smith in return, per Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports.
Duda, 31, is batting .246/.347/.532 with 17 home runs and 37 RBI in 291 plate appearances for the Mets this season. He’ll provide a potent bat in the Rays’ lineup as they attempt to overcome their current 2.5-game deficit in the AL East.
Smith, 23, is the Rays’ No. 30 prospect, according to MLB Pipeline. He ascended from High-A to Triple-A already this season, posting an aggregate 1.60 ERA with a 40/9 K/BB ratio over 45 innings across four stops with High-A Lakeland (Tigers), High-A Charlotte (Rays), Double-A Montgomery, and Triple-A Durham.