Earlier this week Deadspin published a lengthy story that included many unsavory allegations about agent Dan Lozano, whose client list includes Albert Pujols, Alex Rodriguez, and lots of other big names.
Last night Lozano’s lawyer issued a statement denying the claims and Pujols told Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post Dispatch:
I am absolutely staying with Danny as my agent. He will continue to negotiate my free agent contract. I am embarrassed for the people who are behind this. I want to make sure that people hear that.
Lozano stands to earn around $10 million from Pujols’ upcoming contract and, among other things, the Deadspin story alleged that he needs that commission to keep his business afloat because of various money problems.
Goold reports that Lozano “reached out to many of his clients to notify them about the potential forthcoming article” and plans legal action against the unnamed sources who provided Deadspin with information, documents, and not-safe-for-work photos.
Free agent third baseman Mike Moustakas is drawing interest from at least four clubs, MLB Network’s Jon Heyman reported Friday. The Brewers are the presumed frontrunners to land the infielder, but Heyman adds that the Angels may take the inside edge as Moustakas hails from the San Fernando Valley and has invested in charity efforts in California over the last year. The Phillies and Padres, on the other hand, have been involved to a lesser degree as they’re both thought to be in hot pursuit of fellow free agent third baseman/shortstop Manny Machado, though their interest in the veteran Moustakas could ramp right back up should they lose out on Machado in the weeks to come.
Moustakas, 30, declined a $15 million mutual option with the Brewers at the end of the 2018 season, and like many others left on the market, has yet to find a landing spot in advance of spring training. While he’s several years removed from his last All-Star performance, he ran a decent campaign with the Royals and Brewers last year, slashing a combined .251/.315/.459 with 28 home runs, a .774 OPS, and 2.4 fWAR across 635 plate appearances.
He certainly appears to be a fit in Anaheim, where he could supplant Zack Cozart at the hot corner and balance out the Angels’ right-heavy lineup alongside Kole Calhoun, Justin Bour, and Tommy La Stella. Even if the Angels have serious interest in the third baseman, however, they’re likely to wait and see what kind of contract Machado (and the as-yet unsigned Bryce Harper) fetches before extending any serious offers of their own. They’re far from the only club to use the four-time All-Star as a litmus test this offseason, which has only fueled a growing unrest among MLB players who believe that more serious action — such as a midseason walk-out or a league-wide strike — will need to be taken over the next few months.