Dan Uggla; Photo from Wikimedia Commons
Joe Frisaro of MLB.com reports the Florida Marlins and Louisville-native Dan Uggla agreed on a one-year, $7.8 million contract Monday. The agreement means the two sides have avoided an arbitration hearing. Uggla had been actively shopped by the Marlins this offseason, and he remains a candidate to be traded before Opening Day. The Marlins have made it clear they won’t just give the slugger away. (Read more)
Uggla had this to say about Frisaro about staying in Florida:
It feels good to get this out of the way. I can’t say that I’m going to for sure be a Marlin, because no one knows that. But I feel with the situation I’m in, I’m happy to be with the Marlins. I love it down there. They worked really well with me to come to an agreement, so I don’t have to go to an arbitration hearing. So I’m happy.”
News of minor league free agent signings is always scarce unless a player signs with an invitation to Spring Training like Somerset-native Josh Anderson or Louisville-native Chris Burke. For lower level minor league free agents spots contracts are signed as teams seek to fill organizational holes. The best resource for following these signings is usually Baseball America‘s weekly minor league transaction feature.
With that in mind here my most up-to-date Kentucky minor league free agents list with the players 2009 organization and level listed.
- C Neil Wilson — Covington, Ky. — Florida Marlins — AAA
- 3B Tanner Townsend — WKU — Florida Marlins — 2009 DNP
- LHRP John Switzer — Covington, Ky. — New York Mets — AAA
- RHRP Matt Ginter — Winchester, Ky. (Morehead) — Milwaukee Brewers — AAA
- RHRP Zack Pitts — Elizabethtown, Ky. (UofL) — St. Louis Cardinals — 2009 DNP
- RHRP Matt Wilhite — Bowling Green, Ky. (WKU) — Colorado Rockies — AAA
- RHRP Andrew Albers — UK — San Diego Padres — 2009 DNP
- SS Ryan Wilkes — UK — New York Yankees — 2009 DNP
Dan Uggla; Photo from Wikimedia Commons
A few afternoon notes to pass along as some updates of some of the storylines we were following before the Holidays.
- Juan C. Rodriguez of the South Florida Sun-Sentinel reports a source with the Marlins says the chances of Louisville-native Dan Uggla beginning 2010 with the Marlins are increasing daily.
- University of Kentucky alum Andy Green resigned a Minor League contract with the New York Mets.
- Hap Fry of the Fort Collins Coloradoan profiles Rocky Mountain High School’s baseball program which produced current UK infielder Andy Burns.
- Todd Zolecki of MLB.com reports arbitration raises to players including UK alum Joe Blanton will affect what the Phillies can do in the remainder of the offseason.
- Phil Rogers of the Chicago Tribune (writing for Baseball America) had this to say about UK alum John Shelby in BA’s White Sox prospect chat: (subscription required)
- “Treybone is still on the organization’s radar because of his speed-power combination. But he’s definitely viewed more as a possible role player than a likely regular. He needs to get his batting average back up near .300 this year, and that will be a challenge.“
The three-team multiple Cy Young winner blockbuster trade is official, and UK alum Joe Blanton is still a member of the Philadelphia Phillies. Blanton appears likely to start the season in Philadelphia since the team parted with Lee, but due to his impending salary raise his status remains worth watching. Now that the baseball world can move past the trade here are some Bluegrass storylines to keep track of:
- Barry Jackson of The Miami Herald passes on a few of the names in the Giants and Marlins Dan Uggla discussions. The most interesting: left-handed pitcher Jonathan Sanchez.
- With the number of available second baseman this offseason, someone like Uggla will probably have to move positions, Dave Cameron of FanGraphs.com writes.
- Brady Williams was named the 2010 manager of the Bowling Green Hot Rods by the Tampa Bay Rays.
- Michael Grant of The Courier-Journal talks to St. X-alum Chris Burke about the opportunity to play for the Reds or his hometown Louisville Bats.
- You can see Blue Jays GM Alex Anthopoulos talk about the blockbuster trade and his recent signing of Lexington Legends Hall of Famer John Buck in a video via MLB.com here.
Joe Blanton; Photo from Wikimedia Commons
The Winter Meetings are over and not a lot of BluGrass Baseball players have moved teams. Dan Uggla remains a Marlin, Corey Hart a Brewer and Scott Downs a Blue Jay. Todd Wellemeyer, Austin Kearns and Paul Byrd all remain unemployed. Each of the those players and several other Kentucky alumni could still end up elsewhere to start 2010 so keep checking back to BluGrass Baseball for the latest news.
- Jordan Bastian of MLB.com writes the Philadelphia Phillies will likely have to move UK alum Joe Blanton before making a serious run at Toronto Blue Jays ace Roy Halladay.
- Joe Frisaro of MLB.com reports that even after the Winter Meetings, trading Louisville-native Dan Uggla remains high on the Marlins’ agenda.
- Joe Capozzi of the Palm Beach Post writes while Uggla remains a Marlin for now, Florida will still likely have a new second baseman to start 2010.
- Andrew Baggarly of the San Jose Mercury News reports the San Francisco Giants are looking to add some power to the lineup, but Uggla is not the Giants’ first choice.
- Aaron Fitt of Baseball America doesn’t under stand the James Paxton camp’s strategy of prolonging its lawsuit against the University of Kentucky. He thinks if Paxton has any chance to play in 2010 he might be best served by meeting with investigators and proceeding from there.
- The Louisville Bats named Matt Andrews their new director of broadcasting. Andrews also serves as the Morehead State men’s basketball lead radio broadcaster.
Corey Hart; Photo from Wikimedia Commons
Lots of Winter Meetings rumors to get to this morning. As for the other major Kentucky baseball story, some outlets had reported we should expect a response from James Paxton’s attorneys to the UK motion Monday, but I’ve seen no report that happened. As soon as I hear something about the case I’ll pass it on here.
- Joel Sherman of The New York Post tweets that the New York Mets are talking about a trade of starting pitcher John Maine to the Milwaukee Brewers for Bowling Green-native Corey Hart.
- Matthew Pouliot of NBC Sports writes the Brewers should be cautious when considering that trade, there might be more to Maine’s medical history than meets the eye.
- Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel cautions that this may be a trade than never moves past the initial discussion stage, but Maine’s ties to Brewers’ pitching coach Rick Peterson may facilitate further talks.
- Jeff Zrebiec of The Baltimore Sun writes there has been no recent talks about any Baltimore Orioles trade for Louisville-native Dan Uggla.
- Joe Frisaro of MLB.com writes Uggla faces an uncertain future.