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Content provided by Rotoworld Player News - Monday, December 16th, 2013

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12 teams interested in Luis Ayala 12-16-2013
Luis Ayala P BAL
Chris Cotillo of reports that 12 teams have expressed interest in Luis Ayala.

Chris Cotillo on Twitter
Cotillo lists the Red Sox, Rays, Dodgers, Giants, Braves, Orioles and Phillies among the interested clubs. Ayala will have no trouble netting a major league deal after posting a 2.58 ERA across 157 appearances over the last three seasons.
Padres among teams interested in Robinson 12-16-2013
Trayvon Robinson LF BAL
Chris Cotillo of reports that the Padres are among multiple teams talking to Trayvon Robinson.

Chris Cotillo on Twitter
Robinson, 26, spent all of 2013 between Double- and Triple-A with the Orioles, batting just .247/.329./394 but hitting 11 homers and stealing 21 bases. He'll have to settle for a minor league deal.
Four teams interested in Jordany Valdespin 12-16-2013
Jordany Valdespin 2B DET
Chris Cotillo of reports that four teams have checked in on the availability of Jordany Valdespin.

Chris Cotillo on Twitter
A source told Cotillo that Valdespin "has got his act together and is working hard to make a difference on the field for whoever signs him." The Mets non-tendered Valdespin earlier this month even though he wasn't arbitration-eligible yet after he batted just .188/.250/.316 in 144 plate appearances in 2013. He also served a PED suspension and has had makeup issues, but someone will take a shot on him on a minor league deal.
Orioles trying to trade Danny Valencia 12-16-2013
Danny Valencia 3B SEA
Jen Royle of the Boston Herald reports that the Orioles are exploring options to trade Danny Valencia.

Jen Royle on Twitter
It makes sense to try to sell high on Valencia after he batted a surprising .304/.335/.553 with eight homers in 51 games for the Orioles last season. There's no word on who might be interested, but the Marlins would make a lot of sense since they're looking for a third baseman and Valencia grew up just outside Miami.
D'Backs stop short of naming Reed closer 12-16-2013
Addison Reed P NYM
Diamondbacks general manager Kevin Towers on Monday stopped short of naming Addison Reed the team's closer.

Steve Berthiaume on Twitter
Reed cost the D'Backs top third base prospect Matt Davidson, but Towers isn't ready to hand the 25-year-old the ninth inning job just yet. "(He) will be pitching in meaningful role, one way or the other," Towers said. Ultimately, Reed figures to beat out J.J. Putz for the gig.
Dodgers close to re-signing lefty J.P. Howell 12-16-2013
J.P. Howell P TOR
Ken Gurnick of reports that the Dodgers are closing in on a multi-year contract with J.P. Howell.

Ken Gurnick on Twitter
The financials of the deal are not yet known, but he figures to get something similar to Boone Logan's three-year, $16.5 million deal. Howell had a number of suitors, but he returns to where he thrived last season. The veteran reliever posted a 2.03 ERA with 54 strikeouts over 62 innings for the Dodgers in 2013.
Shane Victorino undergoes thumb surgery 12-16-2013
Shane Victorino RF LAA
Shane Victorino underwent nerve release surgery on his right thumb Monday.

Alex Speier on Twitter
The procedure, which was performed by Dr. Thomas Graham, is not expected to keep Victorino from beginning spring training on time. The outfielder had issues with the thumb down the stretch and was apparently still feeling it during offseason workouts. Victorino batted .294/.351/.451 with 15 homers and 21 steals last season for the Red Sox.
Dodgers ink Josh Bell to minors deal 12-16-2013
Josh Bell 3B CWS
Dodgers signed 3B Josh Bell to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training. Bell was a top prospect when he was last with the Dodgers, but he's bottomed out since then. The 27-year-old spent all of 2013 at Triple-A with the White Sox and Yankees, batting just .226/.324/.356 with five homers over 52 games. He's merely organizational depth.
O's considering vesting option for Balfour 12-16-2013
Grant Balfour P TB
Roch Kubatko of reports that the Orioles "might" offer Grant Balfour a vesting option for a third season.

Roch Kubatko on Twitter
If they do, that could get it done. The Orioles appear to have identified Balfour as their top option to replace Jim Johnson and have extended him a two-year offer. Balfour was originally wanting a three-year deal with a vesting option for a fourth year, but the two sides might be able to meet in the middle.
Yankees interested in Young, Roberts 12-16-2013
Michael Young 3B LAD
CBS Sports' Jon Heyman report that the Yankees are interested in Michael Young and Brian Roberts.

Jon Heyman on Twitter
He also mentions Mark Reynolds, which he had reported on Sunday. It's unlikely that the Yanks would view Young or Roberts as legitimate full-time options at second base, but it's possible they could share the position with Kelly Johnson if the club is unable to land a bigger name at the position.
Hahn won't name new White Sox closer 12-16-2013
Nate Jones P CWS
White Sox general manager Rick Hahn named Nate Jones, Matt Lindstrom and Daniel Webb as the team's possible in-house candidates to replace Addison Reed as closer.
"I don't feel the urgency to anoint anyone the closer," Hahn said. "Frankly our scouts and player development people have done a real nice job over the years providing us with options, and I'm confident that's going to continue." Most have pegged Jones and his career 9.3 K/9 rate as the early favorite for the role, though Lindstrom has the "closer experience" thing working in his favor. Webb is surely a longshot for the ninth inning given that he only has nine career appearances at the big league level, but the Sox do like his upside.
Royals officially announce Infante signing 12-16-2013
Omar Infante 2B KC
Royals signed 2B Omar Infante to a four-year contract. The exact terms aren't yet known, but ESPN's Buster Olney reported last week that it will be for about $30 million. The deal also includes an option for 2018. Infante, 31, batted .318/.345/.450 with 10 home runs and 51 RBI in 118 games this past season for the Tigers. He'll be a major upgrade at second base for Kansas City.
Indians sign RHP Marcum to minor league deal 12-16-2013
Shaun Marcum P CLE
Indians signed RHP Shaun Marcum to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training.

Jordan Bastian on Twitter
Jordan Bastian of hears that Marcum would have a $1 million base salary if he makes the team, with the chance for another $3 million with incentives. He can opt out of the deal if he doesn't make the Opening Day roster. The 32-year-old is coming off thoracic outlet surgery and has had a host of injuries in his career, but he's a nice gamble for Cleveland.
Cubs add LHP Wesley Wright on 1-yr deal 12-16-2013
Wesley Wright P LAA
Cubs signed LHP Wesley Wright to a one-year, $1.425 million contract. Bob Nightengale of USA Today passed along the terms of the contract. Wright, 28, posted a 3.69 ERA and 55/19 K/BB ratio over 53 2/3 innings between the Astros and Rays this past season. He should be a weapon against left-handed batters out of the Cubs' bullpen.
Report: Indians ink RHP Marcum to minors deal 12-16-2013
Shaun Marcum P CLE
FOX Sports' Jon Paul Morosi reports that the Indians have signed right-hander Shaun Marcum to a minor league contract.

Jon Paul Morosi on Twitter
Marcum was limited to just 78 1/3 innings with the Mets this past season prior to undergoing thoracic outlet syndrome surgery. The 32-year-old is far from a sure thing to be healthy in 2014, but this is a no-risk situation for the Indians.
Rockies DFA right-hander Collin McHugh 12-16-2013
Collin McHugh P HOU
Rockies designated RHP Collin McHugh for assignment. McHugh got the boot Monday evening to clear a 40-man roster spot for new left-handed reliever Boone Logan. The 26-year-old right-hander owns a hideous 8.94 ERA in 47 1/3 career innings at the major league level.
Report: Astros ink Matt Albers to 1-yr deal 12-16-2013
Matt Albers P CWS
FOX Sports' Ken Rosenthal reports that the Astros have agreed to a one-year, $2.45 million contract with reliever Matt Albers, pending a physical.

Ken Rosenthal on Twitter
Albers will make $2.25 million in 2014 while his contract includes a $3 million option or $200,000 buyout for 2015. The 30-year-old compiled a 3.14 ERA, 1.27 WHIP and 35/23 K/BB ratio over 63 innings this past season with the Indians. He'll presumably pitch in a set-up role with Houston.
Rox finalize $16.5M contract with lefty Logan 12-16-2013
Boone Logan P CLE
Rockies signed LHP Boone Logan to a three-year, $16.5 million contract. It's a bit odd that the Rockies would commit so much money to a left-handed reliever when there are so many other holes on their roster, but Logan was very steady in his four seasons with the Yankees and should do fine in Colorado. He'll make a $4.75 million salary in 2014, $5.5 million in 2015 and $6.25 million in 2016.
Cards finalize $5.25M pact with 2B Mark Ellis 12-16-2013
Mark Ellis 2B STL
Cardinals signed 2B Mark Ellis to a one-year, $5.25 million contract. The one-year pact also carries about $1 million in performance-based bonuses. Ellis should be a perfect fit as a bench piece in St. Louis, where he will back up the left-handed Kolten Wong at second base. The 36-year-old Ellis still rates very well defensively.
Tribe's one-year deal with Axford worth $4.5M 12-16-2013
John Axford P OAK
According to FOX Sports' Ken Rosenthal, John Axford's one-year deal with the Indians is worth $4.5 million.

Ken Rosenthal on Twitter
Axford can also earn a bit more through incentives. The 30-year-old right-hander has been mediocre over the past two seasons, but he was one of the top closers in baseball in 2011 and the Indians plan to use him in the ninth inning in 2014. Chris Perez was released earlier this winter, and Cody Allen and Bryan Shaw will remain in setup roles.
Ellis contract with Cards worth $5.25 million 12-16-2013
Mark Ellis 2B STL
Mark Ellis' one-year contract with the Cardinals is worth $5.25 million, reports Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports.

Ken Rosenthal on Twitter
The deal was agreed to last Friday and will be made official this week after Ellis passes his physical. The 36-year-old right-handed-hitter will provide insurance at second base behind youngster Kolten Wong, a lefty. It's a nice subtle addition for St. Louis.
Braves avoid arb. with Beachy for $1.45 mil 12-16-2013
Brandon Beachy P LAD
Braves and RHP Brandon Beachy avoided arbitration by agreeing to a one-year, $1.45 million contract.

Chris Cotillo on Twitter
Beachy had Tommy John reconstructive elbow surgery in June 2012 and was limited to just five starts in 2013. He's expected to be 100 percent healthy heading into spring training next February and will try to get his career back on track. The 27-year-old right-hander was arbitration-eligible for the first time after earning a near-minimum $510,000 salary this past season.
Orioles sign Chris Marrero to minors contract 12-16-2013
Chris Marrero 1B BAL
Orioles signed 1B Chris Marrero to a minor league contract.

Matt Eddy on Twitter
Marrero was the 15th overall pick in the 2006 MLB Amateur Draft and has at times shown signs of promise, but the Nationals got tired of waiting and cut him loose at the end of the season. Marrero, now 25 years old, is a .281/.353/.413 hitter in 275 games at Triple-A.
D'Backs acquire CHW closer Addison Reed 12-16-2013
Addison Reed P NYM
Diamondbacks acquired RHP Addison Reed from the White Sox for 3B Matt Davidson. Arizona's trade for Mark Trumbo pushed Martin Prado into a full-time role at the hot corner, so the D'Backs used their surplus third baseman to upgrade the back end of the bullpen. Reed had a pedestrian 3.79 ERA in 2013 for Chicago, but he still finished with 40 saves and still has some room for improvement at age 24. He should maintain good fantasy value on a Diamondbacks team that will be looking to contend in 2014.
White Sox get Matt Davidson for closer Reed 12-16-2013
Matt Davidson 3B CWS
White Sox acquired 3B Matt Davidson from the Diamondbacks for RHP Addison Reed. Davidson, the 35th overall pick in the 2009 MLB Amateur Draft, was a .280/.350/.481 hitter with 17 homers, 32 doubles and 74 RBI in 115 games this past season at Triple-A. Reed is a solid closer with a strong amount of upside, but this is a pretty good get for the rebuilding White Sox. Davidson seems likely to open the 2014 season as Chicago's starting third baseman.
Tigers outright Danny Worth to AAA Toledo 12-16-2013
Danny Worth SS ARZ
Tigers sent INF Danny Worth outright to Triple-A Toledo. Worth was designated for assignment by the Tigers last week to clear a 40-man roster spot for new reliever Joba Chamberlain and drew no attention on waivers. The 28-year-old infielder hit .223/.305/.308 in 2013 at Triple-A.
Tigers outright Luis Marte to Triple-A level 12-16-2013
Luis Marte P DET
Tigers sent RHP Luis Marte outright to Triple-A Toledo. Marte was designated for assignment by Detroit earlier this month and passed through waivers unclaimed. The 27-year-old is still recovering from shoulder surgery.
Arizona close to trade for RP Addison Reed 12-16-2013
Addison Reed P NYM's Steve Gilbert reports that the Diamondbacks are close to acquiring White Sox closer Addison Reed.

Steve Gilbert on Twitter
Matt Davidson, a promising third base prospect, is reportedly headed to Chicago. Reed saved 40 games in 2013 for the White Sox while posting a 3.79 ERA, 1.11 WHIP and 72/23 K/BB ratio in 71 1/3 frames. The 24-year-old righty should do well in the ninth inning for Arizona and will maintain considerable fantasy value on a good D'Backs team.
Braves, Gavin Floyd finalize 1-year, $4M pact 12-16-2013
Gavin Floyd P TOR
Braves signed RHP Gavin Floyd to a one-year, $4 million contract. The deal also carries $4.5 million worth of incentives. Floyd is still in recovery from Tommy John reconstructive elbow surgery and might not be available to the Braves until late May. The 30-year-old right-hander will try to rebuild his value once he makes it back. He had a 4.22 ERA and 1.30 WHIP in his seven years with the White Sox.
Rangers interested in OF Kensuke Tanaka 12-16-2013
Kensuke Tanaka LF TEX
The Rangers are interested in Kensuke Tanaka.

Dallas Morning News
That's according to a report from Sponichi in Japan, translated by the Dallas Morning News. Tanaka was released by the Giants in September despite posting a promising set of numbers at Triple-A Fresno -- including a .400 OBP and 22 steals. The 32-year-old utilityman was a teammate of Rangers ace Yu Darvish on the Nippon Ham Fighters. He plays outfield and infield.
Blue Jays sign Jared Goedert to minors deal 12-16-2013
Jared Goedert 2B CLE
Blue Jays signed INF Jared Goedert to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training.

Jon Morosi on Twitter
Goedert batted just .241/.316/.390 in 519 plate appearances this past season with the Triple-A affiliate of the Pirates. He'll be organizational depth for Toronto.
Phillies 'very willing' to move Jimmy Rollins 12-16-2013
Jimmy Rollins SS CWS
Buster Olney of ESPN writes that the Phillies are "very willing" to trade Jimmy Rollins.

Buster Olney on Twitter
Rollins is owed $11 million in 2014 and carries an $11 million vesting option for the 2015 season. The 35-year-old batted just .252/.318/.348 across 666 plate appearances in 2013. He'll likely be difficult to move.
Braves do one-year, $4M contract with Floyd 12-16-2013
Gavin Floyd P TOR
Jerry Crasnick of ESPN reports that the Braves have signed Gavin Floyd to a one-year, $4 million deal.

Jerry Crasnick on Twitter
The one-year contract also carries $4.5 million in performance-based incentives. Floyd is on his way back from Tommy John elbow surgery and not expected to be ready for major league starts until May. The Braves will hope the deal pays off down the stretch. Floyd, 30, owns a 4.48 career ERA and 1.34 career WHIP.
Felix Pie signs contract with Korean team 12-16-2013
Felix Pie LF PIT
Felix Pie has officially agreed to a contract with the Hanwah Eagles of the Korean Baseball Organization.

MyKBO on Twitter
Pie, a former top prospect with the Cubs, batted .138 with a .366 OPS in 31 plate appearances this past season with the Pirates. It's likely a one-year deal.
D'Backs make re-signing Chavez a 'priority' 12-16-2013
Eric Chavez 3B ARZ's Jesse Sanchez says re-signing Eric Chavez has "become a priority" for the Diamondbacks.

Jesse Sancez on Twitter
But the veteran infielder is also drawing interest from several other clubs -- including the Rangers, Yankees, Marlins and Rays -- so it might take more than Arizona is willing to give. Chavez hit .281/.332/.478 with nine home runs and 44 RBI in 80 games this past season for the Diamondbacks. He turned 36 years old on December 7.
Cubs targeting left-hander Jonathan Sanchez 12-16-2013
Jonathan Sanchez P CHC
According to Mark Gonzales of the Chicago Tribune, the Cubs are targeting Jonathan Sanchez.

Chicago Tribune
Sanchez is 1-12 with an 8.73 ERA, 2.15 WHIP and 60/61 K/BB ratio in 78 1/3 innings since the start of the 2012 season, but the Cubs have nothing to lose and can make him a reclamation project in 2014. The 31-year-old left-hander will presumably have to accept a non-guaranteed minor league contract given his recent struggles.
Jesse Crain has recieved multiple offers 12-16-2013
Jesse Crain P CWS
FOX Sports' Jon Morosi reports that free agent reliever Jesse Crain has received multiple offers.

Jon Morosi on Twitter
Crain suffered a shoulder injury in June of 2013 and failed to make it back, but he's as steady as it gets when healthy and is expected to be 100 percent heading into the 2014 campaign. The 32-year-old right-hander owns a 3.05 career ERA through 10 major league seasons.