Friday, November 18, 2011

Nats re-claim Kimball, protect 4 others

Updated at 5:02 p.m.

The Nationals have re-claimed Cole Kimball from Toronto off waivers, two days after losing the right-hander in a similar roster move. They also added catcher Derek Norris, first baseman Tyler Moore, outfielder Eury Perez and catcher Jhonatan Solano to their 40-man roster, protecting all four from being taken in next month's Rule 5 draft.

The bizarre string of transactions that brought Kimball back to D.C. came after the Blue Jays picked up another pitcher, right-hander Andrew Carpenter, off waivers from the Padres. Needing to clear a spot on their 40-man roster for Carpenter, they placed Kimball on waivers in an attempt to outright him to Class AAA.

But the Nationals rushed in and re-claimed Kimball, a move that immediately puts the injured reliever back on their 40-man roster hours before all clubs needed to submit a finalized, offseason list to Major League Baseball.

Kimball had surgery in July to repair a torn rotator cuff and won't be ready to pitch again until mid-2012. Knowing that, the Nationals attempted earlier this week to pass him through waivers and outright him to Class AAA Syracuse, a move that would have allowed him to remain in the organization without using up a 40-man roster spot.

Now, though, Kimball takes up a spot that could have been used to protect one of several minor leaguers from being taken in the Rule 5 draft. (Kimball can be placed back on the 60-day DL next spring, so he won't use up a 40-man spot during the season.)

The Nationals wound up protecting four Rule 5-eligible players in Norris, Moore, Perez and Solano. Norris and Moore weren't surprises; each excelled at Class AA Harrisburg this season. Perez, 21, has never played above high-Class A Potomac. Solano, 26, hit .275 at Class AAA Syracuse this year.

Among the players the Nationals left unprotected, and thus could lose in the Rule 5 draft, are left-hander Josh Smoker, right-hander Brad Meyers and outfielder Erik Komatsu.

63 comments:

Anonymous said...

Sounds like the start of a little brouhaha between the Nats FO and the Blue Jays FO. They do have some ex-Nat officio's there.

NatStat said...

So do the Nats put him back on waivers, so they can clear the spot on the 40 man that they had initially intended to do??

Interesting stuff.

Must be hard on Cole, as he tries to recover.

Just sayin' said...

I just hope his friends and loved ones can return all that Blue Jays gear they just bought...

Anonymous said...

So do the Nats put him back on waivers, so they can clear the spot on the 40 man that they had initially intended to do??

A calculated move intended to buy the Nats another roster spot while giving KImball as much time as he needed to recover. They'll keep him on the roster until they can DL before the season starts. That will clear up a spot for someone making the 24 man out of spring training.

Waddu eye no said...

Hope he didn't move yet. Probably didn't start packing yet

Sunderland said...

Makes me wish I had made a decent offer to Jenn for her Kimball shirsey.

Jenn, I hope this makes you ever so happy!


Jenn Jenson said...
Nooooo! Cole is my favorite prospect.

I should never have bought the shirsey. This always happens to me.

November 16, 2011 3:53 PM

Sunderland said...

And look at that picture. You can see how happy cole is about this.

natsfan1a said...

He was so beside himself with joy that he couldn't get his cap on straight.

markfd said...

Per @ Nationals PR

Nationals select the contracts of 1B Tyler Moore, C Derek Norris, OF Eury Perez & C Jhonatan Solano... 40-man roster now at 37 players.


WOW, I did not see the need to add Perez and Solano! What is the logic there?

Anonymous said...

On Solano and Perez, I think that they see a thin market generally for CF types and Catchers. The Nats may very well trade-away a Flores or Bernadina, or at least want the flexibility to have guys left if they want to seriously consider doing something like that. They were really high on Perez last year, no?

I am glad they got Kimball back. He has a decent shot to come back healthy and, when he's healthy, his stuff is killer.

dfh21

Anonymous said...

Solano makes an abundant amount of sense. If they plan on packaging Flores in a deal Solano fits backup catcher to a "tee". He also happens to be a favorite of new bench coach Randy Knorr. How much that might factor into it? Meanwhile, Norris will catch as many games as possible in AAA and hopefully they will find another savvy backstop to manage the club and continue his training. Veteran Maldonado will likely back him up.

Perez comes as more of a surprise to me. But he did steal 45 bases and 60 the year before in Hagerstown. His .318 OBP isn't all that wonderful and he strikes out a lot. He is also not as polished a fielder as Brown and Curran in center.

The Nats must have some means of gauging interest in their players and so the decisions must have been made based on the how much risk they thought might be there for them ...

Anonymous said...

There is a tangible possibility for Tyler Moore to beat Marerro for the backup 1st base slot. Moore has hit 30 homers at two levels two years running. If he goes to Syracuse and repeats that pattern ... but Johnson seems to like Marerro?

I guess we'll see.

Mark'd said...

RULE 5 ELIGIBLE Derek Norris Tyler Mooreosh Smoker Brad Meyersack McGeary Erik Komatsu Steven Souza Patrick McCoyeff Mandel Sandy Leon Chris Curran Stephen King.R. Higleyose Lozada

Solano and Eury Perez weren't on Mark's list. Surprised you protect Eury and not Komatsu.

Exposremains said...

What about Slaten why is he still there?

Mark Zuckerman said...

Yeah, apologies for missing Perez and Solano among the eligible players. I forgot to check on the guys who were signed out of foreign countries, was only looking at those who were drafted.

jeff said...

Perhaps there was some perfidy by Toronto and DC in order to protect CK? I thought he was a top prospect and was puzzled that the Post, MLB.com and others didn't even mention his loss!!??!! Doesn't this impact plans to trade Storen??

Just sayin' said...

O's have signed Matt Antonelli (according to MLBTradeRumors). Not clear if it's to a minor or major league contract (I would assume minor).

Sunderland said...

Exposremain, from a poster named Mark Zuckerman a couple dats ago...

-- For those wondering why Kimball was dropped now but Doug Slaten remains on the 40-man roster, Slaten is an arbitration-eligible player, so there are different rules that apply in his case. Slaten could (and most likely will) be non-tendered before the Dec. 12 deadline.

November 16, 2011 5:46 PM

Exposremains said...

Thanks Sunderland! I missed that..

Unkyd said...

Mark'd said...
RULE 5 ELIGIBLE Derek Norris Tyler Mooreosh Smoker Brad Meyersack McGeary Erik Komatsu Steven Souza Patrick McCoyeff Mandel Sandy Leon Chris Curran Stephen King.R. Higleyose Lozada
------------------

Punctuation. It's not just for breakfast, anymore...

Anonymous said...

This has to mean trades are coming -- this does not leave a lot of wiggle room for free agents without exposing these guys to waivers.

Unkyd said...

Ok....next question: why don't I see Adam
LaRoche on the 40 man? Similar surgery to Kimball, no?

Grandstander said...

LaRoche is on the 40-man. He may not be on whatever you're looking at, as he ended the season on the 60-day DL, but the DL ends with the season so he was placed back on the 40-man at that time.

Jenn Jenson said...

Sunderland,
I would never sell the shirsey!
:)

whatsanattau said...

There are no plans to trade Storen. There are probably offers for Storen to be considered, but there are no plans to trade him. Very few players are untouchable (Cough, Harper, Cough), but the rumors of Storen being shopped are mostly spread by people outside the organization. And even if they did want to trade Storen, the presence of a player recovering from shoulder injury is not going to make him more available.

Wally said...

Apparently Matt Purke tweeted that after the AFL, he had to go to Alabama to do a throwing test.

Curious if true. Pretty famous arm doctor in Alabama.

MicheleS said...

Adding a comment to the new thread:

LOVED seeing RZimm working out today at Nats Park. Stay healthy!! Glad we got to see him with WILSON!

Did Rizzo looked like he was getting choked up when he talked about Wilson being held captive. I know that I did (along with jane, 1a and others)

MicheleS said...

I love that we got Cole back from the Jays - seems like there was a bit of a tiff with Jays on this! Hopefully, the kid will recover and be a good arm for us for years to come

natsfan1a said...

MicheleS, yes, I thought he did seem a bit verklempt.

FS said...

I wonder with all recent changes, how far are we from having substitutes for certain players?

Anyways, great to see Kimball back with us and Ramos in DC. That second dude who was asking about mental health and all needs a check-up.

Section 222 said...

So is there any chance that the Kimball ping pong was a pre-arranged deal between Rizzo and his old pals now in the Rangers F.O.? Are the Nats in any better position having reclaimed Kimball than they would have been if they had just kept him on the 40 man? If not, did the waiver re-claim come before or after the designation of Rule 5 protectees? If before, sounds like the Nats basically decided they'd rather keep Kimball than protect Meyers or Komatsu.

Interesting stuff. There's drama and surprise even in offseason roster moves. What a great game!

whatsanattau said...

My conjecture is that this was exactly what it looked like. Someone in the Blue Jays organization familiar with Kimball wanting to take a chance with him, but then finding someone they liked better. Perhaps/maybe once they claimed him they gained access to the medical records and seeing them decided not to roster him. The Nationals hoped he would slip through and were disappointed when he didn't but grabbed him back when the opportunity arose. Of course, there COULD have been a conspiracy ....

Ztown17 said...

YES! WE GOT COLE BACK!

Anonymous said...

Too bad about Antonelli. He might have been good in the current infield mix. But he wasn't even given a September call-up. He'll likely find more of an opportunity with the O's.

Slidell said...

I think the Jays just tried to slip Cole through at the deadline, hoping no one would take notice.

gonatsgo said...

I just love all the Hot Stove intrigue and shenanigans. I hope Cole recovers - I liked his bull-dog attitude. And yes, seeing Wilson was emotional - I can't even imagine how Rizzo and his teammates felt when they actually saw him in person.

JaneB said...

I'm glad we got Cole back. I remember lots of electricity about Eury Perez last year, so it makes sense that they wouldn't want to lose him.

Is there any indication that there is something wrong with Purke, that they are sending him to Alabama?

Sigh.

I love baseball. I love this team. I'm just sayin'.

Muddy Ruel said...

Anybody have more info re Purke to Alabama?

joemktg said...

FWIW: Buster Olney just tweeted clarification regarding playoff seeding: "For example:If PHI has best record, and Braves/Nats are No. 4-5 seeds, PHI could play winner of ATL/WASH under new format,in all likelihood."

Has no significance, but love the fact that he used the Nats as an example.

Theophilus said...

Rule 5/40-man decisions reveal a lot about the strata of the various Nats farmhands. The fact is very few of the Rule 5 eligibles were bona fide major league prospects on whom any other team would be willing to waste a roster spot for all of 2012. All of the good stuff are not yet Rule 5 eligible. Hence, few real tuff decisions needed to be made.

The real process was probably something like, "Who in your wildest dreams do you think might be claimed and should we stash him on the 40-man until we can trade him?" I think that 'splains the Solano, Perez decisions.

The one choice it doesn't really 'splain is the one between Perez and Leon, unless someone thought it didn't make sense to have five catchers on the 40-man roster. I can't imagine in my wildest dreams that some ML team would waste a spot on a 21-yr old banjo hitter who has never played above high-A. If there was such an outfield-challenged team it would be Washington.

Of those who remain draft-eligible, Leon is the one I think is most likely to be picked. (As I recall, Flores was a high-A catcher when the Nats picked him.)

gonatsgo said...

I count 36 spots at this point, with 20 of them pitchers. Is that enough wiggle room for a pitcher, center fielder and bench players? If not - what do we do then - give players an outright release or trade them? Are those the only choices?

Wally said...

Theo - I agree that Leon seems at risk of being selected, as does Brad Meyers. I also agree that it seems very unlikely that Perez would have been taken, but I am sure that Rizzo, Clark, et al are much more sophisticated at strategizing for this than me, so I am deferring to their expertise.

Re Purke : I posted what I saw from his tweets. He responded to Hank Conger, an Angels catcher that was on his AFL team, that he didn't drive straight home after the AFL because he had to go to Alabama for a throwing test. The speculation on Dr. Andrews was just my own. I am not even sure if the Nats sent him or he went on his own, and whether it was scheduled or because of a problem.

NatStat said...

Brad Meyers looks like a good Rule 5 gamble, for team that is challenged in pitching, e.g. Houston, Oakland, etc.

The FO must be very optimistic about Kimball recovering from his injury to place him ahead of Meyers.

Sunshine_Bobby_Car-enter_Is_Too_Pessimistic_For_Me said...

Would somebody PLEASE select Josh Smoker off waivers? We'll throw in the rights to Nook Logan as well.

Theophilus said...

I think Meyers, right now, is about 6th or 7th on the list of minor league pitching prospects, behind Peacock, Purke, Cole, Myer, Solis, and probably Milone or Rosenbaum -- because those two are believed to be healthy and they can't be sure of that so far as Meyers is concerned.

The rationale may be that the loss of Meyers would be regrettable but he can't be traded for anything worthwhile in his present condition. Perez, on the other hand, could be a useful chip in a deal for an outfielder.

They've conspicuously leaked that Taylor is the CF of the future, and there's also a chance Goodwin could turn into a CF. So why keep Perez? My bet is he goes in a deal before August 1.

Section 222 said...

Sunshine, did you really have to mention Nook Logan and spoil such a beautiful fall day?

Mark, it would be great if once the Rule 5 picks have been made, you could get Rizzo to talk on the record about his strategy, including the Kimball Gambit (a good movie title I would think) over the past few days.

Theophilus said...

Kimball="The Fugitive"?

Sec 3, My Sofa said...

Let's hope he doesn't wind up as the One-Armed Man.

Just Sayin' said...

Sweet news...at least from the perspective of a Phillies hater...

"Under the new CBA, teams that sign the remaining Type A relievers will not be forced to surrender draft picks, a source tells Ken Rosenthal ... The teams that sign those relievers and certain other Type A free agents will not forfeit draft picks but the teams that lose those players will still receive compensatory picks...The measure is not retroactive, however, meaning that the Phillies will still surrender their first-round pick for signing Jonathan Papelbon." (from MLBTradeRumors.com)

Anonymous said...

Peacock, Purke, Cole, Myer, Solis, and Robbie Ray who is **left-handed**?

Sans the injuries Bradley Meyers is a better version of Tommy Milone in that he has far more velocity on his fastball. Meyers is the better pitcher when he is healthy but his injuries have set his development back. In spite of them he still managed to pitched extremely well in AAA this past season. The real difference? Think about it for a moment:

Left handed pitching prospects:
Milone, Solis, Purke, Ray, Rosenbaum, and Smoker Highly coveted by Rizzo (and the Yankees).

Right handed pitching prospects:
Peacock, Meyers, Meyer (Could end up as a reliever not a starter.)

Meyers is likely ranked ahead of Meyer and Kimball in the mind of the Nats FO. Its a calculated risk, they assume that a team won't risk picking Meyers in the rule 5 because of his injury history. They would have to keep him on their roster the entire year or offer him back to the Nats.

Perhaps from the Nats perspective Meyers may be blocked next year, he looks almost ready. But he is right handed and they do have Peacock ahead of him right now. If another team takes him and starts him in their rotation ... but can't keep him the entire year the Nats could get a better player in return one with major league experience. Seems like a good risk.

As far as Kimball in case you didn't notice the Jays forced their hand ... The Nats now must keep Kimball on the 40-man. Not sure why the Jays would do that to the Nats ... certainly the Nats aren't going to take their move kindly ... I wouldn't.

Anonymous said...

Would somebody PLEASE select Josh Smoker off waivers?

Fairly effective left-handed reliever, still young with a mid nineties fastball? Working on control problems but making progress?

You're joking right?

Anonymous said...

Peacock, Meyers, Meyer (Could end up as a reliever not a starter.)

Craig Stammen is a 'tweener' ... not sure where he should be placed? Starter or reliever? He is already on the 40-man, don't think he is still a 'prospect'?

Anonymous said...

I count 36 spots at this point, with 20 of them pitchers.

37 and you're forgetting the non-tender candidates:

Doug Slaten.
Tom Gorzelanny.
Jesus Flores.

Have to assume that Jesus Flores ends up in a trade sooner rather than later given Rizzo's confident stance relative to trading for that mysterious CF he covets (I read BJ Upton but prefer Peter Borjous ... now way the Angels do that though ... ). Perhaps Lannan and/or Gorzelanny go the same route? My take is its Lannan perhaps to the Yankees.

That leaves Slaten who could free up another spot if non-tendered.

Anonymous said...

Of those who remain draft-eligible, Leon is the one I think is most likely to be picked. (As I recall, Flores was a high-A catcher when the Nats picked him.)

The difference between them? Flores was an offensive catcher ... with good enough defense. Leon is a defensive catcher with offense still developing mostly because he is attempting the platoon-bat. As we've seen (Danny Espinosa or even Matt Weiters?) developing switch-hitting is a non-trivial exercise even for the best athletes. Can Leon do it? Does a major league team want to take that risk against major league pitching?

Theophilus said...

Stammen will be the No. 5 starter for the Royals, Padres, Angels, Mariners, Orioles, Indians, Pirates -- some such team.

Section 222 said...

Stammen may able to start somewhere, but he's a reliever for us, at best. Too bad he wasn't traded several years ago when his stock was higher. He's got a shot at the long relief role in next year's pen though.

Anonymous said...

Although its generally pitchers and catchers who are selected in the December Rule 5 draft; one famous example rule 5 draftee is the Nat's Jayson Werth. Something to consider relative to protecting Eury Perez perhaps?

Scooter said...

Some folks were wondering why anyone would draft Eury Perez. Here's my guess: the team drafting him would most likely use him as a pinch runner for a year, with maybe some pinch defending, then send him back to the minors. In other words, he's got a skill set that's useful for a 25th man and can therefore be "stashed." Just a quick thought.

Sec 3, My Sofa said...

Lots of the draftees are pitchers, but catchers are more unusual, or at least more proportional to the number of catchers overall, at least in the MLB phase of the draft. Many years no catchers were taken; 2006, when the Nats picked up Jesus Flores, was an anomaly, with 3.

wikipedia list of results

Anonymous said...

This year everyone is desperate for a shortstop ... starting with Tampa Bay, and even Atlanta ... San Fran ...

And here the Nats are with Espinosa, Desmond, Lombardozzi, major league ready and Jeff Kobernus coming up from high A with 53 SB's but only a .318 OBP. Then there's Rick Hague. Plus newcomer Zach Walters in the wait-and-see category. The O's sign Syracuse IF Matt Antonelli to a major league contract ...

I guess that's why Rizzo wanted pitching and shortstops. At shortstop does he deal from more strength than the depth of #4/#5 pitchers that have accumulated?

whatsanattau said...

Random responses to posts now old ...

- Smoker is still an asset - not sure why anyone would root for his departure. He does our Minor League system no harm and still has time to develop as a lefthanded reliever. He's still young too.

- There are several reasons to protect a player like Perez including age. Since he came into the organization young he still has time to develop. Teams selecting Rule 5 candidates usually look for younger players who have not already reached their ceiling. Also, the Nationals may want to keep him in the organization for a couple more years and realize he is at risk. Perhaps some other organizations have asked about him in the recent past.

- There is a wide spread presumption that Flores will be traded this winter, but the Nats would still be selling low. I think it is more likely they keep him another half year at least. It seems unlikely another organization would trade for him now expecting him to be their starter this year.

Joe Seamhead said...

I just saw that Philly signed Ty Wigginton as a utility player. Another aging player to a team that is getting old fast. I'm really starting to think that maybe they are going to get Reyes and let Jimmy Rollins walk.

Tcostant said...

The fact that they reclaimed him and will still use a 40 man roster spot on Kimball, proves what I was saying all along. That Rizzo blew it to expose him, sometimes it's better to be lucky than good.

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