MLB Winter Meetings Day 1 Live: Shin-Soo Choo Talks Reportedly Appear to Be Reaching ‘Critical Stage’

MLB Winter MeetingsTuesday, 10:15 a.m.: Good news, folks. The Day 2 live blog is in business. Be sure to follow all of Tuesday’s winter meetings action at the link below.

We’ll see if the action picks up on Day 2, as Day 1 was relatively quiet in comparison to years past. There were some rumors floating around, but nothing major really happened. In fact, the biggest news from Day 1 might be Roy Halladay’s retirement.

There will certainly be plenty of ongoing dialogue on Day 2 and throughout the rest of the week, however, so you’re still going to want to follow along. Plus, the biggest deals are often ones that you don’t see coming.

Click here for the Day 2 live blog >>

8:40 p.m.: I’ll be stepping away for the evening, but don’t go anywhere. NESN.com’s Nicholas Goss will continue to keep you up to speed.

Also keep in mind that NESN.com will be running a live blog for each day of the MLB winter meetings. So when you finally decide to hit the hay, don’t be shy about coming back Tuesday morning.

If you’re into the whole Twitter thing, feel free to follow me at @TheRickyDoyle. That’s just a suggestion, though, and I won’t be offended if you tell me to kick rocks.

8:32 p.m.: There are 12 teams in on Mark Trumbo, according to CBSSports.com’s Jon Heyman. The Diamondbacks, however, have the pitching that the Angels are seeking.

The D-Backs aren’t interested in dealing Patrick Corbin or Wade Miley, Heyman reports. That leaves Tyler Skaggs as a potential chip, although Bill Shaikin of the Los Angeles Times reports that the Angels aren’t interested in trading Trumbo for Skaggs straight up.

Yahoo! Sports’ Tim Brown reports that the Angels are primarily focused on Skaggs and Trevor Cahill in Trumbo talks.

8:02 p.m.: ESPN’s Buster Olney reports that the Dodgers are in discussions with four teams about possible trades involving Matt Kemp or Andre Ethier.

7:55 p.m.: The Diamondbacks are making some late noise here on Day 1. Ken Rosenthal reports that the D-Backs, who are reportedly making a push for the Angels’ Mark Trumbo, are also in on free-agent outfielder Shin-Soo Choo.

Rosenthal reports that Arizona is active on multiple fronts. He suggests that the club could go after Choo, or trade for Trumbo and sign a free-agent pitcher.

The D-Backs and Rangers aren’t the only ones in on Choo, according to Rosenthal. Other teams are believed to be in the mix as well.

7:53 p.m.: Things are intensifying a bit when it comes to Mark Trumbo.

FOX Sports’ Ken Rosenthal reports that the chances of the Angels trading Trumbo are increasing. The Diamondbacks are reportedly making a push for a deal, although other teams are in the mix with offers that are improving.

7:48 p.m.: All has been quiet on the Shin-Soo Choo front on Day 1 of the winter meetings. Until now.

According to FOX Sports’ Ken Rosenthal, talks regarding Choo appear to be reaching a “critical stage.” The Rangers and at least one other club are reportedly in the mix for the free-agent outfielder.

7:43 p.m.: The Marlins have come up a lot this offseason, and they’re still making some noise — just not on the Mike Morse front.

Miami is looking for a right-handed bat, but is not pursuing Morse at this time, according to MLB.com’s Joe Frisaro.

7:34 p.m.: The Brewers and Mets met Monday to discuss a potential deal involving New York first baseman Ike Davis, according to Newsday’s Marc Carig.

The Brewers are reportedly among at least four teams engaged with the Mets regarding Davis.

6:45 p.m.: The Red Sox might be kicking the tires on another reliever.

According to Gordon Wittenmyer of the Chicago Sun-Times, the Red Sox are among three or four teams with interest in Carlos Marmol. The Brewers reportedly are also in the mix.

Marmol was traded from the Cubs to the Dodgers in July after spending parts of eight seasons with Chicago. The 31-year-old was named an All-Star in 2008 and spent plenty of time serving as the Cubs closer before being shipped to the Dodgers. Marmol recorded a career-high 38 saves in 2010.

Marmol struggled for the most part in 2013, especially while with the Cubs, and finished the season with a 4.41 ERA and 1.63 WHIP in 49 innings over 52 relief appearances.

6:34 p.m.: Those hoping that Matt Kemp lands in Boston might not get their wish.

According to ESPN.com’s Gordon Edes, talks between the Red Sox and Dodgers regarding Kemp have not reached a “serious stage,” and one source told Edes that they’re not going to.

6:28 p.m.: Orioles executive vice president Dan Duquette said that the club is considering pitchers who are currently rehabbing. Roch Kubatko of MASNSports.com suggests that means that Joel Hanrahan and Gavin Floyd could be in play for Baltimore.

6:20 p.m.: Johan Santana didn’t pitch at all in 2013, but there’s still interest in the veteran left-hander.

Jon Heyman reports that the Orioles and Mets are among many teams with interest in Santana, who is currently rehabbing from shoulder surgery. Santana also missed all of 2011 with an injury, so the 34-year-old obviously comes with plenty of uncertainty.

One thing that is certain, however, is that Santana plans to pitch in 2014. ESPN’s Jayson Stark reports that a friend of Santana said that there’s “no chance” of the southpaw following in Roy Halladay’s footsteps and retiring this winter.

Santana went 6-9 with a 4.85 ERA in 21 starts in 2012. He’s hardly the same pitcher who won Cy Young awards in 2004 and 2006, but there’s a chance that he could help a big league rotation when healthy.

6:10 p.m.: Quick side note for Red Sox fans. According to CBSSports.com’s Jon Heyman, Mike Napoli received a limited no-trade clause in his two-year, $32 million deal with Boston.

6:07 p.m.: Add the Orioles to the list of potential suitors for Nelson Cruz.

FOX Sports’ Ken Rosenthal reports that the Orioles met with Cruz’s agents Monday and plan to continue talks regarding the free-agent outfielder. Rosenthal lists the Rangers and Mariners as other strong candidates to land Cruz.

6:03 p.m.: Sometimes, a lot happens at the winter meetings. Other times, the week is more about what didn’t happen.

FOX Sports reports that a potential trade between the Rangers and Blue Jays fell through about two weeks ago. The Rangers were reportedly going to acquire Sergio Santos in the deal before another player failed a physical.

If nothing else, this broken-down trade shows that the Rangers are open to the idea of adding another reliever despite a pretty solid bullpen already in place.

5:54 p.m.: The Yankees, Nationals and Padres are all involved in the lefty relief market to varying degrees, according to FOX Sports’ Jon Morosi.

5:47 p.m.: The Indians might turn to free agency to find a closer.

According to FOX Sports’ Jon Morosi, the Indians have talked with Grant Balfour, who saved 38 games for the A’s in 2013.

Balfour, who turns 36 later this month, also saved 24 games in 2012, and has been a very solid reliever since signing with Oakland prior to the 2011 season.

Balfour has posted a 2.53 ERA and has recorded 64 saves in 202 appearances over the last three seasons with the A’s. The fiery right-hander also enjoyed a strong final season in Tampa Bay in 2010, posting a 2.28 in ERA in 57 appearances.

5:03 p.m.: While the Rangers want Nelson Cruz back, their interest has been on a two-year deal plus an option, according to ESPN’s Buster Olney. Cruz reportedly wants a three-year deal from Texas.

4:55 p.m.: WEEI.com’s Rob Bradford reported earlier in the day Monday that the Red Sox will take a wait-and-see approach while Stephen Drew’s market develops.

The Boston Globe’s Nick Cafardo said on Twitter that Drew has a market, but it’s not as extensive as previously thought. According to Cafardo, the Red Sox feel that they have a good chance to retain the shortstop.

4:49 p.m.: Don’t rule out the continuation of an eight-year relationship.

According to ESPN’s Buster Olney, the Rangers met with a rep for free-agent slugger Nelson Cruz, who has spent the last eight seasons in Texas. The Rangers reportedly want the slugger back.

Cruz served a 50-game suspension this past season for his involvement in the Biogenesis scandal. Hit hit .266 with 27 home runs and 66 RBIs in 109 games while earning his second All-Star selection.

4:38 p.m.: Bartolo Colon’s hilarious career path has led him to free agency this winter, and things appear to be heating up.

Sweeny Murti of WFAN reports that Colon’s agent met with the Mets on Monday, although it’s unlikely that New York will overexert itself financially to add the 40-year-old.

CBSSports.com’s Jon Heyman lists the Orioles, in addition to the Mets, as a possibility for Colon, while noting that a one-year deal could be for a “significant number.” According to Heyman, signing Colon to a one-year pact could cost more than $10 million.

Peter Gammons said that the Mariners and Blue Jays are among the other potential suitors for Colon.

Colon went 18-6 with a 2.65 ERA in 190 1/3 innings over 30 starts with the A’s this past season. The right-hander went 10-9 with a 3.43 ERA in his first season with Oakland in 2012.

Colon, of course, is a three-time All-Star whose career started going downhill after he won the American League Cy Young while with the Angels in 2005. The veteran has bounced back in a big — no pun intended — way, though, and is now apparently in high demand within a relatively weak starting pitching market.

4:31 p.m.: It seems like mostly speculation at this point, but according to FOX Sports’ Ken Rosenthal, the Diamondbacks could jump in on Mark Trumbo.

The Angels are believed to be looking for controllable starting pitching, and the D-Backs might be a match in that regard.

4:26 p.m.: The Orioles have also checked in on Logan Morrison, according to FOX Sports’ Jon Morosi.

The New York Post’s Joel Sherman, meanwhile, reports that the Rays are not close to acquiring Morrison and have never even engaged the Marlins on the slugger.

Morrison will certainly bring upside to whichever team he joins. He hit 23 homers and drove in 72 runs in 123 games in 2011 before seeing a drop-off in production in 2012 and 2013.

4:20 p.m.: The LoMo market is heating up.

ESPN’s Jayson Stark reports that the Marlins are telling teams that they will trade Logan Morrison shortly. It’ll be interesting to see where Morrison lands, though, as a number of clubs have been linked to the 26-year-old first baseman/outfielder.

A report surfaced Monday morning stating that the Pirates were discussing Morrison and Adam Lind. Stark reports that the Rays appear very interested as well, as Tampa Bay will likely need to replace first baseman James Loney, who is currently free agent.

According to CBSSports.com’s Jon Heyman, the Brewers and Blue Jays are also interested in Morrison, which is interesting because Milwaukee was previously said to be making first baseman/outfielder Corey Hart a priority.

4:16 p.m.: The White Sox are rolling the dice on Felipe Paulino.

Paulino tweeted out that he has joined the White Sox, and Colleen Kane of the Chicago Tribune reports that the two sides have agreed to a one-year, $1.75 million contract that also includes a $4 million club option (with a $250,000 buyout) for 2015.

Paulino missed all of the 2013 season after undergoing Tommy John surgery in 2012. The 30-year-old right-hander went 3-1 with a 1.67 ERA in seven starts with the Royals in 2012.

Paulino, who has also spent time in the Astros and Rockies organizations, comes with both uncertainty and upside.

4:11 p.m.: CBSSports.com’s Jon Heyman lists the Dodgers, Rangers and Mariners as the three most serious suitors for David Price.

According to Heyman, those three teams have the interest and the players to get a deal done with the Rays.

4:06 p.m.: Rumors of David Price potentially going to the Dodgers might intensify.

It’s certainly early in the game, but Bruce Levine of WSCR-AM reports that the Rays and Dodgers may be matching up on the left-hander.

It’ll be interesting to see if anything comes together because, on the surface, it looks like Los Angeles might lack the upper-level minor league talent to pull off such a deal.

3:56 p.m.: The Twins are making a push for Bronson Arroyo, according to FOX Sports’ Ken Rosenthal. Talks are reportedly gaining momentum.

The Twins have already added Ricky Nolasco and Phil Hughes to their rotation this offseason, so adding Arroyo would further revamp Minnesota’s starting five.

3:50 p.m.: The Indians have signed first baseman David Cooper to a major league contract.

Cooper, who was the Blue Jays’ 17th overall selection in the 2008 draft, came back from a career-threatening back injury in 2013. He hit .314 in 55 plate appearances split between Cleveland’s Rookie League affiliate and Triple-A affiliate.

2:53 p.m.: Matt Kemp is in a unique situation. The Dodgers are believed to be listening to offers on their outfielders — besides Yasiel Puig — and Kemp has been at the heart of the speculation.

Kemp’s agent, Dave Stewart, even thinks that his client will get dealt at some point this offseason.

“I’d be surprised if it doesn’t happen,” Stewart told Dylan Hernandez of the Los Angeles Times.

“I haven’t heard a player’s name floated around like that and something not happen,” Stewart reportedly added.

Kemp is coming off an injury-plagued season in which he was limited to 73 games. He was also limited to 106 games in 2012, one season after finishing second in NL MVP voting. There would certainly be some risk in acquiring the 29-year-old center fielder, but he absolutely brings plenty of talent to the table when healthy.

2:36 p.m.: Corey Hart didn’t play at all in 2013 and has had surgery on both of his knees. He’s somewhat of a buy-low option, though, and could ultimately be a worthwhile gamble for a team looking for a first baseman.

A few potential Hart suitors have come off the board recently, as the Red Sox and Rockies signed Mike Napoli and Justin Morneau, respectively. Now, it sounds like there’s a chance that Hart could return to the place he has called home for his entire nine-year major league career.

Hart’s agent, Jeff Berry, told Tom Haudricourt of the Journal Sentinel that the Brewers are making his client a priority. Milwaukee drafted Hart in the 11th round of the 2000 draft.

While Hart comes with a great deal of uncertainty given his health status, the 31-year-old has tremendous power, which should be considered an asset within a free-agent market that lacks pop. The two-time All-Star smacked 30 home runs in 2012, and has hit at least 20 homers in five seasons.

Berry reportedly noted that Hart has also drawn interest from other teams.

2:04 p.m.: As it stands, the Rangers will have Elvis Andrus at shortstop and Jurickson Profar at second base in 2014. Things could change before Opening Day, however.

According to FOX Sports’ Ken Rosenthal, the Rangers are willing to move Andrus, even in the wake of trading second baseman Ian Kinsler in exchange for first baseman Prince Fielder. Texas reportedly would need a big return to part ways with Andrus, though.

Rosenthal also reports that trading away Profar is viewed as a “longshot” within the Rangers organization. Texas reportedly hasn’t discussed the 20-year-old with other teams since the Fielder/Kinsler swap.

1:55 p.m.: Domonic Brown enjoyed a breakout campaign in 2013. It sounds like the Phillies are looking to sell high.

The Phillies are “actively shopping” Brown, according to Yahoo! Sports’ Jeff Passan. Philadelphia is reportedly looking for controllable starting pitching in return for the 26-year-old outfielder.

Brown hit .272 with 27 homers and 83 RBIs in 139 games this past season.

1:44 p.m.: Mark Trumbo’s name is still getting kicked around.

According to FOX Sports’ Ken Rosenthal, Trumbo is “in play” as the Angels discuss trades with other teams. Los Angeles apparently recognizes that the 27-year-old slugger is its best trade chip.

Trumbo, who turns 28 in January, produced 34 home runs and 100 RBIs in 2013, marking his second straight 30-homer campaign. Trumbo hit 29 and 32 long balls in 2011 and 2012, respectively, helping to make up for his low on-base percentages. The first baseman/outfielder’s career average sits at .250 and his career on-base percentage is an underwhelming .299.

Trumbo is arbitration-eligible for the first time this offseason, and he figures to garner somewhere in the range of $4.7 million for 2014, according to MLB Trade Rumors.

1:32 p.m.: The Dodgers already have the best left-hander in baseball in their rotation. But hey, you can never have enough lefty aces, right?

Dylan Hernandez of the Los Angeles Times reports that the Dodgers have made the Rays aware of their interest in David Price.

According to Hernandez, the Dodgers don’t plan to aggressively pursue Price, but they told the Rays to keep them in mind if Tampa decides to deal the 2012 Cy Young winner.

1:23 p.m.: The news surrounding the White Sox has been interesting.

Chicago is in rebuilding mode — or so it seems after a dismal 2013 season — and is open to discussing trades for Chris Sale, Jose Quintana and Hector Santiago. However, the White Sox have also expressed interest in Chase Headley, according to Daryl Van Schouwen of the Chicago Sun-Times, which is somewhat surprising considering the Padres third baseman is slated to become a free agent next winter.

Morosi reports that the White Sox are more willing to trade Santiago than Sale or Quintana. In fact, while the White Sox might listen to offers for Sale, general manager Rick Hahn told Dan Hayes of CSN Chicago that he would need an “unfathomable return” to move the big lefty.

Sale has been tremendous over the last two seasons. He went 17-8 with a 3.05 ERA in 2012, and then went 11-14 with a 3.07 ERA in 2013. The southpaw finished sixth and fifth in AL Cy Young voting over the last two years.

Morosi suggests that Hahn could demand far more in prospects for Sale than Rays GM Andrew Friedman can for David Price. Sale has been perhaps the best left-hander in baseball besides Clayton Kershaw over the past two seasons, and the 24-year-old is under team control for the next six years at just over $55 million.

1:05 p.m.: More Pirates news!

As mentioned earlier in this blog, the Bucs are reportedly meeting with Bronson Arroyo’s agent at this week’s meetings. Pittsburgh is also still looking for a first baseman, and a couple of names are beginning to surface on the trade market.

According to FOX Sports’ Jon Morosi, the Pirates are discussing Logan Morrison and Adam Lind amid their first base conversations.

James Loney is another name that’s been tossed around in conjunction with the Pirates, although Morosi notes that Pittsburgh is currently exploring potential trades, perhaps due to Loney’s reported three-year, $30 million asking price on the open market.

12:22 p.m.: Mike Carp was a very valuable bench player for the Red Sox in 2013, and other teams might even view him as a starter.

According to WEEI.com’s Rob Bradford, there appears to be growing interest in Carp, who is slated to once again play a backup role with the Red Sox next season.

Carp, who is arbitration-eligible for the first time this winter, hit .296 with nine homers and 43 RBIs in 86 games in 2013. The 27-year-old posted an impressive .885 OPS.

Bradford says that the Rays, Orioles, Pirates and Brewers could all use a player like Carp.

12:14 p.m.: While the Red Sox would love to bring back Stephen Drew, WEEI.com’s Alex Speier reports that doing so while remaining under the luxury tax threshold might require that Boston “get creative.”

Speier suggests that the Red Sox might need to consider moving some of the salaries currently on their payroll if they want to re-sign Drew. One possibility would be for the Sox to look to deal Jake Peavy (who counts for $16.5 million against the luxury tax threshold) or Ryan Dempster (who accounts for $13.25).

12:06 p.m.: Stephen Drew is the only one of the Red Sox’ four major free agents this offseason who remains unsigned. Mike Napoli re-signed with the Red Sox, and Jacoby Ellsbury and Jarrod Saltalamacchia signed with the Yankees and Marlins, respectively.

Boston would certainly like to bring back Drew for 2014, although it’s possible that the shortstop could wind up with a multiyear offer to play elsewhere. As such, the Red Sox are in wait-and-see mode right now.

According to WEEI.com’s Rob Bradford, the Red Sox are planning to wait out to see what type of market develops for Drew before handing over a definitive offer.

Drew is coming off a solid season in Boston, and the 30-year-old would be an upgrade at shortstop for many teams. However, whichever team (besides the Red Sox) signs Drew will need to relinquish a draft pick because of the qualifying offer that Boston extended to the shortstop at the beginning of free agency. It’s possible that draft-pick attachment is hurting Drew’s overall market.

11:55 a.m.: I’d be remiss if I didn’t point out that the Baseball Hall of Fame has three new additions.

Bobby Cox, Joe Torre and Tony La Russa — each of whom had a ton of managerial success — were unanimously elected to The Hall by the 16-man Major League Baseball Hall of Fame Expansion Era committee.

11:46 a.m.: The Pirates aren’t the only ones meeting with Bronson Arroyo’s agent this week.

Darren Wolfson of 1500 ESPN reports that the Twins will meet with Arroyo’s agent, Terry Bross, on Monday.

Bross has received calls from 15 teams about Arroyo, but hasn’t received a formal offer to this point, according to The Boston Globe’s Nick Cafardo.

11:36 a.m.: It’ll be interesting to see what the Pirates have lined up for an encore after their first winning season and postseason appearance since 1992.

In all likelihood, we probably won’t see anything major from the Pirates, mainly because the club doesn’t have the financial means to make a huge splash. Pittsburgh’s biggest move could be re-signing A.J. Burnett, although some additional moves are certainly possible.

One name that the Pirates has been linked to is Bronson Arroyo. Arroyo has spent the last eight seasons in Cincinnati after spending the previous three years in Boston. The 36-year-old was actually drafted by the Pirates in the third round of the 1995 draft and appeared in 53 big league games with the Bucs before the Red Sox claimed him off waivers in 2003.

The Pirates plan to meet with Arroyo’s agent, Terry Bross, at this week’s winter meetings, according to ESPN’s Buster Olney. Arroyo would give the Pirates some veteran insurance in case Burnett doesn’t pitch next season.

Arroyo went 14-12 with a 3.79 ERA in 32 starts with the Reds in 2013. It’s actually entirely possible that his performance could put him out of the Pirates’ price range at the end of the day.

11:10 a.m.: The biggest news of the winter meeting’s first day thus far isn’t a signing or a trade. Rather, it’s a retirement.

According to CBSSports.com’s Jon Heyman, Roy Halladay is retiring after 16 seasons in the majors. The 36-year-old is reportedly signing a one-day contract with the Blue Jays — the team he spent 12 seasons with before finishing his career with the Phillies — so that he can retire as a member of the organization.

Halladay went 4-5 with a 6.82 ERA during an injury-plagued 2013 season in which he was limited to 13 starts. A retirement seemed entirely possible, although it’s a shame, as Halladay was one of the best pitchers in baseball for pretty much an entire decade.

Halladay, an eight-time All-Star, won two Cy Young awards. He also finished as a Cy Young runner-up twice and finished in the top five a total of seven times overall. The right-hander, who had three 20-win seasons and five seasons of 19 wins or more, hangs it up with a career record of 203-105 and an ERA of 3.38.

10:45 a.m. ET: If the MLB offseason to date is any indication of what the winter meetings have in store, expect a whole bunch of activity over the next four days.

It’s already been a wild offseason across the league, with the most significant action occurring last week. Robinson Cano, Jacoby Ellsbury, Carlos Beltran, Curtis Granderson and Mike Napoli all came off the board, leaving teams with a somewhat depleted free-agent market as the winter meetings kick off in Orlando, Fla., on Monday.

But while free agency’s biggest fish have already been reeled in, there are still a number of players out there capable of making an impact in 2014. Shin-Soo Choo is arguably the biggest name available, while Nelson Cruz, Stephen Drew, Omar Infante, Ubaldo Jimenez and Ervin Santana represent other intriguing free-agent options.

Free agency isn’t the only thing worth monitoring this week, however. The Rays are believed to be listening to offers for David Price, the Phillies are reportedly shopping Jonathan Papelbon and the Dodgers reportedly are willing to trade one of their talented outfielders. Oh yeah, there could also be plenty of drama surrounding the Masahiro Tanaka situation. Perhaps those and/or other major deals will be consummated over the next four days.

NESN.com will have you covered every step of the way throughout this week’s winter meetings. The MLB offseason moves quickly, so you’re going to want to check back with the live blog early and often.

Photo via Twitter/@craigcalcaterra