MLB Winter Meetings Day 2 Live Blog: Marlins May Be Emerging as Favorites for Albert Pujols

MLB Winter Meetings Day 2 Live Blog: Marlins May Be Emerging as Favorites for Albert Pujols

12:58 a.m.: Anyone still up? Well, they’re wide awak in Dallas, and it’s starting to sound like Albert Pujols may be on his way to Miami.

Joe Capozzi, who covers the Marlins for The Palm-Beach Post, just tweeted that his sources tell him the Fish are “very confident” Pujols will sign with them.

Minutes later, Jon Heyman tweeted this:

“Nothing decided yet but a good number of executives still seem to think marlins will win pujols derby.”

10:59 p.m.: Looks like we’ve found our third team in the Pujols sweepstakes.

Ken Rosenthal just tweeted that the Angels are in on the all-world first baseman. The Angels are seemingly in on everyone every season, and seemingly every season they lose out on every one.

This would be an interesting way of putting an end to that.

9:34 p.m.: USA Today’s Bob Nightengale reports that there is now a third team — a mystery team — involved in the Albert Pujols sweepstakes.

Nightengale reports that not only is there a third team, but all three teams — St. Louis, Miami and mystery team — are offering 10-year deals worth more than $200 million.

The Cubs have also reportedly made an offer, but it’s not expected to be of the 10-year variety.

8:07 p.m.: We’ve got some conflicting reports on the status of David Ortiz and arbitration.

ESPNDeportes first reported that the slugger intended to accept arbitration, a move that probably would have netted him a one-year deal worth roughly $14 million.

However, various reports have come out refuting that, or at least questioning how concrete Ortiz’s notion to accept is.

For instance, the Boston Herald’s Mike Silverman confirmed the report via Twitter only to follow that up with another tweet roughly 20 minutes later stating, “The plan right now is for Ortiz to accept arbitration. He has not yet. A multi-year deal with [Red Sox] appears unlikely.”

So, what we know is this: It’s pretty likely that Ortiz will be with the Red Sox in 2012. It’s also pretty unlikely that he’ll be doing so as part of a multiyear deal.

Stay tuned.

6:29 p.m.: The Daily News’ Andy Martino is reporting that Albert Pujols’ offer from the Marlins is believed to be in the neighborhood of 10 years and $220 million.

Also, Miami is pushing for this to be resolved Tuesday night. That makes sense considering the Fish have been in on just about everyone, and if Pujols doesn’t sign with them, they’ll look to spend those resources elsewhere.

USA Today’s Bob Nightengale also tweeted that the Cardinals have made a new offer to Pujols.

6:29 p.m.: The White Sox want a “Ubaldo Jimenez” package in exchange for starter John Danks, at least according to ESPN’s Buster Olney.

Yeah, good luck with that.

6:05 p.m.: The Mets want a closer. That is pretty evident.

SI’s Jon Heyman tweets that the Mets have met with the agent for Brad Lidge and Jon Rauch. They also like Andrew Bailey and Frank Francisco. They even sound open to reaching out to Francisco Rodriguez for a reunion.

No word on whether they’ve spoken to Rick Aguilera or Robb Nen yet, though.

5:54 p.m.: ESPN’s Jim Bowden, a solid Twitter follow by the way, just tweeted a text he got from Scott Boras about Boras’ client, Prince Fielder.

“we have many suitors & the coffee isn’t even hot yet,” the text read, according to Bowden.

Makes sense. Aside from Pujols, Fielder is probably the best offensive player on the market. But with that in mind, as well as the fact that Fielder is a first baseman, we’ll likely have to wait until Pujols signs before the Fielder market really kicks in.

Oh, and “the coffee isn’t even hot yet?” That sounds exactly like something Scott Boras would say.

5:34 p.m.: Those pesky Marlins, they just won’t go away.

Ken Rosenthal recently tweeted that Miami is still in on C.J. Wilson. That must mean that they’ve cooled on their chances of signing Albert Pujols? Not so fast.

“Loria pushing Marlins’ interest in Wilson, not ruling out signing Wilson AND Pujols,” Rosenthal tweeted about an hour ago.

 

5:17 p.m.: Teams looking for starting pitching help without having to spend an arm and a leg (Red Sox?), may have an option in St. Louis’ Kyle Lohse.

The Cardinals are reportedly willing to deal both Lohse and Jake Westbrook.

So there’s that.

4:53 p.m.: Is it time to start the Hanley Ramirez rumor mill up again?

ESPNDeportes.com is reporting that the Marlins shortstop does not want to change positions, as has been speculated after Miami signed shortstop Jose Reyes earleir this week.

One would think, that with the full-court press that the Marlins have put on seemingly every big-name free agent, they’d have to at least entertain the idea of trading Ramirez, especially if he’s not going to be happy. Ramirez still has three years left on his contract, and he’s owed just north of $15 million per season over that time.

4:14 p.m.: Sorry folks, Adam Jones is not available, says Morosi.

4:09 p.m.: It sounds like the Mets are aboard the Mark Buehrle boat.

According to Heyman, they have the money and interest in the hurler.

Speaking of the Mets, Joel Sherman says they’ll send someone out to see reliever Joel Zumaya.

3:19 p.m.:
If a team did indeed offer C.J. Wilson a six-year deal, it was not the Angels, according to Jon Heyman.

The Angels “Want to keep Jered Weaver as highest-paid pitcher,” Heyman said.

2:35 p.m.: This obviously ventures into super speculation land, but Jon Paul Morosi said the Marlins people “looked rather smiley” as they gear up for critical points in the Albert Pujols quest.

Maybe they’re close to landing Pujols, or maybe they just had a great lunch. Hard to tell at this point in time.

2:14 p.m.: Adding on to the earlier David Ortiz nugget, Jon Heyman chimes in, saying an MLB executive guessed that Ortiz would make $14 million if he accepted arbitration. He also notes that the Red Sox have offered a two-year deal (we assume for less than $14 million per), so it’d be a “shocker” if Ortiz doesn’t end up back with the Red Sox.

1:42 p.m.: Here’s a fun one — Gordon Edes of ESPN reports, via a Red Sox source, that the team expects the DH to return to Boston, “one way or another.”

How exactly that gets done is yet to be determined, but it won’t matter to most fans who fear seeing Ortiz don another team’s jersey.

12:58 p.m.: We’ve got another trade, as the White Sox have acquired Nestor Molina from Toronto in exchange for Sergio Santos.

Molina, 22, had a combined 2.21 ERA in high-A and Double-A last year.

12:40 p.m.: A 10-year deal isn’t enough for Albert Pujols, who reportedly asked for five years of no-trade protection before his 5/10 rights would kick in.

Ken Rosenthal reports that the Marlins aren’t willing to go that far but that the two sides could work out a compromise.

12:25 p.m.: The Yankees aren’t going to be able to land Gio Gonzalez in a trade using their own players, according to Joel Sherman.

“[Oakland] wants [high-end] young OFs and NYY has none at Double-A or higher,” Sherman reported.

11:59 a.m.: Ken Rosenthal is chiming back in, saying the Cubs don’t want to sign Prince Fielder to a long contract of eight or nine years.

The concerns of Fielder’s weight and ability to stay completely healthy would appear to be behind that thought, of course.

11:37 a.m.: Ken Rosenthal has confirmed the report that the Marlins offered Pujols a 10-year contract, adding the wrinkle that Pujols wants no-trade protection for the first five years. After that, he’d have 10/5 rights that would allow him to veto any trade anyway.

It must be nice getting to make such demands after a team offers you a lifetime of riches to play baseball.

11:08 a.m.: Whoa.

The Marlins have offered Albert Pujols a 10-year contract, according to ESPN’s Buster Olney.

It looks like they may not be concerned with Pujols’ age. Some quick math, if the deal is worth $25 million to $30 million per year, means that deal would be for somewhere in the $250 million to $300 million range.

All of this from a franchise known for spending less on its entire roster than the Yankees spend on Alex Rodriguez. Pretty shocking stuff.

10:55 a.m.: We’ve got movement, with Jon Heyman reporting Kevin Slowey has been traded to the Rockies.

The Twins will receive a player to be named later or cash.

Slowey, 27, went 0-8 with a 6.67 ERA last year, but owns career marks of 39-29 and 4.66.

10:24 a.m.: From a Red Sox perspective, Jed Lowrie and Mike Aviles are getting a lot of interest, according to CSNNE’s Sean McAdam.

It’s interesting because neither would be seen as vital to the operation of the Red Sox, though the team certainly has invested a lot of time and hope in Lowrie, and would probably be disappointed to cut ties with the switch-hitting infielder without seeing what he can do while fully healthy for a full season.

McAdam noted that the team wouldn’t trade both players.

9:40 a.m.: Outside of Buzz Bissinger sharing a few profanity-laced feelings about Jimmy Rollins and Chase Utley, there’s not too much to report on yet.

Jon Heyman did comment that Cubs manager Dale Svuem “loves” Prince Fielder, but, well, why wouldn’t he?

The interesting question there, with Pujols meeting with Miami and with the Cardinals still making efforts to retain their franchise player, is whether the Cubs would be willing to sign Fielder while Pujols is still on the open market. There are pros and cons, with the most obvious pro being that Fielder is younger and the most obvious con being that Pujols may one day retire as the best right-handed hitter of all time.

Tough call for Theo Epstein and Jed Hoyer.

9:24 a.m.: ESPN’s Buster Olney comes through with the line of the winter meetings, saying Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria “has become something like a teenager with a credit card.”

It seems about right, considering the Marlins splurged on Heath Bell and Jose Reyes, and they seem serious about this pursuit of Albert Pujols.

8:30 a.m.: It’s quiet thus far in the day, but it’s still very, very early.

7 a.m. ET: The first day of the MLB winter meetings came and went without too much activity, especially in terms of big names. Will the hot stove heat up during the meetings’ second day?

All of the marquee names are still on the table, and there are plenty of questions to be answered. Does C.J. Wilson really have a six-year deal from someone, and if he does, why hasn’t he signed it? Are the Miami Marlins really a legitimate threat to sign Albert Pujols? Will David Ortiz re-sign with the Red Sox before Wednesday’s arbitration deadline? Does Theo Epstein have anything up his sleeves with the Cubs?

There are still a ton of questions to be answered, and plenty of dominoes left to fall. Once that happens and those big names start to set the market, expect things to get real hectic.

Perhaps Tuesday will be the day that really gets the ball rolling. Be sure to follow along with NESN.com’s live blog of all the action, and keep up with the latest developments in Dallas as they unfold.

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