Texas Rangers Wiretap
Kevin Millwood and the Texas Rangers have reached a preliminary agreement on a four-year contract worth nearly $48 million, according to a person familiar with the negotiations, ESPN's Peter Gammons reported Monday night.
Gammons reported that the deal includes a Rangers team option for a fifth year. If the contract goes five years, it would then be worth $60 million. Texas can void the fifth year of the deal if Millwood doesn't pitch a certain number of innings in earlier years of the contract.
Millwood is expected to undergo a physical Tuesday, and the deal likely will be finalized Wednesday.
Details of the deal were disclosed by two people familiar with negotiations who spoke on condition of anonymity because the contract had not been finalized. Millwood's decision to accept Texas' offer was first reported by the Fort Worth Star-Telegram on its Web site.
The Sox, according to an industry source, have expressed significant interest in free agent pitcher Kevin Millwood, the American League's ERA leader in 2005, who had a 9-11 record with a 2.86 ERA. There were indications last night the Red Sox were trying to arrange a visit for Millwood, though CEO Larry Lucchino is in San Diego for the holiday and principal owner John W. Henry was said to be visiting relatives.
At the moment, Boston's most serious competition would appear to be the Texas Rangers, who yesterday made an offer for the righthanded Millwood, who turns 31 tomorrow. Millwood's agent, Scott Boras, is seeking a five-year deal for Millwood, who last season was paid $7 million by the Indians.
The Texas Rangers have helped address their pitching woes by reaching agreement to acquire San Diego Padres right-handed pitchers Adam Eaton and Akinori Otsuka and minor league prospect Billy Killian in exchange for right-handed pitcher Chris Young, first baseman Adrian Gonzalez and outfielder Terrmel Sledge, ESPN.com's Jerry Crasnick has confirmed.
The Rangers and Padres had been discussing a deal for Eaton for several weeks, but Texas was reluctant to part with young catcher Gerald Laird, The Dallas Morning News reported.
Free-agent right-hander Kevin Millwood, whose 2.86 ERA for Cleveland this year led the AL, and his agent, Scott Boras, met with Rangers officials in Texas on Tuesday. Millwood rejected a salary arbitration offer from the Indians on Monday night, but could still re-sign with Cleveland through Jan. 8.
While officials from both clubs said that the trade will be finalized after the players involved pass physicals, the process could be delayed slightly because Otsuka is currently in Japan.
The main motivation for the Padres to deal Eaton was because they were far apart in negotiations on a new multi-year contract, and Eaton will enter the final year of his current deal in '06, Crasnick reports.
Spurned in their pursuit of Matt Morris and Josh Beckett, the Texas Rangers got former All-Star right-hander Vicente Padilla from the Phillies on Monday for a player to be named.
The deal was pending Padilla passing a physical, according to two baseball officials who spoke on condition of anonymity because the trade had not been finalized.
Padilla was 9-12 with a 4.71 ERA in 27 starts last season in Philadelphia. He was traded July 26, 2000, from Arizona to the Phillies along with three other players for pitcher Curt Schilling. Padilla made $3.2 million last year, and is eligible for salary arbitration.
Padilla was an All-Star in 2002, when he was 14-11 with a 3.28 ERA, and he followed that by going 14-12 with a 3.62 ERA in 2003. He is just 16-19 over the last two seasons.
If the Nationals acquired Alfonso Soriano to move him to the outfield, as has been speculated, they might be in for a rude awakening.
In an interview with the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Soriano reiterated a position he maintained while with the Rangers: He's not moving from second base.
"I have the same position [on moving] as I always had when I was with Texas," Soriano told the newspaper. "I said that I'm not going to change from second base."
Although he said he hasn't spoken with anyone from the Nationals, Soriano told the Star-Telegram that he believes the club traded for him to play second base.
"I think that if they traded for me, it's to play second base," he told the newspaper.
However, Washington already has a past All-Star at second base in Jose Vidro, though he was hampered by leg problems last season that limited him to 87 games.
Soriano has been reluctant in the past to switch positions. When he was acquired by Texas in the February 2004 trade that sent AL MVP Alex Rodriguez to the New York Yankees, Soriano remained at second base and Michael Young moved to shortstop, where he became an All-Star.
Rangers Dec 2005 Archive