With Jose Reyes now off the market, the next free agent position player who could logically be a fit for the Tigers is third baseman Aramis Ramirez. So far, however, there’s nothing going on between the two.
Look for the Tigers and Ramirez’s representatives to touch base here at the Winter Meetings, but they haven’t had any contact since their earlier talks last month. That indicates the Tigers are not one of the four or five teams who are seriously involved with him.
Jon Paul Morosi of FOXSports.com tweeted late Sunday that there was “nothing serious” going on with the Tigers and Ramirez. It looks now like there’s not much at all, though things change quickly sometimes during the Winter Meetings.
Enrique Rojas of ESPNDeportes talked with reliever Octavio Dotel, who confirmed interest from the Tigers, as well as the Cardinals, Brewers and Mets. Dotel apparently told Rojas he’s interested in returning to the Cards, whom he said have offered him a one-year contract. He would like a two-year offer.
Dotel is 38 years old. A two-year offer could be an interesting risk for a team. For the Tigers, it could be increasingly so, given that Jose Valverde will be a free agent next winter and Joaquin Benoit will be going into his contract year at that point. What the Tigers bullpen looks like then could be interesting.
Keep in mind, too, that Joel Zumaya is still out there. He’s going to throw for scouts Dec. 14, and his agents believe they can get as many as 20 teams watching him.
In case you missed it, I wrote an article for the site today about Joel Zumaya and the decision he faces as a first-time free agent after five injury-shortened seasons: Stick with the only team he’s known and the team that knows his medical history, or get a fresh start somewhere else where his injury history won’t be such an overriding theme. As the story shows, it’s not an easy choice for him.
At this point, Zumaya is looking around to see what’s out there. He’s going to throw a bullpen session for teams on or around Dec. 14 in Houston, where his agents are based. About 10 teams have expressed some interest in taking a look, he said, including the Red Sox, who expressed interest soon after he became a free agent a month ago.
The Tigers may or may not have somebody there, but they already know his history and his rehab from this fall. One 30-pitch session isn’t going to give them anything they don’t already know.