– Marc Topkin of the St. Petersburg Times is now hearing that the Angels’ deal for Rays LHP Scott Kazmir won’t be announced until late Friday night. It’s not clear what the hold-up is. The Halos are shipping youngsters Alexander Torres, Matthew Sweeney and a PTBNL to Tampa Bay for the 25-year-old Kazmir. Anaheim is on the hook for the remaining $6M of his contract this season, $8M next season, $12M in 2011, and possibly a $13.5M club option with a $2.5M buyout in 2013.
– According to MLB.com, a potential deal involving Rays LHP Scott Kazmir heading to the Angels for two prospects has died. There are still multiple reporters saying this is all but a done deal. Kazmir was notified of the trade by reporters and thought they were kidding. He was seen moving around the clubhouse on the phone, while the pre-game press conference has been pushed back. Stay tuned for updates.
– The Yankees are interested in RHP Brad Penny. If they sign him, the Yanks will be on the hook for only $100K. Strange how much the Yankees are loving Penny right now, considering that they battered him for eight runs and 10 hits in less than five innings of work last week. In any event, Penny reportedly promised the BoSox that he wouldn’t sign with an AL contender, so keep an eye on the situation.
– According to ESPN, the Giants have put a waiver claim on Brewers RHP Trevor Hoffman. The Brewers are going to demand a lot for the all-time saves leader, making a deal pretty unlikely. The deadline is set for Monday.
– Red Sox C Victor Martinez told reporters Thursday evening that he is open to signing a contract extension with the Red Sox. “Definitely. Who wouldn’t want to play here in Boston? It’s up to them, but from my side, I would want to stay here.” He has a club option for 2010 that could be picked up as part of the new agreement. Martinez, 30, is batting .313/.385/.521 since joining the Red Sox.
– The Cardinals are close to signing RHP Ryan Franklin to a contract extension. Franklin’s club option for next season is worth $2.75M, and while it’s expected that St. Lou will pick it up, he’ll add another year to his deal that will pay him $3.75M, as he has numerous performance bonuses in his contract. Franklin has been great this season, boasting a 1.07 ERA, an 0.91 WHIP and 34 saves in 36 chances. A great bargain, even if Franklin falls back to mediocrity.
– The Twins are close to acquiring LHP Ron Mahay from the Royals, according to FOX Sports’ Ken Rosenthal. No word on the return yet. Mahay had been designated for assignment this week and the Twins were a rumoured suitor.
– Mets SS Jose Reyes (torn right hamstring tendon) may require offseason surgery. The Mets say Reyes is still getting physical therapy for the torn tendon behind his knee and that surgery is an option. The speedy infielder has been on the disabled list since May. It wouldn’t be a major procedure, but could speed up his recovery as he prepares for next season. He’ll join fellow Mets teammates LHP Oliver Perez and LHP Johan Santana in the operating room.
– The Twins have acquired RHP Jon Rauch from the D’Backs for a PTBNL. The 30-year-old Rauch went 2-2 with a 4.14 ERA in 54-plus innings for Arizona. The 6-foot-11 Rauch walked 17 and struck out 35 in 58 games for the Diamondbacks this year. Rauch is due $2.9M next season.
– D’Backs 1B Conor Jackson, on the DL with valley fever, acknowledged Thursday that his season is likely over. “I see more risks to me trying to come back than I do benefits. Obviously, I want to come back, but I have to be smart about it.” There’s some talk that the Diamondbacks may not tender him a contract this December.
– The Nationals have transferred RHP Jordan Zimmermann to the 60-day DL and have placed OF Nyjer Morgan (hand) on the 15-day DL.
– The Dodgers have have transferred RHP Jason Schmidt to the 60-day DL.
– The Canucks have acquired D Christian Ehrhoff and D Brad Lukowich from the Sharks for D Daniel Rahimi and F Patrick White.
– The Canucks have signed D Mathieu Schneider.
– Blues D Eric Brewer underwent arthroscopic knee surgery Thursday. The Blues’ captain injured the knee while rehabbing it from back surgery. It’s unclear when he’ll return, but it won’t be by the start of the season. It is the defender’s third surgery since December – he’s had two on his back and now this, so it could be a while before he’s back at full strength.
– The Predators are interested in D Chris Chelios. Chelios, 47, was recently turned down by the Leafs. Stay tuned.
– The Leafs have granted a tryout to former Leaf F Jason Allison. The 34-year old, who has not played in the NHL since the 2005-06 season, will attend the Leafs’ camp next month without a contract. Allison approached the team about the idea of a comeback over the summer and Toronto agreed to have a look at him. In 66 games with the Maple Leafs in ’05-06, Allison scored 17 goals and 43 assists. His best season was with the Boston Bruins in 2000-01, when he scored 36 goals and 95 points. His season with Toronto was the only one he has played since 2002-03. He missed significant time due to injuries, the lockout, and issues stemming from a divorce.
– Contrary to earlier reports, it appears as though Knicks RFA F David Lee is not prepared to hold out of camp if he isn’t re-signed by September 28. Yesterday’s NY Post article had Lee’s agent saying that his player was basically ready to sit out if nothing more happened than the qualifying offer he currently has for this season that is worth more than $2M. The agent, Mark Bartelstein, is now saying the paper totally misrepresented him and his quotes and that Lee isn’t planning anything else but to play for the Knicks unless the team can work out some sort of sign-and-trade that will take him elsewhere.
– The NBA has suspended Nuggets G J.R. Smith and Suns F Jason Richardson after both were recently convicted of driving offenses. Smith will sit out the Nuggets’ first seven games for pleading guilty to reckless driving in New Jersey; Richardson will miss two games after he pleaded guilty to drunken driving in Arizona. Both suspensions imposed Friday are without pay. The NBA said Smith’s was also for his poor driving record. Smith was involved in an accident in 2007 that caused the death of a passenger in his car.
– As reported last night, Rey Mysterio has been suspended for 30 days for violating WWE’s Wellness policy. A 30 day suspension indicates this is the Intercontinental champion’s first violation. WWE.com has updated its announcement regarding Mysterio’s suspension, stating that it will begin next Wednesday, September 2nd. It appears Mysterio will work Tuesday’s Smackdown taping in order to drop the WWE Intercontinental championship and will then begin serving his 30 days. Mysterio is expected to be pulled from this weekend’s house shows and will not be wrestling against Dolph Ziggler at WWE Breaking Point on 9/13 as advertised.
– WWE.com has announced that WWE Hall of Famer Dusty Rhodes is scheduled host Monday’s show. There had been talk in recent weeeks that Cavaliers F LeBron James would be hosting next week’s show, but those plans appear to have fallen through.
– Former WWE superstar The Brian Kendrick has finally spoken about his release from the company. In an interview with the Dragon Gate USA website promoting his debut for the company against CIMA on September 6, spoke for the first time. Kendrick said he’s happy to not to be in WWE anymore as a comedy heel designed to “make old men laugh.” While he plans on incorporating some of what he learned in WWE into his wrestling style on the indy circuit, he will ultimately wrestle in a style that pleases himself. “I had some fun in WWE. I learned a lot, made some friends. It’s a corporation, I am a human. This human didn’t fit into the corporation’s plans, and that corporation didn’t fit with my human side. I had some laughs, but I am awfully happy the ride is over, and I don’t want back on.”
– Jim Ross has updated his blog at JRsBarBQ.com. Some highlights from this entry:
Jerry Lawler For Mayor of Memphis: “Jerry Lawler did excellently when debating his opposition on live Memphis TV Thursday night. The King is a great talker and to show you how serious he is about this race Jerry actually wore a nice looking, dark blue suit, a starched, white shirt and a striking, red tie. Girlfriend Renee must have had a hand in Jerry’s TV attire. You might ask what is the big deal with Lawler wearing a suit but if you knew how much he detested “dressing up” you would better understand my point.”
WWE’s WCW DVD: “The ‘Rise and Fall of WCW’ DVD continues to be panned and applauded by a variety of people that I respect. I happened to like it but I also will agree that some of the story was not told at all or not told as throughly as some would have preferred. Even with that said, I still wholeheartedly recommend one buying this DVD release and coming to one’s own conclusions. The sad thing about a minority of wrestling fans if that one doesn’t agree with their opinion then that person, IE yours truly in this case, is a blithering idiot. Hey, I might qualify for blithering idiot status but not on the grounds that I expressed an ‘opinion.’”
Rey Mysterio’s Wellness Vilation: “I was hugely disappointed to hear of Rey Mysterio being suspended for violation of the WWE Wellness Policy. That’s a real head scratcher but it will open the door for some young lions to take their game and the perception that goes with it to the next level including Dolph Ziggler and John Morrison just to name a couple.”
– Apparently Jeff Jarrett and BG James had a falling out recently. The PWTorch Newseltter claims that Kurt Angle told James to tell Jarrett that he was going to kick his ass next time he saw him. James relayed the message, but Jarrett claimed he was told Kurt threatened to kill him. When James was asked to clarify, he said Kurt merely threatened to beat up Jarrett, not kill him. Another Kurt Angle story making the rounds is that he recently got so fired up when talking about Jarrett that he slammed the TNA Title belt down and accidentally broke it in the process.