I have decided to expand the O.T.S. rumors report into an all sports rumors segment.
A piece of unverified information of uncertain origin usually spread by word of mouth.
Unverified information received from another; hearsay.
The Los Angeles Dodgers were in on Kevin Youkilis until Sunday afternoon when the Chicago White Sox agreed to send a second player in exchange for the Boston Red Sox eating $5.5 million of Youkilis’ salary. I was told that the Dodgers now are turning their focus to Josh Willingham of the Minnesota Twins. The Dodgers need to add another power bat to their line-up and Willingham could be that guy that could play first base and hit 5th in their line-up. It comes down to what the Twins are asking for and if they want to deal him.
The Dodgers and Twins also have talked in recent weeks about a deal that could send Francisco Liriano to L.A. for a couple prospects. Liriano hasn’t pitched bad since being brought back into the rotation after being demoted to the bullpen. Liriano would give the Dodgers another strong arm to go with reigning Cy Young award winner Clayton Kershaw and the surprising Chris Capuano.
A name to watch in either deal with the Twins (or anyone other Dodgers deal) could be Chad Billingsley. I was told that the organization is growing frustrated with Billingsley and feel that a change of scenery may be need for both him and the team.
I am hearing a name that is available and could be had for a reasonable price is Seattle Mariners outfielder Ichiro. He is not having the type of year we are accustomed to Ichiro having, but teams in need of offense like the Nationals, Dodgers, Mets, Giants and even the Yankees all have an interest. Given his age (38), ownerships lack of willingness to deal him and he would have to approve any deal makes it tough for the Mariners. But Ichiro wants to win a World Series and he could welcome a chance to play for a contender, increase his marketability in free agency (should he play well) and most importantly wanting to continue playing and reach 3,000 hits.
The Milwaukee Brewers are in a stretch which will decide whether they will be sellers or buyers at the trade deadline. They have a huge chip in starting pitcher Zack Greinke and could fetch a young arm and positional player in any deal. A source who is tied into MLB circles has told me that they have talked to the Dodgers, Rangers, Pirates, Tigers and Nationals all have spoke to the Brewers. The Dodgers and Rangers have some pieces that fit what the Brewers would be looking for in return. I was told that the mentioned teams are not worried about his anxiety issues.
I spoke to a former MLB scout and asked him about Nationals outfielder Bryce Harper and the Angels Mike Trout. He said that Trout is “Dale Murphy while Harper is Pete Rose”. He said “They are the real deal and have all the tools you look for in players. They have each have hell of future and should become the faces of MLB.” He said that the thing that separates Harper from Trout “is Harper’s power & arm” while he says Trout has “way better speed.”
The NBA Draft is on Thursday and I have heard that the Los Angeles Lakers are trying to trade back into the first round for a Point Guard. A couple names I hear the PG’s they like include Austin Rivers, Marquis Teague, Tony Wroten and Tyshawn Taylor. The rumor making the rounds has the Lakers and Heat talking about a deal (at #27).
I have also heard that the Lakers and Minnesota Timberwolves have talked about a deal that would send last years #2 overall pick power forward (and L.A. native) Derrick Williams, the #18 overall pick and Wesley Johnson to L.A. for power forward/center Pau Gasol. I was told that that Lakers feel they need a PF that can shoot and play away from the basket to free up Andrew Bynum, which Williams can do. The players I hear the Lakers like at that pick include PF Perry Jones III (Baylor) and Quincy Miller (Baylor). Gasol and Ricky Rubio (the Wolves PG) play together for the Spain National team and Gasol would add leadership to the young Minnesota team.
I am hearing that the Bobcats are targeting North Carolina SF Harrison Barnes and would like to move back a few slots to select him. He worked out for them this past week and “wowed” the Bobcats upper management. I was also told that former Tar Heel and NBA great (the Bobcats owner) Michael Jordan has signed off on drafting him if GM Rich Cho chooses to do so.
I hear to small forwards will be on the move draft day, the Bulls Luol Deng and the 76ers Andre Iguodala. Word is Golden State and the Bulls are talking about Deng, while the Lakers, Clippers and Raptors are in on Iguodala. If the Lakers deal for Iguodala it would include Pau Gasol.
Join me on The Average Joe Show this Tuesday at 8pm pst time. Joe Pacheco and myself will be joined by former NBA All Star Kenny Anderson as we talk about the NBA Finals, LeBron James, Heat, Lakers and the NBA Draft. We will be taking calls and answering YOUR questions. Join us at http://blogtalkradio.com/the-average-joe-show.
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