Pitcher Mike Koplove said Monday he is “kind of just in a holding pattern.” So is everyone else involved in the blockbuster Diamondbacks-New York Yankees-Los Angeles Dodgers trade.
As of Monday afternoon, the trade had not been submitted to commissioner Bud Selig, who has to approve it before the D-Backs can negotiate with outfielder Shawn Green and the Yankees can talk to Arizona ace Randy Johnson. Both players have no-trade clauses and may ask for contract extensions to sign off on the deal.
One person familiar with the discussions said Monday evening there was hope the trade would be finalized by this morning.
The Diamondbacks did make a couple of moves Monday, declining to tender contracts to minor league right-hander Brandon Medders and lefty Shane Nance. Arizona would still need to open a spot on its 40-man roster to complete the proposed 10-player deal.
The trade would send Green, right-hander Brad Penny, reliever Yhency Brazoban and minor league pitcher Brandon Weeden from Los Angeles to Arizona; Johnson from Arizona to New York; Koplove from Arizona to Los Angeles; lefty Kaz Ishii from Los Angeles to New York; and right-hander Javier Vazquez and two minor leaguers from New York to Los Angeles.
The Dodgers are apparently keeping the deal in limbo, perhaps trying to have other moves in place before signing off on the trade.
“We are continuing to talk through various items, but it is not finalized, so to speak,” Los Angeles general manager Paul DePodesta told beat writers on a conference call Monday night.
“We all certainly understand the issues involved and we all try to be sensitive to each others’ needs here. Also, everyone has to be satisfied at end of the day.
“We are at the stage right now that unless everything is lined up and perfectly OK, we'd be perfectly happy not doing it.”
Koplove has been with the Diamondbacks organization for more than six years, since he was a 29th-round draft pick in 1998.
“It kind of came out of the blue when (Diamondbacks general manager Joe Garagiola Jr.) told me,” Koplove said. “But there are worse places to go. If I got traded to the Dodgers it would be a great situation, I'm sure.
“If it does happen, I'll be excited to go to L.A. It's an awesome place to pitch and I love playing there.”
In 13 career appearances at Dodger Stadium, Koplove is 1-2 with a 3.00 ERA and 14 strikeouts in 12 innings.
Arizona apparently did tender a contract to infielder Shea Hillenbrand, who stands to make about $4 million in arbitration. The D-Backs have sought to trade Hillenbrand, since newcomer Troy Glaus came in to play third base and Chad Tracy is expected to move to first.
Four other players are eligible for arbitration; Koplove, reliever Brandon Lyon and lefties Casey Fossum and Randy Choate.
Medders had a 4.26 ERA in 11 appearances for Class AAA Tucson this year before requiring shoulder surgery. Nance, acquired from Milwaukee in the Richie Sexson trade, was 1-1 with a 5.84 ERA in 19 games for Arizona. Both become free agents, leaving the D-Backs with one player — minor league outfielder Noochie Varner — in exchange for the six sent to the Brewers (although they did bring back Craig Counsell as a free agent).
Right-hander Andrew Good, released last week by the D-Backs, has signed a minor league contract with Detroit, including an invitation to major league spring training. . . . Bill Plummer, who spent the past two years managing short-season Class A Yakima, will manage Class A Lancaster next year. Damon Mashore, hitting coach in Class AA El Paso last season, will be Plummer's hitting coach, and Jeff Pico will move from pitching coach at Class A South Bend to Lancaster.