Nevin has time to OK deal; Padres deal for Randa

Updated: August 1, 2005, 2:22 PM ET
ESPN.com news services

SAN DIEGO -- The slumping NL West-leading San Diego Padres went about strengthening their standing Saturday with one official trade and another they hope gets Phil Nevin's seal of approval.

Phil Nevin
First Base
San Diego Padres
Profile
2005 SEASON STATISTICS
GM HR RBI R OBP AVG
71 9 47 31 .305 .262

San Diego agreed to send first baseman Nevin to Baltimore for pitcher Sidney Ponson, but Nevin indicated Sunday he will take his time with the decision to waive his limited no-trade clause.

Nevin has 72 hours to notify the team on whether he will accept the trade to Baltimore, one of eight teams Nevin can block a trade to. The deadline is Tuesday at 9 p.m. ET.

"I have a certain amount of time to make a decision and I'm going to use that time," Nevin said. "I want to talk about it with my family and kids. It's a tough thing to talk to them about over the phone."

Soon after agreeing to the Nevin deal, Padres general manager Kevin Towers dealt for third baseman Joe Randa from the Cincinnati Reds and demoted struggling Sean Burroughs to Triple-A Portland.

With Ponson acquired by the Padres, the Orioles' deal to acquire Florida Marlins right-hander A.J. Burnett has been shelved.

A three-way deal with the Orioles and Texas Rangers, which would have sent Burnett to Baltimore, was "killed" by the Orioles this weekend, a baseball man familiar with the deal told ESPN.com's Jayson Stark. So the Marlins are believed to have broken off talks with Baltimore, at least for now, and are back to focusing on offers from the Chicago White Sox and the Boston Red Sox.

Florida, Baltimore and Texas had structured a complicated three-way trade that, theoretically, would have allowed the Orioles to assume most of the $21 million left on Marlins third baseman Mike Lowell's contract by jettisoning Ponson. Ponson has about $13 million remaining on his contract, which runs through 2006. But Baltimore and Florida would have assumed a large chunk of that and then traded Ponson to the Rangers, who would have picked up the rest. Texas also would have saved another $2 million by dealing outfielder Richard Hidalgo to Florida -- meaning the Rangers would have been getting Ponson for only about $3 million.

But that whole scenario became moot when Baltimore apparently decided it didn't want Lowell. The Orioles couldn't be sure of signing Burnett, and they had a chance to trade Ponson to San Diego for Nevin in a joint salary dump.

The Ponson deal was agreed upon once he refused a trade to the Tampa Bay Devil Rays for left-handed reliever Trever Miller.

The Padres have a need for a starter. Adam Eaton (9-2 in 14 starts, 3.42 ERA) has been on the 15-day disabled list since June 23 because of a strained tendon in his middle finger. The Padres said Saturday they have no plans to send Eaton to the bullpen once he comes off the DL.

Now the Marlins have to try to find a taker for Lowell and Burnett, or return to the possibilities with the White Sox and Red Sox.

The White Sox figure to head the list of other deals, with prospect Brandon McCarthy the main part of the package along with starter Jose Contreras. The Red Sox's offer would include Double-A pitching prospect Anibal Sanchez and right-handed pitcher Bronson Arroyo.

Nevin started in the Padres' game Saturday at Philadelphia and went 1-for-3 in a 2-0 loss. He did not play Sunday. Ponson started for the Orioles against Tampa Bay on Saturday, pitching seven innings but taking the loss in a 3-2 defeat.

In December 2002, Nevin refused to waive his no-trade clause and killed a deal that would have sent him to Cincinnati for Ken Griffey Jr.

"It kind of goes back to what happened in the Cincinnati deal," Barry Axelrod, Nevin's agent, said. "Kevin [Towers] had a deal made, then called and asked if Phil would accept it. I said, 'No way.' Phil's criteria has always been that he would like to play for a West Coast team. He wants to play for San Diego. He doesn't want to leave here. He's got a new home being built here.

"But if they've arrived at the conclusion that the profile of the team needs to change in some way, then we'll re-examine the circumstances when we're asked," he said.

That could include asking for more money.

"I suppose we could try to exact something out of them, but it hasn't gotten to that point," Axelrod said.

Nevin is making $9 million this season and is due $10 million next season.

Joe Randa
Third Base
Cincinnati Reds
Profile
2005 SEASON STATISTICS
GM HR RBI R OBP AVG
92 13 48 44 .356 .289

The Padres are known to have shopped Burroughs but ended up having to option him to Triple-A Portland so he can try to regain his batting stroke. He was hitting just .255 with one homer and 15 RBI. Burroughs, the son of former AL MVP Jeff Burroughs, has shown a remarkable lack of power, hitting only 11 homers in 1,487 at-bats since he made his big-league debut in 2002.

If the Nevin trade goes through, the Padres plan to use Randa at third and Xavier Nady at first base.

The Padres got Randa for minor-league right-handers Justin Germano and Travis Chick.

"It's been pretty apparent that something was going to happen," Randa said. "I'm relieved. This has been hanging over my head. You wonder when it's going to happen and where you're going."

The Twins were also interested in acquiring Randa before the July 31 trade deadline. Randa, an 11-year veteran who spent six seasons with the Royals before signing with the Reds as a free agent, batted .289 for the Reds with 13 home runs, 48 RBI and a .356 on-base percentage.

"When you're 25 or 30 games out in August, you have to find motivation," Randa said. "When you're in a pennant race, you don't have to find motivation. It's out there on the field."

San Diego lost its seventh straight Sunday, falling 5-1 to Philadelphia and seeing its lead in the weak NL West cut to 3 games over Arizona. The Diamondbacks were playing later Sunday.

Information from ESPN's Peter Gammons, ESPN.com senior writer Jayson Stark and The Associated Press was used in this report.

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