We don't have any clear word yet, and the source has jumped the gun on reports in the past, but ESPN's Jim Bowden is reporting that the Astros plan on using Carlos Lee at first base in 2012. That means that Brett Wallace is likely on the trading block once again, and Bowden speculates that the Cleveland Indians could be a good fit for him.
The Indians have kicked the tires on free agent Carlos Pena but apparently don't like the asking price, and they've soured on the prospect of Matt LaPorta developing into a quality hitter. Wallace wasn't great last season and some scouts have noted mechanical issues in his swing, but he's still somewhat intriguing.
I've tossed some more tidbits from Bowden's post below the fold:
- The Washington Nationals have made lefty starter Mark Buehrle a priority this offseason, as they try to bolster their rotation to contend next season. A rotation of Buehrle, Stephen Strasburg, Jordan Zimmermann, John Lannan and either Chien-Ming Wang or Ross Detwiler would be pretty darn effective.
- The Chicago White Sox aren't confident that they'll be able to sign Mark Buehrle at the years and dollars that he's presently seeking. Don't be surprised if the White Sox are sporting a much, much younger rotation next season, led by Chris Sale.
- The Arizona Diamondbacks and LA Dodgers are seeking pitching. Bowden reports that the Dodgers have met with Aaron Harang's agents, while the D-Backs are focusing on Buehrle and Roy Oswalt.