Alex Rios is no stranger to trade rumors. Two years ago, the Blue Jays nearly pulled off a deal that would’ve sent him to the Giants for Tim Lincecum. Rios’ name again popped up throughout last year.
This week, Rios’ name surfaced in a report that indicated he was claimed off waivers — likely by the Chicago White Sox — a situation that could mean a trade is in the works. Sitting at his locker on Saturday morning, Rios admitted that it can get tiresome answering questions so often about rumors.
“At some point, it gets old,” Rios said. “But, it’s baseball, man. There’s nothing you can do about it. You just have to not listen to [the rumors] and keep going with what you’re doing.”
The reality of the current situation is that being claimed off waivers this time of year is a routine part of the game — something that happens every year with many players. The difference is not all the names are leaked. When a player is claimed, the team that exposed him to waivers can A) Let him go for nothing, B) Work out a trade with the claiming club, or C) Pull him off waivers.
It’s a way for teams to gauge interest in their players. For contending clubs, sometimes this will lead to an addition that will be eligible for a postseason roster. Trades need to be completed before Sept. 1 for players to be able to take part in the playoffs. Rios said he understood that every team exposes much of its roster to waivers this month.
“I’ve heard that most of the players go through waivers after the deadline is over,” said Rios, referring to the July 31 non-waiver Trade Deadline. “I guess it’s a normal process that most people go through.”
Rios said Blue Jays general manager J.P. Ricciardi, who downplayed the reports on Friday, had not talked to him about the rumors. If Toronto wanted to shed salary, this would be an easy way to go about it, considering Rios is owed just shy of $61 million through 2014. It’s unlikely the Jays would let Rios go for nothing, though. Toronto has until Tuesday to make a decision.
“I can’t do anything,” Rios said. “If I get traded, I get traded. I’m going to have to go wherever I get traded to, but I don’t know. At this point, I’m thinking that I’m staying here. That’s the way I have to think about it.”
BALTIMORE ORIOLES (46-63)
Fifth place AL East, 21.0 GB
1. Brian Roberts, 2B
2. Adam Jones, CF
3. Nick Markakis, RF
4. Aubrey Huff, 1B
5. Nolan Reimold, LF
6. Melvin Mora, 3B
7. Luke Scott, DH
8. Matt Wieters, C
9. Cesar Izturis, SS
Starter: RHP Chris Tillman (0-0, 6.75)
1. Marco Scutaro, SS
2. Aaron Hill, 2B
3. Adam Lind, DH
4. Lyle Overbay, 1B
5. Vernon Wells, CF
6. Alex Rios, RF
7. Edwin Encarnacion, 3B
8. Raul Chavez, C
9. Joe Inglett, LF
Starter: LHP Brett Cecil (5-1, 4.36)
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