11/02/11 8:05 PM ET
McDonald re-ups with D-backs for two years
Club hopes to keep Blanco; Bloomquist's status uncertain
By Steve Gilbert / MLB.com
The D-backs on Wednesday re-signed John McDonald to a two-year deal worth $3 million after he came over from the Blue Jays in an August trade.
While the D-backs exercised their half of mutual options on both Blanco and Bloomquist, the pair declined their end of the options, making them free agents.
Blanco and the D-backs had a lot of dialogue Wednesday, and a return looks promising.
"We talked at length today, and I think there's a good chance we could have something done maybe tomorrow or the next day," D-backs general manager Kevin Towers said. "We've been working on kind of tweaking his deal somewhat."
It seems less clear at this point whether something will get worked out with Bloomquist.
"I am declining it with the hopes of renegotiating something longer than just next year," Bloomquist said on Monday. "I hope we can work something out as we would love to stay here."
With shortstop Stephen Drew working his way back from major ankle surgery and Bloomquist's return unsettled, the D-backs felt they needed to get something done quickly with McDonald.
"We really haven't had any dialogue since they declined," Towers said, referring to Bloomquist and his representative, Scott Boras. "We'd still like to have Willie back, we just seemed to have more dialogue with Johnny Mac and his advisers over the last few days. I think for us based on the holes we had in the middle of the infield we wanted to act quickly versus sitting around and waiting for the market to kind of open up and find out where guys are at and where dollars are at on guys. I get the impression from Willie's side that that was what they wanted to do."
McDonald hit .169 in 59 at-bats for the D-backs down the stretch.
"He's one of the better defenders in the game," Towers said. "I think he showed that in the games that he started for us. Another good guy in our clubhouse, great makeup, incredible intangibles. Gives us great protection I think specifically at shortstop. He's been around the game for a long time and plays the game the way it should be played. He provides also some leadership and guidance for some of our younger players because he's been around the game so long and been around some great players."