Out of lineup, but Lucroy has 'not been traded'

Out of lineup, but Lucroy has 'not been traded'

MILWAUKEE -- "I have not been traded," Brewers catcher Jonathan Lucroy said Saturday afternoon, when his absence from the lineup provided evidence the team was moving closer to trading the two-time All-Star.

General manager David Stearns briefed manager Craig Counsell earlier in the day on the Brewers' trade talks involving Lucroy, and the two decided to start Martin Maldonado behind the plate against the Pirates. Lucroy has been linked to a slew of teams in trade talks, most notably the Indians and Mets over the past two days.

"David stopped down and said he's progressing on something," Counsell said. "We just thought it best that [Lucroy] not be in the lineup today. He has not been traded. He is available to us today, and I'll use him if something comes up and I have to use him."

Counsell added: "Let me make it clear: He has not been traded. He may not be traded [Sunday]. He may not be traded Monday."

The non-waiver Trade Deadline is 3 p.m. CT on Monday.

Multiple reports on Saturday said the Mets had sweetened their offer for Lucroy to include outfield prospect Brandon Nimmo, No. 5 on MLBPipeline.com's list of the top Mets prospects, in addition to catcher Travis d'Arnaud. The Mets are not among the eight teams on Lucroy's no-trade list.

The Indians are, along with the Angels, A's, Mariners, Nationals, Padres, Tigers and Twins.

Often, a player will waive his no-trade rights in exchange for financial compensation or a contract extension, which could be of particular interest to Lucroy since he is playing on a team-friendly contract that pays $4 million this season and includes a $5.25 million club option for next season. That side negotiation can take time.

The Mariners and Tigers, also on Lucroy's no-trade list, were linked to him in the past week. So were the Astros, Rangers, Red Sox and at least one "mystery team."

Asked if he could say whether his no-trade rights were part of the decision to sit him Saturday, Lucroy said, "I can't. I don't want to comment on any of that stuff right now. If something does happen, we'll talk all about it."

Adam McCalvy has covered the Brewers for MLB.com since 2001. Follow him on Twitter @AdamMcCalvy, like him on Facebook and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.