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Link-O-Rama: Chapman, Byrnes, Pena, Pujols, Mauer

Oct 29, 2009, 2:15 PM EDT

* Cuban left-hander Aroldis Chapman had what agent Edwin Mejia described as “a very good visit” with the Red Sox yesterday at Fenway Park. In addition to the Red Sox, Pete Abraham of the Boston Herald lists the Yankees, Mets, Tigers, Cardinals, and Mariners as having interest in the 21-year-old free agent. Earlier this offseason Boston signed shortstop Jose Iglesias, who was teammates with Chapman in Cuba.
* Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic writes that the Diamondbacks may be ready to part ways with Eric Byrnes two years and $19 million after handing him a misguided contract extension. Byrnes is still owed $11 million in 2010, but has gone from productive fan favorite to oft-injured whipping boy.
* Kansas City is interested in keeping Tony Pena Jr., but only if he’s willing to continue his mid-career switch to pitching. Originally a slick-fielding shortstop who was one of the worst hitters in baseball, Pena posted a 2.33 ERA and 18/6 K/BB ratio in 19 minor-league innings after moving to the mound in July.
* Today the MLB Players Association named Albert Pujols and Joe Mauer as players of the year in their respective leagues. Hopefully the Baseball Writers Association of America will follow suit when the “real” awards are announced next month.

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