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Aaron Gleeman

  1. Josh Willingham’s three-year, $21 million deal with the Twins is finally official

    Dec 15, 2011, 11:50 AM EDT

    willingham getty

    Josh Willingham and the Twins went oddly silent after news broke earlier this week that he’d agreed to terms on a three-year, $21 million contract, leading to speculation that Michael Cuddyer may have had second thoughts about leaving Minnesota. I’m still not sure what the lengthy delay and secrecy was about, but the Twins have…

  2. Josh Hamilton is looking for a new “accountability partner”

    Dec 15, 2011, 10:47 AM EDT

    josh hamilton getty

    Among other duties Johnny Narron has served as Josh Hamilton‘s “accountability partner” since 2009, but he left the team last month to become the Brewers’ new hitting coach and now the Rangers are searching for a new person to keep the former MVP in line on the road. “We’re working on it,” Hamilton told Richard…

  3. Carlos Zambrano is “climbing mountains and running on the beach”

    Dec 15, 2011, 10:15 AM EDT

    Carlos Zambrano

    Carlos Zambrano took the mound in the Venezuelan winter league yesterday for the first time since a line drive off the face on November 18 left him needing 16 stitches. Zambrano faced 13 batters and tossed four hitless, scoreless innings, with Carrie Muskat of MLB.com noting that eight of his twelve outs came on ground…

  4. Giants re-sign Guillermo Mota to one-year, $1 million deal

    Dec 14, 2011, 5:17 PM EDT

    San Francisco Giants v Atlanta Braves

    Last week Guillermo Mota was said to be close to re-signing with the Giants and now Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com reports that it’s a done deal, as the veteran reliever gets a one-year, $1 million contract. Mota earned $925,000 in 2011 after inking a minor-league deal with the Giants, throwing 80 innings with a 3.81…

  5. Bill Smith returning to Twins a month after being fired as GM

    Dec 14, 2011, 4:16 PM EDT

    Chicago White Sox v Minnesota Twins

    Minnesota fired Bill Smith as general manager on November 7, replacing him with former GM Terry Ryan, but they talked about wanting to keep him as part of the organization in a different role and apparently Smith is willing to stay. Phil Mackey of 1500ESPN.com reports that Smith is close to returning in a “special…

  6. Red Sox sign Nick Punto for two years and $3.5 million

    Dec 14, 2011, 3:50 PM EDT

    Mark Kotsay, Nick Punto

    This morning the Red Sox traded infielder Jed Lowrie to the Astros in a deal for reliever Mark Melancon and it didn’t take them long to replace him, with Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com reporting that Boston has signed Nick Punto to a two-year, $3.5 million contract. Punto was paid just $750,000 by the Cardinals and…

  7. General manager Walt Jocketty calls Reds’ lack of moves “very frustrating”

    Dec 14, 2011, 2:57 PM EDT

    Walt Jocketty

    Reds general manager Walt Jocketty has come up empty on various attempts to make a significant move this offseason and called it “very frustrating.” “It’s all I’ve been working on, trying to improve our pitching,” Jocketty told John Fay of the Cincinnati Enquirer. “It’s been an extension of the winter meetings. But we’re still not…

  8. Michael Cuddyer signing with Rockies “could happen today”

    Dec 14, 2011, 1:50 PM EDT

    cuddyer wide getty

    Josh Willingham‘s three-year, $21 million deal with the Twins isn’t finalized yet, but it sounds just about official and that means the man he’s replacing in Minnesota, Michael Cuddyer, could also be on the verge of choosing a new team. Cuddyer has been linked to Colorado all offseason and Troy Renck of the Denver Post…

  9. Joel Zumaya threw for more than 50 scouts today

    Dec 14, 2011, 1:16 PM EDT

    Detroit pitcher Zumaya injures arm after pitching to Twins Young during their MLB baseball game in Minneapolis

    Joel Zumaya took a big step in his latest comeback today, throwing for scouts in Houston to show he’s recovered from a fractured elbow that’s kept him out since mid-2010. Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com reports that “more than 50 scouts” were in attendance, passing along word that Zumaya threw 93-96 miles per hour. One of…

  10. Wade Davis and Jeff Niemann are Rays pitchers most likely to be shopped

    Dec 14, 2011, 12:44 PM EDT

    wade davis getty

    Tampa Bay has all kinds of starting pitching depth, leading to speculation that they’ll try to cash some of it in for lineup help at some point. Marc Topkin of the St. Petersburg Times examined all the rotation options and concluded that Wade Davis and Jeff Niemann are the most likely starters to be traded…

  11. Closer found? Red Sox get Mark Melancon from Astros for Jed Lowrie and Kyle Weiland

    Dec 14, 2011, 11:52 AM EDT

    Mark Melancon

    Boston may still add a veteran closer to replace Jonathan Papelbon, but in the meantime they’ve picked up a potential ninth-inning option in right-hander Mark Melancon, who saved 20 games for the Astros this year. Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com reports that the Red Sox are sending infielder Jed Lowrie and pitching prospect Kyle Weiland to…

  12. Alex Gonzalez’s one-year, $4.25 million deal with Brewers has vesting option for 2013

    Dec 14, 2011, 11:19 AM EDT

    Alex Gonzalez

    Milwaukee briefly flirted with Jimmy Rollins before settling on Alex Gonzalez as their new shortstop and Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com reports that his one-year deal is worth $4.25 million with a $4 million option for 2013 that vests with 525 plate appearances. That makes it easy for the Brewers to cut bait on Gonzalez if…

  13. Nationals pursuing Mark DeRosa, Greg Dobbs, and Willie Harris for bench jobs

    Dec 14, 2011, 10:47 AM EDT

    Mark DeRosa

    Washington’s search for bench bats has led them to express interest in Mark DeRosa, Greg Dobbs, and Willie Harris, according to Bill Ladson of MLB.com. Dobbs and Harris are left-handed hitters and strictly role players, while DeRosa is a right-handed hitter who was an everyday player before wrist problems derailed his career three years ago.…

  14. UPDATE: Twins, Josh Willingham near three-year, $21 million contract

    Dec 13, 2011, 11:15 PM EDT

    willingham getty

    11:15 PM ET: Joe Christensen of the Minneapolis Star-Tribune reports that the Twins and Willingham are “very close” to a three-year, $21 million contract. UPDATE III: Hold up. Rhett Bollinger of MLB.com and Joe Christensen of the Minneapolis Star-Tribune are both hearing that a deal between the Twins and Willingham isn’t done. What’s more, Christensen…

  15. GM says Johan Santana “might not be” ready for Opening Day

    Dec 13, 2011, 3:50 PM EDT

    johan santana face getty

    In talking about the Mets’ rotation plans general manager Sandy Alderson categorized Johan Santana as a “question mark” and told Adam Rubin of ESPN New York that the former Cy Young winner “might not be” ready for Opening Day. Santana planned to return from shoulder surgery to pitch for the Mets down the stretch, but…

  16. Josh Willingham to decide on new team within 48 hours

    Dec 13, 2011, 2:20 PM EDT

    willingham reuters

    Josh Willingham will sign within the next 48 hours, agent Matt Sosnick told Joe Christensen of the Minneapolis Star Tribune. Sosnick indicated that Willingham has narrowed his choices down to three teams, two of which are believed to be the Twins and Indians. Minnesota has had a three-year, $25 million offer on the table to…

  17. Takashi Saito’s one-year deal with Arizona worth $1.75 million

    Dec 13, 2011, 1:48 PM EDT

    takashi-saito-brewers-spring

    Arizona’s one-year contract with Takashi Saito will pay the reliever $1.75 million, according to Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com. Milwaukee was interested in re-signing Saito, but Francisco Rodriguez accepting arbitration took them out of the running for other free agents and left the right-hander settling for the same salary he earned in 2011. Saito is 41…

  18. Aramis Ramirez backloaded his contract to help with Brewers’ payroll crunch

    Dec 13, 2011, 12:44 PM EDT

    Aramis Ramirez

    Francisco Rodriguez accepting arbitration from the Brewers stretched their payroll to the limit, so Aramis Ramirez‘s three-year, $36 million deal is heavily backloaded. Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports that Ramirez will get just $6 million in 2012, leaving $30 million to paid for the other two seasons, and $6 million of his…

  19. Cardinals choose cash instead of players to complete July swap with Blue Jays

    Dec 13, 2011, 12:16 PM EDT

    stack of money

    As part of July’s eight-player swap with the Blue Jays that was headlined by Colby Rasmus and Edwin Jackson the Cardinals received three players to be named later or cash considerations. Gregor Chisholm of MLB.com reports that St. Louis has opted for cash instead of players in all three instances, although the exact dollar amounts…

  20. Carlos Beltran is drawing interest from the Rockies

    Dec 13, 2011, 11:51 AM EDT

    San Francisco Giants v Philadelphia Phillies

    Carlos Beltran has been linked to surprisingly few teams this offseason, but Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com reports that the Rockies have shown interest in the switch-hitting outfielder. However, they’ve shown even stronger interest in Michael Cuddyer, with Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com reporting that Colorado made him a three-year offer worth more than $25 million in…

  21. Red Sox sign Kelly Shoppach to replace Jason Varitek as backup catcher

    Dec 13, 2011, 11:19 AM EDT

    shoppach_kelly

    Kelly Shoppach was the Red Sox’s second-round pick in 2001 and debuted for them in 2005, but was traded to the Indians in the Coco Crisp swap that offseason and went on to establish himself as a solid backup catcher who crushes left-handed pitching. Now he returns to Boston to fill that exact role, with…

  22. Astros catcher Jason Castro out again following foot surgery

    Dec 13, 2011, 10:15 AM EDT

    jason-castro-astros-injury

    Jason Castro missed the entire season following knee surgery for a torn ACL suffered during spring training and now the Astros catcher may not be ready for next spring because of another operation. Castro was in the Arizona Fall League in order to make up for all the playing time he missed, but the 2008…

  23. Jerome Williams signs one-year, $820,000 deal with Angels

    Dec 12, 2011, 5:10 PM EDT

    Oakland Athletics v Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim

    Jerome Williams‘ comeback was complete when he returned to the majors and got people to call him the right name, but now he’s getting a big-league contract too. Rather than potentially non-tender Williams the Angels have signed him to a one-year deal worth $820,000 upfront and another $120,000 in possible incentives, avoiding arbitration with the…

  24. Cardinals nearing two-year deal with Skip Schumaker

    Dec 12, 2011, 4:33 PM EDT

    Skip Schumaker

    Skip Schumaker is close to avoiding arbitration (and a possible non-tender) by signing a two-year contract with the Cardinals, according to Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post Dispatch. Last month general manager John Mozeliak indicated that Daniel Descalso would open the season as the Cardinals’ starting second baseman, but Schumaker’s presence means at the…

  25. John Buck rescued two women from an overturned car

    Dec 12, 2011, 2:42 PM EDT

    Buck_John

    Marlins catcher John Buck and his wife were driving around their neighborhood Thursday morning when they came upon a car that had flipped over after crashing into a tree. Buck shared the details of what happened next with Joe Capozzi of the Palm Beach Post: “I kind of saw a hand pulling at the window,’’…

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