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Aaron Gleeman

  1. Astros choose 37-year-old Nelson Figueroa over 20-year-old Jordan Lyles for fifth starter job

    Mar 21, 2011, 2:44 PM EST

    Houston Astros v New York Mets

    Journeyman Nelson Figueroa will open the season as the Astros’ fifth starter after competing for the job with 20-year-old top prospect Jordan Lyles, who was sent to the minors today. Lyles was impressive this spring and has a ton of long-term upside, but realistically the Astros are better off letting Figueroa keep the rotation spot…

  2. Brief Digression Theater: The Great Ketchup Debate of 2011

    Mar 21, 2011, 1:48 PM EST

    ketchup

    It started, like many things do, with me mocking my mother on Twitter.

  3. Royals announce Luke Hochevar and his 5.60 career ERA as Opening Day starter

    Mar 21, 2011, 1:15 PM EST

    hochevar

    Kansas City announced its rotation and as expected Luke Hochevar will get the Opening Day start against the Angels despite a 5.60 career ERA that includes a 4.81 mark in 18 outings last year. Of course, the Royals being the Royals they don’t really have any clearly better options. Jeff Francis, Kyle Davies, and Bruce…

  4. Frank Francisco has an appointment with Dr. James Andrews

    Mar 21, 2011, 12:49 PM EST

    frank-francisco-rangers

    Often when a pitcher travels to Dr. James Andrews’ office is Alabama for an examination the next news is announcement that arm surgery is needed, but in Frank Francisco‘s case his visit to Dr. Andrews is for a sore right pectoral muscle. That doesn’t mean he won’t need surgery, of course, but an MRI exam…

  5. Hideki Matsui donates $600,000 to Japanese relief efforts

    Mar 21, 2011, 12:14 PM EST

    hideki-matsui-autographs

    Last week Ichiro Suzuki donated $1.2 million to the Japanese relief efforts and now Hideki Matsui has joined him, donating around $600,000 to the Red Cross. Matsui’s official donation is 50 million yen (Ichiro’s was 100 million yen), which works out to about $620,000 based on the current conversion rate and represents around 15 percent…

  6. Luis Castillo signed a minor league contract, but won’t be going to the minors

    Mar 21, 2011, 11:49 AM EST

    Castillo_Luis

    As expected, general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. confirmed this morning that going to the minors isn’t actually a possibility for Luis Castillo even though he signed a minor-league contract with the Phillies yesterday. Instead, he’ll either convince the Phillies to put him on the Opening Day roster or become a free agent again in two…

  7. Indians place reliever Jensen Lewis on waivers

    Mar 21, 2011, 11:18 AM EST

    Lewis_Jensen

    Jensen Lewis has consistently been one of Cleveland’s best relievers since debuting in mid-2007, posting a 3.68 ERA and 177 strikeouts in 198 innings, but he’s been knocked around in a half-dozen appearances this spring and now Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com reports that the Indians have placed him on waivers. Lewis is under contract for…

  8. Elbow injury may keep Jason Isringhausen from making Mets

    Mar 21, 2011, 10:47 AM EST

    jason-isringhausen-mets-spring

    Over the weekend Andy Martino of the New York Daily News wrote that Jason Isringhausen had emerged as a realistic bullpen option for the Mets–and perhaps even an eighth-inning setup candidate–after signing a minor-league deal following a tryout last month. Unfortunately injuries have once again threatened to derail Isringhausen’s career, as Andy McCullough of the…

  9. End of the line at age 31? Pirates release Garrett Atkins

    Mar 21, 2011, 10:15 AM EST

    garrett-atkins-pirates-spring

    Apparently feeling that their Garrett quota had been surpassed after claiming Garrett Olson off waivers last week, the Pirates have released Garrett Atkins. Atkins is just one season removed from being paid $4.5 million by the Orioles, but that was a terrible signing last winter and he appeared in all of 44 games before Baltimore…

  10. Phillies sign Mets castoff Luis Castillo to minor league deal

    Mar 20, 2011, 10:49 PM EST

    New York Mets v Atlanta Braves

    Cut loose by the Mets last week despite still being owed $6 million for this season, Luis Castillo has reportedly signed a minor-league contract with the Phillies. World-renowned Castillo hater Jon Heyman naturally hates the move and an awful lot of Phillies fans seem to agree, but given the injuries to Chase Utley and Placido…

  11. No shock: Ricky Nolasco says he didn’t try to hit Nyjer Morgan

    Mar 18, 2011, 5:17 PM EST

    Nyjer Morgan

    Not that there was much doubt in the mind of anyone but Nyjer Morgan, but Ricky Nolasco made it pretty clear today that he didn’t intend to hit Morgan with a pitch earlier this week: I don’t know what to tell Nyjer. I’m not trying to hit him. What’s happened last year is squashed. If…

  12. Pirates claim Garrett Olson off waivers from Mariners

    Mar 18, 2011, 4:16 PM EST

    garrett-olson-mariners-spring

    One of the benefits of finishing with the worst record in baseball last season is that the Pirates still have the No. 1 waiver priority and they used it today to claim Garrett Olson after he was let go by the Mariners. I once thought Olson had a future as a solid mid-rotation starter for…

  13. Scot Shields retires after 10 years as elite, underrated reliever

    Mar 18, 2011, 3:20 PM EST

    Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim v New York Yankees

    Scot Shields was said to be pondering retirement throughout the offseason and the longtime Angels setup man officially called it quits today after a 10-year career in which he threw 697 innings with a 3.18 ERA. Because he never got a chance to be a full-time closer Shields was almost always overlooked during discussions of…

  14. Ryan Raburn in the mix for Tigers’ starting job at second base

    Mar 18, 2011, 2:14 PM EST

    ryan-raburn-tigers

    Carlos Guillen‘s slower than expected recovery from knee surgery has opened the door for Scott Sizemore and Will Rhymes to compete for the Tigers’ starting job at second base, but Jason Beck of MLB.com writes that Ryan Raburn has emerged as a contender for the gig as well. Raburn has never started more than 15…

  15. Ichiro Suzuki donates $1.2 million to Japanese relief efforts

    Mar 18, 2011, 1:18 PM EST

    Image (1) ichiro_090906-thumb-223x298-1785.jpg for post 5121

    Ichiro Suzuki hasn’t talked to the media about the earthquake and tsunami in Japan, but Geoff Baker of the Seattle Times reports that he donated 100 million yen to the Red Cross’ relief efforts. That works out to around $1.2 million, depending on the current conversion rate. According to Baker the Mariners have also announced…

  16. Astros pick Brett Myers over Wandy Rodriguez as Opening Day starter

    Mar 18, 2011, 12:45 PM EST

    Brett Myers

    Today the Astros announced that Brett Myers, not Wandy Rodriguez, will start on Opening Day against Roy Halladay and the Phillies. Myers is coming off a career-year that saw him post a 3.14 ERA and 180/66 K/BB ratio in 224 innings to earn a two-year, $23 million contract extension, but Rodriguez was also plenty effective…

  17. Jake Fox has an MLB-high seven homers, but do spring stats really matter?

    Mar 18, 2011, 11:50 AM EST

    Fox_Jake

    Yesterday my Twitter feed lit up with Orioles writers marveling at Jake Fox hitting his sixth and seventh homers of the spring, which is good for the MLB lead and suddenly makes his chances of cracking the Opening Day roster a popular topic. While no doubt impressed by the power display, manager Buck Showalter explained…

  18. C.J. Wilson on extension talks: “It doesn’t look like a deal is going to get done”

    Mar 18, 2011, 11:16 AM EST

    CJ Wilson pitching

    C.J. Wilson dramatically altered the course of his career last year by requesting a chance to move from the bullpen to the rotation and after thriving as a starter he’s potentially now just one season from a big payday as a free agent. Wilson and the Rangers have had some talks about a contract extension,…

  19. Brad Lidge hoping for return to game action next week

    Mar 18, 2011, 10:47 AM EST

    Image (1) lidge%20throwing.jpg for post 6330

    Brad Lidge threw a problem-free bullpen session this morning and afterward told Todd Zolecki of MLB.com that he’s hoping to return to game action within 3-4 days. Lidge has been sidelined for a week with right biceps tendinitis, but said his arm “felt really good” while throwing 35 pitches today and is scheduled for another…

  20. DL bound Kendrys Morales “still isn’t running full speed”

    Mar 18, 2011, 10:15 AM EST

    Morales_Kendry

    Mike Scioscia has said that Kendrys Morales needs to see game action by Sunday if he’s to have any chance of being on the Opening Day roster, but there’s almost zero chance of that happening with Mike DiGiovanna of the Los Angeles Times reporting that Morales “still isn’t running full speed.” Morales is 10 months…

  21. What do the Twins really think of Delmon Young’s defense?

    Mar 17, 2011, 4:50 PM EST

    delmon-young-twins

    Kelsie Smith of the St. Paul Pioneer Press did a terrific job incorporating advanced defensive metrics into a recent article about Delmon Young. She spoke to sabermetricians Bill James and John Dewan while noting that the 30 pounds Young lost last offseason didn’t actually lead to major improvement in his fielding numbers and then used…

  22. Andrew Bailey gets positive news on elbow, but status for Opening Day still uncertain

    Mar 17, 2011, 3:19 PM EST

    Andrew Bailey

    Andrew Bailey gave the A’s a scare when he left Monday’s game grabbing his surgically repaired elbow, but Dr. James Andrews found no structural damage and Bailey said today that the “ripping” sensation he felt was likely just scar tissue breaking up. Bailey told Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle that he hopes to…

  23. Omar Minaya “antsy” to return to baseball, has offer from Mets

    Mar 17, 2011, 2:47 PM EST

    Omar Minaya

    “An industry source” told Mike Puma of the New York Post that former general manager Omar Minaya is “antsy” to find another job in baseball after being fired by the Mets. However, according to Puma he “still is exploring options” while being paid $2 million this season as part of his contract with the Mets.…

  24. Chase Utley is visiting with a “rehabilitation specialist” today

    Mar 17, 2011, 2:16 PM EST

    Utley_Chase

    General manager Ruben Amaro Jr. revealed that Chase Utley and Phillies trainer Scott Sheridan are spending today visiting with a “rehabilitation specialist.” Amaro declined to give any other details, but told Jim Salisbury of CSNPhilly.com that Utley and the Phillies are “trying to exhaust all ways not to have surgery” for the patellar tendinitis in…

  25. Springtime Storylines: How soon can Buck Showalter turn the Orioles into AL East contenders?

    Mar 17, 2011, 12:32 PM EST

    buck-showalter-orioles-spring

    Between now and Opening Day, HBT will take a look at each of the 30 teams, asking the key questions, the not-so-key questions, and generally breaking down their chances for the 2011 season. Next up: Buck Showalter and the optimistic Orioles. The Big Question: How soon can Buck Showalter turn the Orioles into AL East contenders? I tend…

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