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  1. Nick Johnson is likely to make the Orioles … “if healthy”

    Mar 2, 2012, 10:47 AM EDT

    Baltimore Orioles infielder Johnson reaches for a grounder during workouts at the team's spring training complex in Sarasota

    When it comes to Nick Johnson, using the “if healthy” caveat makes anything that follows sound sort of silly, but manager Buck Showalter indicated yesterday that the perpetually injured first baseman is likely to make the Orioles out of spring training … if healthy. “I think he brings some things that I’d really like to…

  2. Who’s gonna DH in Detroit?

    Mar 2, 2012, 10:30 AM EDT

    Delmon Young

    Lynn Henning has a story up today about how hard it’s going to be for Jim Leyland to find someone to pencil into the DH slot every day this year without ruffling feathers. One of the options that seems to not be on the table at the moment is just making Delmon Young the DH:…

  3. Angels undecided on where Albert Pujols will bat in lineup

    Mar 2, 2012, 10:15 AM EDT

    Los Angeles Angels Photo Day

    Albert Pujols had 7,433 plate appearances for the Cardinals and 82.6 percent of those came as a No. 3 hitter, but the Angels aren’t certain yet where he’ll bat in their lineup. Mike Scioscia told Alden Gonzalez of MLB.com that he’s leaning toward keeping Pujols in the No. 3 spot, in part because it guarantees…

  4. Mariano Rivera’s cutter: “a gift from God”

    Mar 2, 2012, 9:44 AM EDT

    Mariano Rivera

    I’m guessing Yankees fans have heard this story before, but I don’t recall it.  Here’s Bob Klapisch, relating the story of Mariano Rivera discovering his cutter.  Given how dominant and unique Rivera is, it’s not terribly unlike a superhero creation story: Its genesis is well known in the Yankees’ family, although Rivera still takes pleasure…

  5. Phillies front office: “Sabermetrics? We don’t need no stinkin’ sabermetrics!”

    Mar 2, 2012, 9:13 AM EDT

    Pittsburgh Pirates v Philadelphia Phillies

    That may not be an exact quote. And really isn’t anything close to what the Phillies people said in the article. I just like “Treasure of the Sierra Madre” and try to use that construction whenever possible. But Bob Brookover of the Philly Inquirer does write today about how Ruben Amaro and his team aren’t…

  6. UPDATE: A.J. Burnett will miss 8-10 weeks

    Mar 2, 2012, 8:50 AM EDT

    A.J. Burnett

    UPDATE: Oy, it’s now been confirmed that Burnett will miss 8-10 weeks.  Wowzers. 8:50 AM: The Pirates have yet to say how much time A.J. Burnett will miss in the wake of surgery-requiring broken orbital bone, but a couple of people with some level of insight into the matter have weighed in.  Of course they don’t…

  7. Great Moments in Marketing to Women

    Mar 2, 2012, 8:20 AM EDT

    Pink cap

    Can someone ask Major League Baseball or Nike if they sell this in a girls’ medium?  I’d like to quit teaching my daughter about how cool baseball is and how to appreciate the sport as a fan and get straight to turning her into a groupie: Keep sending those positive messages to women, MLB. Never…

  8. Stephen Drew acknowledges he may miss start of season

    Mar 1, 2012, 10:03 PM EDT

    stephen drew getty

    Diamondbacks shortstop Stephen Drew had his 2011 season cut short in late July after suffering a fractured right ankle while sliding into home plate. And he’s still battling the injury here in March. According to MLB.com beat man Steve Gilbert, Drew is “nowhere near the point in his recovery” where he is ready to appear…

  9. Varitek makes retirement official at emotional presser

    Mar 1, 2012, 8:28 PM EDT

    Boston Red Sox' Varitek announces his retirement from baseball during a news conference at the team's spring training complex in Fort Myers

    Veteran catcher Jason Varitek officially put an end to his playing career on Thursday evening with a farewell press conference at the Red Sox’ spring training complex in Fort Myers, Florida. Speaking from a podium fittingly placed just in front of home plate at the newly constructed JetBlue Park, Varitek addressed his reasoning behind the…

  10. Mike Napoli (ankle) catches three innings in scrimmage

    Mar 1, 2012, 7:00 PM EDT

    napoli ankle getty

    Rangers catcher Mike Napoli has taken a big step forward in his ongoing recovery from the high ankle sprain that he suffered in World Series Game 6. According to Richard Durrett of ESPNDallas.com, the 30-year-old slugger caught three innings Thursday in an instrasquad game and “felt good.” Napoli had been limited to drills and light…

  11. Ryan Braun’s attorney criticizes the collector’s statement

    Mar 1, 2012, 5:31 PM EDT

    braun tall getty

    Dino Laurenzi Jr. is the man we’ve come to call “the collector” in the Ryan Braun case.  He defended himself the other day following Ryan Braun’s sharp criticism of him at his press conference. Now Braun’s attorney, David Cornwell, has issued a statement defending Braun from the defense: “Ryan Braun presented a winning defense in the…

  12. Shane Victorino wants a five-year deal from the Phillies

    Mar 1, 2012, 5:07 PM EDT

    Shane Victorino

    Shane Victorino will make $9.5 million this season in the final year of a three-year deal and the center fielder told Jim Salisbury of CSNPhilly.com that he’d like to re-sign with the Phillies on a five-year contract because “my agents say I can get a five-year deal on the market … why not trust them?”…

  13. Buster Posey to sit out Giants’ spring opener

    Mar 1, 2012, 4:32 PM EDT

    posey wider

    Buster Posey has been reported to be on schedule from his ankle rehab, but the Giants are exercising some caution: Posey will not play in Saturday’s Cactus League opener against the Diamondbacks. That according to Andrew Baggarly of CSNBayArea.com. Indeed, it’s possible that he’ll miss the following two or three games, as the Giants remain…

  14. Grady Sizemore out 8-12 weeks following back surgery

    Mar 1, 2012, 4:08 PM EDT

    sizemore

    When the Indians told reporters that they’d have an update on Grady Sizemore‘s health status today Jordan Bastian of MLB.com immediately tweeted that it “sounds ominous” and … well, he was right. Sizemore, who was already expected to miss Opening Day because of a back injury suffered three weeks ago, underwent micro discectomy surgery on…

  15. Evan Longoria is day-to-day with a bruised right hand

    Mar 1, 2012, 3:21 PM EDT

    evan longoria

    Evan Longoria gave the Rays a scare this morning. Or, more accurately, Matt Bush gave them the scare by plunking Longoria in the hand with a fastball. Longoria immediately left the game and later went for X-rays, but they came back negative and he’s been diagnosed with a bruised hand. He’s officially listed as day-to-day.…

  16. The Cardinals and Yadier Molina finalize their deal

    Mar 1, 2012, 2:53 PM EDT

    yadier molina getty

    Via Ken Rosenthal and Derek Goold, we learn the final details of the Yadier Molina deal: Five years, $75 million The deal begins in 2013, and there is a mutual option for 2018 at $15 million There is no deferred money There is a no-trade clause Like we’ve said before: wow, that’s rich for a…

  17. Johan Santana throws two-inning simulated game

    Mar 1, 2012, 2:14 PM EDT

    New York Mets v Florida Marlins

    Johan Santana faced live hitters today for the first time this spring, throwing a two-inning simulated game against a lineup that included David Wright, Ike Davis, and Daniel Murphy. Adam Rubin of ESPN New York reports that Santana threw 43 pitches and is scheduled to make his first spring training start Tuesday against the Cardinals.…

  18. Brace yourselves for another drug suspension appeal!

    Mar 1, 2012, 1:30 PM EDT

    syringe

    I’m guessing this one won’t be as contentious as the Braun one, but still. Remember yesterday how minor leaguer James Dowdy was suspended for 50 games for refusing a drug test?  Well, he tells Deadspin that he didn’t refuse anything.  Dowdy says that the urine collector — a job we didn’t think much about until…

  19. Hal Steinbrenner wants the Yankees’ payroll down to $189 million by 2014

    Mar 1, 2012, 1:16 PM EDT

    Hal Steinbrenner

    Hal Steinbrenner said today that the Yankees plan to decrease their payroll to below the $189 million luxury tax figure by 2014, which is when the new collective bargaining agreement threshold kicks in. Steinbrenner called it “streamlining” the payroll, which is currently at around $210 million. Wallace Matthews of ESPN New York notes that Alex…

  20. Looking back at Game 6

    Mar 1, 2012, 1:02 PM EDT

    Texas Rangers' Nelson Cruz misses a two RBI double off the wall by St. Louis Cardinals' David Freese in the ninth inning in Game 6 of MLB's World Series baseball championship in St. Louis

    Rangers fans may not want to read it, but Bob Nightengale of USA Today has a great story about Game 6 of the World Series from the Rangers’ perspective.  It’s a fantastic blow-by-blow of what went down after the Rangers left the field with a 7-5 lead at the end of the eighth inning. And…

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