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  1. Jose Canseco is still trying to play baseball

    Feb 13, 2012, 1:07 PM EDT

    Jose Canseco

    Jose Canseco is 47 years-old. He spent last summer as a player/manager in the independent Golden League, where he hit .256/.371/427.  But that’s not stopping him: he just signed to play this year for the Quintana Roo Tigers of the Mexican League. The team plays in Cancun, so I guess he’ll at least have some fun…

  2. Jorge De La Rosa “well ahead of schedule” coming back from Tommy John surgery

    Feb 13, 2012, 12:51 PM EDT

    de la rosa getty

    Jorge De La Rosa underwent Tommy John elbow surgery in late May and definitely won’t be ready anywhere near Opening Day, but Troy Renck of the Denver Post reports that he’s “well ahead of schedule in his recovery.” Of course, De La Rosa lied to the Rockies while trying to pitch through the pain for…

  3. Yoenis Cespedes signs with the Oakland Athletics

    Feb 13, 2012, 12:22 PM EDT

    cespedes

    We weren’t expecting this:  Tim Brown of Yahoo! reports that Yoenis Cespedes is on the verge of signing with the Oakland Athletics.  Susan Slusser added that the deal will be for four years, $36 million. That’s a bit lower than anyone thought he’d get.  Is it possible that his short, lackluster stint in winter ball hurt…

  4. Kevin Goldstein releases his annual top 101 prospects list

    Feb 13, 2012, 12:16 PM EDT

    Matt Moore

    Kevin Goldstein of Baseball Prospectus has posted his annual list of the 101 best prospects in baseball and it’s in front of the site’s paywall, making it free to read. I won’t spoil the whole list, which along with Baseball America and Keith Law of ESPN.com are my three must-reads each year, but Goldstein’s top…

  5. Russell Martin is in The Best Shape of His Life. Again!

    Feb 13, 2012, 12:02 PM EDT

    Russell Martin

    Last Sam Miller of the OC Register/Baseball Prospectus noticed something neat:  Russell Martin declares himself to be in The Best Shape of His Life just about every single year.  Really: Here he is in 2008, here he is in 2009, here he is in 2010 and here he is last year. So, shocker, but Martin…

  6. Jhoulys Chacin upset about GM Dan O’Dowd’s criticism

    Feb 13, 2012, 11:49 AM EDT

    chacin

    Last week Rockies general manager Dan O’Dowd criticized Jhoulys Chacin for being one of the few players not reporting to spring training in the best shape of his life, saying that he wasn’t pleased with the right-hander’s offseason workouts and added weight. Chacin spoke to Rafael Rojas Cremonesi of the Venezuelan newspaper Meridiano and SB…

  7. David Ortiz and Red Sox avoid arbitration for $14.575 million

    Feb 13, 2012, 11:13 AM EDT

    David Ortiz

    After all the drama about his potential arbitration case David Ortiz and the Red Sox have avoided today’s scheduled hearing by agreeing to a one-year, $14.575 million contract at the last minute. Ortiz filed for $16.5 million and the Red Sox submitted at $12.65 million, so the two sides settle at the exact midpoint. And…

  8. Jason Grilli is in The Best Shape of His Life

    Feb 13, 2012, 11:00 AM EDT

    Print

    This is about as straight-forward a BSOHL as you can get. Pirates reliever Jason Grilli posted this to his Facebook page, thanking his personal trainer. I’d like to think that the capitalization of “Life” is evidence that Grilli is aware that BSOHL is a thing now: Best shape of my Life Thanks to @RhFitPro A.K.A.…

  9. Orioles would eat Kevin Gregg’s salary to make him go away

    Feb 13, 2012, 10:47 AM EDT

    Gregg_Kevin

    Baltimore has spent the offseason adding veteran relievers and in the process have pushed last season’s primary closer, Kevin Gregg, into a low-leverage role. Not surprisingly the Orioles are interesting in trading Gregg, who’s owed $5.8 million this season, and Roch Kubatko of MASNSports.com reports that “they’d eat a chunk” of salary to facilitate a…

  10. Mike Matheny will move a giant pile of dirt for you

    Feb 13, 2012, 10:30 AM EDT

    mike matheny getty

    In the NBC SportsTalk segment I linked earlier I said that the Cardinals’ Mike Matheny will have the biggest impact of all new managers this year. And, with all respect to Matheny’s skills and intellect, it would be a negative one.  No hate here, just acknowledging that he’s not Tony La Russa.  No one is,…

  11. Mike Napoli still bothered by World Series ankle injury

    Feb 13, 2012, 10:15 AM EDT

    2011 World Series Game 6 - Texas Rangers v St Louis Cardinals

    Over the weekend Mike Napoli and the Rangers avoided arbitration with a one-year, $9.4 million deal, but the ankle injury he suffered in Game 6 of the World Series continues to bother the catcher and figures to limit him at the beginning of spring training. “The fact he’s still feeling it a few months later…

  12. Senator Bob Casey doesn’t like the Nationals trying to block Philly fans

    Feb 13, 2012, 9:50 AM EDT

    Phillies fans AP

    We learned recently that the Washington Nationals are going to try to keep Phillies fans from invading their ballpark during the May 4-6 series in D.C.  To do so they have limited ticket sales to that series to people from Washington, Maryland and Virginia. The effort is kind of dumb, easily circumvented and likely will…

  13. David Ortiz, Red Sox set for an arbitration hearing today

    Feb 13, 2012, 9:20 AM EDT

    ortiz getty

    UPDATE:  They settled. Read the details here. Barring an 11th hour settlement — and those often happen in these cases — The Red Sox and DH David Ortiz are set to have an arbitration hearing today. If the thing goes off as scheduled, it will be the Red Sox’ first hearing in ten years. As…

  14. UPDATE: The Indians sign Jon Garland to a minor league deal

    Feb 13, 2012, 8:54 AM EDT

    Los Angeles Dodgers v New York Mets

    UPDATE: It’s now being reported that the Indians have a minor league deal in place for Garland, pending a physical. 8:50 AM: Ken Rosenthal reports this morning that the Indians are “working on” a deal for righty Jon Garland. Garland used to be a decent innings-eater, but the innings ate him last year. His season ended…

  15. NBC SportsTalk: Who ya got?

    Feb 13, 2012, 8:00 AM EDT

    Calcaterra Sheehan

    Sports Illustated’s Joe Sheehan and I were on NBC SportsTalk on NBCSN on Friday evening talking about what’s gone down this offseason.  And boy, don’t we look smug?  I kind of think we look smug. Anyway, we did it in “Who ya got” format: who’s better: Angels or Tigers?  Whose contract is gonna be a…

  16. 2012 OPS projections: top 10 center fielders

    Feb 12, 2012, 9:00 PM EDT

    Matt Kemp

    It’s an AL East-heavy top 10 in the center field projections: .903 – Matt Kemp (Dodgers) – 597 AB – .986 in 2011 .847 – Curtis Granderson (Yankees) – 574 AB – .916 in 2011 .845 – Jacoby Ellsbury (Red Sox) – 612 AB – .928 in 2011 .845 – Andrew McCutchen (Pirates) – 560…

  17. Running down the rosters: Milwaukee Brewers

    Feb 12, 2012, 7:00 PM EDT

    rickie weeks ap

    With Prince Fielder‘s departure assured, the last thing the 2011 NL Central champion Brewers needed was to lose Ryan Braun for a third of the season. It’s likely to happen, though, even if his appeal is still pending. The rotation should be strong enough to keep the Brewers in the race while Braun is out,…

  18. Justin Smoak gives up burritos, hoping for strong 2012

    Feb 12, 2012, 5:01 PM EDT

    smoak getty

    While not quite a Best Shape of His Life tale, this weekend report from Larry Larue of the Tacoma News Tribune does profess Mariners first baseman Justin Smoak as having an improved physique: “I gave up Mexican food – man, I could crush burritos,” Smoak told Larue. “And pizza. I could crush those, too. I…

  19. Phillies president confident about retaining Cole Hamels

    Feb 12, 2012, 3:34 PM EDT

    hamels getty

    The Phillies haven’t made much progress this winter toward a long-term extension for Cole Hamels. But team president David Montgomery told Matt Gelb of the Philadelphia Inquirer that there’s a sense of confidence something will eventually get done: “I don’t think it’s difficult,” Montgomery said. “We’ve let Cole know we’re anxious to have him stay…

  20. Picture of the Day: M’s open spring training in Arizona

    Feb 12, 2012, 2:09 PM EDT

    mariners spring small

    The Mariners open their season in late March in Tokyo, so they’re in camp a week earlier than most teams. Which gives us the image below — a simple but wonderful picture of baseball players performing light running drills on a field in Arizona (via the M’s official Twitter feed). It’s back, people. Baseball is…

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