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  1. Jordan Schafer was just ahead of his time, man

    Dec 30, 2011, 1:00 PM EST

    Jordan Schafer

    Lots of hand wringing when Astros’ center fielder Jordan Schafer was arrested with marijuana a couple of months ago. However, Courtland Milloy’s column in the Washington Post — passing along the results of a study published in the American Journal of Sports Medicine — may show that it wasn’t all bad, man: “Athletes under the…

  2. Ken Rosenthal’s eminently reasonable position on Jeff Bagwell and steroids

    Dec 30, 2011, 11:55 AM EST

    Jeff Bagwell

    Not sure why it’s so hard for Hall of Fame voters to get on board with the ideas that (a) it’s not fair to assume someone was on steroids when there is no evidence of it; and (b) Jeff Bagwell, on the merits, posted a Hall of Fame career. But considering it’s highly unlikely he’ll…

  3. College football will test the Yankee Stadium turf today

    Dec 30, 2011, 10:50 AM EST

    Army v Rutgers

    Rutgers fans and New Yorkers will likely remember how the turf at Yankee Stadium didn’t do too well for college football when a game was played their last month.  Today the Pinstripe Bowl will be played — Rutgers again — and the New York Times has a story about all the precautions being taken to…

  4. Free agent Edwin Jackson “intrigues” the Orioles

    Dec 30, 2011, 10:15 AM EST

    Edwin Jackson

    Free agent left-hander Joe Saunders has already been linked to the Orioles and now Dan Connolly of the Baltimore Sun reports that free agent right-hander Edwin Jackson also “intrigues” them. Connolly speculates that Jackson will wind up with a four-year contract somewhere and notes that “the Orioles have been hesitant” to make that type of…

  5. Remembering Melvin Mora

    Dec 30, 2011, 9:25 AM EST

    San Diego Padres v Arizona Diamondbacks

    I made a joke on Twitter earlier about how we’d see just how desperate bloggers are for content by the number of “is Melvin Mora a Hall of Famer?”  posts written today.  Hey, he retired. That’s an easy one, right? I shouldn’t be so damn cynical, because Rob Neyer wrote up a nice Melvin Mora…

  6. Kobe Bryant does study and research for A-Rod

    Dec 30, 2011, 8:34 AM EST

    New York Knicks v Los Angeles Lakers

    It was mentioned in that story about A-Rod’s knee procedure the other day that Kobe Bryant recommended the German doctor and the procedure to Rodriguez. Now there’s a bigger story about it, talking to Bryant: “You can’t just try something just to try it,” Bryant said. “It has to make sense. It has to be…

  7. Melvin Mora announces retirement from baseball

    Dec 29, 2011, 9:27 PM EST

    melvin mora getty

    From Rafael Rojas of Viva Colorado comes word that veteran infielder Melvin Mora announced his retirement Thursday from the game of baseball. Mora, 39, posted a .277/.350/.431 career batting line over 6,158 career plate appearances, amassing 1,503 career hits and 171 career home runs. The native of Venezuela spent time with the Orioles, Mets, Diamondbacks…

  8. Albert Pujols’ 10-year, $254 million deal is extremely backloaded

    Dec 29, 2011, 7:32 PM EST

    pujols getty press conference

    Just like the Marlins did in acquiring free agent shortstop Jose Reyes, the Angels are dabbling in some dangerous backloading in their 10-year, $254 agreement with first baseman Albert Pujols. According to ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick, Pujols will get just $12 million in 2012 and $16 million in 2013. Because of those low early salaries, the…

  9. The Orioles are interested in Joe Saunders

    Dec 29, 2011, 5:20 PM EST

    Joe Saunders

    Dan Connolly of the Baltimore Sun says that the Orioles are interested in Joe Saunders. That makes them one of several teams that, for reasons that aren’t clear to me, are apparently interested in Joe Saunders. I swear, starting pitchers in December and January are like homely people in the bar at closing time. They…

  10. Shoulder surgery may keep Ryan Kalish out until June

    Dec 29, 2011, 3:45 PM EST

    kalish pose

    By trading Josh Reddick to the A’s yesterday the Red Sox seemingly cleared the way for Ryan Kalish to take over as their starting right fielder at some point in 2012, but whether he’s in the minors or majors Kalish will likely begin the season on the disabled list. Kalish missed most of 2011 with…

  11. The IRS sued Hal Steinbrenner

    Dec 29, 2011, 3:20 PM EST

    Hal Steinbrenner

    The IRS has sued Hal Steinbrenner and his wife, seeking $670,000 back in a refund that the feds now claim was given erroneously. You can read about all the details here. That’s less than the Yankees paid Boone Logan last year, by the way, so I’m guessing this one will be settled pretty quickly.  

  12. Details of John Danks’ five-year, $65 million extension with White Sox

    Dec 29, 2011, 2:19 PM EST

    John Danks

    John Danks‘ five-year, $65 million contract extension with the White Sox was reported last week and became official today. Danks will get $8 million in 2012 and then $14.25 million per season from 2013-2016. If not for the extension Danks would be heading into his final season of arbitration eligibility after earning $6 million in…

  13. The A’s to San Jose? Not so fast …

    Dec 29, 2011, 1:19 PM EST

    San Jose postcard

    On Christmas Eve, while you were all drinking too much and having passive aggressive interactions with your families, Bob Nightengale reported that the Athletics’ long-awaited move to San Jose was finally poised to be approved by Major League Baseball. Only one problem: no one seems to have informed the Giants about this, and at least…

  14. You ain’t got to lie, Jerry, you ain’t got to lie

    Dec 29, 2011, 11:45 AM EST

    Jerry DiPoto

    I interviewed two general managers at the Winter Meetings: Ned Colletti and Ruben Amaro.  It was kinda neat. They’re important people and talking to them made me feel sort of important. It was for TV, and I’m sort of liking this TV stuff.  And of course talking to guys like that — and the assistants…

  15. Nationals likely to start Jayson Werth in center field

    Dec 29, 2011, 11:17 AM EST

    Jayson Werth

    Washington has been searching for a long-term answer in center field since the middle of last season, but after once again coming up empty in their attempts to trade for a veteran general manager Mike Rizzo indicated that he’ll put the search on hold until next offseason. Rizzo noted during an interview with MLB Network…

  16. Short careers and the Hall of Fame: it’s better to burn out than fade away

    Dec 29, 2011, 10:43 AM EST

    kirby puckett game 6 1991

    After writing the Dale Murphy post an uncomfortable thought struck me: would it have been better for his Hall of Fame case if he had been hit by a bus in 1988 than for his career to have simply cratered like it did? I know, I’m awful for thinking that. Trust me when I say…

  17. Adam Wainwright is “pretty stinking close” to “perfect rehab”

    Dec 29, 2011, 10:15 AM EST

    wainwright ap

    Adam Wainwright is 12 months removed from Tommy John elbow surgery and one month into a throwing program designed to get him ready for spring training, and the Cardinals right-hander is making excellent progress in his recovery. Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post Dispatch reports that he threw 30 pitches to a catcher on…

  18. You can vote for Dale Murphy for the Hall of Fame. Just do it for the right reasons, OK?

    Dec 29, 2011, 9:49 AM EST

    Dale Murphy

    Tim Kawakami of the Mercury News just submitted his first-ever Hall of Fame ballot.  Included on that ballot was Dale Murphy. I’m cool with that. I don’t think I’d vote for him myself because I really do like to see a mix of elite peak — which Murphy had — and longevity, which Murphy didn’t.…

  19. So I guess I’m an “underwear guy”

    Dec 29, 2011, 8:29 AM EST

    Captain Underpants

    George Vecsey wrote for the New York Times for 43 years. He’s retiring now. Unlike some others of his generation, he pretty much kept his fastball until the end and even when I disagreed with him I thought he was a great writer who really understood the game and the context in which it existed.…

  20. Who will close next season in Oakland?

    Dec 28, 2011, 9:28 PM EST

    balfour getty

    The A’s dealt closer Andrew Bailey to the Red Sox on Wednesday evening as part of a five-player swap. The trade has all sorts of implications, many of which we’ll analyze over the next few months leading into the start of spring training. But let’s start simple, with a look at the back end of the…

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