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  1. Matt Holliday and David Freese like to play squash

    Feb 14, 2012, 1:00 PM EDT

    Squash

    Or: how you know that the offseason has dragged on long enough: 863 words on Matt Holliday and David Freese playing squash: Looking for a competitive alternative to add to their offseason workouts this winter, Freese and Holliday found squash. A cousin of racquetball, the game features a smaller ball with less bounce and tends…

  2. Angels GM on Bobby Abreu: “Right now, he fits our roster”

    Feb 14, 2012, 12:16 PM EDT

    Bobby Abreu

    Last week Jayson Stark of ESPN.com reported that the Angels would accept a “middling prospect” in exchange for Bobby Abreu and his $9 million salary, but yesterday general manager Jerry Dipoto downplayed the team’s chances of parting with Abreu. “Bobby is an Angel,” Dipoto told Mike DiGiovanna of the Los Angeles Times. “Right now, he…

  3. The White Sox sign Kosuke Fukudome

    Feb 14, 2012, 12:02 PM EDT

    fukudome running bases

    The Chicago white Sox signed Kosuke Fukudome. The deal: one-year, $1 million contract with a $3.5 million club option for 2013. $500K of that $1 million comes in the form of a buyout of next year’s option, so he’s making basically nothing during the season. That’s pretty sweet.  Fukudome was overpaid once upon a time,…

  4. Brewers defeat Jose Veras in arbitration hearing

    Feb 14, 2012, 11:50 AM EDT

    jose-veras-marlins

    Milwaukee beat Jose Veras in an arbitration hearing held yesterday, meaning the reliever will earn $2 million this season rather than the $2.375 million he requested. Considering the small gap in submissions it’s odd that the two sides couldn’t come to a pre-hearing compromise, but instead the Brewers made their case to a three-person panel…

  5. Ryan Braun should know if he’s suspended by February 24

    Feb 14, 2012, 11:35 AM EDT

    braun getty

    There’s usually a 25-day deadline between a drug test appeal and a decision, but that time frame has come and gone with respect to Ryan Braun.  Tom Haudricourt reports, however, that MLB’s decision on whether to suspend Braun for 50 games should come no later than February 24, which is Braun’s deadline to report to…

  6. Kate Upton helps Justin Verlander, David Price, C.J. Wilson, and Jay Bruce sell video games

    Feb 14, 2012, 11:19 AM EDT

    2011 Taco Bell All-Star Legends & Celebrity Softball Game

    Here’s the commercial for this season’s “MLB 2K” video game, featuring new Sports Illustrated swimsuit edition cover girl Kate Upton teaching the finer points of joystick control to Justin Verlander, David Price, C.J. Wilson, and Jay Bruce:

  7. Why doesn’t Johnny Damon have a job? Because he wants 3000 hits

    Feb 14, 2012, 10:58 AM EDT

    Tampa Bay Rays v Baltimore Orioles

    At least that’s what Joel Sherman of the New York Post is reporting: … executives from three teams that had interest in Damon expressed concerns a fixation with 3,000 has diminished an attribute that greatly contributed to the perception of Damon as a winning player: patient, tough at-bats. And statistics appear to confirm the criticism.…

  8. Royals exercise 2013 option on manager Ned Yost

    Feb 14, 2012, 10:47 AM EDT

    Ned Yost

    Last year we saw what can happen when a veteran manager of a young, suddenly decent team has a contract that expires at the end of the season, but the Royals have ensured they won’t have a Jim Riggleman situation by exercising their 2013 option on Ned Yost before spring training even begins. Yost, who…

  9. Plan your “Moneyball” Oscar party now!

    Feb 14, 2012, 10:30 AM EDT

    moneyball poster

    “Moneyball” was nominated for several Academy Awards, and over at the website Buzzsugar, they give some advice on how to throw a “Moneyball”-themed Oscar party. The upshot: Serve beer and peanuts! Wear baseball jerseys! Decorate the room with gloves, caps and memorabilia! I wonder what these captains obvious suggested when “Revolutionary Road” was nominated. That…

  10. Ike Davis is “good to go” and has “been fine for a while”

    Feb 14, 2012, 10:15 AM EDT

    Ike Davis

    Ike Davis‘ sophomore season was ruined by a ankle injury and multiple setbacks, but the Mets first baseman said yesterday that he’s now “good to go” and has “been fine for a while now.” Davis opted for rest and rehab rather than microfracture surgery, telling Dan Martin of the New York Post: “It’s great to…

  11. Happy Valentine’s Day from HBT

    Feb 14, 2012, 9:47 AM EDT

    Valentine's Day

    Some people say Valentine’s Day is a Hallmark holiday.  Other people think it’s an important day on which to express one’s love for another. Still others, no matter what they think of the day’s legitimacy, dread it either because they have no love in their life or because they do but they can’t stand the…

  12. Manny Machado is optimistic

    Feb 14, 2012, 9:20 AM EDT

    manny machado

    Orioles top-prospect Manny Machado is either the most optimistic man on the planet or else he’s just an awesome team guy: I hate how MLB keeps ranking my orioles in last place again. Man I can’t wait till we shut them up nd become al east division champs. — Manny Machado (@MannyMachado3) February 10, 2012…

  13. Is Hiroki Kuroda gonna be OK in New York?

    Feb 14, 2012, 8:50 AM EDT

    kuroda getty

    I tend to greatly discount talk about players who won’t be able to play in New York due to the pressure or whatever. I mean, it’s a real thing I think, but it seems overplayed. These guys are pros. And with a handful of exceptions, guys who have fizzled in New York have done so for more…

  14. Jorge Soler expected to sign with the Cubs

    Feb 14, 2012, 8:20 AM EDT

    Cubs logo

    When it comes to Cuban free agents, everyone’s attention has been on Yoenis Cespedes.  But, as the man said, there is another. His name is Jorge Soler.  He’s and outfielder who profiles as a corner guy, long term. He has the same sorts of tools as Cespedes. He’s much younger too: 19. And according to Dave…

  15. 2012 OPS projections: top 10 right fielders

    Feb 13, 2012, 11:00 PM EDT

    Jose Bautista

    Saving the best for last, here are the top 10 right fielders: 1.008 – Jose Bautista (Blue Jays) – 547 AB – 1.056 in 2011 .958 – Justin Upton (D-backs) – 574 AB – .898 in 2011 .911 – Mike Stanton (Marlins) – 560 AB – .893 in 2011 .868 – Jason Heyward (Braves) –…

  16. Carl Barger’s family isn’t happy with No. 5 being unretired for Logan Morrison

    Feb 13, 2012, 9:45 PM EDT

    Logan Morrison

    We learned over the weekend that the Marlins were unretiring No. 5 so that Logan Morrison could wear it in memory of his father. Nice story, right? Turns out it’s a bit more complicated. According to Joe Capozzi of the Palm Beach Post, the family of former Marlins’ president Carl Barger didn’t hear from the…

  17. Red Sox and Cubs submit Theo compensation arguments to Bud Selig

    Feb 13, 2012, 9:02 PM EDT

    Chicago Cubs President of Baseball Operations Theo Epstein speaks at a news conference at Wrigley Field in Chicago

    According to the Associated Press, the Red Sox and Cubs have submitted written arguments to commissioner Bud Selig in regard to compensation for Theo Epstein. The Red Sox say they were promised “significant compensation” after Epstein stepped down as general manager nearly four months ago in order to become the Cubs’ president of baseball operations,…

  18. Dmitri Young works out for the Pirates

    Feb 13, 2012, 8:00 PM EDT

    Dmitri Young Getty

    We recently passed along word that Dmitri Young was going to have a tryout for the Pirates at the team’s spring training complex in Bradenton, Florida. The scheduled workout took place today, according to Tom Singer of MLB.com. The slimmed-down Young fielded balls at first base and in the outfield, ran the bases and hit…

  19. Blue Jays and Casey Janssen agree to extension

    Feb 13, 2012, 6:37 PM EDT

    casey-janssen-blue-jays

    UPDATE: Richard Griffin of the Toronto Star reports that the Jays and Janssen have agreed to a two-year, $5.9 million contract with a $4 million option for 2014. The new deal buys out his final year of arbitration and potentially his first two years of free agency. 3:29 PM: Casey Janssen and the Blue Jays…

  20. The Oakland A’s in 2014

    Feb 13, 2012, 6:32 PM EDT

    Billy Beane

    Though they’ve since made moves geared more for the short-term in re-signing Coco Crisp and trading for Seth Smith, the A’s pretty much gave up on 2012 when they shipped out pitchers Gio Gonzalez, Trevor Cahill and Andrew Bailey for youngsters. That’s still true even after they anted up $36 million for Yoenis Cespedes. Their eyes are…

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