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  1. Is race and personality affecting coverage of the Ryan Braun story?

    Dec 13, 2011, 3:36 PM EDT

    braun wide getty

    Ray Ratto of CSNBayArea.com wants to know why people are inclined to give Ryan Braun the benefit of the doubt at the moment when they weren’t so willing to do so with Barry Bonds: So why, then, is there such an eagerness to find Braun’s seemingly implausible story so believable, or at least defensible by…

  2. Josh Willingham to decide on new team within 48 hours

    Dec 13, 2011, 2:20 PM EDT

    willingham reuters

    Josh Willingham will sign within the next 48 hours, agent Matt Sosnick told Joe Christensen of the Minneapolis Star Tribune. Sosnick indicated that Willingham has narrowed his choices down to three teams, two of which are believed to be the Twins and Indians. Minnesota has had a three-year, $25 million offer on the table to…

  3. Takashi Saito’s one-year deal with Arizona worth $1.75 million

    Dec 13, 2011, 1:48 PM EDT

    takashi-saito-brewers-spring

    Arizona’s one-year contract with Takashi Saito will pay the reliever $1.75 million, according to Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com. Milwaukee was interested in re-signing Saito, but Francisco Rodriguez accepting arbitration took them out of the running for other free agents and left the right-hander settling for the same salary he earned in 2011. Saito is 41…

  4. Scott Boras has a 73-page book on Prince Fielder

    Dec 13, 2011, 1:30 PM EDT

    Prince Fielder, Corey Hart, Ryan Braun, Rickie Weeks

    Every year a story comes out about the big binder full-o-love that Scott Boras puts together for his top free agent clients. Glossy and filled with over-the-top claims, they sound like an outrageous amount of fun. More fun when they involve questionable dudes like Oliver Perez — remember how he was the next Sandy Koufax?…

  5. An updated top 50 free agents

    Dec 13, 2011, 1:13 PM EDT

    National League first baseman Fielder of the Brewers watches three-run home run in fourth inning during Major League Baseball's All-Star Game in Phoenix

    Taking into account recent signings and some new arrivals courtesy of the non-tender deadline, here’s a new list of the top 50 free agents available. Posted Japanese players Yu Darvish and Norichika Aoki are not included. Darvish, a right-handed pitcher, would come in at No. 2 on the list, while Aoki, an outfielder, would slide in right around No.…

  6. Aramis Ramirez backloaded his contract to help with Brewers’ payroll crunch

    Dec 13, 2011, 12:44 PM EDT

    Aramis Ramirez

    Francisco Rodriguez accepting arbitration from the Brewers stretched their payroll to the limit, so Aramis Ramirez‘s three-year, $36 million deal is heavily backloaded. Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports that Ramirez will get just $6 million in 2012, leaving $30 million to paid for the other two seasons, and $6 million of his…

  7. Cardinals choose cash instead of players to complete July swap with Blue Jays

    Dec 13, 2011, 12:16 PM EDT

    stack of money

    As part of July’s eight-player swap with the Blue Jays that was headlined by Colby Rasmus and Edwin Jackson the Cardinals received three players to be named later or cash considerations. Gregor Chisholm of MLB.com reports that St. Louis has opted for cash instead of players in all three instances, although the exact dollar amounts…

  8. Carlos Beltran is drawing interest from the Rockies

    Dec 13, 2011, 11:51 AM EDT

    San Francisco Giants v Philadelphia Phillies

    Carlos Beltran has been linked to surprisingly few teams this offseason, but Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com reports that the Rockies have shown interest in the switch-hitting outfielder. However, they’ve shown even stronger interest in Michael Cuddyer, with Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com reporting that Colorado made him a three-year offer worth more than $25 million in…

  9. Red Sox sign Kelly Shoppach to replace Jason Varitek as backup catcher

    Dec 13, 2011, 11:19 AM EDT

    shoppach_kelly

    Kelly Shoppach was the Red Sox’s second-round pick in 2001 and debuted for them in 2005, but was traded to the Indians in the Coco Crisp swap that offseason and went on to establish himself as a solid backup catcher who crushes left-handed pitching. Now he returns to Boston to fill that exact role, with…

  10. Union head Michael Weiner releases a statement about Ryan Braun

    Dec 13, 2011, 11:05 AM EDT

    braun tall getty

    Steroids stories breaking when no other news is going on means that everyone is gonna get out in front of it. Like, way in front of it. This stuff with Ryan Braun went down on Saturday and I think people have already decided what his grandchildren’s legacy is going to be as a result. But…

  11. Astros catcher Jason Castro out again following foot surgery

    Dec 13, 2011, 10:15 AM EDT

    jason-castro-astros-injury

    Jason Castro missed the entire season following knee surgery for a torn ACL suffered during spring training and now the Astros catcher may not be ready for next spring because of another operation. Castro was in the Arizona Fall League in order to make up for all the playing time he missed, but the 2008…

  12. The Orioles are about to sign Tsuyoshi Wada

    Dec 13, 2011, 10:01 AM EDT

    Tsuyoshi Wada

    UPDATE: The deal is for two year and $8.15 million.  Even if he’s not much more than serviceable, that’s a good deal for the O’s. 10:01 AM: Dan Connolly reports that the Orioles are nearing a deal with Tsuyoshi Wada, late of the Softbank Hawks of the NPB. It’s not yet finalized, but it’s a multi-year deal. Wada, a…

  13. Derek Jeter gives his hookups autographed baseballs

    Dec 13, 2011, 9:40 AM EDT

    Derek Jeter

    From the New York Post:  Things that Derek Jeter can get away with that just about no one else on the planet can get away with: “Derek has girls stay with him at his apartment in New York, and then he gets them a car to take them home the next day. Waiting in his…

  14. Shocker: John Rocker admits to steroid use

    Dec 13, 2011, 8:55 AM EDT

    John Rocker

    I’m nonplussed. Like I totally lack plus. Plus-free zone here. Not a single plus was given this day. Via Neyer, comes Mike Silva’s interview with John Rocker from the other night in which the pumped up fireballer with anger issues — shockingly — admitted to using steroids during his career. Here’s Silva: I was surprised…

  15. The Rangers aren’t really hot for Prince Fielder

    Dec 13, 2011, 8:10 AM EDT

    fielder getty

    We keep hearing reports about teams interested in Prince Fielder. Without putting too fine a point on it, however, those reports often seem to come from people who have been said to have Prince Fielder’s agent as a valued source. Others, however, specifically Ken Rosenthal, are hearing different things. Specifically with respect to the Rangers, who…

  16. Tracking the non-tenders: Joe Saunders, Luke Scott, Hong-Chih Kuo

    Dec 13, 2011, 12:54 AM EDT

    Luke Scott

    Here’s the official list of players non-tendered prior to the Monday midnight deadline: American League Baltimore: OF/DH Luke Scott, LHP Jo-Jo Reyes, RHP Willie Eyre Scott went from hitting .284/.368/.535 during an excellent 2010 season to .220/.301/.402 in 209 at-bats during a 2011 season shortened by shoulder surgery. The Orioles could re-sign him for significantly less…

  17. Pirates land 3B Casey McGehee from Brewers

    Dec 12, 2011, 9:03 PM EDT

    Casey McGehee

    The Pirates picked up another option at third base on Monday, acquiring Casey McGehee from the Brewers for right-hander Jose Veras. Both players were considered candidates to be non-tendered this evening. McGehee, 29, followed up two surprisingly strong seasons for the Brewers by hitting .223/.280/.346 with 13 homers and 67 RBI in 546 at-bats last…

  18. Report: Diamondbacks to non-tender Joe Saunders, Micah Owings

    Dec 12, 2011, 8:40 PM EDT

    Joe Saunders

    The Diamondbacks couldn’t come to terms with Joe Saunders on either a one- or a two-year deal and have chosen to non-tender the left-hander, according to FOXSports.com’s Ken Rosenthal. Micah Owings, who did a nice job against righties out of the bullpen last season, will also be let go. Saunders went 12-13 with a 3.69…

  19. Dodgers sign Tony Gwynn Jr. to two-year deal

    Dec 12, 2011, 7:46 PM EDT

    Tony Gwynn Jr.

    The word out of Los Angeles recently was that Tony Gwynn Jr. was a possible non-tender candidate, but so much for that thought. The Dodgers signed the speedy outfielder to a new two-year, $2 million deal on Monday. The contract covers Gwynn’s two remaining years of arbitration eligibility. The 29-year-old hit .256/.308/.353 with two homers, 22 RBI…

  20. The Mets recently received a $40 million loan from Bank of America

    Dec 12, 2011, 7:22 PM EDT

    Fred Wilpon

    UPDATE: Via Andy Martino of the New York Daily News, the Mets have released the following statement: “The bridge loan was approved by Major League Baseball and the syndicate of lenders to the Mets. The process for the sale of minority shares in the team continues to go very well.” 7:22 PM: Just in case the…

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