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  1. The Pirates raise prices for walkup tickets, but it’s cool

    Jan 25, 2011, 8:25 AM EDT

    Empty PNC Park

    My eyes bulged a bit when I saw that the Pirates had raised some ticket prices. The Pirates? Really? You can’t give Pirates tickets away some days, so how do they get off raising prices? Then I read further — and read Dejan Kovacevic’s longer take on it — and realized that (a) it’s only a…

  2. Murray Chass can’t let go of Mike Piazza’s back acne

    Jan 25, 2011, 6:18 AM EDT

    10 METS FAYTOK

    While I was initially outraged at Murray Chass’s insistence that he knows Mike Piazza used steroids because he saw back acne on him once while walking through the locker room, I have since become amused by it. And a little bit in awe of his tenaciousness in holding on to the point. He wrote this over…

  3. Jon Lester is already talking World Series

    Jan 25, 2011, 1:52 AM EDT

    lester

    Red Sox Nation is brimming with confidence these days, and rightly so given the amazing offseason Theo Epstein put together. They bolstered their bullpen with Bobby Jenks and Dan Wheeler, added Adrian Gonzalez’s big bat to the middle of the lineup and nabbed speed merchant Carl Crawford. So obviously, there is reason for plenty of…

  4. Padres agree to deal with Jorge Cantu

    Jan 25, 2011, 12:53 AM EDT

    Texas Rangers v Oakland Athletics

    UPDATE: A slight correction. Dan Hayes of the North County Times hears that it is a non-guaranteed major league deal. 11:35 PM: Marty Caswell of XX1090 Sports Radio in San Diego reports that Cantu will make an $850,000 base salary in his new one-year contract with the Padres. I would assume there are some incentives…

  5. Justin Morneau to skip TwinsFest in order to continue workouts

    Jan 24, 2011, 9:44 PM EDT

    Justin Morneau

    Here’s a little addendum to what Craig wrote this morning. Twins general manager Bill Smith has informed La Valle E. Neal III of the Minneapolis Star-Tribune that Justin Morneau will skip the team’s annual TwinsFest this weekend in order to continue his workouts near his offseason home in Arizona. Smith said it was a tough…

  6. Andy LaRoche signs minor league contract with Athletics

    Jan 24, 2011, 8:11 PM EDT

    Andy LaRoche

    Funny I mentioned Andy LaRoche just a short while ago, because he has signed a minor league deal with the Athletics, according to the team’s Twitter feed. He’ll be a non-roster invitee during spring training. LaRoche, now 27 years old, was designated for assignment by the Pirates in November after batting just .206/.268/.287 with four…

  7. Rockies sign Willy Taveras to minor league deal

    Jan 24, 2011, 6:50 PM EDT

    Willy Taveras sliding

    The Rockies have signed outfielder Willy Taveras to a minor league contract with an invite to spring training, according to the team’s Twitter feed. This is a homecoming of sorts for Taveras, who batted .320 with a .367 on-base percentage and .748 OPS with the Rockies during the team’s World Series run in 2007. Baseball’s…

  8. The President of the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum defends the decision to move the Legacy Awards Show

    Jan 24, 2011, 5:30 PM EDT

    Negro Leagues Baseball Museum

    Last week I posted  a link to Sam Mellinger’s story in the Kansas City Star about the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum’s decision not to hold its annual Legacy Awards Show this month.  Today I received an email from the President of the NLBM, Dr. Raymond Doswell, who takes issue with Mellinger’s characterization and, subsequently, my…

  9. Joe Torre leaning toward taking a job with Major League Baseball

    Jan 24, 2011, 5:00 PM EDT

    Joe Torre

    A couple of weeks ago we learned that Joe Torre was considering taking Sandy Alderson’s gig with Major League Baseball. Today it’s reported that he’s learning towards accepting it. Or at least something like it: Joe Torre may not stay retired much longer. The former Los Angeles Dodgers manager says he’s leaning toward accepting a…

  10. Diamondbacks sign Micah Owings to a minor league contract

    Jan 24, 2011, 4:42 PM EDT

    Micah Owings

    In an effort to resurrect his career Micah Owings is returning to the team that drafted him, signing a minor-league contract with the Diamondbacks that includes an invitation to spring training. Owings was Arizona’s third-round pick in 2005 and spent the first two seasons of his career with the Diamondbacks before being traded to the…

  11. Should the Rangers bring up Josh Hamilton’s substance abuse history if they go to arbitration?

    Jan 24, 2011, 4:09 PM EDT

    File photo of Texas Rangers' outfielder Josh Hamilton waiting to hit during workouts in preparation for Major League Baseball's World Series in San Francisco

    Unless they settle with either a one-year deal or a big lockup package, Josh Hamilton and the Rangers are slated to head to an arbitration hearing sometime soon.  From that an interesting question emerges: how hard do the Rangers hit him — if they hit him at all — with his substance abuse history? The…

  12. Orioles pitcher Troy Patton arrested and charged with DWI

    Jan 24, 2011, 3:20 PM EDT

    troy patton mugshot

    Orioles left-hander Troy Patton was arrested Saturday night in Houston and charged with a DWI after police pulled him over for speeding and driving over a curb, according to KPRC television. Patton was the Astros’ ninth-round pick in 2004 and was traded to the Orioles in December of 2007 as part of the package for…

  13. Potential buyers for the Dodgers emerge

    Jan 24, 2011, 3:02 PM EDT

    McCourt Divorce Trial Continues With Ownership Of Dodgers In Contention

    Frank McCourt’s official line is that the Dodgers are not for sale. But whether they’re ultimately sold is kind of out of his hands. If the latest court ruling is upheld, Jamie McCourt is going to be owed a ton of money for her share of the team, Frank doesn’t have it handy, and the…

  14. Would Brian Cashman rather run a small market team?

    Jan 24, 2011, 2:10 PM EDT

    Cashman profile

    Over the weekend, Bill Madden of the Daily News wrote a column about the Brian Cashman/Rafael Soriano press conference.  The premise: Brian Cashman is chafing at what it means to be the general manager of the New York Yankees: If you listen to some of things Cashman has said over the years and look at…

  15. Nelson Cruz altering running style to avoid hamstring injuries

    Jan 24, 2011, 1:45 PM EDT

    Nelson Cruz pops out

    Nelson Cruz missed 54 games and spent three different stints on the disabled list last season because of hamstring injuries and Richard Durrett of ESPNDallas.com reports that the Rangers outfielder is working with a trainer “focused on running more upright to possibly relieve some of the stress on his legs.” Cruz’s trainer is actually Rangers…

  16. What if Clay Matthews Jr. was a baseball player?

    Jan 24, 2011, 1:06 PM EDT

    NFC Championship Football

    If a baseball player had gained nearly 100 pounds of muscle between the ages of 16 and 22, what would be said about such a player? HBT reader and former major leaguer Bob Tufts asks, and I’d really like to know the answer. Bob also talks about the football and NBA labor situations, which could…

  17. UPDATE: The Armando Galarraga trade is official

    Jan 24, 2011, 12:28 PM EDT

    Armando Galarraga

    UPDATE: The Armando Galarraga trade is official, reports Jason Beck. The Tigers get Kevin Eichhorn and lefty reliever Ryan Robowski. The Diamondbacks are responsible for all of Galarraga’s salry. 12:28 PM:  The Galarraga-to-Arizona trade has gone from talks to “likely” to “on the verge” of happening according to Steve Gilbert of MLB.com. The trade could be done today. The…

  18. Re-signing Carl Pavano leaves Twins with an extra starter

    Jan 24, 2011, 12:17 PM EDT

    Minnesota Twins starter Pavano pitches to the New York Yankees during the first inning of Game 2 of their MLB ALDS baseball playoffs in Minneapolis

    Carl Pavano is a 35-year-old pitcher with an infamously lengthy injury history and one of the lowest strikeout rates in baseball last season, so re-signing him to a two-year, $16.5 million contract is not without risk for Minnesota, but to avoid a three-year commitment and retain him for a slight bump in annual salary from…

  19. Who cares if Roy Halladay wouldn’t talk to reporters?

    Jan 24, 2011, 12:06 PM EDT

    Roy Halladay

    When you have four legitimate number one starters on your team and you’re coming off two pennants in the last three years, it’s hard to find something to complain about. But via Crossing Broad, we learn that Howard Eskin found something. Roy Halladay allegedly won’t talk to the media: And because of my track record…

  20. Bryce Harper to have his jersey retired

    Jan 24, 2011, 11:30 AM EDT

    Bryce Harper college

    For those of you doing the math, Bryce Harper’s college jersey will be retired before Sparky Anderson’s Tigers jersey will be: The College of Southern Nevada will retire the No.34 jersey worn by Bryce Harper on Friday. Harper, 18, played in 66 games with the school after skipping his senior year of high school to accelerate his eligibility…

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