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  1. The Cardinals are probably going to sign Albert Pujols, but it won’t be easy and it won’t all be positive…

    Jan 16, 2011, 5:50 PM EDT

    St Louis Cardinals v Pittsburgh Pirates

    As the resident Cardinals supporter on this here blog, I feel it is my responsibility to riff a little on the Albert Pujols extension stuff. It was reported Saturday that Pujols and his agent want talks to cease once spring training begins and Albert confirmed that deadline while speaking with the media Sunday in what…

  2. Astros prospect Delino DeShields Jr. charged with DUI

    Jan 16, 2011, 4:36 PM EDT

    Astros DeShields Baseball

    Ozzie Canseco isn’t the only guy with baseball ties who is facing DUI charges. According to Zachary Levine of the Houston Chronicle, infield prospect Delino DeShields Jr. was arrested and charged with DUI, possession of alcohol by a minor and a traffic violation early Sunday morning in the Atlanta, Georgia area. DeShields, 18, was a…

  3. Hamilton released from hospital after bout with pneumonia

    Jan 16, 2011, 3:24 PM EDT

    Rangers Hamilton slides on the grass after diving and catching a ball hit by Giants' Schierholtz during Game 4 of Major League Baseball's World Series in Arlington

    All is well with Josh Hamilton. According to John Blake, the vice president of communications for the Rangers, Hamilton was released from the hospital this afternoon after a five-day stay because of pneumonia. The illness never got too serious and Hamilton only remained in the hospital for more than a couple of days so that…

  4. Twins avoid arbitration with Casilla via one-year, $865K deal

    Jan 16, 2011, 2:52 PM EDT

    Alexi Casilla

    From SI.com’s Jon Heyman comes word that the Twins have reached agreement on a one-year, $865,000 contract with infielder Alexi Casilla, avoiding the need for an arbitration hearing. The 26-year-old was eligible for salary arbitration for the first time this winter after racking up enough service time in 2010. He sat idle for the first…

  5. Reds, Votto reach three-year, $38M contract extension

    Jan 16, 2011, 1:10 PM EDT

    Philadelphia Phillies v Cincinnati Reds, Game 3

    Big news out of Cincinnati. According to MLB.com’s Mark Sheldon, the Reds reached agreement this afternoon on a three-year, $38 million contract extension with first baseman Joey Votto. Jon Heyman of SI.com first caught wind of the negotiations this morning and everything is expected to be made official once the slugger passes a physical Monday.…

  6. A’s reach deal with Ziegler, avoid arbitration

    Jan 16, 2011, 12:03 PM EDT

    Oakland Athletics v St. Louis Cardinals

    From ESPN.com’s Buster Olney comes word that the A’s avoided arbitration with reliever Brad Ziegler on Saturday by agreeing to a one-year, $1.25 million contract. Ziegler, a 31-year-old right-hander, posted a 3.26 ERA and 1.35 WHIP over 60.2 innings last season and a 3.07 ERA over 73.1 innings the year before.  He was eligible for…

  7. Yankees stepping up pursuit of Andruw Jones

    Jan 16, 2011, 10:44 AM EDT

    White Sox Jones hits homerun against Twins in Minneapolis

    It would appear that super agent Scott Boras is close to finding a home for veteran client Andruw Jones. The Yankees were first linked to Jones last week by SI.com’s Jon Heyman and now the Sports Illustrated reporter is saying that the Bombers have “stepped up” their pursuit of the 33-year-old. Jones isn’t as great…

  8. Reds working on multi-year extension with Joey Votto

    Jan 16, 2011, 9:51 AM EDT

    Cincinnati Reds v Philadelphia Phillies, Game 2

    UPDATE: A three-year, $38 million contract extension was agreed to on Sunday afternoon. ************** Reds first baseman Joey Votto qualifies for arbitration this winter for the first time in his major league career.  But he may never actually have to face an arbitration hearing. The slugger is in line for a massive raise from the…

  9. Pablo Sandoval is shrinking!

    Jan 16, 2011, 8:55 AM EDT

    sandoval tweet

    At the beginning of last week, Hank Schulman of the San Francisco Chronicle published a story about Pablo Sandoval and his offseason workout program.  The third baseman, of course, was claiming to be in “the best shape of his life” and ready to turn his career around after a disappointing 2010 campaign. We were skeptical. …

  10. Bruce Chen stays with Royals for $2 million

    Jan 15, 2011, 6:27 PM EDT

    Bruce Chen, Armando Galarraga

    After initially holding out for a mulityear pact, Bruce Chen will return to the Royals on a one-year, $2 million contract, reports SI.com’s Jon Heyman. Chen, a journeyman who debuted with the Braves in 1998, finished 12-7 with a 4.17 ERA for the Royals last season. He went 1-13 in stints with the Orioles, Rangers…

  11. Ozzie Canseco arrested on DUI charges in Florida

    Jan 15, 2011, 5:00 PM EDT

    Ozzie Canseco

    The Associated Press reports that Ozzie Canseco, twin brother of Jose Canseco, was arrested in Florida this morning for DUI charges. According to Kristal Roberts of the local ABC affiliate in Tampa, Canseco had a blood alcohol level between .109 and .108, above the .08 legal limit. The 46-year-old was booked early this morning and…

  12. Albert Pujols sets spring training deadline for contract talks

    Jan 15, 2011, 3:40 PM EDT

    Pujols swing

    That’s the sobering news from the team’s annual Winter Warm-Up event this afternoon. According to B.J. Rains of FOX Sports Midwest, Cardinals general manager John Mozeliak confirmed that Albert Pujols and his agent Don Lozano will not negotiate a contract extension once spring training begins. It’s not clear if this has been the deadline all…

  13. Phillies, Ben Francisco avoid arbitation with one-year deal

    Jan 15, 2011, 3:02 PM EDT

    ben Francisco swinging

    The Phillies and outfielder Ben Francisco avoided arbitration by agreeing to a one-year, $1.175 million contract, according to Matt Gelb of the Philadelphia Inquirer. Francisco, who was acquired from the Indians along with Cliff Lee in July of 2009, was arbitration-eligible for the first time this winter. The 29-year-old outfielder earned $470,000 last season while…

  14. Olney: Brian Cashman has “full confidence” of Steinbrenners

    Jan 15, 2011, 2:44 PM EDT

    Brian Cashman, Hank Steinbrenner

    If you ever had any doubt that the Yankees own New York, just look at the back page of the New York Daily News today. Pretty impressive feat — no, I didn’t use that word because of Rex Ryan — especially on a weekend when the Jets are playing the Patriots in the divisional playoffs.…

  15. Cardinals and Kyle McClellan avoid arbitration with one-year deal

    Jan 15, 2011, 2:15 PM EDT

    Kyle McLellan throwing

    Cardinals general manager John Mozeliak just announced at the team’s annual Winter Warm-Up Event that the team avoided arbitration with right-hander Kyle McClellan by agreeing on a one-year contract. Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch tweeted earlier this morning that a deal was close. McClellan, 26, was arbitration-eligible for the first time this winter.…

  16. Report: Jim Thome turned down at least $4 million from Rangers to re-sign with Twins

    Jan 15, 2011, 1:20 PM EDT

    Jim Thome ap

    As Aaron wrote yesterday, Jim Thome will make $3 million guaranteed with the chance for an additional $3 million in performance-based incentives as part of his new contract with the Twins, but according to Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com, the veteran slugger was offered more than $4 million by the Rangers. So yes, Thome did leave…

  17. Cubs to honor Ron Santo with statue at Wrigley Field

    Jan 15, 2011, 12:36 PM EDT

    Ron Santo Wrigley

    The Cubs just kicked off day two of their annual Cubs Convention by announcing plans to unveil a statue in the likeness of Ron Santo, who passed away in December at the age of 70. The statue will be unveiled as part of “Ron Santo Day” on August 10. The official release from the team…

  18. Report: Athletics pushing to sign free agent reliever Brian Fuentes

    Jan 15, 2011, 12:14 PM EDT

    brian-fuentes-twins

    The Athletics just added Grant Balfour to help strengthen their bullpen yesterday, but it appears that they aren’t done yet. Major league sources tell Ken Rosenthal and Jon Paul Morosi of FOXSports.com that the club is also pushing to sign Brian Fuentes. Fuentes, 35, posted a 2.81 ERA and 47/20 K/BB ratio over 48 innings…

  19. Jed Lowrie could push Marco Scutaro for playing time at shortstop

    Jan 15, 2011, 11:20 AM EDT

    Jed Lowrie swinging

    During an appearance at the “Hot Stove Cool Music” panel discussion at Fenway Park last night, Red Sox general manager Theo Epstein expressed confidence in Marco Scutaro as the starting shortstop, but suggested that Jed Lowrie could push him for playing time this season (via Brian McPherson of the Providence Journal). “We have two really…

  20. UPDATE: Johan Santana to throw before spring training

    Jan 15, 2011, 10:26 AM EDT

    Johan Santana

    UPDATE: Seems the Mets worded their initial announcement a little awkwardly. According to Adam Rubin of ESPN New York, Santana has been cleared to throw before spring training, not now. Friday, 5:35 PM: You’ll recall that Johan Santana underwent surgery to repair a torn anterior capsule in his left shoulder in September. At the time…

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