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  1. How surprising were the Giants?

    Nov 4, 2010, 11:00 AM EDT

    Tim Marchman over at Sports Illustrated has a great post up this morning counting down all of the wild card-era World Series champions and ranking them from most surprising to least surprising. You won’t be, er, surprised, to find the 1998 Yankees at the bottom of the list.  Many of you may be quite surprised…

  2. Are coaches underpaid? (And how much was Davey Lopes worth to the Phillies?)

    Nov 4, 2010, 10:48 AM EDT

    davey-lopes-phillies

    I’ve been thinking about the value of coaches lately, in part because the Cardinals only had to shell out $750,000 per season to make Dave Duncan the highest-paid pitching coach in baseball and in part because the Phillies let first base coach Davey Lopes go over failed contract talks that probably involved a difference of…

  3. Yu Darvish is coming to the United States . . . in 2012

    Nov 4, 2010, 10:30 AM EDT

    Yu Darvish pitch

    People have been getting rather excited over the possibility of Japanese pitcher Yu Darvish coming to America for some time.  Recently we learned that, nope, it won’t be in 2011.  David Lennon of Newsday reports however that it will happen in 2012. Interesting, I suppose, but one of the biggest knocks on Darvish is that…

  4. Rays may try to re-sign Dan Wheeler and Willy Aybar after declining options

    Nov 4, 2010, 10:15 AM EDT

    dan-wheeler-rays

    Tampa Bay declined 2011 options on Dan Wheeler at $4 million and Willy Aybar at $2.25 million, but Marc Topkin of the St. Petersburg Times reports that the Rays may try to re-sign both players to lesser salaries. Aybar batted just .230/.309/.344 in 309 plate appearances while playing mostly designated hitter, so giving him a…

  5. Are the White Sox going to let A.J. Pierzynski walk?

    Nov 4, 2010, 9:58 AM EDT

    A.J. Pierzynski

    Jim Bowden reports — that always sounds weird, by the way — that the White Sox have not yet offered a contract to free agent catcher A.J. Pierzynski. And maybe they shouldn’t, because he has declined a great deal and he probably wants multiple years when he doesn’t really deserve them.  But it does leave…

  6. Jeff Francoeur wants to play every day

    Nov 4, 2010, 9:27 AM EDT

    Florida Marlins v Atlanta Braves

    Because they can’t help themselves, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution spoke with Jeff Francoeur yesterday.  Mostly chitchat, but this question about Francoeur’s hopes and dreams for next season stood out: Q. A part-time role isn’t what you’re after, is it? A. No, I want to play every day, and the Rangers know that. That’s why I said…

  7. The Mets slash ticket prices

    Nov 4, 2010, 8:58 AM EDT

    citi field-thumb-300x200-1825

    Mets attendance went way down in 2010, and the team has reacted: they’ve lowered ticket prices.  Season tickets are a flat 10% off. Given how many categories of tickets any given ballpark has it’s complicated beyond that — big cuts for some categories of seats, slight increases for others — but the team says that…

  8. Ron Roenicke: an inspiring choice for the Brewers

    Nov 4, 2010, 8:31 AM EDT

    Great story by Adam McCalvy at MLB.com about Ron Roenicke, who will soon take over the Brewers.  Seems that in the aftermath of Nick Adenhart’s death last year, Roenicke was instrumental in helping to pull the team together. He particularly impressed Scott Boras, Adenhart’s agent, who was in the clubhouse along with Adenhart’s father and…

  9. The Giants had a big parade

    Nov 4, 2010, 8:00 AM EDT

    San Francisco Giants Victory Parade

    The Giants had their victory parade in San Francisco, and it seemed pretty nuts by victory parade standards.  It’s always hard to estimate this stuff — and estimates always seem to err on the ridiculously high side — but the Chronicle said that hundreds of thousands lined the parade route. Random tweets and things from…

  10. Huff wants to re-sign with Giants: ‘I love this place’

    Nov 4, 2010, 2:00 AM EDT

    huff-101103

    Not that he would say anything different during the Giants championship victory parade, but free agent first baseman Aubrey Huff was pretty emphatic in saying that he wants to return to San Francisco next season. From the Associated Press: “Oh, absolutely, without question,” Huff said. “I won a World Series here. I’ve been in last…

  11. Cliff Lee, cowboy boots and free agent madness

    Nov 4, 2010, 1:06 AM EDT

    Lee-cliff-101031

    Just after midnight Eastern on Saturday night it will be open season on free agents. But the madness is already starting. According to ‘Duk over at BLS, Cliff Lee has been spotted buying cowboy boots! Hold the presses! This clearly means Cliff Lee is staying with the Texas Rangers right? Or maybe he’s interested in…

  12. Talks between Jeter and Yankees already looking problematic

    Nov 3, 2010, 9:48 PM EDT

    Texas Rangers v New York Yankees, Game 4

    When it comes to matters of Derek Jeter, the Yankees and free agency, everyone seems to agree on one thing: it’s best that the negotiations do not turn ugly.  Unfortunately, that may no longer be possible. Yankees managing partner Hal Steinbrenner told a New York-based radio station Tuesday that Jeter is wanted back, but also…

  13. Ryne Sandberg will not be returning to Cubs next season

    Nov 3, 2010, 8:34 PM EDT

    Ryne Sandberg

    When Lou Piniella stepped down from his post as Cubs manager earlier this year, there was an assumption that Triple-A Iowa skipper and Cubs legend Ryne Sandberg would take over to start the 2011 season.  Then Mike Quade stepped in, led the Cubbies to a 24-13 down the stretch and was awarded the full-time position…

  14. Rangers nearing multi-year extension with Ron Washington

    Nov 3, 2010, 7:20 PM EDT

    washington in white uni

    Rangers GM Jon Daniels told reporters soon after his club’s loss in the World Series that locking up manager Ron Washington to a multi-year contract was his first offseason priority.  He wasn’t lying. The two sides will sit down on Thursday and work out the final details of a contract extension, according to MLB.com’s T.R.…

  15. Chris Young’s option declined by Padres

    Nov 3, 2010, 6:38 PM EDT

    Chris Young

    Confirming something GM Jed Hoyer admitted was coming a month ago, the Padres on Wednesday declined Chris Young’s $8.5 million option for 2011. After missing five months with a shoulder injury, Young returned in September to post a 1.49 ERA in three starts, and he surely would have been a part of San Diego’s postseason…

  16. Mets retain Jose Reyes for $11 million

    Nov 3, 2010, 6:24 PM EDT

    Jose Reyes

    Maybe it wasn’t quite the no-brainer everyone figured it would be a couple of years ago, but the Mets exercised their $11 million option on Jose Reyes for 2011 on Thursday, retaining the shortstop for what will be his ninth season in Queens. Reyes was healthy for the most part last season after missing most…

  17. Top 111 Free Agents: Nos. 10-1

    Nov 3, 2010, 6:05 PM EDT

    New York Yankees v Tampa Bay Rays

    It’s time for the final chapter in our rundown of the winter’s free agents. I don’t think there will be any controversial choices in the top 10 below. All will get multiyear deals if they want them, and none should have to settle for less than $10 million per year. 111-91 90-71 70-51 50-31 30-11…

  18. Rangers decline $9 million option on Vladimir Guerrero

    Nov 3, 2010, 5:38 PM EDT

    World Series Rangers Giants Baseball

    T.R. Sullivan of MLB.com reports that the Rangers have declined their $9 million option on Vladimir Guerrero for 2011. While perhaps surprising to some based on his big name and 115-RBI season, Guerrero simply wasn’t a $9 million player in 2010 and at age 36 was unlikely to be any better in 2011. He struggled…

  19. The Washington Nationals get less scrappy

    Nov 3, 2010, 5:30 PM EDT

    Adam Kennedy, Chris Denorfia

    Or maybe gritty. Each apply to offensively-deficient white middle infielders.  They’re certainly both terms that have been applied to Adam Kennedy, who will no longer be a Washington National now that they have declined his 2011 option. No surprise here of course, as he would have cost the Nats $2 million next year, when he’d…

  20. Rockies decline $4.5 million option on Octavio Dotel for 2011

    Nov 3, 2010, 5:21 PM EDT

    octavio-dotel-rockies

    Because he was traded during the season Octavio Dotel had the right to reject his $4.5 million option if it was exercised, but the Rockies made that a moot point by choosing a $250,000 buyout instead. Colorado acquired Dotel in mid-September and he wouldn’t have even been eligible for the playoff roster, so it’s no…

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