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  1. The Yankees are talking to Carl Crawford

    Dec 3, 2010, 8:51 AM EDT

    Carl Crawford running

    I’ve been skeptical of any real Yankee interest in Carl Crawford because (a) their outfield seems quite nice as currently-constructed; and (b) even if we scoff at the Yankees “budget,” they do claim to have one and it’s hard to see how Crawford would fit in it if they’re also going to extend Jeter, re-sign…

  2. Would you believe that the Red Sox bid for Mariano Rivera?

    Dec 3, 2010, 8:30 AM EDT

    rivera1

    The reports of Mariano Rivera’s signing last night were accompanied by brief asides that he turned down other offers from other teams.  So who were they? Jon Heyman is the only one I’ve seen naming names.  He says the Angels and — get this — the Red Sox were involved. Heyman says they each offered…

  3. Ron Santo 1940-2010

    Dec 3, 2010, 8:01 AM EDT

    Ron Santo

    Awful news: Chicago Cubs great Ron Santo has died at age 70. Santo had been battling bladder cancer, lapsed into a coma on Wednesday and died yesterday. Ron Santo was one of the most productive and consistent players of the 1960s and early 70s.  Because of the low overall offensive profile of the era, however,…

  4. Yankees, Dodgers discussed — then nixed — a Russell Martin trade

    Dec 3, 2010, 5:56 AM EDT

    Russell Martin dodgers

    Michael S. Schmidt of the New York Times reports that the Yankees and Dodgers had serious discussions about a Russell Martin-for-Francisco Cervelli trade last night.  It got to the point where the teams were exchanging medical information and everything, but it fell through.  It’s unclear if Martin’s health — he’s had issues with his hip…

  5. Yankees reach two-year, $30 million agreement with Rivera

    Dec 2, 2010, 11:24 PM EDT

    rivera in delivery

    Well, the Yankees have wrapped up negotiations with one of their veteran free agents. Red Christian of the New York Daily News reports that closer Mariano Rivera has agreed to terms on a two-year contract worth $30 million and that the agreement will be finalized on Friday. Rivera’s talks went smoothly because he wasn’t asking…

  6. M’s trade Jose Lopez to Rockies for minor league pitcher

    Dec 2, 2010, 11:04 PM EDT

    lopez swing

    Mariners GM Jack Zduriencik is widely regarded as one of the smartest and most forward-thinking front office executives in all of baseball.  Things didn’t work out in 2010, when the M’s finished with a hideous 61-101 record, but the man they call “Jack Z” is again earning his reputation this winter. According to Shannon Drayer…

  7. White Sox reach two-year deal with A.J. Pierzynski

    Dec 2, 2010, 10:35 PM EDT

    A.J. Pierzynski

    A few hours ago, Joe Cowley of the Chicago Sun-Times reported that the Blue Jays were close to a contract with free agent catcher A.J. Pierzynski.  That was incorrect. From Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com comes word that the White Sox have agreed to a two-year deal with Pierzynski, possibly worth $8 million. Pierzynski, 33, hit…

  8. A’s have indeed made “big offer” to Adrian Beltre

    Dec 2, 2010, 9:49 PM EDT

    beltre batting

    ESPN.com’s Jayon Stark passed along an odd rumor earlier today, stating that the A’s and Adrian Beltre were close to agreement on a contract and that the deal might be finalized by this evening. It’s now past 9:30 PM in the east and nothing has been signed. Beltre is a Scott Boras client and Boras…

  9. UPDATE: Jays not near deal with catcher A.J. Pierzynski

    Dec 2, 2010, 8:23 PM EDT

    pierzynski walking to dugout

    From Joe Cowley of the Chicago Sun-Times comes word that the Blue Jays are close to an agreement with free agent catcher A.J. Pierzynski. Cowley buried the news in a story about the White Sox signing Adam Dunn, so it’s possible that he doesn’t fully trust the source that passed along the information.  But a…

  10. Francisco Rodriguez will plead guilty to assault Friday

    Dec 2, 2010, 7:08 PM EDT

    k-rod in bullpen

    The Mets’ new management regime has already committed to using Francisco Rodriguez at closer next season, but that doesn’t mean the right-hander can put the events of August 11 behind him.  At least, not yet. According to the New York Daily News, Rodriguez will plead guilty Friday in a New York court to an assault…

  11. Javier Vazquez hoping physical therapist can help him find lost velocity

    Dec 2, 2010, 5:31 PM EDT

    Javier Vazquez Yankees

    Earlier this week I wrote about how Javier Vazquez’s significant drop in velocity this season makes him far from a sure thing to bounce back in 2011 simply because he was leaving New York and returning to the National League. Vazquez apparently feels the same way, because Joe Capozzi of the Palm Beach Post reports…

  12. The White Sox may get Adam Dunn AND Paul Konerko

    Dec 2, 2010, 5:00 PM EDT

    Chicago White Sox Konerko watches his first hit of five against Minnesota Twins during the first inning of their American League baseball game in Minneapolis

    Adam Dunn is all but done. And talk about changing the balance of power, here’s the latest tweet from Joe Cowley: Several Sox players are under the belief that not only is Dunn done deal, but PK [Paul Konerko] is close. Seems the demise of JR’s checkbook is exaggerated I have no idea if a…

  13. Braves non-tender Matt Diaz after five years in Atlanta

    Dec 2, 2010, 4:49 PM EDT

    matt-diaz-braves

    Matt Diaz has been added to the non-tender pile, as the Braves cut the 33-year-old outfielder loose after five seasons in Atlanta. Diaz has alternated good years and bad years for the Braves, and when his batting average slumps like it did this season his modest pop, swing-at-everything approach, and poor defense make him a…

  14. The White Sox, Adam Dunn on the verge of a four-year, $56 million deal

    Dec 2, 2010, 4:48 PM EDT

    Adam Dunn

    UPDATE:  The Los Angeles Times reports that the deal between the White Sox and Dunn has been struck: four-years, $56 million, pending a physical.  Wow. What’s more: there are strong indications that the Sox will bring back Paul Konerko too.  We’ll have an update on that shortly. 4:47 PM: Joe Cowley of the Sun-Times says…

  15. Twins sign Pat Neshek and Jason Repko to one-year deals, avoiding arbitration

    Dec 2, 2010, 4:16 PM EDT

    pat-neshek-twins

    Non-tender candidates Pat Neshek and Jason Repko will remain with the Twins and avoid arbitration after signing one-year contracts prior to tonight’s deadline. Neshek will get $625,000 after spending most of 2010 on the disabled list or back in the minors following a shaky comeback from Tommy John surgery. He’ll compete for a spot in…

  16. The Yankees sweeten their offer to Jeter. Of course, this is all theater.

    Dec 2, 2010, 4:01 PM EDT

    New York Yankees v Texas Rangers, Game 6

    You can almost hear the stage manager barking out directions on this one: “OK, now Jeter: you let the Yankees come to your home, showing that you are due respect … and now you Yankees; you alert multiple members of the media that you are increasing your offer.  Don’t say how much! That will blow…

  17. Jason Varitek is close to returning to Boston on a one-year deal

    Dec 2, 2010, 3:32 PM EDT

    varitek

    Face it Boston fans: Jason Varitek is going to be playing for the Sox until your grandkids have grandkids.  Peter Gammons just reported that the Sox is about to sign a $2 million contract. You have to think that this means that Saltalamacchia is the starter and Varitek the backup, right? Of course that’s the…

  18. UPDATE: White Sox non-tender longtime closer Bobby Jenks

    Dec 2, 2010, 3:20 PM EDT

    Bobby Jenks

    UPDATE: As expected, the White Sox have non-tendered Jenks. ========== Throughout the past year or so there’s been speculation about the White Sox non-tendering closer Bobby Jenks this offseason. He made $7.5 million in 2010 and would be in line for a raise through the arbitration process, and his performance has deteriorated to the point…

  19. Eric Hinske signs with the Braves

    Dec 2, 2010, 3:00 PM EDT

    San Francisco Giants v Atlanta Braves, Game 3

    Eric Hinske had been courted by both the Brewers and the Braves, but he has decided to stick with Atlanta. Dave O’Brien of the AJC reports that he’s getting a one-year deal with an option. No word on the bucks yet, but Mark Bowman had previously reported that the offer from Atlanta was for around…

  20. Cubs and Jeff Baker avoid arbitration with one-year deal

    Dec 2, 2010, 2:46 PM EDT

    jeff-baker-cubs

    Jeff Baker and the Cubs have avoided arbitration by agreeing to a one-year deal prior to tonight’s contract-tendering deadline. Jon Paul Morosi of FOXSports.com reports that the deal is worth $1.175 million, which is a 20 percent raise from the $975,000 he earned while hitting .272/.326/.413 in a part-time role this season. Baker has logged…

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