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  1. Does anyone really want to see a U.S. vs. Japan World Series?

    Dec 17, 2010, 3:13 PM EDT

    Japan Series

    From the Department of Does Anyone Besides Marketing People Think This is a Good Idea: Major League Baseball will continue talks next month on a plan that would pit the World Series winner against Japan’s champion. The linked article talks about nothing besides the weather in the respective championship cities. But I’m not terribly concerned…

  2. The Astros sign Bill Hall to a one-year deal

    Dec 17, 2010, 2:53 PM EDT

    Bill Hall

    Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com reports that the Astros have signed Bill Hall to a one-year contract with a mutual option for 2012. He’ll make somewhere around $3 million. Hall, who turns 31 later this month, batted .247/.316/.456 with 18 home runs, 46 RBI, nine stolen bases and a 772 OPS over 382 plate appearances this…

  3. The union doesn’t have a problem with Cliff Lee’s deal

    Dec 17, 2010, 2:33 PM EDT

    Cliff Lee phillies throwing

    There has been some debate about just how much one can characterize Cliff Lee’s deal with the Phillies as one in which he “left money on the table.”  On the one hand, there is the potential there for him to make more money with Philly than he made in New York. On the other hand,…

  4. The clubhouse leader for ballpark concession of 2011

    Dec 17, 2010, 1:47 PM EDT

    Image (1) cookout.jpg for post 6410

    A friend of mine once observed that there is no greater source of power in the universe than a bored Midwesterner. It leads to things like this, coming to you at the Akron Aeros ballpark next season: In 2011, the Akron Aeros will be serving the “Three Dog Night” during each and every home game.…

  5. Report: The Giants and Cubs talked Rowand for Fukudome

    Dec 17, 2010, 1:31 PM EDT

    Kosuke Fukudome

    Get this. According to Jerry Crasnick of ESPN.com, the Giants and Cubs discussed a swap of Aaron Rowand for Kosuke Fukudome. Some may classify this as a potential swap of bad contracts, but to equate Fukudome to Rowand is nuts. Keep in mind, Rowand is still owed $24 million (!) over the next two seasons…

  6. Zack Greinke switches agents

    Dec 17, 2010, 1:06 PM EDT

    Zack Greinke

    Players switch agents at any time and for a zillion reasons, but when a guy who is a hot trade property like Zack Greinke does it, you take special notice.  Ed Price: Greinke is now being represented by Jeff Berry and Casey Close of CAA, a major league source told FanHouse. He had been represented…

  7. Orlando Hudson is going to the Padres

    Dec 17, 2010, 12:30 PM EDT

    Minnesota Twins v New York Yankees, Game 3

    UPDATE: OK, it is official. Basically, anyway: Rosenthal reports that he’s getting two-years and $11.5 million. The deal is done pending a physical. So he does get a raise. And, unlike his last two deals, he gets multiple years. Not the greatest contract in the history of the word, but we’re clearly back to boom-times for free…

  8. Is Brad Penny Detroit-bound?

    Dec 17, 2010, 12:19 PM EDT

    Brad Penny

    It’s been a busy offseason so far for Brad Penny. He got engaged to one of the pros from “Dancing with the Stars.” He’s busy getting into The Best Shape of His Life.  And now he may be packing his bags for Detroit. That’s what Jon Paul Morosi is saying, reporting that the Tigers have expressed…

  9. The Marlins are not interested in Edgar Renteria

    Dec 17, 2010, 11:51 AM EDT

    San Francisco Giants v Texas Rangers, Game 4

    The other day we heard that the Marlins may be interested in bringing Edgar Renteria back. In the story about him being insulted over the Giants’ $1 million offer, he said another team was interested, so I assumed that was the Marlins.  Not so says Joe Capozzi of the Palm Beach Post. He heard from two…

  10. Cliff Lee and the media

    Dec 17, 2010, 11:36 AM EDT

    Cliff Lee phillies throwing

    Bob Raissman writes about how really no one in baseball media got the Cliff Lee story right. Fair enough. I can’t remember the last time everyone was this fooled about a big signing. But I think Raissman is a bit unfair with this passage: In fact, none of the legion of ESPN’s highly promoted, self-decorated…

  11. Must-click link: Ozzie Guillen has made the best video ever

    Dec 17, 2010, 11:06 AM EDT

    Click Here large

    Really, this is not hyperbole. If you don’t watch and thoroughly enjoy Ozzie Guillen’s White Sox tickets commercial, you and I just can’t be friends. Even if it was a minute and a half of Guillen wearing the reindeer sweater and saying absolutely nothing it would be more than worth it.

  12. Bert Blyleven: let the PED users in the Hall of Fame

    Dec 17, 2010, 10:48 AM EDT

    blyleven

    I wrote yesterday about how I reconcile PED use and the Hall of Fame.  I’ve written a lot about Bert Blyleven and the Hall of Fame. Say, how can those things go together? Via the Jonah Keri Podcast, of course.  Jonah has been talking to some serious heavyweights this week, and the other day Blyleven…

  13. Carl Crawford will be thanked

    Dec 17, 2010, 10:20 AM EDT

    Carl Crawford running

    Remember how the guys from DRaysBay were trying to collect money to create and place an ad in the Tampa Bay Times saying thank you to Carl Crawford for all of his years of service to Rays Nation?  Well, they did it.  Here’s what it looks like.  Here’s the DraysBay guys’ thank you to the…

  14. Joe Mauer had knee surgery

    Dec 17, 2010, 10:03 AM EDT

    Joe Mauer

    MLB.com says that Joe Mauer underwent minor surgery on his left knee this week. I didn’t know he needed it, but apparently it was no big deal: just some inflammation build-up. He’s expected to be  good to go once spring training starts. While we’re in Minnesota, I would just like to note that I could not…

  15. Feliciano to get a two-year, $8 million deal from the Yankees

    Dec 17, 2010, 9:32 AM EDT

    New York Mets v Philadelphia Phillies

    The Yankees have their LOOGY.  Or almost have him. Heyman reports that New York is on the verge of signing Pedro Feliciano to a two-year deal. He’d make $4 million a year. There’s also an option, which I presume would be a team option, but it’s unclear at the moment. Bob Klapisch was the first…

  16. Brandon Webb wants to be the last boy in the bar

    Dec 17, 2010, 9:20 AM EDT

    Brandon Webb

    Resolved: the closer it gets to last call, the more attractive that guy at the end of the bar appears to be (or that girl, depending on your predilections).  Brandon Webb and his wonky shoulder are apparently counting on that: According to a baseball source, Washington continues to be in the mix to acquire right-hander Brandon…

  17. Private businesses in Tampa are going to look into a new Rays ballpark in 2011

    Dec 17, 2010, 9:02 AM EDT

    Texas Rangers v Tampa Bay Rays, Game 1

    The Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce is going to spend much of 2011 looking at new stadium options for the Rays.  The key: they’re going to focus on private, rather than public financing options. My observations of chambers of commerce closer to my own home suggest that when a group of private, up-by-their-own-bootstraps entrepreneurs get together and…

  18. Nobody knows Zack Greinke

    Dec 17, 2010, 8:32 AM EDT

    Zack Greinke

    I’ve written a lot recently about how no one can simply assume that Zack Greinke’s history with anxiety disorder makes him unsuitable for pitching in New York. Indeed, it could easily be the opposite — he’s at his best when he’s successful and at his worst when facing adversity — and thus the winning and…

  19. I am genuinely worried about Jose Canseco

    Dec 17, 2010, 6:29 AM EDT

    Canseco book

    I continue to watch Jose Canseco’s online meltdown. And as I said the other day, I don’t do so for mocking purposes. I’m genuinely worried about the guy. If you had a friend who spoke frequently about regret and anger and desperation the way Canseco has in the past week, you’d try to get them…

  20. Edgar Renteria is insulted by the Giants’ offer

    Dec 17, 2010, 6:14 AM EDT

    Renteria running

    Noted: ballplayers don’t necessarily appreciate that postseason heroics are often flukey things that don’t serve as a fair representation of their current value. Case in point: Edgar Renteria’s response to the Giants’ offer of one year, $1 million: “That offer from the Giants was a lack of respect. A total disrespect. To play for a million…

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