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  1. Mets close to deal with Mike Jacobs

    Feb 9, 2010, 7:27 PM EDT’s Jerry Crasnick reports that the Mets are close to agreement on a minor league contract with free agent first baseman Mike Jacobs. The deal, once finalized, will include a non-roster invitation to spring training.  Jacobs struggled mightily in his first American League season, batting a measly .228/.297/.401 last year with 132 strikeouts in just…

  2. Brandon Lyon to miss start of spring training

    Feb 9, 2010, 6:59 PM EDT

    Astros GM Ed Wade revealed to the media Tuesday that relief pitcher Brandon Lyon had a small cyst in his right shoulder drained two weeks ago and won’t be back to full strength by the time pitchers and catchers report to spring training. The Astros detected the cyst in the initial MRI they gave Lyon…

  3. Fantasy ranking the rotations

    Feb 9, 2010, 6:35 PM EDT

    In light of Craig’s response to Buster Olney’s blog, I’ve thrown this together. It’s a ranking 1-30 of how the top six pitchers in each team’s rotation fare in my fantasy projections. This isn’t meant to be taken very seriously. For one thing, I’ve simply added up the totals, so the No. 6 starter is…

  4. UPDATE: Chien-Ming Wang has a couple of offers

    Feb 9, 2010, 6:01 PM EDT

    UPDATE:’s Bill Ladson hears that the Nationals are “aggressively pursuing” Wang and are “one of the finalists” for his services. 5:23pm: Rosenthal reports that two teams have already made Chien-Ming Wang offers, have watched him pitch multiple times and have even given him a physical.  The teams that made said offers have not been…

  5. Ronny Cedeno: X-Factor

    Feb 9, 2010, 4:54 PM EDT

    Trolling around for stuff to write about and I come across this piece from FanHouse yesterday, in which John Hickey runs down the “x-factors” of all the NL teams. You know, those guys who will hopefully make the difference.  The Pirates’ entry caught my eye: Ronny Cedeno, shortstop. Cedeno’s last two managers, Lou Piniella with…

  6. Some more changes coming to Wrigley Field

    Feb 9, 2010, 4:27 PM EDT

    Fractional ownership suites aren’t the only new things coming to Wrigley Field next year: The Cubs are following the lead of the Boston Red Sox, opening up the space underneath the right-field bleachers for corporate pregame events, and for bleacher fans who may want to come down during the game and watch the action on…

  7. Five years later, Jacque Jones returns to Twins

    Feb 9, 2010, 3:50 PM EDT

    Sometimes in life, the joke is on you. Two months ago I poked a little fun at Jacque Jones attending the winter meetings in search of a job, suggesting that he was washed up and would “be lucky to secure a minor-league contract with an invite to spring training.” It turns out I was absolutely…

  8. Scott Boras is comically confident about Damon's prospects

    Feb 9, 2010, 3:20 PM EDT

    Scott Boras has been taking a beating over the fate of Johnny Damon this offseason, but he’s not deterred.  In fact today he has offered a couple of Black-Knight-in-Monty-Python-and-the-Holy-Grail-style “have at yous!” First in the Detroit Free Press: Although Damon, 36, has been a free agent since November, Boras said the market for him really…

  9. Scott Schoeneweis signs with the Brewers

    Feb 9, 2010, 3:06 PM EDT

    Scott Schoeneweis struggled with depression following the death of his wife last May, but was able to successfully return to the mound in September and this afternoon signed a minor-league contract with the Brewers. An autopsy later revealed that Schoeneweis’ wife (and the mother of his four children) passed away from an overdose of cocaine…

  10. Indians may give rookie Brantley a shot in left

    Feb 9, 2010, 2:50 PM EDT

    Michael Brantley made his big-league debut last September filling in for the injured Grady Sizemore in center field, but now that Sizemore is healthy the Indians are thinking about starting Brantley alongside him in left field. Here’s manager Manny Acta: What he did in September gives him a leg up on the position. That being…

  11. It's OK for a steroid user to become a coach in the NFL

    Feb 9, 2010, 2:20 PM EDT

    FOX’s Jay Glazer reports that Mike Shanahan is interviewing Bill Romanowski to be the Redskins’ new strength and conditioning coach. I repeat: a man who took the “cream” and the “clear” just like Barry Bonds did is poised to be the STRENGTH and CONDITIONING coach for an NFL team. In light of the bruising Mark…

  12. A's release Willy Taveras one week after trade

    Feb 9, 2010, 1:44 PM EDT

    Last week the A’s acquired Willy Taveras in a trade with the Reds only to designate him for assignment literally minutes later, so it comes as no surprise that they outright released him today after failing to find a taker for even a fraction of his $4 million salary. Taveras is now free to sign…

  13. Frank McCourt on the Dodgers, money and remaining competitive

    Feb 9, 2010, 1:25 PM EDT

    Jon Weisman of the newly-relocated Dodger Thoughts sat down with Dodgers’ owner Frank McCourt for an extended interview recently. Most of it was spent talking about how, despite doing things like not offering Orlando Hudson and Randy Wolf arbitration, the Dodgers are all about winning and not cost-cutting these days. But with responses like these,…

  14. Shields unlikely to be ready for spring training

    Feb 9, 2010, 12:48 PM EDT

    Scot Shields was perhaps the elite setup man of the aughts (we really need a better name for 2000-2009), posting a 2.98 ERA from 2002-2008 while averaging around 90 innings per season, but ended the decade on a low note with an injury wrecked 2009 campaign and is now unlikely to be ready for spring…

  15. Albert Pujols is gearing up for the offseason

    Feb 9, 2010, 12:45 PM EDT

    And you thought he was scary with a bat.

  16. Ricky Romero is in the best shape of his life

    Feb 9, 2010, 12:18 PM EDT

    I’ll stop writing stuff like that when dudes stop writing stuff like this: Halladay’s departure leaves Romero, who went 13-9 as a rookie, as the most experienced healthy starting pitcher on the roster, and the 25-year-old is tackling the new challenge the way Halladay would. By training like a maniac. In addition to his throwing…

  17. Lenny Dykstra is back, with some more can't-miss investment advice

    Feb 9, 2010, 11:45 AM EDT

    There was a brief moment a couple years ago when a not-insignificant number of people believed that Lenny Dykstra was a financial genius capable of picking winning stocks like some sort of baseball Rainman. Real Sports on HBO did a relatively fawning profile piece focused on Dykstra’s lavish lifestyle, Jim Cramer famously called him a…

  18. Mike Pelfrey is in the best shape of his life

    Feb 9, 2010, 11:19 AM EDT

    Add Mets’ pitcher Mike Pelfrey to the list of this offseason’s biggest losers: One week until Fat Tuesday, but Mike Pelfrey won’t be participating. The Mets pitcher is prepared to arrive in camp next week some 25 pounds lighter than last season and believes that will propel him to new heights after a disappointing 2009.…

  19. The five best rotations in baseball?

    Feb 9, 2010, 11:00 AM EDT

    Buster Olney names what he thinks fits that bill anyway.  His list, in order: Red Sox, Yankees, White Sox, Angels, Cardinals.  He has the Phillies at 5a. Yes, I’m a fanboy, but shouldn’t the Braves crack the top five? Olney has them “in the conversation” and said he would have ranked them third if they…

  20. The Cubs are building a new mega-suite

    Feb 9, 2010, 10:33 AM EDT

    The Cubs are consolidating the luxury suites down the left field line in Wrigley Field and are turning the space into something of a mega-suite. Season tickets will be able to be purchased individually at the price of $300 a game instead of in lots of 12-15 like normal luxury suites, but the service and…

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