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  1. Is Ryan Howard more powerful than Derek Jeter?

    Jan 27, 2010, 1:21 PM EDT

    I don’t mean which of those two can bench the most, I’m talking about power defined in terms of influence, appeal, marketability and money. Which of them can most easily impose their whims on we mere mortals and most expect us to do their bidding? Well neither of them can, but the people who write…

  2. Cruise with Major League greats. And Stan Bahnsen.

    Jan 27, 2010, 12:55 PM EDT

    All I ask is for a tall ship and a star to steer her by! Well, at least a couple stars, according to USA Today: Good news, baseball fans: MSC Cruises says it will hold another round of ‘baseball greats’ voyages next winter in the Caribbean. The seven-night, baseball-themed sailings, to be headlined by well-known…

  3. Thome is nice, but Twins still need infield help

    Jan 27, 2010, 11:57 AM EDT

    As a Twins fan I’ve been hoping they’ll sign either Felipe Lopez or Orlando Hudson to play second base and hit second in the lineup, but the Minneapolis Star Tribune‘s beat writing tag team threw some cold water on both scenarios recently. First here’s LaVelle E. Neal II on Lopez: Lopez? Scouts tell me you…

  4. The Royals get a national TV game

    Jan 27, 2010, 11:25 AM EDT

    Kansas City hasn’t been on Sunday Night Baseball for since 1996, but ESPN is going to televise their Sunday night game against the Angels on the Fourth of July. Your non-mutually-exclusive conspiracy theories of the day: (1) Since it’s the Fourth of July, and everyone will be out watching fireworks and stuff, ESPN figures that…

  5. The Yankees and Damon are totally splitsville

    Jan 27, 2010, 10:55 AM EDT

    No matter how many times we heard the reports that the Yankees were going to stick to a budget and couldn’t give more than a couple million bucks to Johnny Damon, you always got the sense that those two kids would make it work. After all, just because the Yankees allegedly have a budget doesn’t…

  6. Sandoval is getting into playing shape

    Jan 27, 2010, 10:26 AM EDT

    Speaking of weight, Pablo Sandoval is back in the U.S. following a tour of the Venezuelan league that reportedly had him falling off the healthy food wagon: [Giants head trainer Dave] Groeschner feared a big weight gain in Venezuela when Sandoval was left to fend at the dinner table without the nutritional prepackaged meals he…

  7. Dodgers to Ron Belliard: be slim, or be gone

    Jan 27, 2010, 10:00 AM EDT

    About that Ron Belliard deal?Yes, it’s for $825,000, and yes, the Dodgers are likely counting on Belliard to win the second base job, but according to Dylan Hernandez of the L.A. Times, it’s not guaranteed.  But it can be:  All Belliard has to do is to weigh in at 209 or less at some point…

  8. The Mets are a mess

    Jan 27, 2010, 9:27 AM EDT

    Unless something really ridiculous happens today I’m going to do my best to honor Bob’s voluntary cease fire on the Mets for as long as a I can. But that doesn’t mean that I can’t outsource the mocking.  Here’s Bob Klapisch: None of this is good news for the Mets’ fans, who are wondering what,…

  9. Quote of the Day: Ryan Zimmerman

    Jan 27, 2010, 9:00 AM EDT

    The Nats’ third baseman on the radio a few minutes ago: “There’s no way we’ll lose a hundred games again this year” I can’t decide if this is a bold statement or not. On the one hand, yes, it’s a guarantee of sorts and we live in an uncertain world. A world in which the…

  10. Tim Wakefield expects to start

    Jan 27, 2010, 8:30 AM EDT

    The Red Sox have John Lackey, Josh Beckett, Jon Lester, Daisuke Matsuzaka and Clay Buchholz, but Tim Wakefield says one of them is going to have to take a back seat to him:  “I’ve been right back on track with my normal offseason routine and I don’t feel like there’s going to be any setbacks,…

  11. Dawson to enter Hall of Fame as an Expo

    Jan 27, 2010, 7:57 AM EDT

    Our long international nightmare is over: After attending the annual B.A.T. banquet in New York Tuesday night, [Andre] Dawson sent the following text to The Tribune: “Hall will issue a press release (Wednesday) announcing that I will go in as an Expo.” While Dawson may have enjoyed more general fame as a Cub, he played…

  12. Washburn reportedly prefers either Twins or M's

    Jan 27, 2010, 12:32 AM EDT

    For those of you who have been wondering (and I know there are a lot of you out there), it appears that Jarrod Washburn will pretty much be choosing between the Mariners and Twins for his pitching home in 2010. From Jon Paul Morosi of Foxsports.com: One major-league source said Tuesday that there are “a…

  13. Cubs add Chad Tracy to bench mix

    Jan 26, 2010, 9:21 PM EDT

    The Cubs did a little more work Tuesday evening toward filling their bench.  According to ESPN Chicago’s Bruce Levine, the team will announce on Wednesday the signing of infielder Chad Tracy to a minor league contract. Tracy, 29, batted .237/.306/.389 last season with eight home runs and 39 RBI in 257 at-bats.  He’s struggled with…

  14. Nationals, Rays targeting Orlando Hudson

    Jan 26, 2010, 9:11 PM EDT

    UPDATE: ESPN.com’s Buster Olney reports that the Rays are also keen on Hudson and might be willing to move Ben Zobrist to right field in order to accommodate him. 7:03pm: MLB.com’s Bill Ladson heard from a baseball source Tuesday that the Nationals “have a good chance of signing” free agent second baseman Orlando Hudson. “There…

  15. Rangers avoid arbitration with closer Frank Francisco

    Jan 26, 2010, 8:44 PM EDT

    According to MLB.com’s T.R. Sullivan, the Rangers and closer Frank Francisco avoided arbitration Tuesday by agreeing to a $3.265 million contract for the 2010 season. Francisco requested $3.6 million from the Rangers and was offered $3 million when arbitration figures were exchanged last week.  He had an impressive 1.11 WHIP and 57/15 K/BB ratio last…

  16. Rockies keeping an eye on Melvin Mora

    Jan 26, 2010, 7:30 PM EDT

    The Denver Post’s Troy Renck hears that the Rockies are still monitoring Melvin Mora in their ongoing search for a utility infielder. “Melvin likes it there. He’s definitely interested,” said agent Eric Goldschmidt, on the possibility of his client heading to Colorado. And who wouldn’t love playing in Coors Field?  Mora, 37, batted .260/.321/.358 last…

  17. Report: Padres, Garland agree to terms

    Jan 26, 2010, 7:08 PM EDT

    UPDATE: FOXSports.com’s Ken Rosenthal has the financial details: Garland will earn $4.7MM in 2010 and can earn $6.75MM on a mutual option for 2011. The option has a $600,000 buyout. 5:25pm: Padres president Tom Garfinkel said Tuesday that the Padres have signed free agent Jon Garland. The terms of the deal were not available. It’s…

  18. Diving into the depths: San Francisco Giants

    Jan 26, 2010, 6:23 PM EDT

    This is part of a 30-article series looking at each team’s depth chart headed into spring training. San Francisco Giants Rotation 1. Tim Lincecum 2. Matt Cain 3. Barry Zito 4. Jonathan Sanchez 5. Madison Bumgarner 6. Joe Martinez 7. Kevin Pucetas 8. Henry Sosa 9. Clayton Tanner 10. Steve Johnson 11. Craig Clark While…

  19. Twins ink Jim Thome to one-year contract

    Jan 26, 2010, 6:22 PM EDT

    According to Kelsie Smith of the St. Paul Pioneer Press, the Twins have inked Jim Thome to a one-year contract.  LaVelle E. Neal III of the Minneapolis Star-Tribune is reporting that the deal is worth $1.5 million with another $700,000 available through performance-based incentives. Thome, who turns 40 near the end of the 2010 season,…

  20. News Flash: Charlie Manuel would like to have had Cliff Lee in the rotation

    Jan 26, 2010, 5:50 PM EDT

    Cholly on the Cliff Lee trade: “Halladay is the best pitcher in baseball right now. Lee is a tad behind him. Of course it would’ve been nice to have both of them. It’d be good to have Halladay, Lee, Hamels. I’d be looking good. I might even be buying more expensive furniture than the Mrs.…

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