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  1. My ballot: American League Rookie of the Year

    Nov 16, 2009, 11:45 AM EDT

    Later today the Baseball Writers Association of America will announce their choice for AL Rookie of the Year, but first here’s how my ballot would look: 1. Andrew Bailey, Oakland 2. Elvis Andrus, Texas 3. Jeff Niemann, Tampa Bay 4. Gordon Beckham, Chicago 5. Rick Porcello, Detroit Honorable mention: Brett Anderson, Ricky Romero, Nolan Reimold,…

  2. The poop on Camp Panda

    Nov 16, 2009, 11:02 AM EDT

    Last week Bob told us all about “Camp Panda,” the intensive conditioning regimen for the Giants’ portly slugger Pablo Sandoval.  Fresh details today from the San Francisco Chronicle: With a host of others, including Giants head trainer Dave Groeschner and strength and conditioning coordinator Ben Potenziano, infielder Pablo Sandoval climbed Phoenix’s Camelback Mountain on Thursday,…

  3. Expert: No, the Yankees DID NOT buy their title

    Nov 16, 2009, 10:30 AM EDT

    A week and a half ago I asked whether or not the Yankees bought their title.  Given that, as of this morning, 652 people have commented on that, I feel comfortable saying that the subject struck a nerve. Today noted sports economist Andrew Zimbalist says in the Wall Street Journal that, nope, the Yankees did…

  4. The Blue Jays could be interested in Brandon Phillips

    Nov 16, 2009, 9:55 AM EDT

    Jeff Blair of the Toronto Globe and Mail says that if the Reds are seriously thinking about cutting bait on Brandon Phillips, the Blue Jays would want him to be their third baseman. You’ll recall, of course, that the Blue Jays shipped their previous third baseman — Scott Rolen — to the Reds just last…

  5. Tigers fans should calm down about the Granderson rumors

    Nov 16, 2009, 9:25 AM EDT

    So says Detroit Free Press columnist Michael Rosenberg, who reminds us that Tigers owner Mike Ilitch is an emotional guy: Ilitch surely is furious now, and for good reason. He gave Dombrowski one of the biggest payroll advantages in baseball — the Tigers had the fifth-highest payroll in the league — and they could not…

  6. Rookies of the Year to be announced today

    Nov 16, 2009, 8:49 AM EDT

    Bobby Crosby. Bob Hamelin. Jason Jennings. Kazuhiro Sasaki.  Immortals all, each of whom got their start with the Rookie of the Year Award.  Who will join their esteemed ranks today, as the major post season awards begin to be rolled out? AL:  Multiple candidates here. Elvis Andrus probably deserved a Gold Glove this year. And…

  7. The gap between the leagues grows wider

    Nov 16, 2009, 8:20 AM EDT

    As least psychically, as the GMs who met in Chicago last are said to be increasingly wary of players moving from the NL to the AL: His shoulders shrugged. His lips pursed. But Kenny Williams bit his tongue one syllable too late. “A guy going from the American League to the National League, no disrespect,…

  8. Free Agency Preview: Third basemen

    Nov 15, 2009, 6:18 PM EDT

    Free Agency Preview – Catcher Free Agency Preview – First base & DH Free Agency Preview – Second base This is part four in a series of columns looking at this winter’s free agents, trade candidates and non-tender possibilities. I’ll be making predictions for the key free agents, but try not to take them too…

  9. Hot Stove Roundup: Cabrera, Rodney, Orioles, Pirates

    Nov 15, 2009, 4:22 PM EDT

    Here’s a few Hot Stove items of note as we eagerly await 12:01 am on Friday: – Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com thinks that if the Tigers aim to cut payroll, they should consider trading Miguel Cabrera to the Red Sox. Likewise, Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe thinks Cabrera should be on Boston’s short-list of…

  10. Stat of the day: Top 10 free agents ranked by WAR

    Nov 15, 2009, 3:10 PM EDT

    The following are the top ten free agents, as ranked by 2009 WAR, or Wins Above Replacement (compiled with FanGraphs): 1) Chone Figgins – 6.1 2) Matt Holliday – 5.7 3) Joel Pineiro – 4.8 4) Felipe Lopez – 4.6 5) Marco Scutaro – 4.5 6) Mike Cameron – 4.3 7) John Lackey – 3.9…

  11. McGwire to blame for Holliday's slow start?

    Nov 15, 2009, 11:23 AM EDT

    Some have speculated that Matt Holliday’s relationship with new hitting coach Mark McGwire might be one of the selling points to keep him in St. Louis. Well, think again. In an interview with Phil Rogers of the Chicago Tribune, agent Scott Boras attributed Holliday’s early season struggles to swing changes McGwire had made during offseason…

  12. Strasburg strong in return from injury

    Nov 15, 2009, 10:34 AM EDT

    Making his first Arizona Fall League start in 12 days, Nationals prospect Stephen Strasburg blanked the Peoria Saguaros over 3 1/3 innings on Saturday, allowing just one hit while striking out six and walking two. Strasburg tossed 36 of 64 pitches for strikes while his fastball was clocked as high as 99 mph. The 20-year-old…

  13. Free Agency Preview: Second base

    Nov 14, 2009, 7:27 PM EDT

    Free Agency Preview – Catcher Free Agency Preview – First base & DH This is part three in a series of columns looking at this winter’s free agents, trade candidates and non-tender possibilities. I’ll be making predictions for the key free agents, but try not to take them too awfully seriously. Here are the second…

  14. Hot Stove Roundup: Lackey, Willingham, Crawford, Hardy

    Nov 14, 2009, 5:43 PM EDT

    We’re just one week away from when the free agency floodgates open, meaning that we’re in the calm before the Hot Stove storm. Here’s a few links to keep you busy on this Saturday: – David Lennon of Newsday writes that the Mets intend to be serious bidders for free agent starter John Lackey. General…

  15. Tigers would like to have Verlander 'for a long time'

    Nov 14, 2009, 1:28 PM EDT

    Whether you buy the rumors of a possible Curtis Granderson trade or not, their most valuable asset is ace Justin Verlander. The 26-year-old workhorse was 19-9 with a 3.45 ERA in 2009, leading the majors with 35 starts, 240 innings pitched and 269 strikeouts. While stopping short of deeming any player “untouchable,” general manager Dave…

  16. Does Crawford want out of Tampa?

    Nov 14, 2009, 12:53 PM EDT

    According to a report from Mike Silva’s New York Baseball Digest, Carl Crawford is “livid” over management’s decision to pick up his $10 million option for next season and now wants out of Tampa. Says a source with the knowledge of the situation: “He wants out of Tampa bad. He had a handshake agreement with…

  17. Alfonzo wants one last shot with Mets

    Nov 14, 2009, 11:43 AM EDT

    According to Kevin Kernan of the New York Post, Edgardo Alfonzo wants one more shot to end his career with the Mets. “My dream is to retire with the Mets colors,” Alfonzo said. “That’s my dream. That’s what I’m praying for, maybe it will happen, maybe not, but dreams sometimes come true, you know. Alfonzo…

  18. Giants prospect Villalona loses U.S. visa

    Nov 13, 2009, 7:08 PM EDT

    The Giants confirmed Friday that top prospect Angel Villalona has lost his U.S. visa after being charged with killing a man in the Dominican Republic. The 19-year-old Villalona was recently released from jail after reportedly agreeing to pay the family of the man he allegedly killed a total of $140,000. Villalona was given a $2.1…

  19. Stubborn Uggla doesn't want to budge

    Nov 13, 2009, 6:20 PM EDT

    While it seems as though most of his suitors view him as a third baseman or outfielder, Dan Uggla isn’t interested in moving off second base, his agent told Yahoo! Sports’ Tim Brown. “Danny Uggla’s been a full-time second baseman for the last four years,” agent Jeff Borris said. “He’s performed exceptionally well at that…

  20. Former prospect Figueroa passes away from lupus

    Nov 13, 2009, 5:15 PM EDT

    Jonathan Figueroa, a longtime minor leaguer who pitched in the Dodgers system, passed away from lupus at age 26. The native of Venezuela was initially billed as a top prospect after a spectacular pro debut in 2002. He went 7-3 with a 1.42 ERA and a 105/39 K/BB ratio in 75 innings between the Rookie…

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