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Ryan Lavarnway Designated for Assignment by Baltimore Orioles

The Baltimore Orioles have designated catcher and former Boston Red Sox prospect Ryan Lavarnway for assignment,  a move necessitated to make space on the 40 man roster after the team signed  Delmon Young to a new one-year deal.  The team also signed  catcher J.P. Arencibia to a minor-league deal. Lavarnway,  27, spent seven years in the Red Sox system and has posted impressive numbers in the minor leagues but has never been able to maintain those numbers at the major-league level. In 301 plate appearances at the major-league level, Lavarnway... 
 

Yankees Sign Stephen Drew, Add Infield Flexibility

The New York Yankees re-signed 31-year-old, Stephen Drew, for a one year, $5 million dollar deal with potentially 1-2 million in incentives on Tuesday. Drew will be expected to play second base and provide insurance to Didi Gregorius at shortstop. The veteran, Drew, hit a measly .162/.237 last season but missed part of the season before signing with a team and there have been rumors of alleged personal matters which may have contributed to his weak numbers. With the move, Brendan Ryan, the previous slick-fielding backup shortstop, would appear to... 
 

Yankees Rumors: Potential Remaining Offseason Moves

It’s been an off-season of saving money and getting younger for the New York Yankees. This isn’t some sort of alternate Universe but it is a clear philosophical shift by the front office to go in a different direction, possibly with an Alex Rodriguez reminder and CC Sabathia and Mark Teixeira contracts fresh on the conscience. The fact of the matter is if the Yankees kept going the direction they were headed, it could have become mid 1980’s ugly and Brian Cashman likely realized that. As a result, Didi Gregorius, Nathan Eovaldi,... 
 

Seattle Mariners Acquire Seth Smith from Padres

The San Diego Padres continued with their busy offseason on Tuesday, sending outfielder Seth Smith to the Seattle Mariners in exchange for right-handed pitcher Brandon Maurer. Padres General Manager A.J. Preller has been very aggressive this winter. With the earlier acquisitions of Matt Kemp, Wil Myers and Justin Upton, Smith became expendable. Smith was acquired from the Oakland Athletics last offseason in exchange for relief pitcher Luke Gregerson. He had a career year with the Padres in 2014, batting .266/.367/.440 in 136 games. In the... 
 

Tampa Bay Rays Reportedly Reach Agreement With Asdrubal Cabrera

The Tampa Bay Rays have reached an agreement with free-agent middle infielder Asdrubal Cabrera, according to FOX Sports’ Ken Rosenthal. The deal is contingent on Cabrera passing a physical. Cabrera, 29,  spent time in 2014 with the Cleveland Indians and Washington Nationals in 2014 hitting .241/.307/.387 with 14 home runs. He has a career .268/.330/.409/.740 slash line over eight MLB seasons. The deal is reportedly for one year at $8 million. Yunel Escobar and Ben Zobrist immediately become the subject of trade rumors as a result of the... 
 

Yankees Trade Shawn Kelley to Padres

The New York Yankees and San Diego Padres have agreed to a trade that will send right-hander Shawn Kelley to the Padres in exchange for minor league right-hander Johnny Barbato. Kelley went 3-6 with a 4.53 ERA in 59 appearances for the Yankees in 2014 and closed briefly for New York when David Robertson was on the disabled list. Barbato is a 22-year-old minor leaguer who posted a 2.87 ERA for the Padres Class-AA San Antonio team and converted 16 saves with 33 strikeouts in 31.1 innings. The right-hander was a sixth-round pick of the Padres... 
 

Phil Hughes Signs Contract Extension with Minnesota Twins

Phil Hughes has signed a contract extension with the Minnesota Twins. The deal adds three years and $42 million to his current contract. Last offseason the Twins inked Hughes to a three year deal worth $24 million. He rewarded them with his best major league season. Now the 28 year-old hurler is under contract through 2019. Hughes will also get limited no-trade protection and a $200K bonus for each season in which he pitches at least 200 innings. Once a top prospect with the New York Yankees, Hughes endured his fair share of ups and downs in the... 
 

Boston Red Sox Analysis: Still Some Work To Do

In his attempt to spearhead back-to-back worst-to-first claims in the American League East, Boston Red Sox general manager Ben Cherington continues to revamp his club’s 40-man roster. On Thursday, the Red Sox acquired veteran catcher Ryan Hanigan from San Diego for third baseman Will Middlebrooks. Yet to be formally announced is the reported re-signing of 34-year-old left-handed reliever Craig Breslow, who was a vital part of the bullpen in Boston’s 2013 World Series championship campaign but scuffled to a career-worst 5.96 ERA and 1.86... 
 

Red Sox, Padres Swap Will Middlebrooks, Ryan Hanigan – Analysis

Formerly considered a likely long-term fixture at third base for the Boston Red Sox, Will Middlebrooks is getting a much-needed fresh start with a new club for which he has a chance to fill the hot corner role in 2015. On Thursday, the Red Sox traded the 26-year-old Middlebrooks to San Diego for veteran catcher Ryan Hanigan. The teams agreed on the deal’s framework early in the day but did not announce the transaction until late last night once Boston’s former top overall prospect passed his physical in San Diego. Though the Padres have... 
 

New York Yankees Making Trades to Contend in the Future

The New York Yankees became creative in its search for starting pitching on Friday, trading 28-year-old swing-man David Phelps and 31-year-old Martin Prado for 24-year-old, Nathan Eovaldi, backup 1B/OF, Garrett Jones and 22-year-old pitching prospect, Domingo German, ranked 20th in the Marlins’ farm system and last seen pitching at the A level. The trade at face value seems like a head-scratcher for New York. Phelps is a homegrown and proven commodity for pitching depth, Prado was arguably the best all-around hitter down the stretch and Eovaldi... 
 

Giants set to acquire Casey McGehee from Marlins

The San Francisco Giants have found a replacement for Pablo Sandoval at third base for the 2015 season, at least they hope so. The Giants announced they have acquired  third baseman Casey McGehee from the Miami Marlins in a trade that sends right-handers Kendry Flores and Luis Castillo to Miami. Earlier this off-season Sandoval signed a free-agrect deal, $95 million over five years with the Boston Red Sox, leaving the Giants with a huge hole to fill. McGehee is expected to serve more or less as a bridge at the position until the team can... 
 

Yankees Add Nathan Eovaldi, Garrett Jones In Trade With Marlins

The New York Yankees and Miami Marlins have agreed on a trade that will send infielder Martin Prado and pitcher David Phelps to Miami in exchange for Nathan Eovaldi, Garrett Jones and Domingo German. Miami also received an undisclosed amount of cash in the deal. Featuring a high-ocatane fastball Eovaldi threw nearly 200 innings, finishing 6-14 with a 4.37 ERA with the Marlins in 2014. He will join a rotation that has question marks with with Masahiro Tanaka, CC Sabathia, Michael Pineda, Chris Capuano and Ivan Nova. Tanaka and Nova... 
 

Padres Set to Acquire Justin Upton From Braves

The San Diego Padres continued an aggressive off-season this time acquiring Atlanta Braves outfielder Justin Upton in a trade that will send the 27 year old slugger back to the National League West Division. The Padres earlier traded for Matt Kemp from the Los Angeles Dodgers and Wil Myers from the Tampa Bay Rays, acquired Derek Norris  re-signed Josh Johnson and signed Brandon Morrow. The trade was first reported by Yahoo’s Jeff Passan. Left-hander Max Fried and second baseman Jace Peterson are headed to the Braves in the trade, reports... 
 

Kansas City Royals Agree with Edinson Volquez on Two-Year Deal

The Kansas City Royals have agreed to terms with free agent pitcher Edinson Volquez on a two-year deal worth $20 million reports Jon Heyman of CBS Sports. Volquez spent last season with the Pittsburgh Pirates who picked him up on a one-year deal after he spent 2013 with the San Diego Padres and Los Angeles Dodgers. The 31 year-old Volquez has just one season of more than +1 WAR. That came in 2008 when he made 32 starts and posted a 3.21 ERA with a strikeout rate of 24.6 percent. Since then he’s posted a 4.48 ERA over more than 750 innings.... 
 

Rays Deal Wil Myers in Blockbuster Trade with Padres, Nationals

The Tampa Bay Rays sent outfielder Wil Myers to the San Diego Padres as part of a three team trade that involved 11 players. Myers heads to San Diego as the centerpiece of the trade. San Diego also receives young minor league arms Gerardo Reyes and Jose Castillo along with big league catcher Ryan Hanigan as part of the deal. Meanwhile, Tampa Bay will get catcher Rene Rivera, right-hander Burch Smith and first base prospect Jake Bauers from the Padres. In addition, the Rays get outfielder Steven Souza and lefty pitcher Travis Ott from the Washington... 
 

Houston Astros Sign Jed Lowrie

The Houston Astros have agreed to a three year deal with shortstop Jed Lowrie which will guarantee him $23 million. Lowrie was previously a member of the Astros in 2012 after the Boston Red Sox traded him along with Kyle Weiland in exchange for Mark Melancon. He spent the last two years with the Oakland Athletics. The 30 year-old Lowrie has battled injury troubles throughout his seven year big league career. He debuted with the Red Sox in 2008, and made a nice impression, batting .258/.339/.400 in 81 games. Lowrie was limited to just 32 games... 
 

Miami Marlins Sign Michael Morse

The Miami Marlins have signed Michael Morse to a two year deal worth $12 million reports Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald. Morse, 32, could slot into first base with the Marlins, either as a platoon partner with Garrett Jones or in a full-time role. A $12 million price tag seems attractive after seeing designated hitters Billy Butler and Kendrys Morales garner $30 million and $18 million, respectively. After an injury-marred 2013 campaign where he hit a miserable .215/.270/.381, Morse signed a one year, $6 million deal with the San Francisco... 
 

Angels Acquire Rays Matt Joyce For Kevin Jepsen

The Los Angeles Angels and Tampa Bays agreed to a trade that will send fan favorite Matt Joyce to the west coast for reliever Kevin Jepsen. Joyce, who was an All-Star in 2011, spent six of his seven seasons in the majors with Tampa Bay coming to the Rays in a trade with the Detroit Tigers. He will join Los Angeles with a .250/.342/.441/.783 slash line in 725 career games. “Matt was an important part of this team for the last six seasons. We appreciate his many contributions to the Rays on the field, and the professionalism he brought to... 
 

New York Yankees, Chase Headley Reach Agreement on four-year deal

The New York Yankees and Chase Headley have reached an agreement on a four-year deal worth $52 million according to Jon Heyman of CBS Sports. Headley spent the 2014 season between the San Diego Padres and Yankees, batting .243 with 13 home runs, 20 doubles and 49 RBI in 135 games. He hit .262 with six home runs, eight doubles and 17 RBI in 58 games with New York. Headley has a career .265/.347/.409/.756 slash line in eight MLB seasons. The deal is pending Headley passing a physical. Alex Rodriguez is due back after a year long suspension for... 
 

Chicago White Sox, Melky Cabrera Reach Agreement on three-year deal

The Chicago White Sox and free-agent outfielder Melky Cabrera have reached an agreement on a three-year deal reportedly worth $45million, pending a physical. Cabrera rejected a qualifying offer earlier this offseason form Toronto and the Blue Jays will receive a compensation pick at the end of the 2015 MLB draft. For the White Sox that means surrendering their third round selection. The Blue Jays eight overall pick is protected and they gave up their second round pick already when they signed David Robertson. The signing is somewhat surprising... 
 

Boston Red Sox, Justin Masterson reunite with one-year deal

Early Wednesday evening, the Boston Red Sox starting rotation consisted of Clay Buchholz, Joe Kelly and an array of promising young Major League arms and top prospects. Less than 24 hours later, the club has acquired Wade Miley and Rick Porcello in separate trades, and now they have signed veteran right-hander Justin Masterson to a one-year, $9.5 million deal. The 29-year-old Masterson, who will be 30 in March, returns to the organization that drafted him in the second round in 2006 out of San Diego State University. As a rookie in 2008, he was... 
 

Twins, Ervin Santana Reach Agreement on 4-year Deal

Last year right-hander Ervin Santana signed a one year deal with Atlanta, unable to find a multi-year offer, at the value of the qualifying offer. After turning in a solid 2014, going 4-10 with a 3.95 ERA in 31 starts Santana took advantage of a suddenly strong pitchers market inking a 4-year deal worth $54 million with the Minnesota Twins, with a conditional option worth $14 million in 2019 if he throws more than 200 innings. He will receive a $1 million buyout if the Twins don’t exercise the option. Santana pitched for the Los Angeles Angels for... 
 

Tigers Acquire Alfredo Simon from Reds

The Detroit Tigers have acquired pitcher Alfredo Simon from the Cincinnati Reds in exchange for shortstop Eugenio Suarez and pitching prospect Jonathan Crawford, reports Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports. It’s the second trade the Tigers have made today. Earlier they sent Rick Porcello to the Boston Red Sox in exchange for outfielder Yoenis Cespedes. Simon, a veteran right-hander, made a career-high 32 starts for the Reds last season. Prior to that he pitched in their bullpen. In 2010, he served as the closer for the Baltimore Orioles, notching... 
 

Kansas City Royals Sign Kendrys Morales

The Kansas City Royals have signed designated hitter Kendrys Morales to a two year deal worth $17 million, reports Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports. The deal could be worth up to $18.5 million with performance incentives. Morales will slot into the DH role left vacant when Billy Butler signed with the Oakland Athletics. Morales was one of the more interesting stories last offseason. He declined the qualifying offer extended to him by the Seattle Mariners and reportedly was seeking a four or five year deal in the range of $15 million. With teams... 
 

Marlins Acquire Mat Latos from Reds

The Miami Marlins have acquired starting pitcher Mat Latos from the Cincinnati Reds reports Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports. In exchange the Reds will receive pitcher Anthony DeSclafani and catcher Chad Wallach. It’s been a busy couple of days for the Marlins who acquired second baseman Dee Gordon from the Los Angeles Dodgers Wednesday night. Latos, who turned 27 earlier this week, is coming off an injury-plagued year. He made just 16 starts as an elbow injury limited him significantly. Prior to that he had posted four straight solid seasons... 
 

Red Sox, Tigers swap Yoenis Cespedes, Rick Porcello

Boston’s rotation reconstruction continued Thursday morning. The Red Sox acquired 25-year-old right-hander Rick Porcello from the Detroit Tigers for outfielder Yoenis Cespedes, right-handed reliever Alex Wilson and a minor leaguer, according to multiple media reports. The 29-year-old Cespedes was traded to Boston at last July’s deadline in the transaction that sent Jon Lester to Oakland. At the time, the A’s were one of the best teams in baseball, but subtracting the Cuban-born slugger from their lineup proved detrimental. Cespedes... 
 

Padres Acquire Matt Kemp from Dodgers

The San Diego Padres have acquired outfielder Matt Kemp from the Los Angeles Dodgers reports Jon Heyman of CBS Sports. As part of the deal, the Dodgers will eat $30 million of the $107 million remaining on Kemp’s contract, which runs through 2019. Catcher Tim Federowicz will accompany Kemp to San Diego while catcher Yasmani Grandal, righty Joe Wieland and pitching prospect Zach Eflin will go to Los Angeles. This is the latest in a flurry of activity for the Dodgers, who completed a six player trade with the Miami Marlins, have a deal... 
 

Red Sox Begin Rotation Rebuild, Acquire Wade Miley

Hours after Jon Lester signed with the Chicago Cubs, Boston Red Sox general manager Ben Cherington told reporters that his club would make multiple moves to bolster the starting rotation. One transaction was initiated on Wednesday night when the Red Sox acquired 28-year-old left-hander Wade Miley from the Arizona Diamondbacks for right-handed pitchers Rubby De La Rosa and Allen Webster. Miley, who was projected to serve as Arizona’s Opening Day starter, will join a rotation that also includes Joe Kelly and Clay Buchholz. The Red Sox are likely... 
 

Dodgers Ship Dee Gordon to Marlins in Six Player Trade

The Los Angeles Dodgers and Miami Marlins have agreed to a six player trade reports Clark Spencer of the Miami Herald. Dee Gordon and Dan Haren will go to the Marlins while left-hander Andrew Heaney, second baseman Enrique Hernandez, reliever Chris Hatcher and catching prospect Austin Barnes are on their way to Los Angeles. Gordon, the Dodgers second baseman and a 2014 All-Star and Heaney, a 23 year-old hurler who was picked 9th overall in 2012, are the main pieces in the deal. Earlier this offseason Haren, who exercised his $10 million player... 
 

Phillies Start Restructure by Dealing Jimmy Rollins to Dodgers

Questions have lingered about the Philadelphia Phillies’ off-season plans. Will they unload veterans and rebuild or keep their prominent names and make one final run at a Natioanl League East title with the current group? Phillies General Manager Ruben Amaro delivered an answer Wednesday afternoon when he traded shortstop Jimmy Rollins to the Los Angeles Dodgers. The 36-year-old Rollins has spent his entire 15-year Major League career in Philadelphia. A second round pick out of an Oakland area high school in 1996, Rollins made his big league... 
 

How the Chicago Cubs Are Building a Future Empire

If you’re not careful, you might miss it. Gradually, the Chicago Cubs, six years without a legitimate contender (a 97 win team in 2009 who would become a first round knockout), five years without a .500 record and owners of back to back last place finishes, are rising. One might look at the standings and see 73 wins in 2014, 12th in the NL in runs, 13th in OBP, 13th in ERA and owners of 20 blown saves and struggle to see the silver lining. But it’s there, and on Wednesday it had a bow on top with a “Happy Holidays” greeting... 
 

Phillies ship Bastardo to Pirates for minor league pitcher

With Francisco Liriano and A.J. Burnett signed to solidify the rotation for 2015, the Pittsburgh Pirates shifted their attention to the bullpen by acquiring 29-year-old left-hander Antonio Bastardo from the Philadelphia Phillies for minor league pitcher Joely Rodriguez. Earlier this week, the Phillies were reportedly talking to the Boston Red Sox about trading Bastardo for minor league infielder and Philadelphia area native Sean Coyle. Bastardo has spent all six of his Major League seasons with the Phillies. He surrendered just 43 hits in 64 innings... 
 

What Would a Cole Hamels to the Red Sox Deal Look Like?

Now that Jon Lester has inked a lucrative deal with the Chicago Cubs, the team with which he earned two World Series rings is shifting its focus to construct a starting rotation for 2015 and beyond. The Boston Red Sox are in prime position to add at least two starters, and there is a possibility they will add a third. Currently, the club has right-handers Clay Buchholz and Joe Kelly slated to occupy two-fifths of the rotation. With an abundance of highly regarded young arms, Boston could feasibly reserve the final rotation spot for one of Rubby... 
 

Astros Sign Pat Neshek, Luke Gregerson to Bullpen

The Houston Astros upgraded their bullpen by signing relief pitchers Luke Gregerson and Pat Neshek. Gregerson’s deal is for three years and $18.5 million and Neshek is under contract for two years and $12.5 million. After two consecutive seasons of having one of the worst relief corps in the major leagues, the Astros are making a push to shore up the staff. The 30 year-old Gregerson spent last season with the Oakland Athletics where he pitched to a 2.12 ERA in 72 appearances. The right-hander struck out 20.8 percent of hitters, down from... 
 

Jon Lester agrees to deal with Chicago Cubs

Jon Lester has finally made his decision. After deliberating for days, the 30-year-old left-hander has agreed to a six-year, $155 million deal with the Chicago Cubs, according to multiple media reports. Lester will earn a $25.83 annual average salary. Over the last 24 hours, Lester eliminated the San Francisco Giants and Los Angeles Dodgers from his list of potential destinations, leaving the Cubs and Red Sox. Lester was an instrumental part of Boston’s World Series titles in 2007 and 2013. Reports indicate the the Red Sox offered him six... 
 

Red Sox-Phillies talking swap for lefty Antonio Bastardo

After their ill-fated attempt to reunite with Andrew Miller, the Boston Red Sox are discussing a deal with Philadelphia to acquire another power left-hander. According to Sean McAdam of CSNNE.com, Boston is interested in landing 29-year-old lefty Antonio Bastardo for infield prospect Sean Coyle, who is from the Philadelphia area. At the trade deadline last July, the Red Sox traded Miller to Baltimore for highly regarded left-handed starting pitching prospect Eduardo Rodriguez. Boston pursued Miller this offseason before the veteran inked a four-year,... 
 

Pittsburgh Pirates re-sign Francisco Liriano

The Pittsburgh Pirates have re-signed Francisco Liriano to a three year deal worth $39 million, reports Jon Heyman of CBS Sports. Earlier in the offseason Liriano rejected the Pirates qualifying offer of $15.3 million. The Pirates added veteran pitcher A.J. Burnett back in November. He and Liriano were a formidable 1-2 punch at the top of the Pirates rotation in 2013. The 31 year-old Liriano revitalized his career in Pittsburgh. After a couple of lackluster seasons with the Minnesota Twins and Chicago White Sox in which he posted ERAs north... 
 

Chicago White Sox Set Acquire Jeff Samardzija

The Chicago White Sox and Oakland A’s are set to announce a trade that will send right-hander Jeff Samardzija to the Sox for infielder Marcus Semien and prospects and righer-handed starter Chris Bassitt, according to Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle. Samardzija ends up spending half a season with Oakland joining the team along with Jason Hammel last summer in a trade that sent Addison Russell and Billy McKinney to the Chicago Cubs. Hammel signed with the Cubs yesterday. The White Sox now have Chris Sale, Samardzija... 
 

Oakland Sends Brandon Moss To Cleveland For Prospect Joe Wendle

The Oakland Athletics and Cleveland Indians have completed a trade that will send slugger Brindon Moss to the Indians in exchange for second base prospect Joe Wendle. Moss has hit more than 20 home runs in three straight seasons. Moss is a career .248 hitter with a .326 on-base percentage, .460 slugging percentage and .786 OPS in 625 games. Wendle, who will turn 25 in April, hit .265/.326/.425 in 93 minor league games in 2014, including .253/.311/.414 with eight home runs and 20 doubles in 87 games for Double-A Akron. Oakland Athletics Rumors As... 
 

Chicago Cubs Reach Agreement with Jason Hammel

The Chicago Cubs have reached an agreement with right-hander Jason Hammel on a two-year deal for $18 million that includes an option year. Hammel started 2014 with Chicago with a one year deal worth $6 million, and went 8-5 with a 2.98 ERA for them, before a trade to the A’s. Overall, he was 10-11 with a 3.47 ERA. Hammel played for new Cubs manager Joe Maddon on the 2008 Tampa Bay Rays team, so certainly there is some familiarity with Hammel there as well. Hammel was part of the deal that sent Jeff Samardzija to Oakland and brought Addison... 
 

MLB Free Agent Profile: David Robertson Rumors

Free agent closer David Robertson is set to make big money this offseason. The New York Yankees recently signed reliever Andrew Miller to a four year deal worth $36 million. Robertson reportedly has an offer for three years and $39 million in hand but expect him to sign for more than that. The 29 year-old Robertson has been one of the top strikeout artists in baseball over the course of his seven year career with the Yankees. In that time frame he’s fanned 32 percent of hitters, the 10th best mark and the highest among relievers that have... 
 

MLB Free Agent Profile: Melky Cabrera Rumors

The market for free agent outfielder Melky Cabrera is heating up, with the Seattle Mariners reportedly leading the pack. Cabrera became a free agent after declining the qualifying offer extended to him by the Toronto Blue Jays. He’s looking to get four or five years and $55-65 million. The 30 year old Cabrera played the last two seasons with the Blue Jays after he signed a two year $16 million commitment with them. Prior to that he had a career season with the San Francisco Giants, posting a .346/.390/.516 batting line. However, his season... 
 

New York Yankees Sign Andrew Miller, Acquire Didi Gregorius In Trade

The New York Yankees completed a very busy day signing free-agent southpaw Andrew Miller to a four-year deal reportedly worth $36 million. Earlier today the Yankees, Diamondbacks and Tigers finalized a three-way deal that sent shortstop to Didi Gregorius to New York. Miller weighed offers from several teams before settling on the Bronx Bombers. Miller split time with Boston and Baltimore last year, giving up just 33 hits in 62 1/3 innings with 17 walks and 103 strikeouts. Miller will be a setup man or share the closing duties with Dellin... 
 

Atlanta Braves Sign Nick Markakis

The Atlanta Braves have agreed to a four year deal with free agent oufielder Nick Markakis that is worth $44 million, reports Jeff Passan. It’s yet another move in what has already been a busy offseason for Atlanta. Earlier they dealt outfielder Jason Heyward to the St. Louis Cardinals, and they are actively shopping outfielder Justin Upton. The 31 year-old Markakis rebounded from a poor 2013 season to post above-average numbers in 2014. After hitting a weak .271/.329/.356 in 2013, the rightfielder improved to .276/.342/.386. His fWAR jumped... 
 

Busy Blue Jays Sign Justin Smoak, Trade For Michael Saunders

The Toronto Blue Jays signed first baseman Justin Smoak to a one-year, $1 million deal, and sent lefty J.A. Happ to the Seattle Mariners in exchange for outfielder Michael Saunders, The Blue Jays claimed the 27-year-old Smoak in October, but non-tendered him on Tuesday to avoid paying him approximately $3 million in arbitration. Smoak played in 80 games last season for the Seattle Mariners, batting .202 with seven home runs and 30 RBIs. Happ, 32, went 11-11, with a 4.22 ERA, in 28 starts for the Blue Jays this year and solidifies a rotation... 
 

Minnesota Twins Sign Torii Hunter to One-Year Deal

The Minnesota Twins have signed veteran outfielder Torii Hunter to a one-year deal worth $10.5 million, reports Ken Rosenthal. Hunter returns to the team where he began his career all the way back in 1997. The veteran outfielder will turn 40 during the 2015 season. Nevertheless, he’s managed to produce offensive numbers at least ten percent better than the major league average in every season since 2006. After a five year stint with the Los Angeles Angels from 2008-12, Hunter spent the last two seasons with the Detroit Tigers. Only two... 
 

MLB Free Agent Profile: Francisco Liriano

Jon Lester, Max Scherzer and James Shields are the big names available in this offseason’s free agent pitching market. The rest of the market appears to be waiting for these dominoes to fall. Lurking behind this trio are a few solid options. Francisco Liriano declined the Pittsburgh Pirates‘ qualifying offer of $15.3 million. The 31 year-old lefthander has spent the last two seasons with the Pirates, and rejuvenated his career. While Liriano has struggled to stay healthy and has never thrown 200 innings in a season, he possesses excellent... 
 

Mariners To Sign Nelson Cruz to four-year deal

The Seattle Mariners and free-agent slugger Nelson Cruz have reached an agreement on a four-year, $57 million deal that also includes a $1 million signing bonus. The deal was first reported by ESPN.com’s Jerry Crasnick. The deal is pending a physical. The 34 year old Cruz led the majors with 40 home runs and finished third in the American League with 108 RBIs, after signing a one year deal worth $8 million with the Baltimore Orioles last February. The Orioles made a one-year qualifying offer of $15.3 million to Cruz for 2015, which he rejected,... 
 

Blue Jays All in After Acquiring Josh Donaldson from A’s

The Toronto Blue Jays acquired third baseman Josh Donaldson from the Oakland Athletics in exchange for third baseman Brett Lawrie, international free agent Franklin Barreto and pitchers Sean Nolin and Kendall Graveman. It’s been a busy offseason for the Jays, who signed catcher Russell Martin to a five year deal earlier. They’re serious about reaching the playoffs for the first time since 1993. Meanwhile, the A’s continue to retool their roster as they always seem to do under General Manager Billy Beane. The 29 year-old Donaldson... 
 

Seattle Mariners Looking To Raise the Bar in 2015

Seattle Mariners enjoyed a reasonably successful 2014, improving on the number of wins they achieved the season before by 16. The aim this offseason is to find the right blend that can help them build upon that success because, despite their improvements, the Mariners fell just short of the postseason. Despite having little to shout about in the way of real success, the Mariners fans enjoy MLB as much as anyone. The 40,000 that packed Safeco Field for what was to become the final game last season— a 4-1 victory over Los Angeles Angels—still... 
 
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