Fantasy baseball players in the news

by KFFL Staff on February 17, 2011 @ 08:48:21 PDT


First Baseman

1B | Albert Pujols | St. Louis Cardinals | Fantasy
Updating a previous report, St. Louis Cardinals 1B Albert Pujols released a statement Wednesday, Feb. 16, about his failed contract negotiations with the team, reports Bob Nightengale, of USA Today. "After spending the last few weeks working toward an extension, we've suspended our conversation with the Cardinals, due to this morning's self-imposed deadline," Pujols said. "Once the 2011 season is over, we hope to revisit those talks. My agent, Dan Lozano and I have been on the same page throughout the entire process, and we strongly feel this is the best course of action. I have made it very clear that I do not want any of this to be a distraction during the season, and it was for that reason, that we came up with a deadline."

1B | Adrian Gonzalez | Boston Red Sox | Injury, Fantasy
Boston Red Sox 1B Adrian Gonzalez (shoulder) is awaiting medical clearance before he'll be allowed to swing a bat, reports Buster Olney, of ESPN. Gonzalez said Wednesday, Feb. 16, that he feels great.

1B | Russell Branyan | Arizona Diamondbacks | Fantasy
Arizona Diamondbacks 1Bs Russell Branyan, Brandon Allen and Juan Miranda will compete for the first base job this spring, according to The Arizona Republic's Nick Piecoro.

1B | Chad Tracy | Japanese League | Injury
Texas Rangers 1B Chad Tracy (shoulder) had shoulder cleanup surgery during the offseason and will likely be limited to first base early in camp, according to's T.R. Sullivan.

Second Baseman

2B | Orlando Cabrera | Cleveland Indians | Transaction, Fantasy
The Cleveland Indians signed SS Orlando Cabrera to a one-year, $1 million contract Wednesday, Feb. 16, after the player passed a physical earlier in the day, reports Paul Hoynes, of The Cleveland Plain Dealer. "He can play second base with his eyes closed," manager Manny Acta said, about the team's plans for the veteran. Cabrera has played 33 games at second base during his career. Cabrera will be battling prospects Jason Kipnis and Cord Phelps, as well as Jayson Nix and Luis Valbuena for the starting job.

2B | Rickie Weeks | Milwaukee Brewers | Fantasy
Updating previous reports, Milwaukee Brewers 2B Rickie Weeks signed a four-year, $38.5 million extension Wednesday, Feb. 16, according to The Associated Press. The deal includes an option for the 2015 season that would bring the total to $50 million.


SS | J.J. Hardy | Baltimore Orioles | Injury, Fantasy
Baltimore Orioles SS J.J. Hardy (wrist) said he feels 100 percent healthy, according to The Baltimore Sun's Jeff Zrebiec. "The wrist just needed to rest, I think," said Hardy. "This offseason, I rested it for like two months. I started hitting in early January and I still felt it a little bit. But it just kind of went away after first couple of swings. I feel 100 percent."

Third Baseman

3B | Chone Figgins | Seattle Mariners | Fantasy
Seattle Mariners 3B Chone Figgins arrived in camp Wednesday, Feb. 16, two days before mandatory physicals, and three days before the first full-squad workout is scheduled Saturday, Feb. 19, reports Geoff Baker, of The Seattle Times.

3B | Jose Bautista | Toronto Blue Jays | Fantasy
The Toronto Blue Jays are nearing a five-year contract extension with OF Jose Bautista to avoid arbitration, according to's Gregor Chrisholm. The deal would be worth $65 million.

3B | Michael Young | Texas Rangers | Fantasy
Texas Rangers general manager Jon Daniels said the team is planning for activities during spring training as if 3B Michael Young will be a part of the team, reports T.R. Sullivan, of The team may contact Young before he is scheduled to report in order to discuss his situation.


C | Joe Mauer | Minnesota Twins | Injury, Fantasy
Minnesota Twins C Joe Mauer (knee) arrived to camp Thursday, Feb. 17, and said he's still working on strengthening his knee after offseason surgery,'s Tom Pelissero reports.

C | Josh Phegley | Chicago White Sox | Injury, Fantasy
Chicago White Sox C Josh Phegley (blood disorder) is in camp and healthy, according to's Scott Merkin. Phegley was battling weekly blood work in combating the idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura illness that cost him all but 48 games during the 2010 season.

C | Ronny Paulino | New York Mets | Fantasy
Visa issues may prevent backup catcher Ronny Paulino from reporting to camp on time, according to's Anthony DiComo. Paulino, who signed a one-year, $1.3 million contract in December, is expected to back up starting C Josh Thole in what could become a platoon situation.

C | Ivan Rodriguez | Washington Nationals | Depth Chart Tidbit, Fantasy
Washington Nationals C Ivan Rodriguez is eager to help the other catchers on the team, C Wilson Ramos and C Jesus Flores, but he also told The Washington Post's Adam Kilgore that he believes there's still time left for him. "The catchers that we have, we have myself, and we have two very talented catchers, very young with a lot of talent. It's always nice to have that in an organization," Rodriguez said.

C | Kurt Suzuki | Oakland Athletics | Fantasy
Oakland Athletics manager Bob Geren said C Kurt Suzuki will likely hit lower in the lineup this year, according to The Associated Press. Geren does not want Suzuki to feel pressured to produce.

C | Gary Sanchez | New York Yankees | Injury
New York Yankees C Gary Sanchez (heart) underwent heart tests Wednesday, Feb. 16, which showed no problems, according to The Associated Press. Sanchez was told to stop workouts earlier this month after not feeling well.

C | Jason Kendall | Kansas City Royals | Injury, Fantasy
Kansas City Royals C Jason Kendall (shoulder) has been cleared to begin a light throwing program as he returns from shoulder surgery, according to Kendall expects to be ready by Opening Day, but manager Ned Yost said that may be optimistic. Kendall can also start swinging a bat. "That's a little unrealistic, but he's an exceptional person in terms of things like that," Yost said. "I would be surprised if he's ready by opening day because of the extent of the injury and the extended amount of rehab in something involved in something like that. But if anybody can do it, he could do it. We'll just take it day-by-day. We're not going to push this thing."


OF | Gary Sheffield | Retired Players | Transaction, Fantasy
Former Major League Baseball standout Gary Sheffield has officially retired, according to George A. King III of The New York Post.

OF | Kenny Lofton | Retired Players | Fantasy
Updating a previous item, The Associated Press reports former Cleveland Indians OF Kenny Lofton will be a baserunning coach for two weeks during spring training.

OF | Mark DeRosa | San Francisco Giants | Injury, Fantasy
San Francisco Giants OF Mark DeRosa (wrist) is completely healed from his wrist injury and is swinging freely, according to the San Francisco Chronicle's Henry Schulman. DeRosa will concentrate on left field but could also play some third base, first base or even shortstop this spring.

OF | Corey Patterson | Toronto Blue Jays | Transaction, Fantasy
Toronto Blue Jays SS Mike McCoy and OF Corey Patterson will be battling newly signed OF Scott Podsednik for two of the final bench spots during Spring Training, reports Gregor Chisholm, of

OF | Scott Podsednik | Toronto Blue Jays | Fantasy
Toronto Blue Jays OF Scott Podsednik is expected to travel to Florida for Spring Training Sunday, Feb. 20, as he is currently tying up loose ends in his home state of Texas, reports Gregor Chisholm, of

OF | Jacoby Ellsbury | Boston Red Sox | Fantasy
Boston Red Sox OF Jacoby Ellsbury might start the season batting in the ninth spot in manager Terry Francona's order, according to Buster Olney, of ESPN.

OF | Carlos Beltran | New York Mets | Fantasy
New York Mets manager Terry Collins said OF Carlos Beltran will be the team's center fielder entering spring training but the team will consider moving him to right field, reports The Associated Press.

OF | Roger Bernadina | Washington Nationals | Fantasy
Washington Nationals OF Roger Bernadina is in great shape this spring, according to The Washington Post's Adam Kilgore. Bernadina worked with a trainer in the offseason, sometimes lifting weights twice a day. He has put on more than 10 pounds of muscle.

OF | Marlon Byrd | Chicago Cubs | Fantasy
Chicago Cubs OF Marlon Byrd said he still works with Victor Conte, whose laboratory was under federal investigation for steroids use and distribution among athletes, according to "(They said) 'Why in the world are you working with Victor Conte? It was a choice I made, to work with him," Byrd told "Real Sports." "It's me believing in him which a lot of people do not."

Starting Pitcher

SP | Stephen Strasburg | Washington Nationals | Injury, Fantasy
Washington Nationals SP Stephen Strasburg (elbow) threw soft tosses to a trainer from 25 to 45 feet for eight minutes with pitching coach Steve McCatty watching Thursday, Feb. 17,'s Ben Goessling reports.

SP | Justin Duchscherer | Baltimore Orioles | Injury
Baltimore Orioles SP Justin Duchscherer (illness) returned to throw his second bullpen session with no problem Thursday, Feb. 17, after he went home sick the previous day,'s Brittany Ghiroli reports.

SP | Zack Greinke | Milwaukee Brewers | Depth Chart Tidbit, Fantasy
The Milwaukee Brewers haven't set their Opening Day starter yet, according to's Adam McCalvy. Brewers manager Ron Roenicke believes SP Zack Greinke, SP Shaun Marcum or SP Yovani Gallardo could start Thursday, March 31, against the Cincinnati Reds.

SP | Tim Lincecum | San Francisco Giants | Fantasy
Clarifying a previous item, The San Francisco Chronicle's Henry Schulman reports San Francisco Giants SP Tim Lincecum will start Thursday, March 31, in the Opening Day game against the Los Angeles Dodgers.

SP | Erik Bedard | Seattle Mariners | Injury, Fantasy
Seattle Mariners SP Erik Bedard (shoulder) threw another bullpen session Wednesday, Feb. 16, reports Geoff Baker, of The Seattle Times. It was Bedard's second bullpen session since camp opened, as the veteran tries to get ready by Opening Day.

SP | Yusmeiro Petit | Seattle Mariners | Fantasy
Seattle Mariners SP Yusmeiro Petit arrived to camp Wednesday, Feb. 16, a few days late due to visa issues in his native Venezuela, reports Geoff Baker, of The Seattle Times.

SP | Bronson Arroyo | Cincinnati Reds | Fantasy
Cincinnati Reds SP Bronson Arroyo said Wednesday, Feb. 16, that he would be open to working in the team's Opening Day game March 31 against the Milwaukee Brewers, reports Mark Sheldon, of Last season, Arroyo passed on the chance because he preferred not to pitch amidst the usual fanfare associated with Opening Day. "Whatever they need me to do, I will do," Arroyo said. "If they want to give me the ball on Day 1, I will do that."

SP | Justin Lehr | Cincinnati Reds | Injury
Cincinnati Reds SP Justin Lehr (elbow) is unlikely to pitch in a game until May, although he was invited to camp as a non-roster player, reports Mark Sheldon, of Lehr is likely to start the season with Triple-A Louisville. "If everything continues as it has, I'll be throwing five innings some time in camp -- maybe not this camp," Lehr said. "I want to try and get an inning [at big league camp]."

SP | Colby Lewis | Texas Rangers | Fantasy
Texas Rangers SP Colby Lewis dropped 15 pounds in the offseason and came to camp weighing 223 pounds, according to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram's Anthony Andro.

SP | John Maine | free agent | Free Agents
The Kansas City Royals are showing interest in signing free-agent SP John Maine (Mets) to a minor league deal, according to The Kansas City Star's Bob Dutton. However, it appears the team has a less than 50 percent chance of signing Maine.

SP | Jorge De La Rosa | Colorado Rockies | Fantasy
Colorado Rockies SP Jorge De La Rosa has arrived at camp in Phoenix Wednesday, Feb. 16, reports Troy E. Renck, of The Denver Post. De La Rosa is expected to take part in a workout Thursday, Feb. 17.

SP | Gavin Floyd | Chicago White Sox | Injury, Fantasy
Chicago White Sox SP Gavin Floyd (shoulder) said Wednesday, Feb. 16, that his right shoulder has fully recovered from the tightness that caused him to be shut down with two weeks left last season, reports Mark Gonzales, of the Chicago Tribune.

SP | Rick Porcello | Detroit Tigers | Fantasy
Detroit Tigers SP Rick Porcello said he is more comfortable using all four of his pitches heading into the 2011 season, according to's Jason Beck. "I think the biggest thing is to make sure one doesn't take away from the other, where I'm throwing the curveball and all of a sudden my slider's starting to flatten out, or it gets big and loopy," Porcello said. "That's my biggest thing that I have to prevent." He changed the grip on his slider in the second half last season, which made it easier for him to throw his curveball.

SP | Dave Bush | Texas Rangers | Injury
Texas Rangers SP Dave Bush (forearm) said the drop in velocity he had last season due to the injury is not an issue anymore because he is healthy, reports Richard Durrett, of

SP | Brandon Webb | Texas Rangers | Injury
The Texas Rangers will take things slow with SP Brandon Webb (shoulder) because they do not want him to rush back and risk another setback, reports Richard Durrett, of Webb said he is expects to have a normal spring training.

SP | Clayton Kershaw | Los Angeles Dodgers | Fantasy
Los Angeles Dodgers SP Clayton Kershaw will start the team's Opening Day game March 31 against the San Francisco Giants, according to's Tony Jackson.

Relief Pitcher

RP | Brad Lidge | Philadelphia Phillies | Injury, Fantasy
Philadelphia Phillies CL Brad Lidge (illness) and RP Antonio Bastardo (illness) had abbreviated workouts Thursday, Feb. 17, and are battling an illness, the Philadelphia Inquirer's Matt Gelb reports.

RP | Jeff Weaver | free agent | Free Agents
The Los Angeles Dodgers are considering re-signing free-agent RP Jeff Weaver,'s Jon Heyman reports.

RP | Joe Nathan | Minnesota Twins | Injury, Fantasy
Updating previous reports, Minnesota Twins RP Joe Nathan (elbow) had actually thrown off a mound before his session Wednesday, Feb. 16, but this was the first time he threw off a mound outside in the fresh air, The Associated Press reports. If Nathan regains the closer role, the team doesn't want him to pitch too many days in a row, which means RP Matt Capps will likely get a few save situations.

RP | D.J. Carrasco | New York Mets | Depth Chart Tidbit, Fantasy
New York Mets RP's D.J. Carrasco, Taylor Buchholz and Tim Byrdak are all front-runners to make the team, despite a wide-open bullpen competition, according to's Anthony DiComo.

RP | Brian Wilson | San Francisco Giants | Fantasy
San Francisco Giants CL Brian Wilson delayed throwing full bullpen sessions until just before spring camp opened, according to Henry Schulman of The San Francisco Chronicle. His second session came on Tuesday, Feb. 15.

RP | David Aardsma | Seattle Mariners | Injury, Fantasy
Seattle Mariners RP David Aardsma (hip) was able to walk without the full aid of crutches Wednesday, Feb. 16, reports Geoff Baker, of The Seattle Times. Aardsma estimated he put 30 percent weight on his foot. "I'm just going to take it slow and see how it feels," Aardsma said. "If I wake up the next morning and I'm sore, then I might scale it back a bit. We'll just see how it goes."

RP | Joakim Soria | Kansas City Royals | Fantasy
Kansas City Royals RP Joakim Soria elected to work another bullpen session Wednesday, Feb. 16, rather than throwing batting practice to minor-league hitters, reports Bob Dutton, of The Kansas City Star. Manager Ned Yost quickly pointed out that the pitcher's request does not indicate a problem. "There is absolutely zero issue with Soria," Yost said. "He wanted to throw another side session. He's an All-Star, and he's earned that right."

RP | J.P. Howell | Tampa Bay Rays | Injury, Fantasy
Tampa Bay Rays RP J.P. Howell (shoulder) is not expected to pitch in games this spring, according to The Tampa Tribune's Roger Mooney. "I feel like I can go, but they say, 'Calm down, we got to build it, build it, build it,'" Howell said. "I feel if they want to rush me they could. But they're saying early May is what we're shooting for, so this is kind of like Jan. 3 to me." He will still throw bullpens every Monday and Friday with long toss sessions Wednesday.

RP | Neal Cotts | New York Yankees | Transaction, Free Agents
The New York Yankees released RP Neal Cotts Wednesday, Feb. 16, according to The Associated Press.

RP | Jon Rauch | Toronto Blue Jays | Injury, Fantasy
Toronto Blue Jays RP Jon Rauch (ankle) was scratched from his bullpen session Wednesday, Feb. 16, with a right ankle injury, according to's Gregor Chrisholm. The injury is not considered to be serious. "We've got time on our side right now, and there's no reason to think he won't be ready once we get into the games schedule and certainly when the beginning of the regular season starts. We just want to be precautionary at this point and make sure there are no lingering issues before we get him on the mound," manager John Farrell said.

RP | Geoff Geary | San Diego Padres | Transaction
The San Diego Padres signed free-agent RP Geoff Geary (Dodgers) to a minor league deal Wednesday, Feb. 16, according to's Corey Brock. The deal does not include an invitation to spring training.

RP | Heath Bell | San Diego Padres | Injury, Fantasy
San Diego Padres RP Heath Bell (calf) threw Wednesday, Feb. 16, according to The San Diego Union-Tribune's Bill Center. "Bell is doing better," said manager Bud Black. "You never know with these things how long they are going to play out." Bell is not participating in running or fielding drills.

RP | Joel Hanrahan | Pittsburgh Pirates | Fantasy
Pittsburgh Pirates manager Clint Hurdle has named RP Joel Hanrahan the team's closer, according to the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review's Rob Biertempfel.

RP | Francisco Rodriguez | New York Mets | Injury, Fantasy
New York Mets RP Francisco Rodriguez (thumb) said his thumb feels fine after undergoing surgery in the offseason, according to's Adam Rubin. "I haven't experienced any discomfort since the surgery," Rodriguez said. "I'll be fine. I've been throwing bullpen sessions. Of course, it's not the same to be out there with the rush, the adrenaline at the field. But I'm fine. I'm healthy. That's the main thing."

RP | Mariano Rivera | New York Yankees | Fantasy
New York Yankees RP Mariano Rivera was not at the team's camp Wednesday, Feb. 16, and it is still unknown when he will arrive, according to's Wallace Matthews. It appears Rivera won't arrive before Thursday, Feb. 17.

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