1B | Carlos Pena | Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim | Transaction
The Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim signed free-agent OF Brennan Boesch (Yankees) and 1B Carlos Pena (Royals) to minor league deals Tuesday, Jan. 28.
1B | Corey Hart | Seattle Mariners | Injury, Fantasy
Seattle Mariners OF Corey Hart (knees) has ramped up his activities to running the bases, and he's feeling much better about his surgically repaired knees. "I haven't gotten on the field yet to do fly balls, but I've been doing simulated ground balls to work on my footwork and agility. It's been progressing. I've been able to do everything. It's been nice."
The M's are hoping to put Hart in the outfield for a significant amount of time this year, and they're willing to wait to see if he can handle the workload. General manager Jack Zduriencik and manager Lloyd McClendon have talked of a three-man rotation between Hart and 1Bs Logan Morrison and Justin Smoak between first base and designated hitter. Hart isn't worried about regaining his timing at the plate, just how his knees will hold up.
SS | Stephen Drew | free agent | Free Agents, Fantasy
Free-agent SS Stephen Drew (Red Sox) is willing to play second or third base in order to sign with a team, according to his agent, Scott Boras. Drew has only played shortstop in his major league career. The Boston Red Sox may be willing to re-sign him at a modest price, since they know they have most of the leverage at this point.
OF | Denard Span | Washington Nationals | Fantasy
Washington Nationals OF Denard Span may have the perfect opportunity to improve on the 20 stolen bases he had in 2013 with new manager Matt Williams planning on being very aggressive on the base paths. "I like that. That's what I want to do. I haven't been as successful in stealing bases in my career, but that is something I strive to get better at everyday," Span said. "I will get better. I will get more than 20 this year, I'll tell you that." Span hired a speed coach in the offseason and spent time watching film of some of the great base stealers in history.
OF | Yasiel Puig | Los Angeles Dodgers | Fantasy
Reckless driving charges against Los Angeles Dodgers OF Yasiel Puig have been dropped. He was arrested and charged with reckless driving last month for driving 110 mph in a 70 mph zone in Florida. The speeding ticket still stands.
OF | George Springer | Houston Astros | Fantasy
Houston Astros general manager Jeff Luhnow said OF George Springer will play in the big leagues this season, but he may not be in the lineup on Opening Day April 1. "I think George Springer will be a starting outfielder in Houston this year," Luhnow said. "Whether it happens Opening Day or sometime during the season, he's a special talent." Springer hit .303 with a .411 on-base percentage and 37 home runs, 45 stolen bases and 83 walks with Double-A Corpus Christi and Triple-A Oklahoma City last year. Springer will have to win a starting job, and the presence of OF Dexter Fowler will likely push Springer to right field.
OF | Grady Sizemore | Boston Red Sox | Fantasy
Boston Red Sox OF Grady Sizemore has plenty of supporters in the organization; manager John Farrell, assistant general manager Mike Hazen, bench coach Torey Lovullo and head athletic trainer Rick Jameyson all worked with Sizemore with the Cleveland Indians and know him very well.
Having supporters around him could be key for Sizemore, especially if he and Jackie Bradley are neck and neck in spring training competition for the center field job. Of course, the key for Sizemore will be staying healthy. He's a low-risk investment that could pay off tremendously.
SP | Ubaldo Jimenez | free agent | Free Agents, Depth Chart Tidbit, Fantasy,
The Philadelphia Phillies might make a last-minute addition to their pitching staff before spring training, but they do not have any offers out to any of the free agents. SPs Bronson Arroyo, A.J. Burnett, Ubaldo Jimenez and Ervin Santana are still available, but general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. said that the asking prices of the free agents weren't in line with how the Phillies viewed them as talents.
SP | Miguel Alfredo Gonzalez | Philadelphia Phillies | Depth Chart Tidbit, Fantasy,
The Philadelphia Phillies have plenty of competition for the final three rotation sports behind SPs Cliff Lee and Cole Hamels. SP Kyle Kendrick is expected to hold one of the rotation spots, with newcomers SPs Miguel Alfredo Gonzalez and Roberto Hernandez competing with SP Jonathan Pettibone for jobs in spring training.
SP | Zach Lee | Los Angeles Dodgers | Injury,
Los Angeles Dodgers SP Zach Lee is ready to make a run at a rotation spot this year, despite the fact that the Dodgers are expected to have a full rotation if SPs Josh Beckett (shoulder) and Chad Billingsley (elbow) return in good health. "I'm trying to win a job, striving to get here as soon as I can. If I pitch well and control what I can control, the opportunity will present itself not far down the road. There are contractual issues, but if you outperform people, there will be a spot for you," Lee said. Scouts are projecting Lee to be a middle-of-the-rotation prospect, and he's currently ranked 63rd on MLB.com's Top-100 list for prospects.
SP | Brandon McCarthy | Arizona Diamondbacks | Fantasy,
Arizona Diamondbacks SP Brandon McCarthy said he will not be wearing Major League Baseball's new protective caps for pitchers. McCarthy tested the new hats while throwing off a mound, playing catch and running and said, "I won't wear it in its current form." He doesn't consider the current cap to be "a major league-ready product." McCarthy said the hat is too big, and pitchers will be away of the size difference during competition. The protective cap also adds seven ounces of weight, which makes it "too hot," according to McCarthy.
SP | Brian Matusz | Baltimore Orioles | Fantasy
Baltimore Orioles SP Brian Matusz will work out as a starter this winter and hopes to win a spot in the rotation. He has been working on his changeup this offseason to combat right-handed hitters' success against him. He has also improved his ability to hold runners on base.
SP | Jason Hammel | free agent | Free Agents
The Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim are interested in free-agent SP Jason Hammel (Orioles) and SP Chris Capuano (Dodgers).
RP | Fernando Rodney | free agent | Transaction, Free Agents,
According to one source, the Baltimore Orioles remain interested in free-agent RP Fernando Rodney, although "it'll be a while" until he signs with a new club.
RP | Aroldis Chapman | Cincinnati Reds | Transaction, Fantasy,
The Cincinnati Reds avoided arbitration with RP Aroldis Chapman Tuesday, Jan. 28, by agreeing to a one-year, $5 million deal. Chapman was asking for $5.4 million.
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