1B | Matthew Skole | Washington Nationals | Transaction,
The Washington Nationals extended spring training invites to RP Pat McCoy, SP Tanner Roark, C Carlos Maldonado, 1B Matthew Skole and INF Zach Walters Tuesday, Jan. 15.
2B | Daniel Descalso | St. Louis Cardinals | Fantasy
St. Louis Cardinals 2B Daniel Descalso is the favorite to enter the season as the starting second baseman, but 3B Matt Carpenter will challenge him at the position. INFs Pete Kozma and Ryan Jackson are in the mix for bench spots, but 2B Kolten Wong could make his way up at some point if he plays well in the minors.
SS | Dee Gordon | Los Angeles Dodgers | Fantasy
Los Angeles Dodgers SS Dee Gordon has committed nine errors in just 29 games while playing winter ball this offseason.
SS | Rafael Furcal | St. Louis Cardinals | Injury, Fantasy
Although St. Louis Cardinals SS Rafael Furcal (elbow) appears on track to be fully healthy for spring training and opening day, the team is unsure how his elbow will hold up when he resumes playing at full effort this spring. St. Louis is expected to be more cautious when giving Furcal playing time in order to keep him healthy throughout the season. INFs Daniel Descalso, Pete Kozma and Ryan Jackson are potential backups at shortstop for Furcal.
SS | Derek Jeter | New York Yankees | Injury, Fantasy
Updating previous reports, New York Yankees SS Derek Jeter (ankle) said he expects to be in the team's opening day lineup April 1. "I do," Jeter said. "I feel good. I am where I need to be (physically). I am right where I should be." He's completely confident that he will be at full strength and back to his old self when the regular season starts. Jeter was walking without a limp Tuesday, Jan. 15. However, he hasn't started running or jogging outside of water and hasn't begun any baseball-related activities.
3B | Don Kelly | Detroit Tigers | Transaction, Free Agents
The Detroit Tigers signed free-agent INF Don Kelly, P Kenny Faulk, INF Eugenio Suarez and OF Tyler Collins to minor league deals with invitations to spring training.
3B | Kevin Youkilis | New York Yankees | Fantasy
New York Yankees 3B Kevin Youkilis plans to tweak his batting stance this spring. He'll be in more of a crouch with his legs wider apart and his hands lower.
3B | Scott Rolen | free agent | Free Agents, Fantasy
The Los Angeles Dodgers are considering whether to pursue free-agent 3B Scott Rolen (Reds), according to a person familiar with the team's plans. However, the Dodgers have yet to reach out to him to gauge his interest. Rolen prefers to play close to his home in Indiana. Rolen has yet to tell the Cincinnati Reds if he wants to return for another season. Los Angeles is unlikely to be able to promise much playing time for Rolen, though, with 3B Luis Cruz slated to open the year as the starting third baseman. Cruz hit just .173 in 19 games in winter ball this year.
3B | Edwin Encarnacion | Toronto Blue Jays | Fantasy
Toronto Blue Jays 3B Edwin Encarnacion is expected to play for the Dominican Republic in the 2013 World Baseball Classic.
C | Jesus Flores | Los Angeles Dodgers | Transaction, Free Agents
The Los Angeles Dodgers signed free-agent C Jesus Flores (Nationals) to a minor league deal with an invitation to spring training.
C | Jason Varitek | Retired Players | Fantasy
Former Boston Red Sox C Jason Varitek, who retired and became a special assistant to general manager Ben Cherington following last season, will serve as an adviser and coach to manager John Farrell and his staff in spring camp.
C | J.P. Arencibia | Toronto Blue Jays | Injury, Fantasy,
Toronto Blue Jays C J.P. Arencibia will play for Team USA in the 2013 World Baseball Classic. Blue Jays SPs Josh Johnson and Brandon Morrow could also be under consideration to represent the United States, but RP Casey Janssen (shoulder) is unlikely to play after having offseason shoulder surgery.
C | Victor Martinez | Detroit Tigers | Injury, Fantasy
Detroit Tigers C Victor Martinez (knee) has picked up his running program, and he's on a schedule of three weekly baseball-running sessions. "Victor is not running at full speed, but he is running very well," team trainer Kevin Rand said. "We are doing low-volume (work) right now with a warm-up, turns at the bases, simulated running out of the batter's box and going from first to third." Martinez won't be pushed in spring training, but he'll be ready to serve as the designated hitter on opening day. He's been hitting live pitching and he hasn't had any issues swinging the bat. Martinez is expected to be the emergency third catcher this year with Cs Brayan Pena and Alex Avila doing the work behind the dish.
OF | Manny Ramirez | free agent | Free Agents
Free-agent DH Manny Ramirez (Athletics) hopes to latch on with a team after hitting four homers in the Dominican Winter League playoffs.
OF | Justin Upton | Arizona Diamondbacks | Fantasy
The New York Mets have decided Arizona Diamondbacks OF Justin Upton's price tag for trade is too high and they will likely not pursue the star outfielder.
OF | Drew Stubbs | Cleveland Indians | Fantasy
Clarifying a previous item, Cleveland Indians OF's Michael Brantley and Drew Stubbs will be part of the starting outfield in 2013 along with OF Nick Swisher. General manager Chris Antonetti said Swisher will play in right field, with Brantley and Stubbs' positions determined in spring training.
OF | Scott Hairston | free agent | Free Agents, Fantasy
The New York Mets have balked at re-signing OF Scott Hairston to his asking price of two years and $8 million. The New York Yankees are not involved in Hairston at this time, either.
OF | Carl Crawford | Los Angeles Dodgers | Injury, Fantasy
The Los Angeles Dodgers are expecting OF Carl Crawford (elbow) to be ready for opening day after he has started a throwing program. President Stan Kasten has received a positive medical report on Crawford, and the new outfielder has also lost 10 pounds since last season.
SP | Vicente Padilla | Japanese League | Transaction
The SoftBank Hawks of the Japanese League signed SP Vicente Padilla (Red Sox) to a one-year, $3.25 million deal.
SP | Joe Saunders | free agent | Free Agents
The Minnesota Twins are interested in free-agent SP Joe Saunders (Orioles).
SP | Aaron Cook | Philadelphia Phillies | Transaction, Free Agents
The Philadelphia Phillies signed free-agent SP Aaron Cook (Red Sox) to a minor league contract. If he makes the team, he'll make $1.625 million.
SP | Colby Lewis | Texas Rangers | Injury, Fantasy
Texas Rangers general manager Jon Daniels identified two remaining needs for the offseason: a veteran starting pitcher who would either come in as the guaranteed fifth starter or compete with in-house candidates for the job, and a utility infielder. Daniels said there is room in the payroll budget "within reason" to add. The Rangers currently have 14 players, including rehabilitating P's Colby Lewis and Joakim Soria, under contract at a total salary of $94.5 million.
SP | Kyle Lohse | free agent | Free Agents, Fantasy
Updating an ongoing story, the Texas Rangers are looking at free-agent SP Kyle Lohse (Cardinals) and have been in touch with him and his agent, Scott Boras.
SP | Tim Stauffer | free agent | Injury, Free Agents, Fantasy,
Free-agent SP Tim Stauffer (Padres) (elbow) is throwing from 75 feet, and he is only two weeks behind schedule. Stauffer is looking for a deal, and would like to return to the Padres.
SP | Jerome Williams | Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim | Transaction, Fantasy,
The Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim avoided arbitration with SP Jerome Williams Tuesday, Jan. 15, by inking him to a one-year, $2 million deal. Williams made $820,000 last season. He's expected to be the team's long reliever/spot starter this year.
SP | Brandon Webb | free agent | Free Agents,
The New York Mets, Philadelphia Phillies, Washington Nationals and Miami Marlins are all "keeping tabs" on free-agent SP Brandon Webb (Rangers).
SP | John Danks | Chicago White Sox | Injury, Fantasy,
Chicago White Sox SP John Danks (shoulder) has thrown off a mound and is feeling good about his recovery after undergoing offseason arthroscopic left shoulder surgery. "Being on the mound for a little bit of time, I feel better about things than I did before," Danks said. "There's still a ways to go. I haven't spun anything or seen a hitter. But my shoulder feels great off the mound." He has thrown 40 pitches off a mound three times per week since Jan. 2, mixing in 30 fastballs and 10 changeups. Danks will begin mixing in breaking pitches before the end of next week, and he's already moved from throwing fastballs down the middle to working the corners of the plate. Danks' labrum proved to be normal during his surgery, making a return for spring training possible.
SP | Matt Harrison | Texas Rangers | Fantasy,
Texas Rangers SP Matt Harrison said he is working on a slider this offseason. "It's my fourth pitch right now and I want to get that better," Harrison said. "I need to use my offspeed more to the arm side and make it a backdoor pitch to righties. It wasn't there consistently enough and I want to work on that this offseason and at spring training."
SP | Kevin Pucetas | Texas Rangers | Transaction,
The Texas Rangers signed free-agent RP Kyle McClellan (Cardinals) to a minor league deal with an invite to spring training Tuesday, Jan. 15. Free-agent RPs Ryan Feierabend (Mariners) and Kevin Pucetas (Royals) were also signed to minor league deals.
SP | Javier Vazquez | free agent | Free Agents, Fantasy,
New York Yankees general manager Brian Cashman said the team isn't scouting free-agent SP Javier Vazquez (Marlins) as he attempts a comeback.
SP | Rick Porcello | Detroit Tigers | Fantasy,
The Arizona Diamondbacks are now downplaying their interest in trading for Detroit Tigers SP Rick Porcello, and it sounds unlikely that they will acquire him.
SP | Yovani Gallardo | Milwaukee Brewers | Fantasy
Milwaukee Brewers SP Yovani Gallardo will play for Mexico in the 2013 World Baseball Classic.
RP | Brian Wilson | free agent | Injury, Free Agents, Fantasy
The New York Mets weren't impressed with free-agent RP Brian Wilson's (elbow) workout. A source said Wilson isn't ready and has a ways to go in his return from Tommy John surgery. The source said if Wilson is still on the market during spring training, the Mets could hold another audition for him, but the Mets also aren't in a rush.
RP | Juan Cruz | Philadelphia Phillies | Transaction, Free Agents
The Philadelphia Phillies signed free-agent RP Juan Cruz (Pirates) to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training.
RP | Kyle Farnsworth | free agent | Free Agents
Free-agent RP Kyle Farnsworth's (Rays) interest has intensified across baseball, and he has narrowed his choices from six teams to three.
RP | Michael Wuertz | Miami Marlins | Transaction, Free Agents, Fantasy,
The Miami Marlins signed free-agent RP Michael Wuertz (Reds) to a minor-league contract Wednesday, Jan. 16. The contract includes an invite to big-league camp.
RP | Rafael Soriano | Washington Nationals | Fantasy,
The Detroit Tigers were not involved in making a run at Washington Nationals RP Rafael Soriano and never made him an offer, according to general manager Dave Dombrowski. The Tigers are prepared to give RP Bruce Rondon a chance to compete for the closer role with RPs Joaquin Benoit, Phil Coke and Octavio Dotel.
RP | Tyler Clippard | Washington Nationals | Fantasy,
Washington Nationals RP Tyler Clippard could become trade bait after the team acquired RP Rafael Soriano to be their closer. Clippard's value is likely at its highest point, and RP Drew Storen is under contract until 2017, which is a year longer than Clippard. Clippard's salary stands to rise significantly next year, too.
RP | Kyle McClellan | Texas Rangers | Fantasy,
Texas Rangers RP Kyle McClellan will enter spring training as a starting pitcher, but he'll also be considered an option for the back end of the rotation or as a long reliever. Right now, SPs Robbie Ross, Martin Perez and Justin Grimm will compete for the No. 5 rotation spot, but McClellan presents another possibility.
RP | J.P. Howell | Los Angeles Dodgers | Fantasy,
Los Angeles Dodgers RP J.P. Howell can make an extra $750,000 in incentives this year based on relief outings; $75,000 for 50 games, $125,000 for 55 games, $150,000 for 60 games, $200,000 for 65 games and $200,000 for 70 games. He can also make an extra $300,000 based on number of innings; $50,000 for 50 innings, 55, 65 and 70 and $100,000 for 75 innings. Howell can make $700,000 based on games finished; $100,000 each for 30, 35 and 40 games and $200,000 each for 45 and 50 games finished.
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