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Jose Bautista launched a go-ahead two-run homer to lead the Blue Jays to a 4-2 win over the Orioles on Saturday.

Bautista took Darren O'Day deep in the bottom of the eighth inning to put the Jays on top. The veteran slugger has mostly been a non-factor during the team's recent hot stretch, hitting just .129 (4-for-31) over his last eight games, but he stepped up at just the right time on Saturday. The Blue Jays have now won 10 in a row and find themselves over .500 (37-36) for the first time this season.
Sat, Jun 22, 2013 04:12:00 PM

Diamondbacks signed RHP Tyler Clippard to a two-year, $12.25 million contract.

The reliever will receive a $4 million signing bonus and be paid $4.1 million in 2016 and $4.15 million in 2017. Clippard saw his strikeout rate drop and walk rate rise last season, but he boasts a career 2.88 ERA and will turn just 31 later this month. He will set up for Brad Ziegler.
Feb 8 - 4:27 PM

Indians signed RHP Craig Stammen to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training.

Stammen was limited to five appearances in 2015 due to an elbow injury that required surgery, but he should be close to full health leading into the 2016 season. If he has a strong showing during Cactus League play, there may be a spot for him in the Indians' Opening Day bullpen. The 32-year-old right-hander owns a 3.91 career ERA, and he boasts a 2.80 ERA since becoming a full-time reliever in 2011.
Feb 8 - 2:33 PM

MLB.com's Jesse Sanchez reports that Cuban infielder Yulieski Gourriel has defected from his native country.

His younger brother Lourdes Gourriel, 22, has also reportedly defected. Yulieski, a 31-year-old third baseman and sometimes second baseman, batted .535 with a 1.615 OPS and 10 home runs over 23 games last season in Cuba's Serie Nacional. He had a 1.009 OPS in 49 games the season before. The well-built native of Sancti Spiritus is an established international slugger who has represented Cuba in all three World Baseball Classics and spent part of the 2014 campaign in Japan. He should do very well for himself once he is granted MLB free agency. Lourdes, the younger Gourriel brother, has been called Cuba's best young prospect.
Source: MLB.com
Feb 8 - 11:01 AM

Jason Castro will have an arbitration hearing with the Astros on Monday afternoon.

And a ruling should come Tuesday. Castro requested a $5.25 million salary for 2016 and was offered $5 million from the Astros' front office when arbitration figures were exchanged in mid-January. Now three arbitrators will choose one of those numbers. Castro, 28, is in his third and final year of arbitration, meaning he can become a free agent next winter.
Feb 8 - 8:20 AM

Freddy Garcia will retire from baseball after pitching for his native Venezuela in the Caribbean Series championship game on Sunday.

Garcia, 39, threw 7 1/3 innings in Triple-A for the Dodgers last season but spent most of the last two years in Taiwan, Venezuela and Mexico. It's been a fine career, as Garcia held a 4.15 ERA across 2,264 innings over parts of 15 major league seasons. He made two All-Star teams and finished runner-up in the 1999 American League Rookie of the Year voting.
Source: MLB.com
Feb 7 - 11:16 AM

Roch Kubatko of MASNSports.com reports that the Orioles are "checking medicals again and weighing the pros and cons" of signing Yovani Gallardo.

It was Kubatko who suggested a week ago that the O's would probably move on from Gallardo and were more likely to acquire a starter via trade. However, he's now saying they "definitely are reconsidering" despite their hesitancy to forfeit the No. 14 overall pick. Gallardo's peripherals and velocity have been heading in the wrong direction, but his durability could be a big boost for an O's team that lost Wei-Yin Chen this offseason.
Source: MASN Sports
Feb 7 - 8:18 AM

Blue Jays signed RHP Gavin Floyd to a one-year, $1 million contract.

Floyd also has the potential to earn an additional $1 million in incentives based on days that he's on the active roster. It's unclear if the Jays plan to use him in the rotation or out of the bullpen where he finished the 2015 campaign with the Indians.
Feb 6 - 12:40 PM

Cubs and RHP Jake Arrieta avoided arbitration by agreeing to a one-year, $10.7 million contract.

The agreed-upon sum is $450,000 above the midpoint that the two sides filed at. It marks the largest one-year deal in history for a pitcher with four years of service time. The reigning National League Cy Young Award winner is fresh off an unbelievable 2015 season where he registered a 1.77 ERA, 0.86 WHIP and 236/48 K/BB ratio over 229 innings. He'll be arbitration-eligible again after next season, though there have been rumblings that the Cubs and Arrieta have been in discussions on a multi-year contract extension.
Feb 5 - 11:55 PM

Giants signed INF Conor Gillaspie to a minor league contract.

The deal will presumably include an invitation to major league spring training as well. The 28-year-old had a rough go of things in 2015, slashing .228/.269/.359 with four homers and 24 RBI in 75 games between the White Sox and Angels. He'll compete for a bench spot with the Giants.
Feb 5 - 10:21 PM

ESPN's Jayson Stark reports that the Blue Jays plan to have long-term extension talks with the agents of Jose Bautista and Edwin Encarnacion during spring training.

Both players are currently set to hit free agency following the 2016 campaign. It seems unlikely that Toronto would be able to afford both on a long-term deal, but they're going to engage with each player in talks soon. New Blue Jays general manager Ross Atkins told the Canadian Press that the team would "love to have both of them" remain Blue Jays beyond this season. "And the more we've learned about them, that has only increased our interest in keeping them here," Atkins said. "The challenge lies in placing a value on that and then agreeing on a contract." Bautista turned 35 last October, while Encarnacion turned 33 last month. The latter has set a deadline of Opening Day for extension talks.
Source: ESPN.com
Feb 5 - 4:41 PM

Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports that the Rays are among the teams considering Tyler Clippard.

The low-budget Rays might not be able to offer Clippard the most money, but the reliever is a Florida native and the state has no personal income tax. The Diamondbacks are another club that has indicated they'd be interested in Clippard, who put up a 2.92 ERA, 1.13 WHIP and 64/31 K/BB ratio over 71 innings last season between the A's and Mets.
Feb 5 - 2:45 PM




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