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Darnell McDonald has announced his retirement from baseball.

McDonald made the announcement Saturday on his Instagram account. The 35-year-old never got an extended look as a regular but carved out a nice career for himself, batting .250/.314/.397 over parts of seven major league seasons with six different teams.
Sun, Apr 6, 2014 12:42:00 PM

FOX Sports' Ken Rosenthal reports that the Astros have "remained in contact with the Athletics on Sonny Gray."

Houston has been looking to add a front-line starter via trade since the offseason began. Gray didn't pitch like a front-line guy in 2016 (5.69 ERA in 22 starts), but he was a legitimate ace from 2013-2015 and the 27-year-old right-hander is under contractual control through 2019. It's going to take a significant package of talent to pluck him away from Oakland. Houston does have the talent to give, and an obvious rotation need.
Jan 16 - 1:09 PM

Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports confirms the Phillies have reached a deal with Michael Saunders.

Heyman says the two sides were discussing a one-year contract with an option for 2018. No word yet on the financial details. Saunders struggled to attract significant interest on the open market this winter after his dreadful second half last year in Toronto, but he could make for a good buy-low on the part of the rebuilding Phillies, who had been looking for a left-handed bat. If he gets off to another hot start, the Phils can use him as trade bait at this year's deadline.
Jan 16 - 12:53 PM

FOX Sports' Ken Rosenthal reports that the Blue Jays and Jose Bautista are discussing a two-year contract in the $35-40 million range.

And it sounds like an official agreement may be imminent. Bautista struggled to attract a healthy market for himself this winter after an injury-riddled 2016 that saw him post his worst OPS (.817) since 2009. In bringing Bautista back the Jays will lose the opportunity to gain a compensatory draft pick, but it's a relatively low-cost, low-risk deal at two years, $35-40 million for a guy who ranked among the most dangerous sluggers in the game just a season ago. If the 36-year-old Bautista can stay healthy for most of 2017 and 2018, this could really work out well for Toronto. Look for more details soon.
Jan 16 - 9:41 AM

Cardinals general manager John Mozeliak said Sunday that the club has considered a contract extension for Yadier Molina.

Molina is set to make $14 million in 2017 and the two sides have a $15 million mutual option for 2018. The catcher will turn 35 at midseason this year, but the Cardinals and Molina would both surely like to work something out to where the seven-time All-Star can retire as a Cardinal. Molina's Gold Glove streak was snapped at eight last season, but he had his best offensive season (.307/.360/.427) in a few years while leading all catchers with 142 starts behind the plate.
Jan 15 - 12:37 PM

According to Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe, the Dodgers view Ian Kinsler as a possible fallback option if the team is unable to acquire Brian Dozier.

The Dodgers have been linked to Dozier for quite some time but Cafardo is hearing the Twins are "having second thoughts" about moving him. Kinsler enjoyed a power surge last season, ripping 28 home runs while contributing a stellar .484 slugging percentage. The Tigers are looking to shed payroll and getting Kinsler's $11 million salary off the books would certainly accomplish that. The four-time All-Star has two years remaining on his current contract.
Source: Boston Globe
Jan 14 - 11:51 PM

Jake Arrieta was noncommittal when asked about his future with the Cubs.

Arrieta is in the final year of his contract and doesn't sound overly optimistic about signing an extension. "If it happens, it happens," said Arrieta. "I don’t know where we stand. I really don’t. We do have some time to maybe work something out. If it doesn’t, I will become a free agent." Arrieta had another outstanding year in 2016, though his growing walk rate is a cause for concern. He turns 31 in March.
Source: CBS Chicago
Jan 14 - 7:39 PM

Russell Martin will play shortstop for Team Canada in the World Baseball Classic.

Martin caught some flak for skipping out on the last WBC, but this time he's willing to do whatever he can to help Team Canada. Apparently that includes playing a new position. Martin has made 19 big-league appearances at third base and four at second base but has never played an inning of shortstop. "You go ahead and put me wherever you want," said Martin. Ryan Dempster, Freddie Freeman, Eric Gagne (seriously) and Justin Morneau are also slated to suit up for Team Canada in the WBC.
Jan 14 - 6:31 PM

Free agent Michael Saunders reiterated that he hopes to be back with the Blue Jays in 2017.

"I'm waiting for the right deal for me and my family," said Saunders. "I'm hoping to stay in Toronto and hopefully finding out soon." Saunders has gotten the cold shoulder from teams this winter despite making his first All-Star team in 2016. A return to Toronto would make sense for both sides, especially if Jose Bautista lands elsewhere. Saunders could also be an option for the Orioles if they lose Mark Trumbo in free agency.
Jan 14 - 6:14 PM

Freddie Freeman will play for Team Canada in the World Baseball Classic.

Freeman had been leaning that way but Sportsnet's Shi Davidi confirmed it on Saturday. He'll be joined on Team Canada by former big leaguers Ryan Dempster and Eric Gagne. Free agent Michael Saunders is also hoping to play but won't commit until he signs a contract. James Paxton and Jameson Taillon are both passing on the WBC.
Jan 14 - 5:39 PM

According to Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe, free agent Carl Crawford has "pretty much called it a career."

Cafardo was told by a Dodgers official that the 35-year-old is ready to hang up his cleats. Crawford has been out of the league since getting let go by the Dodgers last June. Assuming this is it for Crawford, the four-time All-Star will finish his career with a .290 average, 136 HR, 766 RBI and 480 steals over 1,716 MLB appearances. He played for three teams—the Rays, Red Sox and Dodgers—throughout his 15-year career.
Source: Boston Globe
Jan 14 - 4:42 PM

Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports reports that the Brewers are nearing a deal with Neftali Feliz.

Feliz rebuilt his value by having a nice season with the Pirates in 2016 in which he posted a 3.52 ERA, 1.14 WHIP and 61/21 K/BB ratio across 53 2/3 innings. Given the current state of the Brewers' bullpen, it wouldn't be surprising to see Feliz get a real shot at the closer's role. The 28-year-old owns 99 career saves, including seasons of 40 and 32 saves with the Rangers in 2010 and 2011.
Jan 14 - 1:16 PM




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