Same factors in play for Cubs, Indians to return to World Series

Sports / Baseball /

MESA, Ariz. -- When Indians general manager Chris Antonetti crosses paths Sunday with Cubs counterparts Theo Epstein and Jed Hoyer at Sloan Park on Sunday, they can share a laugh over their stressful state during the rain delay before the 10th inning of Game 7 of the 2016 World Series.

"I remember the look on Jed and Theo's faces, same as mine,...Read more

Matt Wieters: 'I always wanted to play for the same team my whole career'

Sports / Baseball /

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. -- Matt Wieters slid his arms through the sleeves of a jersey that didn't belong to the Orioles for the first time as a professional Friday. His familiar No. 32 was on the back, but the red spring training jersey of the Washington Nationals was anything but familiar.

A staple of the Orioles' recent resurgence, Wieters has ...Read more

Shin-Soo Choo hopes to prove how much he can help Rangers

Sports / Baseball /

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- Shin-Soo Choo is embarking on his fourth season with the Texas Rangers, and that seems a little bit hard to believe.

But it's true that he was signed in December 2013 to a seven-year deal and has entered each of the past three seasons thought to be a key piece to the Rangers' success.

The same holds true again for 2017.

Yet...Read more

Cubs sign Pedro Strop to extension, adding long-term stability to bullpen

Sports / Baseball /

MESA, Ariz. -- While the Cubs face the prospect of losing at least 40 percent of their rotation for 2018, they haven't overlooked stabilizing their bullpen for the future.

When they signed Pedro Strop to an extension through 2018 with an option Friday, the Cubs addressed one free-agent question and now can shift some attention to other long-...Read more

Padres' Jarred Cosart hopes to honor Jose Fernandez this year

Sports / Baseball /

PEORIA, Ariz. -- The last two years of Jarred Cosart's career served a reminder that, for all its benefits, life in the major leagues can be unforgiving. On the mound, he was largely unable to replicate the success he experienced early in his career. Recurring blisters followed him as he moved from one coast to another. Just hours after he ...Read more

Jose Fernandez was married before MLB debut, ex-wife confirms

Sports / Baseball /

MIAMI -- The Miami Herald has learned that Jose Fernandez, the Miami Marlins' star pitcher who died in a boating accident in September, was married to a woman named Alejandra Baleato Marichal before he threw his first pitch for the Marlins.

The State of Florida Marriage Record, obtained by the Herald, notes that Fernandez and Marichal were ...Read more

Will Joey Gallo ever play every day for the Rangers?

Sports / Baseball /

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- Nothing has changed this spring from the last or from the one before that. And possibly even the one before that.

Joey Gallo's batting practice is the most exciting thing in Surprise, Ariz.

Not even the life-changing new bridge freeing up Bell Road at Grand Avenue can match what Gallo is capable of doing to BP fastballs on ...Read more

Kershaw, Hill and Maeda, in that order

Sports / Baseball /

PHOENIX -- Clayton Kershaw will throw one inning against the Chicago White Sox in Saturday's Cactus League opener for the Los Angeles Dodgers, Manager Dave Roberts said Thursday morning.

The team has lined up the rotation so Rich Hill will start Sunday and Kenta Maeda will start Monday. That was the expected outlook heading into camp. The final...Read more

Cubs manager Joe Maddon pondering his many non-conformist lineup options

Sports / Baseball /

MESA, Ariz. -- Manager Joe Maddon wisely shot down the thought of new leadoff batter Kyle Schwarber getting the opportunity to run at every opportunity.

"I would prefer he subscribes to the Brian Downing method of leading off," Maddon quipped Thursday in referring to the former leadoff hitter for the White Sox and Angels who was called the "...Read more

Orioles players have mixed feelings about new intentional walk rule

Sports / Baseball /

SARASOTA, Fla. -- Major league pitchers will no longer have to waste four pitches to deliver an intentional walk, thanks to an MLB rule change approved by the players union this week. Some people aren't happy about it.

It's part of an overall MLB strategy to shorten games, but alone, the new rule does little to help in that effort. It takes ...Read more

Marlins' Stanton makes history with MLB rule change

Sports / Baseball /

JUPITER, Fla. -- A Major League Baseball rule change this week landed Miami Marlins slugger Giancarlo Stanton a permanent place in the baseball history books: He was the recipient of the last regular-season traditional intentional walk.

Starting this season, intentional walks will be automatic after a signal from the dugout, as opposed to ...Read more

Catcher Matt Wieters at Nationals camp, expected to be introduced Friday

Sports / Baseball /

Matt Wieters was in Washington Nationals camp on Thursday, tucked away inside the team's sparkling new spring training complex in West Palm Beach, Fla., while awaiting word on his two-year deal becoming official.

The club is expected to announce the deal with the former Orioles catcher Friday, possibly in the morning, but it's unclear whether ...Read more

Wade Davis' starting experience a big help to him as a closer

Sports / Baseball /

MESA, Ariz. -- Both the Rays and Royals ultimately decided Wade Davis was more valuable to them as a reliever than a starter.

But the lessons Davis learned during three seasons in the rotation allowed him to carve a niche from which the Cubs seek to benefit in 2017.

As primarily a starter from 2009-11 and in '13, Davis learned to sharpen his ...Read more

Rick Hahn: White Sox rebuild 'hardest' for Jerry Reinsdorf

Sports / Baseball /

GLENDALE, Ariz. -- White Sox fans may become impatient as they wait for the team's rebuilding process to unfold this spring.

General manager Rick Hahn understands that feeling well enough considering Sox Chairman Jerry Reinsdorf occasionally lets Hahn know he's not getting any younger.

"He mentions his age to me in a fair amount of these ...Read more

Ichiro sore, skips workout after collision at Marlins camp

Sports / Baseball /

JUPITER, Fla. -- The day after a spring training mishap sent the Marlins' Ichiro Suzuki to the trainer's room for the first time in his major league career, the future Hall of Famer was walking gingerly and skipped the team workout.

Ichiro said he was most bothered by the knock he took to the quadriceps above his right knee in a collision ...Read more

Giants reliever Will Smith has MRI on sore elbow

Sports / Baseball /

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- The Giants will be missing one of their most important relievers when the spring exhibition season opens on Friday.

Left-hander Will Smith underwent an MRI on his sore left elbow and will be held out of action for a week, Giants manager Bruce Bochy said. The test did not show any structural damage beyond inflammation, and ...Read more

Rangers pitcher Cole Hamels believes he hasn't reached his peak

Sports / Baseball /

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- Spring training 2017 marks the 12th big-league camp for Cole Hamels, who back in 2006 was a celebrated former first-round pick who would make his major-league debut later that season.

He capped the year by marrying the former Heidi Strobel, the "Survivor: The Amazon" contestant. In 2008, Hamels was the World Series MVP. In ...Read more

Adam Jones praises Orioles' defensive upgrades in outfield, but remains concerned

Sports / Baseball /

SARASOTA, Fla. -- Orioles center fielder Adam Jones is excited about recent additions to improve the team's outfield defense, but still worries about the club's range.

The team retained veteran outfielder Michael Bourn -- who improved the Orioles' corner outfield defense for the final month of the season after they acquired him on Aug. 31 -- by...Read more

Jung Ho Kang appears in Korean court, vows to become 'exemplary player'

Sports / Baseball /

Jung Ho Kang appeared in a South Korean court Wednesday as judges began hearing arguments in a trial over charges Kang, the Pirates' third baseman, fled the scene of a DUI accident after slamming a rented BMW into a guardrail around 3 a.m. Dec. 2 in Seoul, South Korea.

A friend who falsely claimed to be the driver also was at Seoul Central ...Read more

Sammy Sosa speaks, but Cubs aren't listening

Sports / Baseball /

PHOENIX -- Sammy Sosa speaks about as often as the Sphinx these days, but when he does have something to say it's usually over the top and ready to go viral.

On Tuesday, Sosa chose an unusual outlet, a personal blog former Cubs media relations employee Chuck Wasserstrom writes, to relay his thoughts on his exile from the Cubs organization, his ...Read more


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