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Dodgers All-Star Cody Bellinger plans to avoid a sophomore slump

Sports / Baseball /

PHOENIX -- Cody Bellinger slipped through the netting of a Camelback Ranch batting cage and gazed at a pitching machine. Dodgers hitting coach Turner Ward manned the contraption, which dolloped late spin onto each offering. Bellinger slashed a pair of line drives before whacking a few foul and others into the ground. "That's a big-league knock,"...Read more

Brandon Morrow's injury-plagued odyssey led him to role of Cubs closer

Sports / Baseball /

Replacing near-flawless Wade Davis despite a lack of recent closer experience doesn't faze Brandon Morrow.

"I don't think mentally it will be too big for me," Morrow said at spring training Wednesday in a calm but direct tone. "I think I have come a long way."

Considering his array of health issues that stunted his development and prevented ...Read more

Twins' Miguel Sano healthy and happy but heavy

Sports / Baseball /

FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Miguel Sano reported to spring training Sunday, the three issues that complicate his 2018 season -- health, weight and an assault investigation -- seemingly reduced to two.

Sano has been given medical clearance to engage in all baseball workouts with his teammates, his surgically reinforced left shin now completely healed, ...Read more

Miguel Cabrera arrives at Tigers spring training, focused on staying healthy

Sports / Baseball /

LAKELAND, Fla. -- The big man reported to spring training on Sunday afternoon.

Miguel Cabrera, the lone Detroit Tigers' superstar left standing, looked better than last season. He walked brisker and looked slimmer and said he felt as if the back issues that turned him into a shell of himself last season were a thing of the past.

"I feel like I...Read more

Padres outfield battle to intensify as Myers leaves first base to Hosmer

Sports / Baseball /

The weekend began with seven outfielders competing for the two outfield spots that did not belong to Manuel Margot. The arrival of a new first baseman (you heard the Eric Hosmer news, right?) changes things quite a bit for that group this spring.

Wil Myers is now a corner outfielder. A fight for the other spot is about to begin.

And third-year...Read more

Here's how the Padres' Eric Hosmer contract differed from the Royals' offer

Sports / Baseball /

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- Eric Hosmer has reportedly agreed to an eight-year, $144 million contract with the San Diego Padres, ending his chapter with the Royals. At first glance, the guaranteed package from the Padres appears roughly similar to the overall dollar number dangled in Kansas City.

In the final stages of the offseason, the Royals were ...Read more

It's Grandal and Barnes behind the plate again, and atop an impressive list of Dodgers catching talent

Sports / Baseball /

PHOENIX -- Austin Barnes pulled up a chair beside Yasmani Grandal's locker on Friday morning. They are united but divided, competitors aligned as a duo, and so they swapped strategy on receiving and framing and blocking. At one point, Grandal hopped up to pantomime a peg to second base. Barnes rose from his own seat to mimic his teammate.

The ...Read more

Padres, Eric Hosmer agree to terms

Sports / Baseball /

SAN DIEGO -- The Padres got their man.

The team and free agent first baseman Eric Hosmer have agreed to a deal, two sources said Saturday night.

Terms were not available, but this will certainly be the largest monetary commitment in Padres history.

According to John Morosi of MLB.com, Hosmer received an eight-year deal with an opt-out clause ...Read more

Twins add starting pitcher by trading with Rays for Jake Odorizzi

Sports / Baseball /

The Twins acquired Rays right-hander Jake Odorizzi on Saturday night, sending Tampa Bay shortstop prospect Jermaine Palacios.

Ordorizzi gives the Twins a starter who can fill out their rotation, a serious position of need going into the offseason, which was made more critical after Ervin Santana was lost for the first several weeks of the ...Read more

Manny Machado arrives at camp happy to be an Oriole, excited for transition to shortstop

Sports / Baseball /

SARASOTA, Fla. -- Manny Machado acknowledges there were some fleeting moments this offseason when he thought he might have played his final game for the Orioles as trade rumors swirled around him.

Even as Machado's equipment bag was unpacked Saturday morning as he arrived for spring training at the Ed Smith Stadium complex, there's no guarantee...Read more

Cubs manager Joe Maddon on Brewers and Cardinals: 'I want them to be good'

Sports / Baseball /

MESA, Ariz. -- The free-agent market remains deep despite the Cubs' moves that include the recent signing of marquee starter Yu Darvish.

And manager Joe Maddon isn't concerned what moves the National League Central rival Brewers and Cardinals could make in their attempt to dethrone the Cubs.

"What I've taught myself over the years is it's ...Read more

Rest isn't a part of Seager's plan

Sports / Baseball /

PHOENIX -- On Jan. 27, Corey Seager wrote on social media for only the second time since the World Series. He tweeted a video of himself spraying line drives from a batting cage inside a facility run by former Los Angeles Dodgers coach Shawn Wooten.

"No better place to get some work in," Seager wrote.

Earlier that day, most of his teammates ...Read more

Joe Maddon impressed by Anthony Rizzo's emotional speech at vigil: 'Give him a lot of credit'

Sports / Baseball /

Anthony Rizzo's emotional speech Thursday in Florida at the vigil for victims of the Parkland school shooting continued to reverberate a day later.

Manager Joe Maddon texted his first baseman afterwards, telling Rizzo how proud he was after watching a video of the heartfelt speech on his iPad.

"What he said and how he said it, and the manner ...Read more

Marlins' Straily glad he wasn't traded and agrees with the rebuilding plan

Sports / Baseball /

JUPITER, Fla. -- Giancarlo Stanton asked to be traded. So did Christian Yelich.

None wanted to be part of a Marlins rebuild. They wanted out.

Dan Straily didn't. He wanted to stay.

"Glad they're gone," Straily said. "If they don't want to be here, then good for them. They can continue their career elsewhere."

Straily said he wasn't insulted ...Read more

No tanks: Moreno wants Angels to win

Sports / Baseball /

TEMPE, Ariz. -- Arte Moreno wants no part of Major League Baseball's growing tank battalion.

No matter how far out of playoff contention his team might be, the Angels owner can't stomach the idea of trading away the bulk of his proven talent for prospects and going into total rebuild mode, even though the strategy worked for the Chicago Cubs ...Read more

Emotional Cubs star Rizzo addresses Florida school shooting vigil: 'I grew up in Stoneman Douglas'

Sports / Baseball /

Chicago Cubs star player Anthony Rizzo became emotional at a Thursday night vigil for the victims of the Florida school shooting at his alma mater, Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, which killed 17 people and injured 14.

Rizzo, who late last month was in Coral Springs for a benefit to raise money so the baseball and softball ...Read more

Tim Lincecum shows off improved fastball in showcase for major league teams

Sports / Baseball /

Former Giants star Tim Lincecum inched closer to a possible return to the major leagues Thursday when he showed off an improved fastball in a workout for scouts from 15-20 teams.

The Giants and Mariners were among the teams on hand to see the new Lincecum at Driveline Baseball Academy in Kent, Wash.

Lincecum, who was out of baseball last ...Read more

Cubs lend support to Anthony Rizzo in wake of Florida shooting

Sports / Baseball /

MESA, Ariz. -- As soon as Kris Bryant realized via text messages Wednesday night that Anthony Rizzo was flying to Florida to support his grieving home community, the Cubs' third baseman immediately knew to give his teammate some space.

That's because Bryant understands the emotional stress Rizzo is experiencing after enduring similar trauma in ...Read more

'Ready to erase' last year, Duffy wants to be a role model for his Royals teammates

Sports / Baseball /

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- Royals starter Danny Duffy stood at his locker Thursday morning and reminisced about the first time he found himself in this clubhouse located 45 minutes northwest of Phoenix.

He was near "the exact coordinates" of the locker he was given after being drafted in 2007, just a few feet from where he put on a blue Royals jersey ...Read more

Florida school shooting strikes close to home for Marlins

Sports / Baseball /

JUPITER, Fla. -- The feeling of renewal and hope that usually accompanies the beginning of spring training was absent Thursday at Marlins camp.

The flags of 10 nations outside the clubhouse flew at half staff in mourning for victims of the mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High. Marlins manager Don Mattingly began his morning media ...Read more