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

Orioles nearing two-year deal with veteran starting pitcher Andrew Cashner

Sports / Baseball /

The Orioles were finalizing a two-year, $16 million deal with right-hander Andrew Cashner on Thursday afternoon, on the verge of adding a long-awaited and much-needed veteran to the team's starting rotation.

Orioles executive vice president Dan Duquette said Thursday that the club had a few more details to work out before the team would have an...Read more

Focused on recovery this spring, Orioles' Zach Britton can't help but think about future

Sports / Baseball /

SARASOTA, Fla. -- While his teammates prepare for Opening Day over the next several weeks, Orioles closer Zach Britton will make his own steady strides at the Ed Smith Stadium complex recovering from a ruptured right Achilles tendon, an offseason injury that will likely delay the start of his final season before free agency for at least two ...Read more

Angels' two-way player Ohtani will pitch and be a DH, but he won't be allowed to slide head-first

Sports / Baseball /

TEMPE, Ariz. -- The Los Angeles Angels plan to give Shohei Ohtani every opportunity to be an impact pitcher and hitter, but his pursuit of two-way stardom in the major leagues will come with some boundaries.

Manager Mike Scioscia said Wednesday that Ohtani will not work out in the outfield this spring, even though the 23-year-old played the ...Read more

Cubs counting on closer Brandon Morrow and fifth starter Tyler Chatwood

Sports / Baseball /

MESA, Ariz. -- Sure, it helps to land the big blow of the offseason before spring training by adding marquee free agent Yu Darvish to a National League title contender.

But for the second consecutive day manager Joe Maddon reminded everyone that one player doesn't assure success, and the six free-agent pitchers joining the Cubs on Wednesday for...Read more

'I don't need a cane:' Ned Yost ready to take on Royals' rebuild after scary fall

Sports / Baseball /

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- On Ned Yost's first day as Royals manager, Eric Hosmer was a 20-year-old first baseman in Wilmington, N.C. Mike Moustakas was 21 and destroying opposing pitchers in Northwest Arkansas. Lorenzo Cain was 24 and a center fielder in Huntsville, Ala., plying his trade in the Milwaukee Brewers organization.

Nearly eight years later...Read more

Braves sign Chris Stewart for depth, insurance at catching position

Sports / Baseball /

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- The Braves signed veteran catcher Chris Stewart to a one-year major-league contract Wednesday, a non-guaranteed deal that provides more depth at a key position on a team that's counting heavily on the development of its young pitchers.

Stewart, who'll turn 36 next week, is a quality defensive catcher and pitch-framer ...Read more

Former Indians All-Star Tito Francona, father of Terry, passes away at the age of 84

Sports / Baseball /

John Patsy "Tito" Francona, a former Indians All-Star and the father of current manager Terry Francona, passed away Tuesday night at his home in New Brighton, Pa., the club confirmed on Wednesday. He was 84 years old.

The elder Francona, who went by Tito just as his son often does today, said in 2016 that he tried to watch every Indians game on...Read more

Despite uncertain future, Matt Kemp grateful for second chance with Dodgers

Sports / Baseball /

PHOENIX -- Matt Kemp cradled a baseball cap in his hands. The color was the same, the blue he had worn in the Dodger Stadium outfield for nine years. Only the logo was unfamiliar, a "D" stitched where "L.A." used to be, a spring marketing ploy showing the passage of time. Kemp traced his thumb across the lettering.

"It's a little different, man...Read more

Yu Darvish signing limits free-agent flexibility for Cubs next offseason

Sports / Baseball /

MESA, Ariz. -- The signing of Yu Darvish to a six-year, $126 million contract still allows the Cubs some flexibility to add a midseason reinforcement.

But landing another marquee free agent next offseason in a deep 2019 class might require some financial gymnastics.

"If everyone plays well and we're healthy and productive, we have just about ...Read more

Derek Jeter: Marlins can have 'well-groomed' facial hair

Sports / Baseball /

MIAMI -- The Miami Marlins are allowed to have beards and mustaches this season, CEO Derek Jeter said Tuesday.

With one catch: The facial hair must be well groomed.

"Well groomed," Jeter emphasized.

That guideline is a bit stricter than the Marlins' facial-hair policy last year, when players could wear hair on their faces without much issue. ...Read more

Yu Darvish embraces pressure of his high-price signing with Cubs

Sports / Baseball /

MESA, Ariz. -- President Theo Epstein was extremely impressed last December when Yu Darvish elected to speak English instead of using a translator during a recruiting visit in Dallas.

But the challenges now become greater for the highly prized free agent, starting Wednesday when Darvish joins his new teammates for the Cubs first workout for ...Read more

Despite investigation, Miguel Sano will report to Twins camp on time

Sports / Baseball /

FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Miguel Sano will report to Twins training camp Sunday with the rest of the position players while still being investigated by Major League Baseball for an alleged assault.

"His intention is to report on reporting day," Twins general manager Thad Levine said.

Pitchers and catchers officially reported Tuesday, and some ...Read more