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Francona on Encarnacion: I didn't think there was a chance (The Associated Press)

Thu, 19 Jan 2017 13:40:40 PST

When Edwin Encarnacion became a free agent this offseason, Indians manager Terry Francona didn't allow himself to daydream about adding the former Blue Jays slugger to his roster. ''I didn't think there was a chance to even talk to Edwin,'' Francona said on Thursday in his first comments since the AL champs signed Encarnacion to a three-year, $65 million deal this month. ''You've got to be realistic that in the winter we play in a different neighborhood'' than during his tenure in Boston, when the Red Sox were among the top-spending clubs in baseball.



Even more MLB games will be available to stream in 2017 (Big League Stew)

Thu, 19 Jan 2017 09:36:19 PST

MLB is loosening their grip on where and how you can watch baseball games. Good news for people who want more ways to watch baseball! NBC Sports Regional Networks has reached a deal with MLB Advanced Media on in-market streaming rights. Starting with the 2017 season, several Comcast regional sports networks will be able to stream baseball games online for their paid subscribers.



Bagwell, Raines, Ivan Rodriguez elected to Hall of Fame (The Associated Press)

Wed, 18 Jan 2017 19:01:44 PST

Bags and Rock and Pudge are heading to Cooperstown. After a vote that could prove to be a turning point how Steroids Era stars are viewed, Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens could be joining them in the next few years. Jeff Bagwell, Tim Raines and Ivan Rodriguez were elected to baseball's Hall of Fame on Wednesday, earning the honor as Trevor Hoffman and Vladimir Guerrero fell just short of the necessary 75 percent.



Red Sox TV analyst Jerry Remy signs new multiyear deal (The Associated Press)

Wed, 18 Jan 2017 16:48:59 PST

BOSTON (AP) -- Boston Red Sox TV analyst Jerry Remy has agreed to a new multiyear contract.



Did this White Sox pitching prospect really just throw 110 mph? (Big League Stew)

Wed, 18 Jan 2017 07:29:46 PST

One Chicago White Sox prospect has gotten a jump on all of that, though.Michael Kopech was captured in a tweet Tuesday throwing one heck of a pitch. Kopech is the pitcher who came to the White Sox from the Boston Red Sox in the Chris Sale trade. The radar gun actually says Kopech’s pitch hit 110 mph. That’s insanely fast, faster than Aroldis Chapman, and four miles faster than anyone at any position threw any baseball in the entire 2016 season.



2017 Category Sleepers: Wins (Rotoworld)

Tue, 17 Jan 2017 20:13:00 PST

Seth Trachtman analyzes possible wins sleepers for the 2017 season.



Hamilton signs minor league deal with Rangers, will try 1B (The Associated Press)

Tue, 17 Jan 2017 18:57:52 PST

Josh Hamilton walked into a room at the Texas Rangers' ballpark carrying a new first baseman's mitt and feeling the way he did 10 years ago. Hamilton, the 2010 AL MVP who has had surgery three times on his left knee since last playing in 2015, knows he has to earn a spot on the roster this spring. ''The first thing that comes to mind is 2007 spring training with the Reds.



The 2017 Hall of Fame ballot: Will these guys be one-and-done? (Big League Stew)

Tue, 17 Jan 2017 11:09:17 PST

For the past two weeks, we’ve been dissecting some of the most interesting players, cases and debates on this year’s Hall of Fame ballot. While we’d like to say we saved the best for last, that’s not exactly the case here.



AP source: Bautista and Blue Jays working hard on return (The Associated Press)

Mon, 16 Jan 2017 10:04:52 PST

TORONTO (AP) -- Outfielder Jose Bautista and the Toronto Blue Jays are ''working really hard'' to bring him back to the club, a person with knowledge of the negotiations told the Associated Press on Monday.



Lowdown: Bautista Going Back? (Rotoworld)

Mon, 16 Jan 2017 07:55:00 PST

Nate Grimm has the latest on Jose Bautista's free agency and discusses Tyson Ross' 2017 outlook and beyond in Monday's Offseason Lowdown.



Bagwell's Hall of Fame wait likely to end after 7 years (The Associated Press)

Sat, 14 Jan 2017 13:26:08 PST

Jeff Bagwell spent a career putting up huge stats, the kind that often get posted on plaques in Cooperstown. Whether he's elected or not, Bagwell says he'll feel something other than happiness or disappointment when the results are announced Wednesday. This is Bagwell's seventh try on the ballot - he got just 41.7 percent of the votes the first time, and was up to 71.6 percent last year in selections by members of the Baseball Writers' Association of America.



David Price says he's heard racial taunts from Red Sox fans (Big League Stew)

Sat, 14 Jan 2017 11:25:23 PST

David Price’s first year in Boston was disappointing for many reasons. David Price’s first year in Boston could be considered a disappointment on many levels. Instead, it resides in the level of disdain and ignorance Price says was hurled toward him in the form of racial slurs and taunts from fans at Fenway Park.



Red Sox reach deals with Bogaerts and Bradley, plus 5 others (The Associated Press)

Sat, 14 Jan 2017 07:00:01 PST

BOSTON (AP) -- Shortstop Xander Bogaerts agreed to a $4.5 million salary and outfielder Jackie Bradley Jr. to $3.6 million as seven Boston players avoided arbitration by agreeing to one-year deals with the Red Sox.



Arrieta, Harper, Machado, Britton get big-money deals (The Associated Press)

Sat, 14 Jan 2017 06:42:38 PST

NEW YORK (AP) -- Chicago Cubs ace Jake Arrieta, Washington star Bryce Harper and Baltimore standouts Manny Machado and Zach Britton got big-money deals Friday as more than 100 major leaguers reached agreements for 2017 and left just 27 players on track for salary arbitration.



MLB-Major League Baseball roundup (Reuters)

Fri, 13 Jan 2017 16:51:39 PST

Washington Nationals star outfielder Bryce Harper avoided salary arbitration by agreeing to a one-year, $13.625 million deal Friday. The four-time All-Star was unanimous National League MVP in 2015 when he batted .330 with 42 homers and 99 RBIs. -- The Chicago Cubs and right-hander Jake Arrieta avoided arbitration by agreeing to a one-year, $15.64 million contract.



Curt Schilling: Is he a Hall of Famer? (Big League Stew)

Fri, 13 Jan 2017 11:01:58 PST

Performance-enhancing drugs are still the mother of all character issues for Hall of Fame voters, but Curt Schilling is giving that particular issue a run for its money. By the end of his career, he had racked up a 3.46 ERA in 3,261 innings with 3,116 strikeouts.



Manny Ramirez: Is he a Hall of Famer? (Big League Stew)

Wed, 11 Jan 2017 11:52:10 PST

The 2017 baseball Hall of Fame ballot features a number of players who cause analysts to wrestle with their thoughts on steroids. Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens have seen their projected vote totals rise. While you can connect a number of players on the ballot to steroids, Ramirez is the only player on the ballot to fail a PED test. That wasn’t a fluky mistake, either.



Jewish-American pros look to boost baseball in Israel (The Associated Press)

Wed, 11 Jan 2017 00:10:57 PST

Israel has just one baseball-specific field, and most Israelis know little about the game. Major leaguers Ike Davis, Sam Fuld and Ryan Lavarnway were among 10 team members who visited Israel for the first time this month to get a glimpse of the country and people they will represent - and to boost a sport that remains on the fringes of the local athletic scene. For Israel, the option of tapping into a deep pool of Jewish big leaguers offers a rare opportunity to compete internationally against powerhouses like the U.S., Japan and the Dominican Republic and lift baseball out of its longtime obscurity in the Holy Land.



What did Rob Manfred discuss in his meeting with Donald Trump? (Big League Stew)

Tue, 10 Jan 2017 13:44:54 PST

Baseball is already great, in our opinion, but that didn’t stop commissioner Rob Manfred from attending an important meeting Tuesday. Manfred met with president-elect Donald Trump to discuss … well, no one is exactly sure. The meeting, which was also attended by New York Yankees president Randy Levine, came as a surprise to the baseball world.



Rejoice! Here are spring training report dates for all 30 teams (Big League Stew)

Tue, 10 Jan 2017 11:34:20 PST

Winter is terrible. The weather is cold, the days are short and baseball news is scarce. The only thing keeping us sane is the promise of spring.



David Ortiz sent a cryptic tweet to the Boston Globe and fans are losing it (Big League Stew)

Tue, 10 Jan 2017 07:54:22 PST

David Ortiz is probably not coming out of retirement because he sent a mistake tweet. When Boston Red Sox slugger David Ortiz hung up his bat and cleats at the end of the 2016 season, many fans wished he’d reconsider. Then on Monday night, Ortiz sent out a tweet that drove people into a frenzy.



Slugger Ramirez set for Japan baseball comeback at 44 (AFP)

Mon, 09 Jan 2017 19:39:35 PST

Former Major League Baseball slugger Manny Ramirez has joined Japanese independent league team the Kochi Fighting Dogs, the club said on its website. The 44-year-old, who has also played in Taiwan after retiring from the major leagues in 2011 as one of only 25 players to pass 500 home runs, is set to play in the four-team Shikoku Island League on the smallest of Japan's four main islands.



Ex-major leaguer Manny Ramirez to make comeback in Japan (The Associated Press)

Mon, 09 Jan 2017 07:14:43 PST

TOKYO (AP) -- Manny Ramirez has agreed to terms with the Kochi Fighting Dogs of Japan's independent Shikoku Island League.



Manny Ramirez is making a comeback in Japan at age 44 (Big League Stew)

Sun, 08 Jan 2017 21:34:42 PST

Just a few weeks before we find out how Manny Ramirez fares in his first year on the Hall of Fame ballot, the 44-year-old ex-MLB slugger has agreed to terms with an independent team in Japan as he attempts to make another comeback. Ramirez is now a member of the Kochi Fighting Dogs — yes, that’s a real team — of the Shikoku Island League Plus. It’s a four-team league that plays 90 games per season, so it’s not like Ramirez is signing up to play in the Arizona Fall League for a month and a half.



Edgar Martinez: Is he a Hall of Famer? (Big League Stew)

Sat, 07 Jan 2017 13:09:00 PST

No player on the baseball Hall of Fame ballot will make you come to terms with what you believe the Hall of Fame is truly about more than Seattle Mariners designated hitter Edgar Martinez. On a ballot featuring polarizing players like Barry Bonds, Manny Ramirez and Curt Schilling, Martinez somehow incites equally passionate arguments on both sides.



Hot Stove Digest: Orioles keeping tabs on Pedro Alvarez (Big League Stew)

Mon, 02 Jan 2017 22:27:52 PST

Welcome to The Stew’s Hot Stove Digest, our daily rundown of MLB news, rumors and gossip for Hot Stove season. Here you’ll find a quick recap of all the day’s action and other fun stuff from around the internet that we think is worth your time.