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12:10 PM ET, January 17, 2017

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 Top News: 
ESPN:
Transparency will make HOF voting a whole new game  —  It's one of the most historic Hall of Fame elections of all time.  And there's an excellent chance that no one has told you why.  —  The funny thing is this history has nothing to do with who gets elected Wednesday …
RELATED:
Ricky Keeler / Fox Sports:
Washington Nationals Legacy: Time For Tim Raines To Make Hall Of Fame  —  No Washington Nationals will make it into the Hall Of Fame in 2016, but its time for former Montreal Expo Tim Raines to be inducted into Cooperstown  —  We are days away from the announcement of who will be inducted …
David Pinto / baseballmusings.com:
ESPN Votes  —  ESPN released all 17 ballots employees submitted for the Hall of Fame vote.  While no player appeared on every ballot, Tim Raines and Edgar Martinez enjoyed overwhelming support, while Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens received 75% of the votes.  Note that the same group of people, 13 of the 17, voted for Bonds and Clemens.
Discussion: ESPN
Derrick Goold / St. Louis Post-Dispatch:
Cards appear intent on taking Martinez, Wacha to arbitration hearing  —  Photo by Chris Lee, clee@post-dispatch.com  —  Before the Cardinals consider a contract extension they've made an annual part of spring training, they first intend to do something they haven't done in almost two decades.
Discussion: South Side Sox
RELATED:
Derrick Goold / St. Louis Post-Dispatch:
Cardinals intend to take Wacha, Martinez to arbitration hearing  —  Photo by Chris Lee, clee@post-dispatch.com  —  ST. LOUIS  • Darren Oliver spent two of his 20 seasons in the majors with the Cardinals, and since he last threw a pitch for the team two U.S. presidents have come and gone …
Ben Frederickson / St. Louis Post-Dispatch:
Winter Warm-Up: Grichuk back to speed after offseason knee surgery  —  Photo by Chris Lee, clee@post-dispatch.com … Cardinals outfielder Randal Grichuk need a little more than a month to recover from knee surgery he had at the end of the 2016 season to address soreness and inflammation that followed him throughout the summer.
Discussion: Viva El Birdos
Carrie Muskat / MLB.com:
Fans get up-close look at trophy, continue title celebration  —  CHICAGO — The buzz at the Cubs Convention on Friday seemed louder and livelier than in years past, as fans were eager to celebrate the World Series championship, the first for the franchise in 108 years.
Steve Adams / MLB Trade Rumors:
Royals Extend Danny Duffy  —  The Royals have a number of key players hitting the open market next winter, but left-hander Danny Duffy will no longer be among them.  The Royals announced on Monday that they've signed Duffy to a five-year deal that runs through the 2021 season and will reportedly guarantee him $65MM.
David Kagan / The Hardball Times:
The Physics of Barreled Balls  —  I guess I wasn't paying attention because back in September 2016 Mike Petriello wrote that Statcast debuted a new metric called “Barreled Balls.”  According to MLB's Statcast Glossary, the barreled ball designation is assigned to balls with specific exit velocities …
Jim Salisbury / CSN Philly:
Phillies Phodder: Jerad Eickhoff, a new bat, Montgomery and other matters  —  Jerad Eickhoff was in town the other day putting smiles on the faces of some special kids at CSN Philly's annual Shining Star Awards dinner, which benefits the March of Dimes.  —  Before the event …
Filip Bondy / New York Times:
Hello, Fans.  We're the New Yankees.  Sandwich?  —  Gary Sanchez, the young catcher and face of the rebuilding Yankees, stood behind a counter Monday afternoon and prepared two sandwiches for starry-eyed customers at the Bullpen Deli Twin Donut on 161st Street in the Bronx.
Discussion: Pinstripe Alley
Ken Rosenthal / Fox Sports:
Indians staying in touch with free agents, including Jose Bautista  —  The Indians might not be done.  —  While the signing of free-agent first baseman Edwin Encarnacion pushed the club beyond its expected payroll limit, team officials are staying in touch with a number of free agents, according to major-league sources.
 
 Latest News Finder: 
4½ hours ago
Filip Bondy / New York Times:
Hello, Fans. We're the New Yankees. Sandwich?   Find
4½ hours ago
David Kagan / The Hardball Times:
The Physics of Barreled Balls   Find
18 hours ago
Ben Frederickson / St. Louis Post-Dispatch:
Winter Warm-Up: Grichuk back to speed after offseason knee surgery   Find
21 hours ago
Steve Adams / MLB Trade Rumors:
Royals Extend Danny Duffy   Find
22 hours ago
Carrie Muskat / MLB.com:
Fans get up-close look at trophy, continue title celebration   Find
 
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 More News: 
Mark Feinsand / New York Daily News:
Hal Steinbrenner has a 2017 payroll figure in mind for Yankees GM Brian Cashman
Discussion: Pinstripe Alley
Charlie Wilmoth / MLB Trade Rumors:
Neftali Feliz Nearing Deal With Brewers
Nick Piecoro / Arizona Republic:
Veteran Chris Iannetta to join Diamondbacks' catching mix
 Earlier Picks: 
ESPN:
Wil Myers inks six-year, $80 million extension with Padres
Discussion: Fish Stripes and Yahoo Sports
Matt Gelb / Philly.com:
Phillies settle with Jeanmar Gomez, will negotiate with Cesar Hernandez
Discussion: Phillies Nation
Laura Albanese / Newsday:
Yankees settle with Michael Pineda, Didi Gregorius and others
 

 
From WeSmirch:

Briannetracytimeinc / People.com:
Kourtney Kardashian Steps Out with Justin Bieber — But ‘Is Still Serious About Making Things Work with Scott’: Source

Catherine Kast / People.com:
Katherine Heigl and Josh Kelley Welcome Son Joshua Bishop

McKenna Aiello / E! Online:
Robin Thicke and Paula Patton Attend Therapy With Their 6-Year-Old Son Amid Ongoing Custody Battle

 
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