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5:25 AM ET, March 22, 2018


 Top News: 
Associated Press:
Giancarlo Stanton says he's prepared for New York-level scrutiny  —  TAMPA, Fla. — Giancarlo Stanton said he is prepared for the scrutiny he will attract during his first season with the New York Yankees.  —  “The good times will be magnified and so will the bad,” the slugger said Wednesday.
Erik Boland / St. Louis Post-Dispatch:
Giancarlo Stanton prepared for scrutiny that comes with playing for Yankees  —  TAMPA, Fla. — The expectations for the 2018 Yankees are through the roof.  —  And Giancarlo Stanton is good with that.  —  “The fans expect a lot,” Stanton said Wednesday afternoon.  “I expect a lot, too.
Daily Record:
Yankees option Tyler Austin to Class AAA Scranton as roster takes shape  —  The Yankees took another step in whittling down to their opening day roster, as Tyler Austin and several others were optioned to Class AAA Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.  —  New York announced the moves during …
Discussion: Pinstripe Alley
Mark Didtler / Associated Press:   Yanks' Stanton says he's prepared for scrutiny in New York
Pete Caldera / Daily Record:
Jacoby Ellsbury is trying to be optimistic about his active return to the Yankees
Discussion: Pinstripe Alley
Derrick Goold / St. Louis Post-Dispatch:
Wong finally feels a sense of belonging  —  • On the practice field nearest their clubhouse Wednesday morning, early enough that shadows still played tricks on the batters' eyes, two Cardinals stepped into the cage for swings against rookie Alex Reyes.  —  One was Tommy Pham, his game-ready intensity lit.
Derrick Goold / St. Louis Post-Dispatch:
Norris looks for reset as relief roles remain in flux
Discussion: MLB Baseball News …
Derrick Goold / St. Louis Post-Dispatch:   Cardinals bringing back ‘biggest arm in camp’ for Grapefruit debut
Rick Hummel / St. Louis Post-Dispatch:   Carpenter, Ozuna homer back-to-back in 13-6 Cards win
New York Post:
Mets concerned about Zack Wheeler, whose spot is in jeopardy  —  PORT ST. LUCIE — Zack Wheeler is the logical choice to start the season in the Mets rotation if Jason Vargas isn't ready, but he is not a slam dunk.  —  Privately, Mets officials were concerned about Wheeler's last exhibition start …
David Lennon / St. Louis Post-Dispatch:   Michael Conforto takes healthy cuts as hope grows he can return before May 1
Matt Ehalt / Daily Record:   Mets still have to settle on leadoff hitter, lineup and bullpen before end of spring
Matt Ehalt / Daily Record:
Mets' Jacob deGrom and Michael Conforto spend off day preparing for season
St. Louis Post-Dispatch:
Notebook: Cobb wraps up deal with Orioles  —  Pitcher Cobb wraps up deal with Orioles  —  Alex Cobb's comfort and familiarity with the American League East was the deciding factor in his decision to sign with the Baltimore Orioles.  —  “They used the AL East and the success I've …
Associated Press:   MLB: Chief Wahoo logo will not be allowed on new baseball Hall of Fame plaques
Eduardo A. Encina / Baltimore Sun:
In courting Alex Cobb, persistence was key for Orioles in nabbing free-agent starter
Associated Press:
Cubs' Darvish limits former club to 3 hits over 6 innings  —  SURPRISE, Ariz. (AP) — Yu Darvish looked as if he would stumble on the mound, yet still managed to unleash a pitch that struck out Drew Robinson of the Rangers.  —  “I got off-balance,” Darvish said through a translator.
Mark Gonzales / Chicago Tribune:   Cubs starter Yu Darvish enjoys return to Surprise in beating former team Rangers
Associated Press:
Diamondbacks' Souza has strained right shoulder, to get MRI  —  SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. (AP) — Arizona Diamondbacks outfielder Steven Souza Jr. will get an MRI on Thursday after straining his right shoulder during a spring training game Wednesday night.  —  The team announced Souza's diagnosis following …
Richard Morin / Arizona Republic:
Arizona Diamondbacks spring training - 2018 … Perhaps the biggest story line throughout Diamondbacks spring training is the race to see who will be closing games for the team in 2018.  —  But the Diamondbacks relievers don't seem to be too concerned about it.  —  Take newly acquired right-hander Brad Boxberger for example.
Mariners' David Phelps to have Tommy John surgery, season over  —  Mariners reliever David Phelps has a torn UCL in his pitching elbow and will have season-ending Tommy John surgery, the team said Thursday.  —  The right-hander is expected to be sidelined 12-15 months.
Ryan Divish / The Seattle Times:
Brutal blow for Mariners' bullpen: David Phelps lost for the season with Tommy John surgery  —  Phelps suffered a torn ulnar collateral ligament in his right elbow and will need season-ending surgery.  —  PEORIA, Ariz. — The 2018 season is done for David Phelps before it even started.
Discussion: MLB Daily Dish and Lookout Landing
Tom Schad / USA Today:
Ex-pitcher Greg Reynolds, who broke hand punching naked LSD attacker, wins over $2 million  —  Former MLB pitcher Greg Reynolds believes his baseball career was cut short after he punched a naked man on LSD who was trying to break into his home in 2015.  —  On Monday, a California jury agreed …
Bob Nightengale / USA Today:
Shohei Ohtani, Angels undaunted by rocky spring: 'He's going to wow us,' says Mike Trout
Gabe Lacques / USA Today:   Is ‘bullpenning’ MLB's best path to 27 outs - or a gateway to ‘mediocrity’?
George Sipple / Detroit Free Press:
Detroit Tigers lose to Braves, 3-2, in Francisco Liriano's up-and-down night … At Champion Stadium, Lake Buena Vista, Fla.  —  What happened: The Detroit Tigers lost, 3-2, to the Atlanta Braves. ....  The Tigers took a 1- lead in the first after Leonys Martin had a leadoff double and scored …
Discussion: Talking Chop
George Sipple / Detroit Free Press:   Ron Gardenhire: Buck Farmer in Detroit Tigers' bullpen plans
Pete Caldera / Daily Record:
Aaron Judge hits two HRs, hitting his stride as Yankees opener nears  —  TAMPA, Fla. - Aaron Judge is getting that let's-start-the-season-already feeling.  —  “I feel ready to go,” Judge said after belting two home runs in Wednesday night's 9-4 Yankees win against the Orioles at Steinbrenner Field.
Mike Mazzeo / New York Daily News:   Aaron Judge proves he is ready for regular season by hitting two home runs in Yankees' rout of Orioles
Associated Press:
Rays' catchers using wristbands amid rotation experiment  —  PORT CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Major League Baseball made game-calling more difficult for catchers this winter when it changed the rules governing mound visits.  For backstops with the Tampa Bay Rays, things got even trickier …
Discussion: DRaysBay and
Mark Gonzales / Chicago Tribune:
Ian Happ has earned large chunk of leadoff duties to start season for Cubs  —  Chicago Tribune  —  Switch-hitter Ian Happ has convinced manager Joe Maddon he can handle the leadoff duties for the Cubs, at least to start the start of the regular season.  —  “You'll probably see him there a bit,” Maddon said Wednesday.
Connor Byrne / MLB Trade Rumors:
Blue Jays Acquire Sam Gaviglio, Designate Matt Dermody  —  The Blue Jays have acquired right-hander Sam Gaviglio from the Royals for cash considerations or a player to be named later, according to an announcement from Toronto.  To make room for Gaviglio, the Blue Jays designated left-hander Matt Dermody …
Daryl Van Schouwen / Chicago Sun Times:
2018 will let White Sox know where rebuild stands  —  Sign-Up for our Newsletter … GLENDALE, Ariz. - So when will the White Sox be ready to contend?  —  Next season?  —  2020?  —  When the subject is broached to general manager Rick Hahn, a suggestion that 2020 was his targeted year …
 Latest News Finder: 
4 hours ago
Derrick Goold / St. Louis Post-Dispatch:
Norris looks for reset as relief roles remain in flux   Find
4½ hours ago
Derrick Goold / St. Louis Post-Dispatch:
Wong finally feels a sense of belonging   Find
4½ hours ago
St. Louis Post-Dispatch:
Notebook: Cobb wraps up deal with Orioles   Find
4½ hours ago
George Sipple / Detroit Free Press:
Detroit Tigers' top 20 prospects: Forecasting their major league debuts   Find
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 More News: 
George Sipple / Detroit Free Press:
Detroit Tigers' top 20 prospects: Forecasting their major league debuts
Rich Hammond / Orange County Register:
Sam Darnold might have cemented status as No. 1 pick with impressive Pro Day display
Associated Press:
D-backs' Zack Greinke throws 60 pitches in return from groin injury
Roger Mooney / Tampa Bay Times:
Rays nearing decision on Venters
Bill Baer / MLB Baseball News, Scores …:
Wade Miley exits spring start with groin strain
Discussion: Brew Crew Ball
Connor Byrne / MLB Trade Rumors:
Mariners Claim Dario Alvarez From Cubs
 Earlier Picks: 
Rob Longley / Toronto Sun:
Oh, Boy: New Jays reliever delivers in style after getting work visa
Susan Slusser / San Francisco Chronicle:
A's shut down A.J. Puk with biceps issue
Discussion: Mercury News and MLB Trade Rumors
Clark Spencer / miamiherald:
Jose Fernandez's death put into motion a series of events that still impact Marlins today
Thomas Boswell / Chicago Tribune:
Commentary: After bold, bland and cool, the Nationals' new manager says let's have fun
Jose M. Romero / Associated Press:
Brewers — including Hank as The Beast — re-enact ‘The Sandlot’ in video

From WeSmirch:

Chris Spargo / Daily Mail:
Are Aubrey O'Day and Donald Trump Jr playing footsie in bed with one another in this photo taken during 2012 affair?

Aili Nahas /
Chrissy Metz Says Her Stepfather Beat Her and Forced Her to Do Humiliating Weigh-Ins as a Teen
Fred Savage and FOX Getting Sued for Harassment, Assault, Discrimination

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