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3:50 PM ET, January 11, 2019

Ballbug

 Top News: 
Wallace Matthews / New York Daily News:
Zach Britton has one thing on his mind by returning to the Yankees - winning ... Manny Machado's motivations may be different  —  Zach Britton, who two years ago led the American League in saves, says he re-signed with the Yankees despite knowing he will not close, for a simple reason.
RELATED:
Chicago Tribune:
Manny Machado's high school coach thinks he'll choose the White Sox  —  Photos of Manny Machado, one of the top free agents this season.  —  Chicago Tribune  —  Where will Manny Machado land?  —  His high school baseball coach says it'll be the White Sox.
Brendan Kuty / New Jersey Online:   Why Manny Machado's HS coach thinks he'll pick White Sox, spurn Yankees; defends work ethic
Phil Thompson / Chicago Tribune:
Newcomer Jon Jay says friend Manny Machado will 'do what's best for his family' when making free-agent decision
Discussion: South Side Sox and Deadspin
Scott Chiusano / New York Daily News:   CC Sabathia is still confident Yankees can land Manny Machado
Kristie Ackert / New York Daily News:
Jacob deGrom and the Mets avoid arbitration as Cy Young winner accepts $17M for 2019  —  Jacob deGrom is finally getting paid.  —  No, the Mets have not stepped up and signed the National League Cy Young winner to a multi-year extension as many of their fans are calling for them to do.
RELATED:
SNY:
Mets Arbitration Tracker: Jacob deGrom receives record raise  —  Friday is deadline to reach one-year deal before salary arbitration  —  Friday is the deadline for teams to exchange numbers with players who are arbitration-eligible.  If a deal is not agreed upon they must schedule …
Discussion: Amazin' Avenue
Derrick Goold / St. Louis Post-Dispatch:
Cards hope to complete one-year deals with Ozuna, Wacha before Friday's arbitration deadline  —  In an attempt to use a deadline to spur agreement or leave salaries in the hands of three arbiters, the Cardinals have adopted the popular “file-and-trial” approach to negotiations with arbitration-eligible players.
Mike Puma / New York Post:   Mets eye short-term Jacob deGrom fix with arbitration looming
Matt Ehalt / Daily Record:
Mets may have found their No. 2 hitter in free agent Jed Lowrie  —  Ed Kranepool (l) and Art Shamsky (r) discuss the 1969 title team  —  Brodie Van Wagenen's busy offseason continued Thursday night with the surprising development that Jed Lowrie agreed to a two-year, $20-million deal.
RELATED:
New York Daily News:
Mets sign lefty reliever Luis Avilan to minor-league deal
Discussion: MLB Trade Rumors
Rotoworld.com:   Lowdown: Brewers' New Backstop
Steve Adams / MLB Trade Rumors:
Mets Sign Luis Avilan To Minor League Deal
Discussion: MLB Baseball News …
Craig Edwards / FanGraphs Baseball:
Nationals Gain Upside with Brian Dozier  —  While much of the focus of the Nationals' offseason has been the potential loss of Bryce Harper, the club has been one of the more active teams this winter.  Their big move brought in Patrick Corbin.  They also signed Anibal Sanchez and traded Tanner Roark.
RELATED:
Associated Press:   Source: Ex-Dodger Brian Dozier and the Nationals agree to $9-million, one-year deal
Steve Adams / MLB Trade Rumors:
Brewers In “Heavy” Pursuit Of Infield Upgrade
Gabriel Burns / Atlanta Journal-Constitution:
Braves avoid arbitration with Foltynewicz, 3 others  —  The Braves avoided arbitration with starter Mike Foltynewicz ($5.475 million), reliever Arodys Vizcaino ($4.8 million), utilityman Charlie Culberson ($1.395 million) and outfielder Adam Duvall ($2.9 million) before the 1 p.m. Friday deadline.
Discussion: Talking Chop
Steve Adams / MLB Trade Rumors:
Dodgers Acquire Russell Martin  —  1:30pm: The Blue Jays have formally announced the trade.  They'll send Martin and cash to Los Angeles in exchange for minor league shortstop Ronny Brito and minor league right-hander Andrew Sopko.  —  1:12pm: The Dodgers have reached an agreement on a trade …
ESPN:
Blue Jays reach one-year deal with free-agent RHP David Phelps  —  The Toronto Blue Jays have agreed to a deal with free-agent right-hander David Phelps, sources told ESPN's Jeff Passan on Thursday night.  —  The one-year deal is worth $2.5 million and includes a club option, sources said.
RELATED:
Steve Buffery / Toronto Sun:
Blue Jays' Dalton Pompey answers call for Canada for Pan Am Games qualifiers
Discussion: MLB Baseball News …
Steve Adams / MLB Trade Rumors:
Alex Bregman Undergoes Arthroscopic Elbow Surgery  —  The Astros announced Friday that third baseman Alex Bregman underwent arthroscopic surgery to remove loose bodies from his right elbow earlier today.  Bregman is expected to be limited at the start of Spring Training but ready for full duty by Opening Day.
Steve Adams / MLB Trade Rumors:
Yankees To Sign DJ LeMahieu  —  11:43am: LeMahieu is heading to the Yankees, tweets Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic.  His contract is believed to be a two-year deal with a guarantee in the range of $24MM.  —  11:40am: The Yankees are closing in on a two-year contract with free-agent second …
Associated Press:
Steven Wright agrees with Red Sox on one-year contract  —  BOSTON — Knuckleballer Steven Wright and the Boston Red Sox agreed to a one-year contract for $1,375,000, a raise of $275,000, in a deal that avoided arbitration.  —  An All-Star in 2016, the 34-year-old right-hander started …
AJ Mass / ESPN:
Fantasy baseball free-agent and trade tracker  —  For even the most committed fantasy baseball managers, getting caught up on a lengthy offseason of wheeling and dealing and free agent signings can be complicated.  —  To that end, here's a brief snapshot of some of the higher-profile transactions …
 
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 More News: 
La Velle E. Neal III / Star Tribune:
Twins sign catcher Tomas Telis, pitcher Dario Alvarez to minor league contracts
Discussion: MLB Trade Rumors
Maury Brown / Forbes:
Economic Data Shows MLB Spent Less On Player Salaries Compared To Revenues In 2018
Evan Grant / Dallas Morning News:
Rangers taking chance on rotation full of Tommy John patients in effort to get ‘bang for our buck’
Discussion: Lone Star Ball
Associated Press:
Casali agrees to $950,000, 1-year deal with Reds
Associated Press:
Padres agree with Travis Jankowski to avoid arbitration
 Earlier Picks: 
Associated Press:
Angels avoid arbitration with RHPs JC Ramirez, Nick Tropeano
Associated Press:
John Ryan Murphy, D-Backs reach $900,000, 1-year deal
Mark Medina / Mercury News:
Warriors' Steve Kerr said DeMarcus Cousins will start in his first game
Paul Sullivan / Chicago Tribune:
Cubs will start spring training on Feb. 12 in Arizona
 

 
From WeSmirch:

TMZ.com:
Paris Jackson Released From Hospital After Attempted Suicide

TMZ.com:
Mama June Arrested for Crack Cocaine in Manic State

Dave Quinn / People.com:
Top Chef Winner Says She Missed Son's First Steps to Compete: ‘It Was Brutal’

 
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