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2:00 PM ET, February 8, 2019

Ballbug

 Top News: 
Anthony Rieber / Newsday:
Bryce Harper, Manny Machado in pinstripes?  Hal Steinbrenner says never say never  —  The Yankees' managing general partner likes the improvements to his team but is open to adding a big-ticket item.  —  ORLANDO, Fla. — It's unlikely that the Yankees will sign Manny Machado or Bryce Harper.
RELATED:
Kristie Ackert / New York Daily News:
Yankees Spring Training Preview: Biggest questions as Bombers try to chase down Red Sox  —  The Yankees won 100 games last year.  They won the American League wild-card game.  The Bombers also had the misfortune of being in the division with the best team in baseball in 2018.
ESPN:
Hal Steinbrenner says Yankees have made the right moves  —  ORLANDO, Fla. — Hal Steinbrenner has heard the constant criticism in New York: Why haven't the Yankees tried to sign Bryce Harper or Manny Machado?  —  “I get hammered every year about something,” the New York owner said Thursday.
Scott Chiusano / New York Daily News:   Hal Steinbrenner wants Yankees fans to know he's 'never done until I'm done' when it comes …
David Schoenfield / ESPN:   With Realmuto joining Phillies, could Harper or Machado follow?
ESPN:
J.T. Realmuto deal continues stunningly sad Marlins tradition  —  1. The first J.T. Realmuto trade rumors started to show up in September 2016, like this one: … Doesn't look like much, but for two key facts.  The first is this had come roughly two and a half months after Realmuto got good.
Discussion: FanGraphs Baseball
RELATED:
Associated Press:
J.T. Realmuto, the catcher the Mets wanted, traded from Marlins to Phillies for 3 players  —  MIAMI — In October, J.T. Realmuto's agent predicted the Miami Marlins' All-Star catcher would be with another team by spring training.  —  He was right.  —  After months of speculation over what they'd do …
Ken Rosenthal / The Athletic:
The Marlins' trade strategy on Realmuto; baseball's staring contest; Moose and Milwaukee?; more notes
Jeff PassanESPN / ESPN:
Phillies acquire catcher J.T. Realmuto from Marlins
ESPN:
Frank Robinson, MVP, first black manager, dies at 83  —  MLB, Cleveland Indians, Baltimore Orioles, Cincinnati Reds, Washington Nationals  —  Frank Robinson, the first African-American manager in Major League Baseball and the only player to win MVP in both leagues, has died at age 83, MLB said Thursday.
RELATED:
Associated Press:   Reaction to the death of baseball great Frank Robinson
Joe Erwin / New York Daily News:   Frank Robinson was an amazing ballplayer, but a true trailblazer as the first black manager
Jon Becker / Orange County Register:
Frank Robinson, Baseball Hall of Famer, dies at 83
Associated Press:
Cleveland Indians agree to minor league deals with Ryan Flaherty, Dioner Navarro  —  CLEVELAND — Infielder Ryan Flaherty has agreed to a minor league contract with the Cleveland Indians and will report to big league spring training.  —  The 32-year-old would get a one-year contract paying $800,000 …
RELATED:
Joe Noga / Plain Dealer:
Cleveland Indians sign free agent outfielder Matt Joyce to minor-league contract
Steve Adams / MLB Trade Rumors:
Giants, Rene Rivera Agree To Minor League Deal
Discussion: McCovey Chronicles
Jeff Bezos:
No thank you, Mr. Pecker  —  Something unusual happened to me yesterday.  Actually, for me it wasn't just unusual—it was a first.  I was made an offer I couldn't refuse.  Or at least that's what the top people at the National Enquirer thought.  I'm glad they thought that, because it emboldened them to put it all in writing.
Jeff PassanESPN / ESPN:
Major League Baseball to rename disabled list as ‘injured list’  —  The disabled list is going on the permanent DL.  —  Major League Baseball will rename the disabled list as the “injured list,” a source familiar with the plan told ESPN.  —  The league will make the change out of concern that the term …
RELATED:
Associated Press:
DL shelved: Baseball's disabled list becomes injured list
Discussion: baseballmusings.com
Paul Sullivan / Chicago Tribune:
2019 will be an important year for both Joe Maddon and Rick Renteria, Chicago's yin and yang of managers  —  Cubs manager Joe Maddon, left, and White Sox manager Joe Maddon both are focusing on improvement heading into spring training.  (Photos by Chris Sweda and Nancy Stone/Chicago Tribune)
RELATED:
Mark Gonzales / Kansas City Star:   Cubs have struck out with homegrown pitchers in recent years, but they're working to change that
Jimmy Golen / Associated Press:
6 things to watch for as the Red Sox begin spring training workouts  —  BOSTON (AP) — The goal is the same for the Boston Red Sox in 2019: finish the season flopping around on the pitcher's mound, celebrating another World Series title.  —  All that's left is for them to figure out who's at the bottom of the pile.
Nick Piecoro / Arizona Republic:
All eyes on GM Mike Hazen as Arizona Diamondbacks spring training nears  —  The reaction from John Hazen's elementary school classmate was one of disbelief.  —  “It was just like, ‘Your dad traded Paul Goldschmidt?’”  Mike Hazen recounted.  —  Hazen did not enjoy the telling of the story …
Discussion: MLB Baseball News …
Jon Meoli / Baltimore Sun:
Orioles announce minor league coaching staffs, bringing a mix of familiar faces, new voices  —  The Orioles' minor league coaching staffs announced Friday feature a mix of familiar faces in new roles and fresh blood from the college and amateur ranks, as the organization looks to overhaul …
Discussion: Camden Chat
ESPN:
Rangers sign outfielder Hunter Pence to minor league deal  —  The Texas Rangers have signed outfielder Hunter Pence and infielder Matt Davidson to minor league contracts with invitations to major league spring training camp, the team announced Thursday.  —  Pence, a three-time All-Star …
RELATED:
Jeff Wilson / Fort Worth Star-Telegram:
Arlington product Pence to attempt to extend MLB career with hometown Rangers
Discussion: Dallas Morning News
Alex Pavlovic / MLB Baseball News, Scores …:
Giants entered a Harper field lacking too many contenders  —  Giants entered a Harper field lacking too many contenders originally appeared on  —  SAN FRANCISCO - When the Giants first started dreaming of Bryce Harper, they did so as contenders, the three-time champs with a roster full …
Discussion: ClutchPoints and South Side Sox
Tom Withers / MLB Baseball News, Scores …:
Indians All-Star SS Lindor out 2 months with calf strain  —  CLEVELAND (AP) — Indians All-Star shortstop  —  Francisco Lindor will likely miss the start of the season with a strained right calf.  —  Lindor, one of baseball's best all-around players, sustained the injury recently while working out in Orlando, Florida.
Discussion: MLB Trade Rumors
CBS Detroit:
Does Tigers Rebuild Mean No Expectation Of Contending?  —  DETROIT (AP) — Player development is the key for 2019 squad.  —  For the Detroit Tigers, success isn't really measured in wins and losses these days.  —  That's what happens when a franchise knows it is rebuilding and has almost no expectation of contending.
Discussion: Bless You Boys
 
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 More News: 
Steve Adams / MLB Trade Rumors:
Ryan Tepera, Kyle Barraclough Lose Arbitration Cases
Discussion: MLB Baseball News …
Associated Press:
AL East teams at the start of spring training
Ernest Hooper / Tampa Bay Times:
What Rays player are you most curious about seeing this spring, and why?
Chandler Rome / Houston Chronicle:
How Astros prospects Forrest Whitley, Corbin Martin topped 110 mph
Jeff Wilson / Fort Worth Star-Telegram:
Kiner-Falefa caught 35 games last season. Here's how that number should soar in 2019
 Earlier Picks: 
Ballpark Digest:
Rome Braves Extend State Mutual Stadium Lease
John Fay / Cincinnati.com:
Cincinnati Reds question: Can veterans Hughes and Hernandez be as good in '19 as they were in '18?
Cincinnati.com:
Cincinnati Reds question: What to do with top prospect Nick Senzel?
Jeff Wilson / Fort Worth Star-Telegram:
Would adding the DH to the National League help the Rangers find a trade for Choo?
Daily Record:
Mets sign catcher Devin Mesoraco to minor-league contract
Discussion: NorthJersey.com
 

 
From WeSmirch:

Borys Kit / Hollywood Reporter:
Taika Waititi to Direct ‘Thor 4’ (Exclusive)

WGN Web Desk / WGN-TV:
Alligator in Humboldt Park Lagoon captured

People.com:
Hayden Panettiere's ‘Life is in Flux’ as 4-Year-Old Daughter Lives in Ukraine with Dad: Source

 
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