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9:45 AM ET, February 9, 2019

Ballbug

 Top News: 
Bob Brookover / Kansas City Star:
Phillies need Bryce Harper or Manny Machado to win the offseason and the NL East  —  We learned long ago and many times over that the team that wins the offseason does not always win the actual season.  —  The Atlanta Braves, for example, spent less money during the offseason than any other team …
RELATED:
ESPN:
Giants' Farhan Zaidi says ‘mutual interest’ led to Bryce Harper meeting  —  SAN FRANCISCO — Bryce Harper's meeting with the Giants in Las Vegas this week was the product of “mutual interest on both sides,” new San Francisco baseball operations chief Farhan Zaidi said Friday.
Associated Press:   Phillies set to open spring still waiting on Bryce and Manny
Alex Pavlovic / MLB Baseball News, Scores …:
Giants entered a Harper field lacking too many contenders
Discussion: ClutchPoints and South Side Sox
Ronald Blum / Associated Press:
Manfred: No DH or draft changes likely for 2019  —  ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — Don't look for a National League designated hitter this year or for new anti-tanking rules in June's amateur draft.  —  Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred said Friday that management is focused on pace-of-game changes …
RELATED:
New York Post:
Baseball owners back MLB bid to buy Fox's regional sports networks
Discussion: baseballmusings.com
Bob Nightengale / USA Today:
MLB owners: Adopting DH in NL not likely until at least 2022 season
Discussion: NBCSports.com
Associated Press:   No designated hitter or draft changes likely in MLB this season
Associated Press:
Mets sign Danny Espinosa to minor league deal  —  NEW YORK — Danny Espinosa and the New York Mets have agreed to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training.  —  The veteran switch-hitter gives the Mets even more depth in a crowded infield.  He could be a backup option at shortstop behind Amed Rosario.
RELATED:
Scott Chiusano / New York Daily News:   Mets sign utility infielder Danny Espinosa to minor-league deal
Wallace Matthews / New York Daily News:
Think Hal Steinbrenner and Yankees are pinching pennies?  You can thank Jacoby Ellsbury and Giancarlo Stanton for that  —  The last position player the Yankees signed to a long-term free agent deal was Jacoby Ellsbury.  That happened in December of 2013.  —  If you want to get to the root …
RELATED:
Kristie Ackert / New York Daily News:
Yankees Spring Training Preview: Biggest questions as Bombers try to chase down Red Sox
Discussion: Pinstripe Alley
ESPN:
Hal Steinbrenner says Yankees have made the right moves
David Wellham / Atlanta Journal-Constitution:
We now know Charlie Culberson's new jersey number, and some others  —  Braves infielder/outfielder Charlie Culberson will wear No. 8 on the back of his uniform this season.  —  Culberson already had said he would relinquish the No. 16 to Brian McCann, who wore than number when he played …
Discussion: Talking Chop
Jeff Wilson / Fort Worth Star-Telegram:
Choo typically leads Rangers in OBP.  He wants to help lead them, period, in 2019  —  One of the best first halves to a season in Shin-Soo Choo's long career took him last year to a place he had never been, the American League All-Star team.  —  It was an overdue honor for a quality MLB player …
RELATED:
Jeff Wilson / Fort Worth Star-Telegram:   Kiner-Falefa caught 35 games last season. Here's how that number should soar in 2019
Associated Press:
Ryan Tepera, Kyle Barraclough lose salary arbitration cases  —  Relievers Ryan Tepera of the Toronto Blue Jays and Kyle Barraclough of the Washington Nationals lost their salary arbitration cases Friday.  —  Tepera was awarded a $1,525,000 salary Friday rather than his request for $1.8 million.
Discussion: Associated Press
RELATED:
Steve Adams / MLB Trade Rumors:
Ryan Tepera, Kyle Barraclough Lose Arbitration Cases
Discussion: Federal Baseball
Toronto Sun:
Mets-Nationals or Cubs-Cardinals set for London in 2020  —  ORLANDO, Fla. — Major League Baseball is considering one of two matchups for its 2020 series in London: New York Mets vs. Washington Nationals or Chicago Cubs vs. St. Louis Cardinals.  —  Two people familiar with the discussions told …
Discussion: Bleed Cubbie Blue
Darren Sabedra / Mercury News:
Why these Mater Dei transfers caught De La Salle's attention  —  'If you look at it, transferring in for a semester, that's transferring for one specific thing'  —  When the California Interscholastic Federation softened its athletic transfer policy two years ago, making it easier to move …
Discussion: Los Angeles Times and Daily Breeze
Phil Miller / The Charlotte Observer:
Bottom line: Twins didn't make any major offseason deals  —  The Twins were the most active team in baseball at last year's trade deadline, pulling off five swaps in the final days of July and another in early August.  And that was just a precursor, the team's front office hinted …
Kansas City Star:
Yordano Ventura's guaranteed contract still not paid two years after death; estate is broke  —  Two years after Royals pitcher Yordano Ventura died in a single-car crash in his native Dominican Republic, the $20.25 million remaining on his contract has not been paid.  —  And his estate is broke.
Jacob Bogage / Chicago Tribune:
Disability rights advocates praise MLB's decision to rename ‘disabled list’  —  The Washington Post  —  Heeding the words of disability rights advocates, Major League Baseball has renamed the roster designation for players recovering from injury.  Formerly known as the “disabled list,” …
Matthew Florjancic / WKYC-TV:
Indians SS Francisco Lindor out 7-9 weeks with calf strain  —  Cleveland Indians shortstop Francisco Lindor is expected to miss 7-9 weeks with a right calf strain.  —  CLEVELAND — Cleveland Indians shortstop Francisco Lindor will get a later start to the 2019 season than either him or the club wanted.
RELATED:
Tom Withers / MLB Baseball News, Scores …:
Indians All-Star SS Lindor out 2 months with calf strain
Discussion: MLB Trade Rumors
 
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 More News: 
Washington Post:
Facing opposition, Amazon reconsiders N.Y. headquarters site, two officials say
Discussion: FOX31 Denver, KFOR-TV and CBS Chicago
Reuters:
Indians sign OF Joyce to minor-league deal
Rick Hummel / St. Louis Post-Dispatch:
Big payday ahead for Wacha? Maybe, but it's not something he wants to talk about
Discussion: MLB Trade Rumors
Nick Piecoro / Arizona Republic:
All eyes on GM Mike Hazen as Arizona Diamondbacks spring training nears
Discussion: MLB Baseball News …
Jon Meoli / Baltimore Sun:
Orioles announce minor league coaching staffs, bringing a mix of familiar faces, new voices
Discussion: Camden Chat
 Earlier Picks: 
CBS Detroit:
Does Tigers Rebuild Mean No Expectation Of Contending?
Discussion: Bless You Boys
Steve Adams / MLB Trade Rumors:
Giants, Rene Rivera Agree To Minor League Deal
Associated Press:
AL East teams at the start of spring training
ESPN:
J.T. Realmuto deal continues stunningly sad Marlins tradition
 

 
From WeSmirch:

WWD:
Lee Radziwill Dies at 85

Lia Eustachewich / Page Six:
Two Nigerian brothers could be charged in Jussie Smollett attack

TMZ.com:
Jennifer Aniston, Courteney Cox Flight to Cabo Makes Emergency Landing

 
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