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8:25 PM ET, February 8, 2019

Ballbug

 Top News: 
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:
Associated Press:
No designated hitter or draft changes likely in MLB this season  —  ORLANDO, Fla. — Baseball commissioner Rob Manfred said management is focused on pace-of-game changes for 2019, and bolder ideas suggested by players such as expanding the designated hitter to the National League are too complicated to be put in place for this season.
Bob Nightengale / USA Today:
MLB owners: Adopting DH in NL not likely until at least 2022 season
Discussion: MLB Baseball News …
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
Jimmy Golen / Associated Press:
6 things to watch for as the Red Sox begin spring training workouts
Discussion: Over the Monster and The Athletic
ESPN:
Hal Steinbrenner says Yankees have made the right moves
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.
Discussion: Associated Press
RELATED:
Associated Press:
Phillies set to open spring still waiting on Bryce and Manny  —  PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Still chasing Bryce Harper and Manny Machado, the Philadelphia Phillies are headed to spring training with high hopes and a revamped lineup.  —  Expectations would increase if they finally land their superstar.
Alex Pavlovic / MLB Baseball News, Scores …:
Giants entered a Harper field lacking too many contenders
Discussion: ClutchPoints and South Side Sox
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  —  The Mets already had a glut of infielders, but they added another on Friday because with their history of injuries, you just never know.  —  They signed utility infielder Danny Espinosa to a minor league deal with an invite …
Steve Adams / MLB Trade Rumors:
Giants, Rene Rivera Agree To Minor League Deal
Discussion: KNBR-AM and McCovey Chronicles
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
Reuters:
Indians sign OF Joyce to minor-league deal  —  Outfielder Matt Joyce announced on Friday he has signed a minor-league deal with the Cleveland Indians.  —  Joyce, 34, spent the last two seasons with the Oakland Athletics.  He announced the agreement on Twitter and will receive an invite to spring training with the Indians.
RELATED:
Joe Noga / Plain Dealer:
Cleveland Indians sign free agent outfielder Matt Joyce to minor-league contract
Associated Press:
Cleveland Indians agree to minor league deals with Ryan Flaherty, Dioner Navarro
Discussion: MLB Baseball News …
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
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
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.
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.
Discussion: Royals Review and The Comeback
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 …
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 …
Ken Rosenthal / The Athletic:
The Marlins' trade strategy on Realmuto; baseball's staring contest; Moose and Milwaukee?; more notes  —  The Marlins do not deny it.  Their early “asks” for All-Star catcher J.T. Realmuto were high.  —  From the Dodgers, Miami wanted first baseman/outfielder Cody Bellinger.
 
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 More News: 
New York Post:
Baseball owners back MLB bid to buy Fox's regional sports networks
Discussion: baseballmusings.com
Rick Hummel / St. Louis Post-Dispatch:
Big payday ahead for Wacha? Maybe, but it's not something he wants to talk about
Jon Meoli / Baltimore Sun:
Orioles announce minor league coaching staffs, bringing a mix of familiar faces, new voices
Discussion: Camden Chat
CBS Detroit:
Does Tigers Rebuild Mean No Expectation Of Contending?
Discussion: Bless You Boys
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?
Jeff Wilson / Fort Worth Star-Telegram:
Kiner-Falefa caught 35 games last season. Here's how that number should soar in 2019
 Earlier Picks: 
Paul Sullivan / Chicago Tribune:
2019 will be an important year for both Joe Maddon and Rick Renteria, Chicago's yin and yang of managers
ESPN:
J.T. Realmuto deal continues stunningly sad Marlins tradition
Discussion: FanGraphs Baseball
John Fay / Cincinnati.com:
Cincinnati Reds question: Can veterans Hughes and Hernandez be as good in '19 as they were in '18?
Discussion: MLB Baseball News …
Cincinnati.com:
Cincinnati Reds question: What to do with top prospect Nick Senzel?
ESPN:
Rangers sign outfielder Hunter Pence to minor league deal
Jon Becker / Orange County Register:
Frank Robinson, Baseball Hall of Famer, dies at 83
 

 
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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