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Angels Say Josh Hamilton Facing Discipline from MLB

Angels Say Josh Hamilton Facing Discipline from MLB

Ronald Martinez/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Los Angeles Angels outfielder Josh Hamilton was scheduled to meet with MLB officials on Wednesday in regards to a disciplinary issue.

Hamilton is expected to be out until May due to a recent shoulder surgery and he has not participated in the team's spring training in Arizona.  He's also been advised to stay at a friend's house in Houston while rehabbing from the surgery.

Hamilton was suspended from February 2004 to June 2006 due to issues related with cocaine and alcohol addiction.  He also had alcohol relapses in 2009 and 2012, but bounced back, leading the Rangers to back-to-back World Series appearances -- and he won the AL MVP award in 2010.

Hamilton signed a five-year deal with the Angels prior to the 2013 season.

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Orioles Sign Infielder Everth Cabrera

Orioles Sign Infielder Everth Cabrera

Rich Pilling/Getty Images(BALTIMORE) -- The Baltimore Orioles have signed free agent infielder Everth Cabrera to a one-year $2.4 million contract.

Last season the 28-year-old batted .232 in 357 at bats and struck out 86 times across 90 games. Cabrera also hit 13 doubles and stole 18 bases.

Cabrera has spent the last six seasons with the San Diego Padres, before the team non-tendered him. His best seasons came during the 2012-2013 stretch when he batted .264 while hitting 34 doubles and stealing 81 bases.

Cabrera has been dealing with trouble off the diamond. In 2013 he was suspended 50 games for a positive PED test and is potentially facing jail time for resisting arrest.

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Red Sox Sign Cuban Prospect Yoan Mancada

Red Sox Sign Cuban Prospect Yoan Mancada

Joe Robbins/Getty Images(BOSTON, Ma.) -- The Boston Red Sox have signed 19-year-old Cuban infielder Yoan Moncada, according to his representative.

The Red Sox will pay the switch-hitting Moncada a signing bonus of $31.5 million dollars, once he passes a pair of physicals. The team will also have to pay Major League Baseball an additional $31.5 million as a tax for surpassing the international bonus money allotment.

Last season, Boston signed Cuban outfielder Rusney Castillo to a six-year, $72.5 million dollar contract.

Moncada is expected to begin his career in the minor leagues with the Portland Seadogs, Boston's Double A affiliate. 

Additionally, the Red Sox have signed Moncada's close friend, 26-year-old Carlos Mesa, according to Moncada's agent, David Hastings.

"He would have gone with Yoan even if the Red Sox had not signed him," Hastings said Monday night. "Carlos will help Yoan with his transition. He speaks English as well as Spanish."

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Red Sox Extend Manager John Farrell

Red Sox Extend Manager John Farrell

Mike McGinnis/Getty Images

(FORT MYERS, Fla.) -- The Boston Red Sox have extended the contract of manager John Farrell through the 2017 season, the team announced Saturday at the beginning of its spring training camp.

"I'm ecstatic to have the extension," Farrell said. "This is a very special place and to be able to be here for a number of years that are in place, we don't take for granted one moment what the expectations are and how we have to deliver on those expectations."

Coming off a 71-91 season the team also announced that it will also extend general manager Ben Cherington past the 2015 season. The exact duration is unknown.

Farrell also addressed several concerns about position players leading into the season; notably Shane Victorino and new third basemen Pablo Sandoval.

"If Shane Victorino is fully capable and fully healthy, he is our right fielder," Farrell explained. "He was one of the best right fielders in the game two years ago. When you come back from injury, you shouldn't have lost your job because of an injury."

After pictures surfaced showing Sandoval with a large protruding gut, some questioned the fitness of the former San Francisco Giant.

"His body type hasn't changed since signing with us," Farrell said. "He's a guy that converted from a catcher to third base position. He's transitioned successfully at it a number of years ago. His body works for him."

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The Mets Won’t Push Back Matt Harvey’s Season Debut

The Mets Won’t Push Back Matt Harvey’s Season Debut

Norm Hall/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Back in December, Mets manager Terry Collins said ace starting pitcher Matt Harvey might not make his debut until the team's home opener on April 13th, but it looks as if plans may change.

According to ESPN New York's Adam Rubin, Collins said that the current plan for Harvey is to start one of the team's first five games.  Harvey was expected to be on an innings limit this season after undergoing Tommy John Surgery last year, however, Collins says they are more inclined to give him five-inning starts instead of skipping his turn in the rotation.

Harvey will look to regain 2013 form in 2015, where he went 9-5 with a 2.27 ERA, striking out 191 batters in 178.1 innings pitched.

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Dodgers Closer Kenley Jansen Out 8-12 Weeks

Dodgers Closer Kenley Jansen Out 8-12 Weeks

Scott Boehm/Getty Images(LOS ANGELES) -- Dodgers closer Kenley Jansen underwent surgery on his left foot and is expected to be out indefinitely, according to the team.

Jansen reported discomfort after running last week, and tests showed there was a growth on a bone in his foot.  Jansen will be on crutches for the next 10 days and in a protective walking boot for another 3-4 weeks.  The entire healing process is expected to take between eight to 12 weeks.

The Dodgers' closer is expected to miss the entire first month of the 2015 regular season.

Last year Jansen had a 2.76 ERA, 1.13 WHIP, and a 101/19 K/BB ratio over 65 1/3 innings.  Jansen also converted 44 saves in 49 opportunities.

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Report: Mariners Sign Rickie Weeks

Report: Mariners Sign Rickie Weeks

Mike McGinnis/Getty Images(SEATTLE, Wa.) -- The Seattle Mariners are adding depth to their infield. The team will sign Rickie Weeks to a one-year, $2 million deal, according to Jim Bowden of ESPN. 

The 32-year-old Weeks spent his entire ten year career with the Milwaukee Brewers. He signed a four year extension with the team in 2011, but the team declined an $11.5 million option after his production at the plate slipped in the past few years.

Weeks will likely spell Robinson Cano on days of rest. Cano signed a 10-year, $240 million deal last season with the Mariners. In his first season with the Mariners, Cano batted .314, smacked 14 home runs and drove in 82 RBI.

In 2011, Weeks was named to his only All-Star game where he batted .269, hit 20 home runs and drove in 49 RBI.

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Todd Frazier Agrees To Two Year Deal With Reds

Todd Frazier Agrees To Two Year Deal With Reds

Brian D. Kersey/Getty Images(CINCINATTI, Oh) -- Third baseman Todd Frazier will man the hot corner for the Cincinnati Reds for another pair of seasons.

The Reds and the 28-year-old Frazier avoided arbitration by agreeing to a two-year, $12 million contract, according to Jon Heyman of CBSsports.com. 

Last season Frazier batted .273, with 29 home runs and 80 RBI for the Reds who finished fourth in the NL Central at 76-86. Frazier was named to his first All-Star game last season.

Aroldis Chapman is the only player left with pending arbitration for the Reds.

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Angels’ Hamilton to Have Shoulder Surgery

Angels’ Hamilton to Have Shoulder Surgery

Ronald Martinez/Getty Images(LOS ANGELES, Ca.) -- Angels outfielder Josh Hamilton is expected to miss the next six to eight weeks as he recovers from shoulder surgery.

Hamilton, 33, will undergo a procedure to repair an AC joint in his right shoulder, the team announced Tuesday.

The former All-Star appeared in just 89 games last season as he struggled through shoulder and other injuries.

Since joining the Angels in 2013 after reviving his career with the Texas Rangers, Hamilton has battled injuries and other inconsistencies. The 2010 Home Run Derby Champion has managed just 31 long balls in L.A. while batting no higher than .263 and striking out 266 times over two seasons.

Hamilton signed a 5-year, $125 million contract with the Angels in 2013.

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Red Sox, Rangers Complete Pitching Swap

Red Sox, Rangers Complete Pitching Swap

Major League Baseball(NEW YORK) -- The Boston Red Sox and Texas Rangers have swapped pitchers struggling to find their role.

Rangers vice president of communications John Blake announced via Twitter Tuesday that Boston has sent right-hander Anthony Ranaudo to Texas in exchange for left-hander Robbie Ross, Jr.

Ranaudo, 25, displayed fantastic play in Triple A, compiling a 14-4 record in 2014 with a 2.61 ERA and 111 strikeouts over 138 innings pitched. He made his Major League debut last season, but struggled to find the same groove as his ERA ballooned to 4.81 in 39.1 innings of work.

Ross, 25, struggled last season after a transition from the bullpen to the starting rotation. Posting a 6.20 ERA in 78.1 innings, Ross failed to find a role in the Rangers injury-riddled rotation.  He will likely resume his role as a left-handed reliever with Boston, a role he excelled in during the 2012 and 2013 seasons. In his career, he has a 53.8 percent ground ball rate.

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Marlins Sign Ichiro

Marlins Sign Ichiro

Rich Schulz/Getty Images

(MIAMI, Fl.) -- Ichiro Suzuki will give it another go in Major League Baseball.

The Miami Marlins have signed Ichiro to a one-year deal.  The deal is for $2 million, according to Jon Heyman of CBS Sports.

Ichiro, 41, has played 14 seasons in Major League Baseball with the Seattle Mariners and New York Yankees. He needs 156 hits to reach the milestone of 3,000 for his career.

The Marlins outfield is set with Giancarlo Stanton, Christian Yelich and Marcell Ozuna. Ichiro will likely be utilized in a platoon and defensive replacement role. 

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Astros Sign Colby Rasmus

Astros Sign Colby Rasmus

Major League Baseball(HOUSTON, Tx.) -- The Houston Astros have added outfielder Colby Rasums into the mix to add a bit of power to their lineup.

The Astros signed Rasmus to a one-year, $8 million deal, Tuesday.

Rasmus, 28, is a talented, yet inconsistent batter.  Last season with the Blue Jays, Rasmus batted .225 with 18 home runs in 376 plate appearances. He also missed 58 games due to a hamstring injury.

After the Astros traded Dexter Fowler to the Chicago Cubs on Monday, the Astros needed an outfielder and Rasmus seemed like a natural fit. Right-handed batter Jake Marisnick will likely platoon with Rasmus once the season gets under way.

On January 14, the Astros also acquired catcher/outfield Evan Gattis from the Atlanta Braves.

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Report: MLB Proposes Shorter Inning Breaks

Report: MLB Proposes Shorter Inning Breaks

BananaStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Major League Baseball is seeking to shorten the length of games.

The MLB has submitted a proposal that would require pitchers to, "finish their warm-up pitches and be ready to make their first pitch of an inning 30 seconds before the end of all between-inning commercial breaks," according to ESPN's Jayson Stark. Hitters would also be required to be ready sooner as well.

Complaints have increased over the past decade over the length of games, as game times have consistently been over three hours. In the same period of time, ratings have seen a consistent decline.

"The average time of a Major League Baseball game this year was 12 minutes longer than just four years ago," Stark said. "So they are looking for ways to pick up the pace."

Before any changes will be made, Major League Baseball and the Major League Baseball Player's Association will explore other measures to speed up games. Pitch clocks will be installed at Double-A and Triple-A parks as a trial study, but will not be used in Major League parks. 

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Report: Rangers Acquire Gallardo from Brewers

Report: Rangers Acquire Gallardo from Brewers

Jason Wise/MLB Photos via Getty Images(ARLINGTON, Tx.) -- The Texas Rangers are taking steps to correct their starting rotation this season.

The Rangers acquired Yovani Gallardo from the Milwaukee Brewers in exchange for three prospects, according to Jeff Passan of Yahoo! Sports. 

The Brewers acquired second baseman Luis Sardinas, relief pitcher Corey Knebel, and Marcos Diplan, an 18-year-old prospect.  In addition, the Brewers cleared $13 million off their payroll by shipping off Gallardo.

Earlier this offseason, the Rangers acquired Ross Detwiler from the Washington Nationals for two minor leaguers. 

Gallardo, 28, has an 89-64 career record over eight seasons, with a 3.69 ERA.

The Rangers will team Gallardo with top pitchers Yu Darvish and Derek Holland as Texas tries to rebound from an injury-riddled season that saw the team finish last in the AL West, at 67-95. 

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Report: Nationals Sign Max Scherzer to Seven-Year Deal

Report: Nationals Sign Max Scherzer to Seven-Year Deal

Ezra Shaw/Getty Images(WASHINGTON, D.C.) -- The Washington Nationals are adding one of baseball's top pitchers to an already solid rotation.

Max Scherzer has agreed to a seven-year deal with Washington, according to Jon Heyman of CBSsports.com.  The deal is for $180 million according to Ken Rosenthal of FoxSports.com.

He will likely take the ace role in the Nationals rotation that includes Stephen Strasburg, Jordan Zimmerman, Doug Fister, Gio Gonzalez and Tanner Roark.

Last season, Scherzer, 30, was 18-5, with a 3.15 ERA while pitching career highs in 220.1 innings and striking out 252 batters. 

Scherzer and Jon Lester were viewed as the top starting pitchers available this offseason. Lester signed with the Cubs for six-years, $155 million. 

 

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Red Sox Avoid Arbitration with Porcello

Red Sox Avoid Arbitration with Porcello

Rob Carr/Getty Images(BOSTON, Ma.) -- The Boston Red Sox and Rick Porcello avoided arbitration with a one-year $12.5 million contract. 

Porcello,26 was acquired by the Red Sox in December in exchange for outfielder Yoenis Cespedes.  The Red Sox acquired Cespedes last season in a trade that saw Boston send ace pitcher Jon Lester to the Oakland A's.

Last season with the Tigers, Porcello went 15-13 with a 3.43 ERA over 204.2 innings, allowing 18 home runs while striking out 129 batters. Porcello also led the American League with 

The Red Sox also re-signed reliever Junichi Tazawa to a one-year $2.25 million deal.

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Tigers, Price, Agree to One-Year, $19.75 Million

Tigers, Price, Agree to One-Year, $19.75 Million

iStock/Thinkstock(DETROIT, Mi) -- The Detroit Tigers and starting pitcher David Price avoid arbitration with a record breaking contract.

Price, 29, and the Tigers set a new high for a player in their arbitration year with a one-year $19.75 million contract, according to Jon Heyman of CBSsports.com

The Tigers acquired Price from the Tampa Bay Rays last season as part of a three team trade that included the Seattle Mariners. The Tigers sent center fielder Austin Jackson to Seattle, who sent infielder Nick Franklin to Tampa Bay and in return Detroit obtained Price. 

The four-time All Star and the 2012 Cy Young Award winner posted a 15-12 record with a 3.26 ERA.  Price also hit career highs with 248.1 innings pitched, 25 home runs allowed and 271 strike outs in 2014 with the Rays and Tigers.

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Yankees Re-Sign Stephen Drew

Yankees Re-Sign Stephen Drew

NY Yankees/MLB(NEW YORK) -- The New York Yankees are bringing Stephen Drew back in a one-year deal.

Drew will earn $5 million this season, according to David Lennon of Newsday, and can earn $1.5 million in incentives, according to Fox Sports' Ken Rosenthal -- making the potential total value of the deal $6.5 million.

Last season, Drew sat out the first month and a half, hoping to earn a multi-year contract. He signed with the Red Sox in May for $10.2 million and was traded to the Yankees at the July deadline.

Viewed more for his defense (.986% fielding in 2014), Drew batted .162 with a .237 OBP in 89 games last season. 

A natural shortstop, Drew will return to second base after the Yankees acquired Didi Gregorious from the Arizona Diamondbacks last month. 

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Rays Sign Shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera

Rays Sign Shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera

Rich Pilling/Getty Images(TAMPA BAY, Fl.) -- The Tampa Bay Rays have signed Asdrubal Cabrera to a one-year deal.

Cabrera, 29, signed for around $8 million, according to Joel Sherman of the New York Post.

Last season Cabrera was traded to the Washington Nationals from the Cleveland Indians, with whom he has spent the previous seven seasons.

Cabrera has struggled at the plate in recent years. Last season with both the Nationals and Indians, he hit .241, had an OBP of .307 and 108 strikeouts.

This has been the latest move for a Rays franchise undergoing a major overhaul.  After manager Joe Maddon and general manager Andrew Friedman left the franchise, the team has traded away Wil Myers, Jeremy Hellickson, Matt Joyce, Joel Peralta and Sean Rodriguez.

Cabrera joins Ernesto Frieri and Michael Kohn as additions to the big league roster.

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Hiroki Kuroda To Return To Japan

Hiroki Kuroda To Return To Japan

Elsa/Getty Images

(NEW YORK) -- Hiroki Kuroda has decided to sign with the Hiroshima Toyo Carp of Japan's Nippon Professional Baseball League.

Kuroda, 39, spent seven seasons in Major League Baseball, the last three with the New York Yankees.

After spending most of his career in the NBP, Kuroda came over to the United States at age 33 to join the Los Angeles Dodgers.  He owns a 3.45 career ERA with 6.7 K/9 in seven seasons of Major League Baseball.

The loss leaves the Yankees with more questions in their rotation as Kuroda was one of their most dependable pitchers last season.  C.C Sabathia, Masahiro Tanaka and Ivan Nova are returning from injury while Michael Pineda and newly acquired Nathan Eovaldi will seek to prove their consistency.

Last season Kuroda finished 11-9 with a 3.71 ERA and a 4.17 SO/BB ratio over 199 innings.  

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