|Report: Jay-Z holds meeting with Mets regarding Robinson Cano||11.19.13 at 9:30 am ET|
Robinson Cano likely will be back in New York for the 2014 MLB season, but there’s a chance that the five-time All Star may not be wearing pinstripes.
Two sources told the New York Post that rapper/agent Jay-Z and other members of Cano’s agency team held a “secret meeting” with the Mets on Monday night at a high-scale Manhattan hotel.
Mets COO Jeff Wilpon, general manager Sandy Alderson and assistant GM John Ricco were in attendance for the meeting, which reportedly was initiated by Jay-Z and agents Brodie Van Wagenen and Juan Perez. Cano was not present for the meeting.
Cano, the top prize of the 2014 free agent class, has made it clear that if he cannot get a sizable payday from the Yankees, for whom he has played since 2005, he will look elsewhere. The Yankees and Cano are said to be almost $150 million apart on a new deal, as Cano is seeking a 10-year, $310 million contract while the Yankees responded with an offer of seven years and between $161 million and $168 million.
Jay-Z has made it known that his client is taking marketing as a serious factor in his contract negotiations, making a return to New York, whether it be the Yankees or Mets, seem very likely given the seemingly endless amount of marketing opportunities that New York has to offer.
A potential move to Queens still seems unlikely for Cano, as Alderson stated last week that he couldn’t see the Mets signing a player to a nine-figure deal this offseason. The Mets also already have a solid option at second base in Daniel Murphy, further complicating the situation.
|Rays OF Wil Myers, Marlins P Jose Fernandez win MLB Rookie of the Year awards||11.12.13 at 11:01 am ET|
The two MLB franchises in Florida now have the bragging rights of having the two best rookies in the league this season, as Rays outfielder Wil Myers was named the AL Rookie of the Year while Marlins pitcher Jose Fernandez nabbed NL Rookie of the Year honors.
Traded from the Royals to Tampa Bay in a Dec. 9 deal that sent James Shields and Wade Davis to Kansas City, Myers spent almost half of the 2013 season in the minor leagues before being called up on June 17. Despite playing in only 88 games this year, Myers hit .293 with 13 home runs and 53 RBIs.
“Honestly, when I was called up that didn’t even cross my mind. As the season went on I could see I would have a chance,” Myers said. “To be able to win is just a huge honor and I’m very excited about it.”
The 22-year-old outfielder received 23 out of 30 first-place votes, besting Tigers (and former Red Sox) shortstop Jose Iglesias and Tampa pitcher Chris Archer.
Myers had an immediate impact with Tampa Bay this year, as the Rays posted a sluggish 36-33 record before Myers’ arrival but then went 56-38 after his call-up. The Rays now have won the AL Rookie of the Year award three out of the last six years (Jeremy Hellickson in 2011 and Evan Longoria in ’08).
Drafted 14th overall in the 2011 MLB draft, Fernandez was thrust into the Marlins starting rotation at the end of spring training despite having not pitched above the Single-A level in his brief baseball career. Just 20 years old at the start of the season, Fernandez was the youngest starting pitcher on a MLB roster this season.
However, Fernandez did not look like a 20-year-old rookie at all this year, as the Cuban went 12-6 with a 2.19 ERA and 187 strikeouts in 172 2/3 innings. Fernandez, a finalist for the 2013 Cy Young Award, finished ahead of Dodgers outfielder Yasiel Puig.
AL and NL Manager of the Year will be announced Tuesday, the Cy Young Awards on Wednesday and the MVPs on Thursday.
|MLB takes Alex Rodriguez’s lawsuit to federal court||10.08.13 at 1:16 pm ET|
The drama surrounding Alex Rodriguez‘s lawsuit against Major League Baseball has taken yet another turn, as the case is being moved from state to federal court.
MLB filed a notice of removal on Monday, stating that Rodriguez’s claims that MLB commissioner Bud Selig has been trying to tarnish the three-time MVP’s career and force him out of baseball is a declaration that should be dealt with in federal court.
Rodriguez and his legal team have the opportunity to file a motion requesting that the case be pushed back to the state level. In response to MLB’s motion, Joseph Tacopina, one of Rodriguez’s lawyers, said that the league “knows that these state law claims properly belong where they were filed, in the New York state court.”
This soap opera between A-Rod and MLB started last Thursday, when Rodriguez and the Major League Baseball Players Association filed a grievance against the league in response to MLB’s Aug. 5 decision to suspend Rodriguez for 211 games for allegedly violating the league’s drug policy.
The grievance is currently being heard by arbitrator Fredric Horowitz. A decision is unlikely to made made until later this winter.
Rodriguez’s lawsuit claims that MLB and Selig went after the Yankees slugger in order to improve their image, which was damaged over the years due to their supposed inaction regarding performance-enhancing drugs in baseball.
Rodriguez made news on Friday, as he filed a lawsuit against a Yankees team doctor and a New York hospital after claiming that they mishandled his hip injury during the 2012 playoffs. Rodriguez only hit .120 during those playoffs before undergoing left hip surgery in January.
|Angels ace Jered Weaver to miss 4-6 weeks with broken arm||04.10.13 at 9:06 am ET|
The Angels will be missing their ace, Jered Weaver, for at least a month after Weaver broke a bone in his left elbow.
On Sunday against the Rangers, Weaver jammed his left (non-throwing) arm while dodging a line drive back to the mound. He left the game early, and while the team originally thought he had only strained his elbow, an MRI on Monday revealed a fracture expected to keep him out four to six weeks.
“This is all new to me,” Weaver said. “I’ve never broken anything before, and didn’t really know how to take the news. It kind of was a shock at first, and now you’ve just got to play the waiting game, I guess.”
Weaver has been the anchor of the Angels’ rotation for years, starting at least 28 games in each of the last six seasons. He finished second in the AL Cy Young voting in 2011 and third in 2012. However, injuries plagued him last season, with lower-back pain and tendinitis in his shoulder causing him to miss several starts.
“It’s extremely difficult to lose your ace, and Jered has been that for a long time here,” Angels general manager Jerry Dipoto said. “He’s a pivotal player for us. I feel like in some way the silver lining is it was his left arm, and there’s more of a short-term definition to the injury than long-term. It’s not as if we just found out he was out for the year or something along those lines. It’s his left arm, and that’s the positive here.”
|MLB examining ways to expand instant replay||03.06.13 at 10:45 am ET|
Major League Baseball is examining ways to expand its use of instant replay by the 2014 season, and MLB executive vice president Joe Torre said Tuesday that league officials will visit Miami during the World Baseball Classic and spring training games to try out different methods and camera angles.
“We’re going to increase replay next year. We just don’t know how we’re going to go about it yet,” Torre said before managing the U.S. team for the World Baseball Classic in an exhibition against the White Sox. “I know we’re using a number of venues to see what make sense, and it’s really making sense with the rhythm of the game as a priority.”
Commissioner Bud Selig has discussed adding video reviews for trapped balls and fair/foul calls. Now, the league is also evaluating whether or not to review close plays on the basepaths and other controversial calls. However, Torre said reviewing balls and strikes isn’t on the table.
“I think balls and strikes, you have to have something to yell about,” Torre said. “I don’t want to take the yelling out of the thing. That’s part of the color.”
League officials also are examining the ways the new system could be implemented, including the possibility of managers challenging calls they disagree with.
“I don’t think it would be a pure challenge system,” Torre said. “We’ve stayed away from that being part of the game. The manager already makes so many decisions, and to drop another rock or two in his pocket, I think it’s a little bit much.”
|Felix Hernandez reportedly negotiating new long-term deal with Mariners||02.08.13 at 8:45 am ET|
Felix Hernandez and the Mariners are working on a deal that would make Hernandez the highest-paid pitcher in baseball, according to reports. The deal has not been completed, but the expectation is that it would be for $175 million over seven years.
Hernandez’s $25 million per year average would tie him for the second-highest yearly pay in baseball with Josh Hamilton and Ryan Howard, behind Alex Rodriguez‘s $27.5 million. It would surpass CC Sabathia‘s original seven-year, $161 million deal with the Yankees.
The 26-year-old Hernandez signed a $78 million, five year-contract in January 2010. He is still under that contract for the next two years and was set to earn $20 million this year and $20.5 million in 2014. The new contract would supersede that.
Hernandez, the 2010 AL Cy Young winner, has a 3.22 ERA in eight seasons playing for a struggling Mariners team.
|Carl Pavano ruptures spleen while shoveling snow||01.25.13 at 2:06 pm ET|
Just as he appeared close to signing with the Rockies, Carl Pavano hurt both himself and his chances to find a new team this offseason when he slipped in his driveway and ruptured his spleen.
Pavano was shoveling snow outside his home in Vermont when he fell and injured himself, according to Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports. He’s expected to be sidelined for 6-8 weeks.
The Mets also has been reported to be interested in Pavano, but the Rockies were his main suitors at the time of the fall. Pavano did not pitch after June 1 last season due to soreness in his shoulder caused by a bone bruise in his humerus. In 2010 and 2011, he posted ERAs of 3.75 and 4.30 with the Twins.
|Ex-Marlins manager Ozzie Guillen tweets congratulations to successor Mike Redmond||11.02.12 at 11:35 am ET|
One week after firing Ozzie Guillen, the Marlins named former major league catcher Mike Redmond as their new manager Thursday.
Redmond, who managed Class-A teams in the Blue Jays’ system, signed a three-year contract and becomes the Marlins’ fifth manager since 2010.
Interestingly, 13 of the 28 current major league managers (two spots are still open) have catching experience in the majors or minors. Former Sox catcher Jason Varitek’s name was floated as a possible coaching choice in Boston.
Redmond was .287 hitter in 13 seasons, including seven years for the Marlins, and was a part of World Series team in 2003.
Former manager Guillen tweeted his well-wishes for Redmond
congrats mike redmond for u new job good luck buddy u have great guys going to play for you
Marlins left fielder Logan Morrison tweeted that he spoke with his new skipper by phone.
Just talked to our new manager on the phone. Sounds like a great guy.
The Marlins scheduled a press conference Friday to formally introduce Redmond.
|Yankees pitcher CC Sabathia has elbow surgery, expected to be ready for next season||10.26.12 at 1:19 pm ET|
Yankees ace CC Sabathia had arthroscopic surgery on his left elbow on Thursday.
The Yankees expect Sabathia to fully recover before the start of next season.
“They found a small bone spur,” Yankees general manager Brian Cashman said. “It was a quick and minor cleanup. We’ll take him along slowly through spring training and he’ll be ready for Opening Day.”
Cashman had said the team would assess Sabathia’s elbow in the offseason, particularly after his poor performance in Game 4 of the ALCS against the Tigers.
Sabathia was on the disabled list from Aug. 8-24 when the same elbow was inflamed.
|Yankees manager Joe Girardi asks for more instant replay after Game 2 blown call||10.15.12 at 12:31 pm ET|
While much of America was watching football, a blown call in the eighth inning of the ALCS game at Yankee Stadium aided the Tigers in a 3-0 victory that gave them a 2-0 series lead.
With two outs and Omar Infante at first base, Austin Jackson singled to right field. Nick Swisher fielded it and threw it to Robinson Cano at second. The Yankees second baseman tagged out Infante, who had overrun the bag and was attempting to dive back, but umpire Jeff Nelson called Infante safe.
On the following play, Infante scored on a bloop single to right field. As Yankees manager Joe Girardi came out to make a pitching change, he again argued with Nelson, who then ejected him from the game. A second run scored later in the inning, leaving the offensively challenged Yankees in a 3-0 hole they could not overcome.
After the game, Nelson admitted he blew the call.
“I had the tag late and the hand going into the bag before the tag on the chest,” Nelson said. “The hand did not get in before the tag. The call was incorrect.”
After the game, Girardi didn’t blame Nelson, but questioned MLB for not instituting more instant replay so umpires can take a second look at controversial plays.
“It’s frustrating. I don’t have a problem with Jeff’s effort. I don’t, because he hustled to get to the point. But in this day and age, when we have instant replay available to us, it’s got to change,” Girardi said. “These guys are under a tremendous amount of pressure. It’s a tough call for him because the tag is underneath and it’s hard for him to see. It takes more time for me to argue and get upset than [if] you get the call right. There’s just too much at stake. I mean, we played 235 days to get to this point.”
To see the video of the play, click here.
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