MLB In Full Bloom 12/6/12

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69 – Number of days until pitchers and catchers report

115 – Number of days until Opening Day

41    – Number of days until Opening Day of the California Winter League

 

The Winter Meetings are coming to a close today and unfortunately we continue to play the waiting game on a blockbuster trade. Reports are that Arizona, Cleveland, Texas, and maybe Tampa Bay continue to work towards that blockbuster deal. It appears that until it happens, Zack Greinke, Josh Hamilton, and other big names sit in a holding pattern. So, lets take a look at what we do know....

  • The Los Angeles Angles and Joe Blanton agreed on a 2-year deal. This signing helps shore up the back end of the Angels' rotation, but it pretty much takes the team out of the running for more high-profile starters, like Zack Greinke. Blanton, who turns 32 on Tuesday, went 10-13 with a 4.71 ERA in 31 starts - 21 for the Philadelphia Phillies.
  • The Angels also agreed with left hander reliever Sean Burnett on a 2-year deal for $8 million. Burnett. Angels continue to strengthen a bullpen that is going to get a lot of work in 2013.
  • The St. Louis Cardinals agreed to terms with reliever Randy Choate on a 3-year deal. The Dodgers wanted to keep Choate, but a three year deal? Good luck with that, I guess.
  • The Chicago Cubs and Nate Schierholtz agreed on a 1-year deal. Schierholtz is a career .270 hitter, and will play right field. David DeJesus will move to centerfield, which means one of the Cubs top prospects, Brett Jackson will begin the season at Triple-A. As a Cubs fan, I deserve one addition this offseason that excites me.
  • The Chicago White Sox agreed to a 3-year deal with Jeff Keppinger worth a reported $12 million. The significance with this signing is that the Yankees really wanted Keppinger and they did not get him. KEPPINGER! What is going on in New York when the White Sox would outbid the Yankees for JEFF KEPPINGER? Regardless, he should enter camp as the White Sox's starter at third base, while the team waits for top prospect Carlos Sanchez. Pursuit of re-signing Kevin Youkilis is over.
  • The Baltimore Orioles and Nate McLouth agreed to a 1-year deal.
  • The Arizona Diamondbacks and Eric Chavez agreed to a 1-year deal. D’Backs are in desperate need of some help at third base. At this point in his career, Chavez is nothing more than a utility player and he brings very little to the table although in 278 AB last year, he did hit 16 HR, so there is a bit of pop in his bat.
  • The Colorado Rockies and Jeff Francis agreed to a 1-year deal. This is all that you need to know about how the Rockies 2013 campaign will follow up a disgusting 2012. In his 24 starts for Colorado last year, Francis went 6-7 with a 5.58 ERA and a 1.478 WHIP. Regardless, he'll be given a chance to compete for a starting spot in spring training.
  • The San Diego Padres announced that Andrew Cashner will need surgery after recently stabbing his thumb in a hunting accident, and will likely start next season on the DL. This guy is NORVED. He is always injured and while I wish no ill will on anyone, thank you Theo Epstein for trading Cashner for Anthony Rizzo!
  • Brian Wilson (elbow) has been told by Dr. James Andrews that he will be cleared for spring training and ready by Opening Day. He is coming off his second Tommy John surgery.
  • Jason Bay and the Seattle Mariners agreed on a 1-year deal. Bay tried very hard to get as far away from New York this offseason and he certainly accomplished his goal. Bay is hoping to resurrect his career with the Mariners after three disappointing and injury-plagued seasons with the Mets. Bay hit .165 with eight home runs and 20 RBIs last season. $21 million left  - spread out.