Published on 27 December 2012
48 – Number of days until pitchers and catchers report
94 – Number of days until Opening Day
20 – Number of days until Opening Day of the California Winter League
As I post today's blog from Peoria, IL, and look outside at snow on the ground with the temperature in the low 30s, I find myself reminiscing about the Arizona Fall League and the First Pitch Arizona 2012 Fantasy Baseball Symposium (a.k.a Fantasy Baseball Camp on Buehler's Day Off) that I attended in November. Three full days packed with seminars, scouting, and watching baseball! I have shared my experiences from Arizona with friends & family since I arrived in Peoria. It comes as no surprise to this baseball purist that the interest level from others to join me next year in Arizona is reaching all time highs! To be around other baseball purists that have the same passion and competitiveness for fantasy baseball is an opportunity that few can pass up! Just 48 more days......
- The Pittsburgh Pirates finalized a six-player trade which sent Joel Hanrahan to the Boston Red Sox. In exchange for Hanrahan and infielder Brock Holt, the Pirates got outfielder/first baseman Jerry Sands, infielder Ivan DeJesus Jr., and right-handers Stolmy Pimentel and Mark Melancon. The Red Sox already announced that Hanrahan will be the team's closer reported by Pete Abraham of The Boston Globe. In other words, the Red Sox will not have a closer controversy going into spring training. Andrew Bailey was acquired last offseason to be the ninth-inning man, but he'll now be pushed into a set-up role alongside the recently-signed Koji Uehara. As for the Pirates, signing Francisco Liriano to that ridiculous two-year contract sealed Hanrahan's fate in Pittsburgh. Pirates general manager Neal Huntington is going to regret both these decisions come Opening Day, if not sooner.
- The New York Yankees and Matt Diaz agreed to a minor league contract on Wednesday, Mark Feinsand of the New York Daily News reports. Diaz received an invite to spring training and will get the opportunity to compete for a job.
- The Texas Rangers designated Luis Martinez for assignment. The Rangers needed to clear room on the 40-man roster for the newly-signed A.J. Pierzynski, so they removed Martinez who figured to compete for a backup catcher role.
- The Pittsburgh Pirates designated Chad Beck for assignment. Beck was one of the causalities from the six-player deal with the Boston Red Sox. Beck was claimed off waivers from the Blue Jays in late October, but the Pirates decided to remove him from their 40-man roster after acquiring Mark Melancon and Jerry Sands from the Red Sox on Wednesday. Beck struggled in the majors last season, but he posted a 1.31 ERA in 43 appearances in the hitter-friendly Pacific Coast League, so don't be surprised to see another team snap him up on waivers.
- The Seattle Mariners designated D.J. Mitchell for assignment. Mitchell was acquired from the New York Yankees in the trade that sent Ichiro Suzuki to Bronx last season. He threw the ball well for Triple-A Tacoma after being dealt, posting a 2.96 ERA over eight starts. Don't be surprised to see Mitchell claimed off waivers.
- The Tampa Bay Rays announced that Wil Myers won't be rushed to the majors. This is not surprising as the Rays typically delay the arbitration eligible/free agent clock on on their young players. Myers will most likely begin the season at Triple-A Durham. It won't be long after the season begins that Myers joins the Rays.
THIS DATE IN BASEBALL HISTORY: 1941- On this day in baseball history, the Braves mascot Chief Nokahoma was born.