MLB In Full Bloom 1/14/2014

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31 – Number of days until pitchers and catchers report

78 – Number of days until Opening Day

As we continue to wait to see where Masahiro Tanaka decides to sign this offseason, movement with other free agents remains at a snail's pace with some position players signing. The free agent pitcher's that remain are on the market remain in a holding pattern as they wait to see Tanaka signs for before they will sign. The good news is that Tanaka will sign by within the next ten days, so we're inching closer to that date.

MLB NEWS & NOTES

  • Reports surfaced on Monday that the Yankees, Dodgers, and Angels were the three finalists for Masahiro Tanaka. However, Angels general manager Jerry Dipoto said Monday that the club did not meet with Tanaka while he was in Los Angeles last week. Tanaka did meet with 8-10 teams while in the states, but apparently the Angels weren't one of them. It doesn't necessarily mean they won't meet with him eventually, but that is certainly unlikely since they did not have that meeting while Tanaka was in town.
  • Dayan Viciedo and the Chicago White Sox agreed to one-year deal. The 24-year-old outfielder batted .265 with 14 home runs and 56 RBI last season. White Sox general manager Rick Hahn had stated earlier this offseason that they may look to trade Viciedo and that could certainly still happen even though  they signed him. If Viciedo remains with the White Sox, look for him to be a part of a platoon in the Sox outfield.
  • Delmon Young and the Baltimore Orioles agreed to a minor league deal which includes an invitation to spring training. Young should easily earn an Opening Day roster spot, as there's playing time available for him at designated hitter and possibly left field. He hit .260 with 11 home runs and 38 RBI between the Phillies and Rays in 2013.
  • Jeff Francis and the Cincinnati Reds agreed to a minor league deal which includes an invitation to spring training. Francis had an ugly 6.27 ERA over 12 starts and 11 relief appearances with the Rockies last year. He will provide some insurance for the starting rotation.
  • Alex Rodriguez has sued Major League Baseball and the Major League Baseball Players Association in federal court in an attempt to have his 162-game suspension overturned. It is shocking that Rodriguez would sue his own union. He thinks he is suing the legal team at the MLBPA that protects and provides for the players. They funded his arbitration and the research that was needed to get Rodriguez ready for this process. However, in reality, Rodriguez is suing each and every players because they pay dues for this support by the legal team. He just pushed every ballplayer to the side with this decision. Rodriguez is on an island now that has nobody on it. Rodriguez has made $350 million in his career and now he is going to sue the hand that fed him. He will lose support from all the players.
  • Fredric Horowitz, the arbitrator for the Alex Rodriguez case, came to the decision of a 162-game suspension for Rodriguez. Many have asked how Horowitz came to that number of games - why 162 games? What we learned is that Rodriguez used three different substances over three years and also made two attempts to obstruct the investigation that Major League Baseball was conducting of Biogenesis. The issue here was continued and prolonged use by Rodriguez as to an opposed single violation. So separate uses get separate penalties. Since Rodriguez used testosterone, human growth hormone, and insulin factor 1 - he received 50 games per substance plus 12 games for the obstruction.