MLB and the MLBPA are at an impasse over increased PED punishments. Casey Kelly, Deolis Guerra and Mike Matheny are all facing surgery. The Tigers GM is a popular man. Probably because he has access to the bacoes.
I was looking forward to the weekend, but I'm sure I'm going to hear it from all the Dominican baseball bloggers the whole time. Luckily I don't speak Spanish.
- There seems to be an impasse in negotiations between Major League Baseball and the Players Association over toughening up penalties for PED use. MLB rejected the union's proposal for a two-tiered suspension system, where intentional users would be punished more seriously than accidental users. The Player's Association is refusing to agree to anything but a two-tiered system, feeling to do otherwise would be unfair to Latin American players, who don't have the same kind of access to reliable supplements. One can see both sides of the argument. For MLB, it's pretty ridiculous for them to try to determine what's intentional and what's unintentional, although the union has offered to put the burden of proof on the player. For the union, they feel Latin American players purchase supplements in their home countries that are unreliably labeled and sometimes contaminated. So it doesn't sound like there is going to be any changes before the next CBA.
- Tom Verducci says that no one who's attended a World Baseball Classic game can dismiss it as "just an exhibition." He won't get an argument from me.
- It's looking like Padres pitching prospect Casey Kelly is facing Tommy John Surgery. He'll be out for the year.
- The Mariners are thinking of having Jason Bay bat lead-off. I think that's a great idea. I've also been in a coma since 2008.
- Phillies manager Charlie Manuel doesn't want to retire at the end of this season. Things might get awkward at Citizen's Bank Park this summer. I just hope the Phillies don't decide to let Manuel manage new games played 90 minutes before the regular games, which Ryne Sandberg would manage. Then when that doesn't work, put Manuel back in charge of the regular games and offer to let Sandberg manage the second games of double-headers. #teamryno
- The Rangers are still talking with Kyle Lohse.
- Nick Cafardo looks at the positives and negatives from Red Sox spring training. Among the positives is Ryan Dempster. The negatives include heel problems for David Ortiz.
- Netherlands outfielder Kalian Sams is dedicating his time in the WBC to the late Greg Halman, who was murdered in 2011.
- The Brewers signed Carlos Gomez to a four-year, $28.3 million contract extension.
- Micah Owings is impressing the Nationals as an outfielder this spring. He'll start the season in the minors, but has a chance to be back with the team later this season.
- Johan Santana said that he and the Mets GM Sandy Alderson have kissed and made up. Those weren't his exact words, unfortunately.
- Tigers GM Dave Dombrowski says he's getting a lot of calls from other GMs talking trade. He doesn't mention any names, but the general assumption is that they're calling on Rick Porcello. One issue with trading Porcello is that the Tigers don't have another good option if a starter gets hurt.
- San Diego had that big open meeting with the City Council, Time-Warner Cable and Fox Sports San Diego, trying to get the Padres games available to Time-Warner customers. Both sides are digging in their heels.
- None of the candidates for the Athletics middle infield positions have looked good so far this spring.
- Former first pick in the draft, Luke Hochevar, is going to the Royals bullpen.
- Following up on the health problems of Twins pitcher Deolis Guerra, he's going to have a rib removed as a result of his blood clot scare. He's going to miss at least half a season, but should be back sometime this year.
- Cardinals manager Mike Matheny is back with the team following back surgery.
- The key to a successful 2013 for Marlins closer Steve Cishek is staying effective against left-handed hitters. That's not easy for a sidearmer like Cishek.
- Finally, a taco made from a Dorito? How much imagination does that take? Now a taco shell made out of bacon, there's something original. It's called a "baco." Go to a West Michigan Whitecaps game this summer, and you can have one too.
The Hawkeyes men's basketball team beat Northwestern, 73-59, in the first round of the Big Ten Tournament.
And tomorrow will be a better day than today, Buster.