Of course, it’s easy for me to say that because I’m in California. I don’t know what Yasiel Puig’s excuse is. Maybe he still thinks he’s in California.
Also, another added benefit to living in California is this.
Due to the trade and timezone, his nickname is now 1:00am https://t.co/by0jWXYj0h— Michael Cerami (@Michael_Cerami) January 31, 2019
- Someone else who may be moving to California is Bryce Harper, who met with the San Diego Padres yesterday. It sounds like the Padres are more interested in Manny Machado than Harper, which makes sense considering the makeup of their current roster.
- David Schoenfield explains why it makes a lot of sense for the Padres to sign either Machado or Harper.
- With Harper and Machado still free agents just a few weeks before camps open, Tristan Jung has a list of obscure free agents who have already signed this winter.
- Eno Sarris argues that the market for free agent ballplayers has become so weak that signing free agents may now be the most cost-effective way to build a winning ballclub. (The Athletic sub. req.)
- Of course, there are always mistakes and David Schoenfield lists the worst current contract for each of the 30 major league teams.
- The Astros signed left-hander Wade Miley to a one-year, $4.5 million deal.
- The Rockies and third baseman Nolan Arenado avoided arbitration by agreeing to a one-year, $26 million deal. That’s a record for a arbitration-eligible player.
- Jonah Keri looks at the increasing problem of service time manipulation and how it affects the upcoming crop of 2019 rookies.
- Sheryl Ring looks at the current efforts to exempt minor league ballplayers from Arizona’s minimum wage laws. She notes that the MLB Players Association is finally getting into the act on this one and fighting to prevent the new law.
- The Rockies are considering bringing back outfielder Carlos Gonzalez.
- Joe Frisaro reports that the Marlins are in “advanced talks” on a deal that would finally trade catcher J.T. Realmuto. What we don’t know is with what team, although Frisaro thinks the Padres are the favorites.
- There have been lots of trade rumors surrounding Indians pitcher Corey Kluber this winter, but Jon Paul Morosi writes that it is now unlikely (although not impossible) that the Indians will trade Kluber at this point of the offseason.
- Jay Jaffe looks at the decline and fall of new Diamondbacks reliever Greg Holland.
- Jeff Sullivan looks that the D-Backs efforts to make second baseman Ketel Marte their new center fielder.
- More Diamondbacks news. Reliever Archie Bradley had his golf bag stolen at Phoenix Open pro-am tournament.
- The Diamondbacks are also moving to artificial turf next season and the Rangers announced that they will have artificial turf in their new stadium when it opens in 2020. I’ve mentioned this earlier, but artificial turf has come a long way from the awful stuff that messed up Andre Dawson’s legs in the 1980s.
- The Angels announced that while Shohei Ohtani is making rapid progress from Tommy John surgery, he will not be ready for Opening Day. I didn’t even know that people thought he could be ready. But we can expect him back as a DH, although probably not as a pitcher, sometime in 2019.
- Athletics first-round draft pick and Heisman trophy winner Kyler Murray says that choosing between careers in baseball and football (and I quote) “sucks.” Murray says he loves both sports.
- Former Reds and White Sox outfielder Adam Dunn faced a similar decision between football and baseball in his career and says that Murray should pick whichever sport makes him happiest and “don’t chase the money.” Dunn said he has no regrets picking baseball over football (Dunn also made over $100 million in his baseball career.) but he’s glad he doesn’t have to make that decision again.
- CC Sabathia visited Jackie Robinson School in Brooklyn for the 100th birthday of the all-time great.
- R.J. Anderson explains how a social media account helped get right-handed pitcher Chris Nunn a minor league contract with the Rangers and how that account is helping other pitchers achieve their dreams as well.
- Marlins third-base coach Fredi Gonzalez is going back to school in the offseason to get his college degree.
- Mike Oz continues his series of opening baseball cards and he has a doubleheader as former reliever Tom “Flash” Gordon and his son, Twins prospect Nick Gordon, open packs together. (Nick’s brother Dee Gordon opened some in an earlier installment of the series.)
- Outfielder Yasiel Puig got traded to Cincinnati this winter after a lifetime in Cuba and Los Angeles. So he was in Cincinnati during the polar vortex and declared it “not that cold.” Puig looked like he was enjoying his first trip to Porkopolis as a member of the Reds.
- And finally, some clever person on Twitter matched up major leaguers hair with the Pokemon character that their hair most resembles.
And tomorrow will be a better day than today, Buster.