Around the Majors: Sosa’s going to the Orioles

1) The Cubs have reportedly agreed in principle to a deal that would send RF Sammy Sosa to the Orioles for 2B-OF Jerry Hairston Jr., several prospects, including 2B Mike Fontenot and P David Crouthers, and cash. Orioles P Jorge Julio and Cubs P Kyle Farnsworth might also be included.

The deal still needs to be approved by Bud Selig, Sosa has to waive his no trade clause, the players need to pass physicals and his agents are expected to ask the union for permission to renegotiate his contract.

2) The Yankees list of nonroster invitees–INFs Homer Bush, Caonabo Cosme, Russ Johnson and Damian Rolls, OFs Doug Glanville, Noah Hall, Colin Porter and Mike Vento, Cs Joe DePastino, Ryan Hankins, David Parrish, Irwil Rojas, Omir Santos and Jon-Mark Sprowl and Ps Danny Borrell, Aaron Small, Marc Valdes and Brad Voyles.

3) The Diamondbacks list of nonroster invitees–SS Sergio Santos, 3B-C Corey Myers, INF Andy Green, OFs Quinton McCracken, Conor Jackson, Carlos Quentin and Doug DeVore, C Kelly Stinnett, Craig Ansman, Juan Brito and Alan Zinter and Ps Jose Jimenez, Casey Daigle, Jon Cannon, Brandon Medders, Shane Nance, Phil Stockman and Kevin Tolar.

4) The Diamondbacks designated C Robby Hammock for assignment.

Hammock has -14 RCAA/.756 OPS in 127 career games, including a .405 SLG, .287 OBA, .692 OPS, -13 RCAA in 62 games in 2004.

5) The Mets signed P Mike Matthews to a minor league contract, with an invitation to spring training.

After 3.94 ERA/0 RSAA and 4.45 ERA/-4 RSAA seasons, Matthews had a 6.30 ERA/-8 RSAA in 35 games with the Reds. He has a 4.41 career ERA, compared to his league average of 4.30, and -8 RSAA in 224 games.

6) According to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, the Pirates are interested in free agent OF Jeromy Burnitz.

7) The Devil Rays re-signed SS Julio Lugo (1 year, $3.35 million, with an option for 2006) and C Toby Hall (1 year, $1.95 million), to avoid salary arbitration.

After -9 RCAA/.710 OPS and -2 RCAA/.743 OPS seasons, Lugo hit .395 SLG, .338 OBA, .734 OPS, 0 RCAA in 157 games. He has a .732 career OPS, compared to his league average of .775, and -44 RCAA in 640 games.

After -16 RCAA/.669 OPS and -19 RCAA/.675 OPS seasons, Hall had a .366 SLG, .300 OBA, .666 OPS, -21 RCAA in 119 games. He has a .683 career OPS, compared to his league average of .765, and -58 RCAA in 387 games.

8) The Devil Rays outrighted P John Webb to the minors, after he cleared waivers. Webb had been removed from the 40 man roster when he was designated for assignment earlier in the week.

9) Mets P Tyler Yates needs surgery and may miss the entire season.

Yates had a 6.36 ERA/-11 RSAA in 21 games (7 starts) in 2004.

10) The Indians signed free agent P Paul Shuey to a minor league contract, with an invitation to spring training.

Homestretch: The 1967 AL Pennant Race, Part 3
A tight race shows no signs of letting up.

After 3.31 ERA/7 RSAA and 3.00 ERA/8 RSAA seasons, Shuey missed the entire 2004 season, due to a ruptured tendon in his right thumb and a hip injury. He has a 3.57 career ERA, compared to his league average of 4.64, and 59 RSAA in 451 games.

11) The Whitesox designated P Jason Grilli for assignment.

Grilli had a 7.40 ERA/-12 RSAA in 8 starts in 2004.

12) Tigers OF Craig Monroe will enter a diversion program, which after he completes, petty theft charges from a December shoplifting arrest will be dropped.

After having -8 RCAA/.736 OPS in 2003, Monroe hit .488 SLG, .337 OBA, .824 OPS, 10 RCAA in 128 games. He has a .765 career OPS, compared to his league average of .767, and -4 RCAA in 296 games.

13) The Twins signed OF Armando Rios to a minor league contract, with an invitation to spring training.

Rios, who was out of the majors in 2004, has 7 RCAA/.786 OPS in 419 career games.

14) Rangers minor league OF Jason Jones retired.

Jones had -6 RCAA/.653 OPS in 40 games in 2003.

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