Cuban defector Chapman heads to NY to meet with teams

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Picking a slightly more central location than tiny Andorra, Aroldis Chapman, who was declared a free agent last month, is headed to New York to begin meeting with suitors.
Chapman’s agent told ESPN’s Jorge Arangure Jr. that the 21-year-old left-hander will arrive on Wednesday and is set to visit several cities. Boston is very likely to be included, and a trip to the West Coast to gauge the interest of the Dodgers and Angels figures to follow.
The hard-throwing Chapman is expected to get one of the winter’s largest contracts, even though he’s probably not ready to succeed as a major league starter just yet. He placed eighth on our list of the winter’s top 111 free agents. A deal in the $50 million range is a good guess, and the Yankees would seem to have the best chance of anyone of landing him.

Braves sign David Hernandez

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Bill Whitehead of the Atlanta Journal Constitution reports that the Braves have signed reliever David Hernandez to a minor league contract on Sunday. He’ll report to spring training as a non-roster invitee.

Hernandez, who turns 32 years old in May, signed a minor league contract with the Giants in February. He requested and was granted his release on Friday when he learned he wasn’t making the team’s 25-man roster to open the season.

Hernandez pitched for the Phillies last year. He compiled a 3.84 ERA with an 80/32 K/BB ratio in 72 2/3 innings.

Dave Roberts: It “doesn’t make sense” for Scott Kazmir to start year in Dodgers’ rotation

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Scott Kazmir won’t begin the regular season in the Dodgers’ starting rotation. Manager Dave Roberts said after Kazmir’s Cactus League outing on Sunday that it “doesn’t make sense” for the ailing Kazmir to break camp in the rotation, Andy McCullough of the Los Angeles Times reports. The lefty will instead rehab some more and join the rotation at a later time.

Kazmir has been battling a hip issue which has caused his mechanics to suffer. He was clocked in the low 80’s 10 days ago and wasn’t much better on Sunday afternoon.

Last season with the Dodgers, Kazmir posted a 4.56 ERA with a 134/52 K/BB ratio in 136 1/3 innings, his worst numbers since returning to the majors in 2013.