Marlon Byrd to sign a three-year deal with the Cubs

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UPDATE: According to Gordon Wittemyer of the Chicago Sun-Times, the Byrd deal is backloaded: $3 million this year, $5.5 million in 2011 and $6.5 million in 2012.

I guess that’s because Byrd is gonna get more valuable as time goes on.

12:22 P.M.
: Rosenthal just tweeted that it’s happening. A three year deal, details to be announced later today. UPDATE: It’s $15 million.

Three years. Mercy.

Byrd is 32 years old. He’s an average defensive centerfielder who, if he is not better suited to a corner now, certainly will be by the end of this deal. He has had some recent offensive success, but it was largely a product of playing in the Ballpark in Arlington.
While his overall OPSs for the past three seasons have been 814, 842 and 808, he was 715, 773 and 740 on the road. As our own Matthew Pouliot said a couple of weeks ago, an Alfonso Soriano-Byrd-Kosuke
Fukudome outfield is going to be an awful lot more expensive than it
will be productive.

Happy New Year, Cubs fans.

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.