Wanna buy a World Series ring?

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It’s a 1984 Detroit Tigers model, so I would be interested.  Whose is it? Lance Parrish? Larry Herndon? [swoons, bats eyes] Alan Trammell?

How much would you pay for a piece of the Tigers’ 1984 World Series championship?

Would you pay $5,000?

That’s the asking price on eBay for the World Series ring of former Tigers’ infielder Doug Baker. As of Wednesday night, there were no bids on the ring, but the auction ends on Friday — so there’s time. If you have $5,000 to spend, that is.

Oh. Well.  Reminds me of the time my dad bought my brother and I a few commemorative six packs of Coke because they had members of the ’84 Tigers on them.  When Curt and I got a Doug Baker can we looked at each other and said “Doug Baker?”  And I was an extremely dedicated fan for an 11 year-old.

But there’s an upside here. When I saw the headline I thought that someone from that team was in bad financial shape and thus had to pawn the thing that represents one of their life’s proudest moments simply to pay the rent.  Turns out that it’s less dire than that: Baker had lost the ring once upon a time, got a replacement from whatever the MLB-equivalent of Jostens is, but then had his original ring returned to him. Dude only needs one, so he’s selling it.

I won’t be buying, but call me if Jack Morris gets hard up for dough.

Report: Astros remain in contact with the Athletics on Sonny Gray

OAKLAND, CA - AUGUST 06: Sonny Gray #54 of the Oakland Athletics pitches against the Chicago Cubs during the first inning at the Oakland Coliseum on August 6, 2016 in Oakland, California. (Photo by Jason O. Watson/Getty Images)
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The Astros remain in contact with the Athletics on starting pitcher Sonny Gray, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports. The Astros have added Charlie Morton this offseason, but the club has been trying to add a big-name starting pitcher to put at the top of the rotation behind Dallas Keuchel.

Gray, 27, was limited to 22 starts in the 2016 season due to a forearm issue. His stats left a lot to be desired, as he finished with a 5-11 record, a 5.69 ERA, and a 94/42 K/BB ratio over 117 innings. Considering how Gray pitched in the previous three years, he’s a good bet to bounce back.

Gray is under team control through 2019, which is a big draw for the Astros. Needless to say, the Athletics would want a haul in terms of prospects. Gray will earn $3.575 million in 2017, having avoided arbitration in his first year of eligibility.

President Obama Welcomes the Cubs to the White House

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As we noted last week, The Chicago Cubs took the unusual step of not waiting until the summer after winning the World Series to make their customary White House visit to meet the president. They did it today, seeing President Obama a few short days before he leaves office.

Despite the fact that Obama is a White Sox fan, he met the Cubs with diplomacy and grace. It’s almost as if he’s been in that business for the past eight years. In return, he was given some gifts by the Cubs: Theo Epstein presented Obama with a No. 44 Cubs jersey, a tile from the center field scoreboard at Wrigley Field, and a lifetime pass to Wrigley as well.

Obama is staying in D.C. after he leaves office this week, hanging around so his daughter can finish high school in the same place she started. Even so, he’s likely going to be back to Chicago a good bit over the rest of his life, so he’ll likely be able to put the free pass to work. Assuming it comes with, like, six companion passes for his Secret Service detail.