Indians trade Saul Rivera to the Dbacks; Bob Howry released

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Saul Rivera headshot.jpgThe headline pretty much says it all.  Cash considerations head back to Cleveland in exchange for Rivera.

Rivera was something of a workhorse for the Washington Nationals in 2007 and 2008, but he was sent down to AAA in 2009 before being released. I can only assume that Manny
Acta put in a good word for him in order to get the Tribe to sign him but, as is evidenced by the lack of a headshot with him wearing an Indians cap, he hasn’t pitched for the big club this year. Instead, he has struck out 11 and walked 7 in 17 innings here in beautiful Columbus, Ohio.

Howry has been lit up like a Christmas tree this year for Arizona, posting an ERA of 10.67 in fourteen outings. Something must be wrong with him physically, because as Aaron pointed out when he was signed last winter, He’s been a workhorse himself, with only Mariano Rivera, Joe Nathan, Francisco Rodriguez, Francisco
Cordero, Scot Shields, Chad Qualls, and Scott Linebrink pitching as many innings as he has while posting a better ERA+.

If he’s healthy you have to figure that someone will take a chance on Howry, because it’s hard to fathom that someone could lose it just like that [snaps fingers].

Report: Royals and Eric Hosmer have discussed a long-term contract extension

SAN DIEGO, CA - JULY 12:  Eric Hosmer #35 of the Kansas City Royals and the American League rounds the bases after hitting a home run against the National League in the 2nd inning of the 87th Annual MLB All-Star Game at PETCO Park on July 12, 2016 in San Diego, California.  (Photo by Denis Poroy/Getty Images)
Denis Poroy/Getty Images
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Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports that the Royals and first baseman Eric Hosmer have discussed a long-term contract extension. However, Hosmer also indicated that he will head into free agency if a deal is not consummated by Opening Day.

Hosmer, 27, avoided arbitration with the Royals last month, agreeing to a $12.25 million salary for the 2017 season. He is one of four key Royals players who can become a free agent after the season along with Mike Moustakas, Alcides Escobar, and Lorenzo Cain. If Hosmer does reach free agency, he would arguably be the top free agent first baseman.

Hosmer finished the past season hitting .266/.328/.433 with 25 home runs and 104 RBI while making his first All-Star team.

Yankees sign Jon Niese to a minor league deal

PHOENIX, AZ - AUGUST 17:  Jonathon Niese #49 of the New York Mets delivers a pitch during the first inning against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field on August 17, 2016 in Phoenix, Arizona.  (Photo by Jennifer Stewart/Getty Images)
Jennifer Stewart/Getty Images
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Joel Sherman of the New York Post reports that the Yankees have signed pitcher Jon Niese to a minor league contract, pending a physical. Assuming the deal is finalized, Sherman notes that the Yankees will have Niese work as both a starter and a reliever in big league camp this spring.

According to Sherman, the Yankees were interested in lefty relievers Jerry Blevins and Boone Logan, but didn’t want to commit at their asking prices. They are looking for a lefty set-up man along with Tommy Lane.

Niese, 30, pitched for the Pirates and Mets last season, finishing with a 5.50 ERA and an 88/47 K/BB ratio over 121 innings.