Royals owner David Glass denied rumors that he’s attempting to sell the team, telling Bob Dutton of the Kansas City Star:
I have never ever talked to anyone about selling the club. Period. I have never had a discussion with anyone about it and I have no interest in doing so.
Dutton chalks up the rumors to “buzz through the blogosphere, fueled by occasional discussion on talk radio” and Glass was unaware of the speculation, saying: “The only guys who hear rumors are you guys in the media” and “I’m surprised to hear that.”
Glass has owned the Royals since 2000, during which time they’ve had one winning season while going 723-1,017 (.416) overall. “I want to be around for the good times,” Glass told Dutton. “I don’t want to miss that. I think we can see the light at the end of the tunnel. I think the organization is doing it the right way.”
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.
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.