Peter O'Malley slams the McCourts

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The O’Malley family owned the Dodgers for 47 years. While there are some old coots in Brooklyn who still hate them, they’re pretty much Dodgers royalty. Since selling the team the O’Malleys haven’t been terribly outspoken about the Dodgers, serving more as sources for historians, documentary filmmakers and authors and stuff than critics of the current regime. Which makes former owner Peter O’Malley’s comments to the L.A. Times about the McCourt saga yesterday fairly significant:

“The current Dodger ownership has lost all credibility throughout the
city. In my judgment, it would
be best for the franchise and the city if there was new ownership. For many years, the Dodgers have been one of the most prestigious
institutions in our city and throughout professional sports. Sadly, that is not the case today.”

Not that it will make any difference of course. The McCourts see the Dodgers as a cash machine and little more, and as long as it continues to dispense the cash — or at the very least serve as useful collateral for irresponsible borrowing — they’ll have no interest in selling the team to more responsible stewards. And that’s the case no matter how much they are publicly shamed either by the words of others or through their own shameless actions.

Colby Rasmus could start 2017 on the disabled list

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Colby Rasmus isn’t ready to take outfield reps just yet. According to Rays’ manager Kevin Cash, that’s a red flag, one that could potentially postpone Rasmus’ debut as the club’s designated hitter and outfielder in 2017. Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports that Rasmus will need to prove he can play a defensive position before getting cleared for the active roster, something which the veteran outfielder has yet to do this spring.

Rasmus, 30, signed a one-year, $5 million deal with the Rays following his two-year run with the Astros. He batted a meager .206/.286/.355 with 15 home runs and a .641 OPS in 2016 and was shut down in late September with an unspecified hip/groin issue. Entering the 2017 season, he’s expected to work his way back to a full-time role after undergoing surgery to repair his core muscle and left hip labrum last October.

The Rays also finalized their one-year, $1.2 million deal with catcher Derek Norris on Saturday and will need to clear room for him on the 40-man roster. Topkin speculates that the move could send Rasmus to the 60-day disabled list, though the outfielder is not projected to miss more than a couple weeks of the regular season.

Report: Rangers agree to six-year extension with Rougned Odor

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The Rangers have reportedly agreed to a six-year, $49.5 million extension for second baseman Rougned Odor, according to Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports and Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News. The extension comes with a club option for a seventh year, Heyman adds.

It’s close to the six-year, $52.5 million extension Jason Kipnis netted with the Indians in 2014, a sum Odor was rumored to be seeking during contract negotiations over the last two years. Granted, the circumstances are a little different this time around. Both players signed extensions on the cusp of their fourth year in the major leagues, but at 27 years old, Kipnis was coming off of an All-Star campaign and a career-high 4.5 fWAR performance. Odor, meanwhile, saw mixed results in 2016, batting 33 home runs and putting up 2.0 fWAR while struggling to stay consistent at the plate and exhibiting poor defense.

According to MLB.com’s T.R. Sullivan, Odor previously agreed to a $563,180 salary for 2017. Depending on when the extension kicks in, it should cover all three of Odor’s arbitration-eligible seasons and two seasons of potential free agency. The team has yet to confirm the extension.