The McCourts will resume settlement discussions this week

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Between Jamie McCourt’s dumb act — at least I hope it’s an act — and the testimony that lawyers working on the critical post-nuptial agreement substituted exhibits to the thing all willy-nilly, it’s safe to say that no one has any idea what the judge might ultimately do with the Dodgers. Jamie could get half the team. Or she could be made a ward of the state so as to prevent her from harming herself or others for that matter. Frank McCourt could walk away free and clear or he could have to pay the ex millions and then spend the next five years suing his old law firm. Chaos, really.

Which makes the news that the McCourts are going to resume settlement discussions the most sensible thing I’ve heard from these knuckleheads in a long, long time.  Any settlement would almost certainly involve Frank paying Jamie a significant amount of cash to go away, but it beats the alternatives if he were to lose: a forced team sale or an even larger buyout.

Of course, a settlement usually requires that both parties (a) be wary of the risks of pressing on; and (b) swallow their pride and walk away with a less-than-fulfilling result.  Whether these deluded, self-centered, materialistic Boomer poster children are capable of reaching a sensible, relatively unselfish solution is an open question, however, so let’s not declare this thing over quite yet.

Report: Mark Trumbo signs three-year, $37.5 million contract with Orioles

TORONTO, ON - OCTOBER 04:  Mark Trumbo #45 of the Baltimore Orioles runs the bases after hitting a two-run home run in the fourth inning against the Toronto Blue Jays during the American League Wild Card game at Rogers Centre on October 4, 2016 in Toronto, Canada.  (Photo by Vaughn Ridley/Getty Images)
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Update #2 (6:21 PM EST): Make that $37.5 million, per Heyman.

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Update (6:02 PM EST): The deal is for “around” $37 million with deferrals that lower the present-day value, per Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports.

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Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports reports that free agent 1B/OF Mark Trumbo is close to a deal with the Orioles. He first reported that the two sides were back in touch earlier on Thursday afternoon. According to Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports, the deal is expected to be for three years and under $40 million.

Trumbo’s market hasn’t developed as he expected. The slugger turned down the Orioles’ $17.2 million qualifying offer back in November. Then the Orioles reportedly made a four-year contract offer to him in December but pulled it off the table. Most recently, a report indicated that Trumbo lowered his expectations to a three-year deal in the $40-50 million range.

Trumbo, 31, led the majors with 47 homers for the Orioles this past season. He also hit a solid .256/.316/.433 with 108 RBI in 667 plate appearances. With Trumbo back in the fold and some slight offensive upgrades made, the Orioles figure to have a formidable offense in 2017.

Astros avoid arbitration with Mike Fiers

SEATTLE, WA - SEPTEMBER 17: Starting pitcher Mike Fiers #54 of the Houston Astros walks to the dugout after pitching an inning during a game against the Seattle Mariners at Safeco Field on September 17, 2016 in Seattle, Washington. The Astros won the game 2-1. (Photo by Stephen Brashear/Getty Images)
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The Astros avoided arbitration with pitcher Mike Fiers, agreeing on a $3.45 million salary for the 2017 season, per Jake Kaplan of the Houston Chronicle. The right-hander was in his first of three years of arbitration eligibility.

Fiers, 31, made 30 starts and one relief appearance for the Astros in 2016. He finished the year with a 4.48 ERA and a 134/42 K/BB ratio in 168 2/3 innings.

Fiers had a much better showing in 2015 as well as in limited action in 2014, so the Astros are hoping he rediscovers that effectiveness going forward. He’ll slot into the back of the starting rotation.