Agent expects Ted Lilly to get a three-year deal this offseason

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Ted Lilly’s agent, Larry O’Brien, said yesterday that he expects the veteran left-hander to get at least a three-year deal on the open market this offseason and added that the Dodgers’ financial issues could make it difficult for them to re-sign him.
“I think the Dodgers are interested in signing Ted back,” O’Brien told Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com. “Ted has interest in signing back. I’m just not sure the Dodgers at this point are going to get to a range that will be very easy for us to achieve come December. I’m pretty confident that there’s a minimum three-year deal out there for Ted.”
Lilly is finishing up a four-year, $40 million contract signed with the Cubs in 2007. At the time of that deal he’d gone 49-44 with a 4.48 ERA in 684 innings over the previous four seasons. Now he’ll become a free agent again having gone 53-38 with a 3.70 ERA in 775 innings during that four-year stretch, so while Lilly is much more of an age-related risk at 35 than 31 his performance has certainly been better than it was when he inked the four-year, $40 million pact.
Even if the Dodgers don’t plan to re-sign Lilly, they can be pretty confident about offering him the arbitration needed to secure draft pick compensation if he leaves. Last offseason the Dodgers shied away from doing that in fear free agents would accept the arbitration offer and force them into one-year commitments, but clearly Lilly has no interest in a one-year deal.

The Braves will be serving some insane food this season

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Lots of teams have crazy concession items and lots of them will circulate photos of the more gonzo ones in the coming week leading up to the baseball season. The Braves, however, have been one of the more aggressive players in the gimmick concession item game in recent years, and they just sent around a release talking about some of the stuff they, and their concessionaire, Delaware North, will be serving at their new ballpark, Sun Trust Park, in 2017.

Among them:a blackened catfish po boy, which is a blackened 6-ounce filet of catfish cut up among three tacos, with a cajun remoulade. Some BBQ beef brisket sliders. A double burger. An ice cream bar. They’re also going to have a regionally-inspired thing called “The Taste of Braves Country,” showcasing southern cooking from Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina, Tennessee, Mississippi and Alabama. Which they’re calling “Braves Country.” Accurate enough, I guess, even if some of us are old enough to remember when they aspired to be a national team. Alas.

The big item, though, is this one:

It’s called the “Tomahawk Chop” sandwich. It’s a fried pork chop with collard green slaw and white BBQ sauce. It serves four and costs $26. I’m guessing it tastes fantastic, but I think the name is pretty cringeworthy for the same reason the cheer which gives it its name is. And, given the dynamics of the Braves move to their new stadium, the choice of BBQ sauce is . . . amusing? I dunno.

Anyway, enjoy, Braves fans.

Max Scherzer will not be ready for Opening Day

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Ten days ago Nationals ace Max Scherzer said he’d be ready for the start of the regular season. “I’m gonna do it,” Scherzer said.

[Ron Howard from “Arrested Development” voice] — No, he’s not:

Nationals manager Dusty Baker said that Max Scherzer is not on track to be the team’s opening day starter, and will most likely open the season as the third pitcher in the rotation.

He’s still projected to make it to the opening rotation, taking the hill, most likely, on Thursday April 6 against the Marlins. At least if the schedule doesn’t slip any more.

Scherzer, as you probably know, has a stress fracture in the knuckle of his right ring finger, which has messed with his preparation and has caused him to alter his grip a bit. As of now Stephen Strasburg will get the Opening Day nod.