Agent: Ricky Nolasco and Marlins “about 20 percent” apart in contract extension talks

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Ricky Nolasco and the Marlins have been trying to work out a long-term contract extension for months and agent Matt Sosnick said yesterday that the two sides have agreed to an acceptable number of years but are “about 20 percent” apart on the salaries.

That may not seem like much of a gap, but it probably represents at least $4 million and perhaps as much as $7 million. In other words, there’s likely plenty of negotiating still to be done.

Sosnick also represents Marlins ace Josh Johnson, who after some similarly tough negotiations eventually signed a four-year, $39 million deal with the Marlins in January.

Nolasco is unlikely to get that much because he’s not as good as Johnson and is already under team control through 2012 as an arbitration eligible player, but Joe Frisaro of MLB.com expects a deal of some kind to get worked out before spring training.

Indians sign Melvin Upton Jr. to a minor league deal

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The Cleveland Indians have agreed to a minor league deal with outfielder Melvin Upton, Jr.

Upton, 33, battled a torn thumb ligament and a shoulder issue last season, limiting him to only 12 games with Triple-A Sacramento, the Giants’ affiliate. In those 12 games, he hit .244 with one double and one home run. Upton last played in the majors in 2016 with the Padres and Blue Jays with which he posted an aggregate .693 OPS.

Given the injuries suffered by Indians outfielders in the past couple of seasons it can’t hurt to have some options for organizational depth. If he has anything left in the tank, stash him on the bench or down in Columbus. If not, no harm done.