Everyone thinks Carl Crawford is going to the Angels

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Yes, he dined with the Yankees, and sure, anyone can swoop in if they wanted to, but Mark Saxon of ESPN Los Angeles reports that two sources close to Carl Crawford are saying that he’s going to the Angels.

Which, for what it’s worth, a lot of people are saying down here in Orlando. Saxson cites “multiple high-ranking sources” saying such things. I tend to talk to multiple low-level sources — they’re young, but they’re sweet — who say the same thing.  Likely filtered down from their high-ranking bosses and repeated to me in order to make them feel like they’re in the know.  We’re similar like that, ya know?

No one thinks there is much to the Yankees rumors. One guy told me he believed it was a negotiation ploy. I kind of doubt the Yankees can really be used like that, but Luke Scott isn’t always wrong, so I believe him here.

Yankees re-sign Jon Niese to a minor league deal

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The Yankees have re-signed pitcher Jon Niese to a minor league contract, George A. King III of the New York Post reports. Niese was released on Sunday, but he’ll stick around and provide rotation depth for the Yankees.

Niese had knee surgery last August and got a late start to spring training as a result. In six spring appearances lasting an inning each, the lefty gave up three earned runs on five hits and a walk with five strikeouts.

Niese, a veteran of nine seasons, put up an aggregate 5.50 ERA with an 88/47 K/BB ratio in 121 innings last season between the Pirates and Mets.

Orioles acquire Alec Asher from the Phillies

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The Phillies announced on Tuesday that the club traded pitcher Alec Asher to the Orioles for a player to be named later.

Asher, 25, was the victim of a roster crunch. He was not going to make the 25-man roster and the starting rotation at Triple-A Lehigh Valley was already full. The Phillies acquired him from the Rangers in the July 2015 Cole Hamels trade.

Asher had good results in 27 2/3 innings in the big leagues last year, posting a 2.28 ERA with a 13/4 K/BB ratio. While it didn’t show in those stats, the right-hander sometimes struggles with command and he doesn’t miss bats often enough to make up for it. The Orioles, however, are happy to add some pitching depth.