Mariners just about ready to finalize Miguel Olivo deal

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The Mariners agreed to a two-year, $7 million contract with catcher Miguel Olivo back on December 9 — almost 14 days ago.

For whatever reason, it has taken close to two weeks for the parties involved to take care of all the necessary paperwork that goes along with a free agent signing, including the transferring of medical records and pre-signing physicals.

According to Kirby Arnold of the Everett Herald, that should all change by the weekend.  Olivo passed his physical with flying colors on Wednesday in Seattle and the contract should be made official by Thursday or Friday.

The 32-year-old catcher hit .269/.315/.449 with 14 home runs and 58 RBI over 394 at-bats for the Rockies in 2010.  He’s expected to share time behind the plate with Adam Moore next season with the M’s.

Brandon McCarthy wins final spot in Dodgers’ rotation

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We learned on Monday that Hyun-Jin Ryu won one of the final two spots in the Dodgers’ starting rotation. Brandon McCarthy has won the other, Bill Plunkett of the Orange County Register reports. Alex Wood was McCarthy’s competitor for the spot.

McCarthy, 33, posted a 4.85 ERA across four appearances spanning 13 innings this spring, yielding seven earned runs on 14 hits and a walk with seven strikeouts. Wood, a southpaw, gave up five earned runs in six innings against the Reds on Tuesday, which might have factored into the decision.

Last season, McCarthy made nine starts and one relief appearance, posting a 4.95 ERA with a 44/26 K/BB ratio in 40 innings. In the event McCarthy falters, the club has Wood as well as Julio Urias and the injured Scott Kazmir as potential replacements.

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.