UPDATE: Buster Olney reports that the deal is done. As Morosi reported, $3 million. The incentives are richer than usual, however, amounting to another $3 million.
5:55 AM: Following up on last night’s reports from Brad Penny himself, Jon Paul Morosi says this morning that the Tigers and Brad Penny are on the verge of a one-year, $3 million deal. Morosi says there will be incentives too. Worth noting that Morosi first connected Penny and the Tigers back in mid-December.
Seems like a good deal for Penny who, before an injury last season, had nine good starts. Remember: he started things off going was 3-0 with a 0.94 ERA last year. He says he’s getting in shape now, though, and if that makes a difference, he could be one of the better putative fifth starters around.
Major League Baseball has announced the umpiring crew for the World Series. John Hirschbeck is the crew chief. It’s his fifth World Series assignment, third as a crew chief.
A surprising name on the crew is Joe West. It’ll be his sixth World Series overall, but first since 2012. There had been chatter for several years that Major League Baseball was making a more concerted effort to get its best umpires into the World Series more often while minimizing the appearances of its weakest umpires. Most assumed West’s absence from the Fall Classic in recent years, despite his seniority, was a function of that. Maybe they’re still making merit a priority and maybe West has just improved? I’ll leave that for you to judge.
Anyway, here is the lineup of umps for Game 1. They will rotate after that, of course. If the series goes six games, Cowboy Joe will be calling the balls and strikes:
Home plate: Larry Vanover
1B: Chris Guccione
2B: John Hirschbeck
3B: Marvin Hudson
LF: Tony Randazzo
RF: Joe West
Replay Official for Games 1-2: Sam Holbrook (with assistance from Todd Tichenor)
Replay Official for Games 3-7: Larry Vanover (with assistance from Todd Tichenor)