Rockies ink Joe Crede to a minor league contract

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Joe Crede is back in action.

After sitting out for all of the 2010 season in recovery from back surgery, the veteran third baseman inked a minor league contract on Wednesday afternoon with the Rockies.  This according to the club’s official Twitter feed.

The deal also comes with an invitation to spring training, where Crede will attempt to land a spot on Colorado’s Opening Day roster.  It’s a longshot, but if he is truly rehabbed and can muster some decent power numbers in Cactus League play, maybe luck will be on his side.  After all, he’s only 32 years old.

Crede appeared in just 90 games in 2009 for the Twins, but he hit 15 home runs.  He played in only 97 games in 2008 for the White Sox, but he again showed good power with 17 home runs.  He was always pretty sharp defensively and could operate as a backup for injury-prone third baseman Ian Stewart out in Colorado.  Coors Field tends to be quite friendly to hitters attempting to rediscover their power stroke.

Giancarlo Stanton will defend his Home Run Derby title

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The Marlins announced on Sunday that outfielder Giancarlo Stanton will defend his Home Run Derby title when the city of Miami host’s the All-Star Game festivities next month.

Stanton, 27, defeated Todd Frazier in the finals of last year’s Home Run Derby at Petco Park, hitting 20 home runs to Frazier’s 13. Stanton hit a total of 61 home runs in the Derby. This will be the third Home Run Derby in which Stanton has participated.

Stanton also went 1-for-3 with a solo home run to help the Marlins defeat the Cubs 4-2 on Sunday. He’s now batting .274/.357/.551 with 20 home runs and 49 RBI in 311 plate appearances.

Aaron Hicks to go on the disabled list with an oblique injury

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Yankees outfielder Aaron Hicks left Sunday’s game against the Rangers after four innings due to soreness in his right oblique. After the game, Hicks said he expects to go on the 10-day disabled list and miss the next three to four weeks, MLB.com’s Bryan Hoch reports.

Hicks was 1-for-2 with a single before departing on Sunday. He entered the game batting .288/.397/.515 with 10 home runs and 37 RBI in 198 plate appearances. It is by far the best season of his career.

Jacoby Ellsbury is on his way back from a concussion, so the Yankees will only have to bridge the gap in center field for a week or two. Mason Williams could draw some starts in center field in the meantime.