Happy Super Bowl Sunday

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If you’re a real football fan, you’re probably not reading this post because you’re undoubtedly taking in the gobs of great content that Pro Football Talk has been pumping out all day.  We’ll leave the analysis to them.  Mike Florio, Gregg Rosenthal, Michael David Smith, Evan Silva and Josh Alper do it better than anyone.

But Super Bowl Sunday is an American holiday.  And even if baseball is more of your thing, it’s a great excuse to inhale finger foods and sample brews before the start of a long week.  We have our picks, you have your picks.  Share them here.

Craig Calcaterra
Packers 23, Steelers 17

Aaron Gleeman
Packers 31, Steelers 24

D.J. Short
Packers 27, Steelers 20

Matthew Pouliot
Steelers 27, Packers 21

Bob Harkins
Steelers 24, Packers 21

Drew Silva
Steelers 23, Packers 17

It should be a good one, with two of the NFL’s most storied and well-run franchises going at it.  Let’s just hope FOX keeps the Crime Scene: Scene of the Crime plugs to a minimum and that something goes terribly wrong while the Black Eyed Peas are signing karaoke, or whatever it is they do.  Why is John Travolta talking to Michael Strahan right now on my TV?

May your glasses be hop-filled and your bellies full.

Royals sign Michael Saunders to a minor-league deal

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Free agent outfielder Michael Saunders has agreed to a minor-league contract with the Royals, the team announced Friday. While the move comes just two days after Saunders agreed to terms with the Pirates, he allegedly asked for his release after the club acquired outfielder Corey Dickerson in a multi-player swap with the Rays on Thursday. MLB.com’s Jeffrey Flanagan adds that Saunders will make $1.5 million upon reaching the majors, with a potential $500,000 in bonuses.

After earning his first spot on an All-Star team in 2016, Saunders followed up a solid campaign with a career-worst performance in 2017. The 31-year-old split the season between the Phillies and Blue Jays’ camps, batting a combined .202/.256/.344 with six home runs and -0.7 fWAR in 234 plate appearances. Although he remained healthy throughout the year, with no sign of the lingering hamstring strain that has plagued him on and off since 2013, he wasn’t productive enough to merit a full-time role on either roster.

With Dickerson slated for a starting role in Pittsburgh, it was unlikely that Saunders would have commanded anything other than a backup role in 2018. Now, however, he’ll compete for playing time amid a slew of outfield options, including Alex Gordon, Cody Asche, Jorge Bonifacio, Tyler Collins and Paulo Orlando.