News you can use: Top 10 beers available at Major League ballparks

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Rob Iracane has a print-and-save article for you over at Big League Stew: “The top 10 brews available at MLB parks.”

Warning: he hates on Natty Boh and other local beers with a long history but with a bad taste.  Which is exactly what he should do because we’re in this for the beer, not the nostalgia. But that sort of thing can be jarring to some, so I offer the warning.  He makes an exception for Iron City in Pittsburgh. I’m not sure I agree with that exception, but he makes his case based on pragmatism, not some amorphous local flavor angle.

Overall it’s a pale ale-heavy list. That also makes sense because pale ale is the nectar of the gods, but I have a confession to make: when I’m at a ballgame, I tend to prefer something a tad thinner. Not watery — indeed, I only go for the macrobrews if forced — but I usually hit weekend day games when I go to major league parks, and summer ales and stuff like that tend to do better for me in the hot sun of a July afternoon.

Enjoy.

Phillies, Red Sox interested in Carlos Santana

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The Phillies and Red Sox appear intent on pursuing free agent first baseman Carlos Santana, MLB Network’s Jon Morosi reports. Santana rejected a one-year, $17.4 million qualifying offer from the Indians on Thursday and is expected to draw widespread interest on the market this winter. The Mets, Mariners, Angels and Indians could make a play for the infielder, though no serious offers have been made this early in the offseason.

Santana, 31, is coming off of a seven-year track with the Indians. He batted .259/.363/.455 with 23 home runs and 3.0 fWAR last season, making 2017 the fourth-most valuable year of his career to date. Although he was primarily stationed at first base over the last year, he could step back into a hybrid first base/DH role with the Red Sox, who are hurting for infield depth with Hanley Ramirez still working his way back from shoulder surgery.

As for Santana’s other suitors, the Mariners are far less likely to pursue a deal after trading for Ryon Healy last Wednesday. Neither the Mets nor the Phillies have a DH spot to offer the veteran infielder, and the Phillies’ Rhys Hoskins appears to be blocking the way at first base. Then again, Santana may not find a more enticing offer outside of Cleveland, where Edwin Encarnacion might otherwise be the club’s best option at first base. During the GM meetings, Indians’ GM Mike Chernoff said he “love to have both [Santana and Jay Bruce] back” in 2018, but hasn’t backed up that love with any contract talks just yet.