Cubs not expected to deal Carlos Pena to Yankees

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Cubs first baseman Carlos Pena was claimed off waivers by the Yankees on Wednesday afternoon.

The Cubs are well out of contention for a playoff spot and would do well to dump some cash. And the Yankees could use an upgrade at designated hitter, where Jorge Posada and Co. have been far too inconsistent. But it doesn’t sound like Pena will be making his way to New York this month.

Carrie Muskat of MLB.com wrote earlier today that the 33-year-old slugger is “not going anywhere” and ESPN.com’s Buster Olney tweeted moments ago that the Cubs and Yanks have “had no contact” yet concerning the waiver claim.

Pena will become a free agent this winter and could probably net the Cubs a lower-tier prospect from the Yankees’ farm system, but the Chicago front office made no effort to shop him at last month’s non-waiver deadline and apparently haven’t found new motivation here in late August.

Phil Rogers of the Chicago Tribune thinks he knows the Cubs’ primary reason for standing pat: half of the one-year, $10 million free agent contract that Pena signed last winter was deferred to 2012.

And why does that matter? Well … uhh … we don’t have a damn clue.

Report: Giants in “serious discussions” with Reds to acquire Billy Hamilton

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Zach Buchanan of the Cincinnati Enquirer reports that the Giants are engaged in “serious discussions” with the Reds to acquire center fielder Billy Hamilton. Talks are apparently advanced enough that a deal could be completed before the end of the Winter Meetings on Thursday.

It’s no secret that the Giants would like to make an upgrade in the outfield this offseason, as the club has also been linked to Red Sox center fielder Jackie Bradley, Jr. Currently, the Giants’ outfield consists of Denard Span, Hunter Pence, and Jarrett Parker.

Hamilton, 27, owns a meager .248/.298/.334 batting line across parts of five seasons in the majors with the Reds. However, he has plenty of speed, having stolen at least 56 bases in each of the last four seasons. Hamilton is also well-regarded for his defense, which would be a boon at spacious AT&T Park.

Hamilton is in his second of three years of arbitration eligibility. He’s projected to earn $5 million for this coming season. Buchanan notes that the Rangers are also interested in potentially acquiring Hamilton.