Rockies decline $11 million option on Aaron Cook

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Colorado has declined Aaron Cook’s $11 million option for next season, choosing a $500,000 buyout instead after injuries limited the 32-year-old right-hander to 97 ineffective innings.

Cook was a workhorse for the Rockies from 2006-2008, but has thrown just 158, 128, and 97 innings during the past three seasons while posting a 4.94 ERA.

General manager Dan O’Dowd told Jim Armstrong of the Denver Post that “the door is open” for Cook to re-sign with the Rockies for a lesser salary, but presumably he’ll shop around for a multi-year deal or at least some decent guaranteed money first.

Mets invite Tim Tebow to spring training

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Tim Tebow isn’t letting go of his major league dreams just yet. The former NFL quarterback is slated to appear with the Mets during spring training this year, extending what initially looked like an ill-fated career choice for at least one more season. Per the club’s official announcement on Friday, he’ll join a group of spring training invitees that includes top-30 prospects like Peter Alonso, P.J. Conlon, Patrick Mazeika and David Thompson.

Tebow, 30, hasn’t taken to professional baseball as gracefully as expected. He batted a cumulative .226/.309/.347 with eight home runs and a .656 OPS in 486 plate appearances for Single-A Columbia and High-A St. Lucie in 2017. While that wasn’t enough to compel the Mets to give the aging outfielder a big league tryout, there’s no denying that Tebow brought substantial benefit to their minor league affiliates — in the form of increased attendance figures and ticket sales, that is.

Even after the Mets were booted from the NL East race last September, they resisted the idea of promoting Tebow for a late-season attendance boost of their own. That’s not to say they’re planning on taking the same approach in 2018; Tebow will undoubtedly get his cup of coffee in the majors at some point, but for now, a Grapefruit League tryout is likely as close as he’ll ever get to playing with the team’s big league roster on an everyday basis.