The Marlins offer to Pujols was less than $200 million

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We heard in the wee hours this morning that the Marlins had made a nine-year offer to Albert Pujols.  Shock! Dismay! Excitement!

And now we hear from Clark Spencer of the Miami Herald that the offer was for less than $200 million.  Which means that it was almost certainly less than the $22 million a year offer the Cardinals have long been thought to have on the table for Pujols.

Which makes me continue to think that with Jose Reyes, Albert Pujols and everyone else the Marlins talk to, the strategy is to be able to create the impression that they’re trying to do big things but that, in reality, they’re just screwing around. You’re not going to pry Pujols away from the Cardinals with comparable dollars. He’s comfortable there and can take advantage of all manner of opportunities and conveniences there that he will not be able to take advantage of if he joins a new team. You gotta make it worth his while, and a <$22M/year offer isn’t that.

When you’re the Marlins — coming off a losing season and looking  to build some credibility in the market — you gotta go big or go home.  Thus far, they don’t seem to be going big.

Padres, Mariners join list of teams to extend netting

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The Reds announced earlier that they plan to extend the protective netting at Great American Ball Park in time for Opening Day next season. You can add the Padres and Mariners to what will surely be a growing list.

A young fan was struck in the face by a foul ball at Yankee Stadium on Wednesday, which gave new life to the netting debate. Some fans and media types think Major League Baseball is not doing enough to protect fans. While Major League Baseball has issued guidelines for protective netting, it is ultimately up to the teams to decide just how much netting to use.

Zach Britton receives stem cell injection, likely done for the season

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Orioles closer Zach Britton is likely done for the remainder of the 2017 season after receiving a stem cell injection in his left knee, Peter Schmuck and Jon Meoli of the Baltimore Sun report. Britton has been battling knee problems for most of the season.

The Orioles are still technically in the AL Wild Card race, entering play Thursday 5.5 games behind the Twins for the second Wild Card slot. With only nine games remaining, however, the 73-80 Orioles are likely being realistic about their chances and not taking any unnecessary risks with Britton.

Britton, 29, put up a 2.89 ERA with 15 saves and a 29/18 K/BB ratio in 37 1/3 innings this season. He will be eligible for arbitration for the fourth and final time this offseason.