Red Sox, Cubs table Epstein compensation talks

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Remember that Nov. 1 deadline for the Theo Epstein compensation to be worked out? It’s going to take a whole lot longer.

The Red Sox and Cubs have decided to halt their talks until after the Rule 5 draft takes place on Dec. 8.

The Boston Globe reported today that the Red Sox are still insisting on a “significant” return for Epstein. They initially proposed a swap of either Starlin Castro or Matt Garza for their general manager. Reports indicated that MLB would step in and decide the compensation if nothing had been worked out by Nov. 1, but the league decided against taking such an action. Now the issue will linger into next month.

Anibal Sanchez accepts optional assignment to Triple-A

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The Tigers announced on Monday that pitcher Anibal Sanchez has accepted an optional assignment to Triple-A Toledo. Pitcher Warwick Saupold was recalled from Toledo to take Sanchez’s roster spot.

Sanchez, 33, continued to struggle this season pitching out of the bullpen. He gave up 26 runs (21 earned) on 34 hits and nine walks with 22 strikeouts in 21 innings. Nine of those 34 hits were home runs. Sanchez finished the 2015 season with a 4.99 ERA and last season with a 5.87 ERA, so he’s had a rough go of it in recent years.

The decision to go to Triple-A was Sanchez’s, Anthony Fenech of the Free Press reports. Sanchez wants to be stretched out as a starting pitcher again.

Braves release James Loney

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Just a few days after inking him to a minor league deal, the Braves have released first baseman James Loney, the team announced on Monday. Loney became expendable when the Braves acquired Matt Adams from the Cardinals on Saturday as a replacement for the injured Freddie Freeman.

Loney, 33, appeared in two games at Triple-A Gwinnett. He had one hit, a single, and one walk in eight plate appearances.

Loney will likely have to wait for another team to deal with an injured first baseman or DH before he can secure another contract.