Theo Epstein bought a $3.25 million house blocks from Wrigley Field

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Theo Epstein is putting his five-year, $20 million contract to work already, as Bob Goldsborough of the Chicago Tribune reports that the new Cubs president paid $3.25 million for a 7,800-square foot house “just blocks from Wrigley Field.”

Goldsborough writes that Chicago Blackhawks player Patrick Sharp had “signed a contract to buy the house” back in September, but backed out of the deal. Epstein stepped in and bought it for about $250,000 more than the original list price.

Epstein’s new place is a block away from Ryan Dempster’s house, which the right-hander bought for $2.7 million in 2008. Maybe they can carpool to work.

(And this concludes my TMZ impersonation. Sorry.)

Giants sign Austin Jackson to two-year, $6 million contract

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The Giants announced on Monday night the signing of outfielder Austin Jackson. According to Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports, it’s a two-year, $6 million deal with performance incentives that allow Jackson to earn up to an additional $2.5 million for a total of $8.5 million.

Jackson, who soon turns 31 years old, spent last season with the Indians. In 318 plate appearances, he hit .318/.387/.482 with seven home runs, 35 RBI, and 46 runs scored.

The Giants have been on the hunt for a center fielder and Jackson addresses that need relatively cheaply. Jackson will join Hunter Pence and newcomer Andrew McCutchen in the outfield.