Nolan Ryan: talks with Prince Fielder are “very preliminary”

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The Rangers met with Prince Fielder yesterday.  Exciting!  Maybe not too exciting, though.  “Keep your shirt on,” Nolan Ryan says:

Texas Rangers president Nolan Ryan describes the team’s discussions with free agent slugger Prince Fielder as “very preliminary” … During a question-and-answer session with fans at the team’s annual winter FanFest, Ryan said the meeting Friday was to try to get a true feel for what Fielder and Boras are thinking.

Hmm, wonder what Boras and Fielder are thinking?  I’ll give you three choices:

A)  “We would like an incentive-laden, short-term deal with a low base salary because we are fully aware of the risks inherent in any free agent signing and wish to put your mind at ease.”

B) “Look, this is all so complicated and subjective. Why don’t you tell us what you think Prince is worth.” or

C) Pay us pay us pay us pays us pay us pay us pay us pay us pay us.

At least I think those are all of the possibilities. Maybe they just wanted to see if the Rangers had Mavericks tickets they could use. I dunno.

2017 Preview: The American League East

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For the past few weeks we’ve been previewing the 2017 season. Here, in handy one-stop-shopping form, is our package of previews from the American League East

Boston may have the most talent and, in Mookie Betts, the best player. The Yankees have the best farm system. Baltimore has all the dingers and the best closer. Toronto may have the best collection of heels, at least in the view of fans of the other AL East teams.  The Rays have the best . . . hmm. I’ll get back to you on that.

Anyway, here are our previews for the American League East:

Boston Red Sox
Toronto Blue Jays
Baltimore Orioles
New York Yankees
Tampa Bay Rays

Steven Matz likely to start season on DL; Zack Wheeler to adhere to innings limit

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Mets manager Terry Collins said on Wednesday, “It’s unlikely that [Steven Matz] will start the season with us.” The final spot in the Mets’ starting rotation will go to either Zack Wheeler or Seth Lugo, Newsday’s Marc Carig reports.

On Wheeler’s innings limit, assistant GM John Ricco said, “There’s going to be some number but we don’t exactly know what that is.” Wheeler missed the last two seasons after undergoing Tommy John surgery.

Neither Wheeler nor Lugo have had terrific springs as each carries a 5.11 and 5.56 Grapefruit League ERA, respectively. However, Carig notes that Wheeler has impressed simply by appearing healthy and brandishing a fastball that once again sits in the mid- to high-90’s. Lugo, meanwhile, proved crucial to the Mets last year, posting a 2.67 ERA across eight starts and nine relief appearances.