UPDATE: The Athletics just officially announced that they have agreed to terms with Yoenis Cespedes on a four-year contract.
The Cuban outfielder arrived in A’s camp this morning and passed a pre-signing physical in order to make the deal official. He is scheduled to be introduced to the media during a press conference tomorrow morning. No word on if Ahman Green will be in attendance.
11:27 AM: The wait is over.
Yoenis Cespedes agreed to a four-year, $36 million contract with the Athletics last month, but the deal isn’t yet finalized because he has been waiting on a work visa in the Dominican Republic. However, Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle reports that the 26-year-old outfielder has finally arrived in Athletics’ camp this morning.
The first order to business is for Cespedes to undergo a physical in order to make his contract with Oakland official. He isn’t expected to work out with the team or address the media today.
Cespedes is a little bit behind the other position players in camp, but he still has plenty of time to get ready for Opening Day. He is expected to open the season as the A’s starting center fielder, pushing Coco Crisp over to left field.
Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports that the Royals and first baseman Eric Hosmer have discussed a long-term contract extension. However, Hosmer also indicated that he will head into free agency if a deal is not consummated by Opening Day.
Hosmer, 27, avoided arbitration with the Royals last month, agreeing to a $12.25 million salary for the 2017 season. He is one of four key Royals players who can become a free agent after the season along with Mike Moustakas, Alcides Escobar, and Lorenzo Cain. If Hosmer does reach free agency, he would arguably be the top free agent first baseman.
Hosmer finished the past season hitting .266/.328/.433 with 25 home runs and 104 RBI while making his first All-Star team.
Joel Sherman of the New York Post reports that the Yankees have signed pitcher Jon Niese to a minor league contract, pending a physical. Assuming the deal is finalized, Sherman notes that the Yankees will have Niese work as both a starter and a reliever in big league camp this spring.
According to Sherman, the Yankees were interested in lefty relievers Jerry Blevins and Boone Logan, but didn’t want to commit at their asking prices. They are looking for a lefty set-up man along with Tommy Lane.
Niese, 30, pitched for the Pirates and Mets last season, finishing with a 5.50 ERA and an 88/47 K/BB ratio over 121 innings.