MLB fires Executive Vice President Jimmie Lee Solomon

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Eric Fisher of SportsBusinessJournal reports that a longtime MLB executive has been let go:

Major League Baseball executive VP/baseball development Jimmie Lee Solomon has been fired by commissioner Bud Selig, according to industry sources, ending a 21-year association with the league.

MLB execs declined to comment, and it is not clear what precipitated the surprise move or what Selig plans to do to replace Solomon.

Fisher later tweeted that some team executives said “this was a long time coming.”

Solomon used to have the Joe Torre job: overseeing on-field issues and umpiring, but was demoted a couple of years ago to deal with the league’s development initiatives.  Now he’s out.

Solomon graduated from Harvard Law School, and after 10 years at a Washington law firm, where he made partner, he got into baseball. A couple of years he was quoted as saying he “hated every second” of his legal career.  Which is gonna make it a bit hard for him when he starts circulating resumes next week …

Blue Jays, Josh Donaldson to table extension talks

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Sportsnet’s Ben Nicholson-Smith reports that the Blue Jays and third baseman Josh Donaldson are tabling extension talks as the two sides weren’t able to build any momentum towards agreement on a new contract.

Donaldson said, “We’re not quite there. That, to me, right now is not the major focus and I’m turning the page.” He added, “I want to play this season and really focus on winning games because, ultimately, our goal is to win a World Series and I don’t want to hinder that at all.” Donaldson also said he expects to hit free agency.

The 32-year-old avoided arbitration with the Blue Jays last month, agreeing on a $23 million salary for the 2018 season. He’s a free agent at season’s end. Last year, the three-time All-Star hit .270/.385/.559 with 33 home runs, 78 RBI, and 65 runs scored in 496 plate appearances. Donaldson missed six weeks in the first half with a calf injury, but was able to return and post terrific numbers, so his health — at least that aspect of it — shouldn’t be a concern going into spring training.

If Donaldson does reach free agency, he’ll join a star-studded group that will likely also include Bryce Harper, Manny Machado, Charlie Blackmon, and A.J. Pollock.