Yuniesky Betancourt expects to have a major league deal soon

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The U.S. unemployment rate is still pushing 8%, but Yuniesky Betancourt does not believe he will be unemployed for long. His agent spoke to MLB Trade Rumors:

“I can assure you that Yuni will be signing a Major League contract. Currently, there are four teams we are in conversations with and we expect to be finalizing a deal shortly after the holidays.”

Betancourt landing more than a minor league deal with a camp invite despite hitting a mere .228/.256/.400 with seven homers last season is evidence of just how thin things are at shortstop around baseball.

Video: Albert Almora, Jr. lays out to make a great catch in deep right-center field

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Cubs center fielder Albert Almora, Jr. robbed Giants first baseman Brandon Belt of at least a double in the top of the first inning of Monday’s game at Wrigley Field. Almora completely left his feet to catch the ball before landing just shy of the warning track.

The Giants took the early lead two batters prior to Belt’s at-bat as Joe Panik hit a solo home run to center field.

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.