The Blue Jays win the Commissioner’s Award for Philanthropic Excellence

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Press release:

Major League Baseball and Baseball Commissioner Allan H. (Bud) Selig have named the Toronto Blue Jays as the 2012 recipient of the Commissioner’s Award for Philanthropic Excellence, which was created in 2010 to annually recognize an extraordinary charitable and philanthropic effort of an MLB Club.

This is for real charity, mind you. Not the charity they showed Jeff Loria in relieving him of all of his financial obligations this winter.

In other news, I had no idea they did charity in Canada. My conservative friends tell me that when you try to create a socialist utopia like our friends up north it saps all philanthropic will.

Hurm.

Orioles acquire Alec Asher from the Phillies

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The Phillies announced on Tuesday that the club traded pitcher Alec Asher to the Orioles for a player to be named later.

Asher, 25, was the victim of a roster crunch. He was not going to make the 25-man roster and the starting rotation at Triple-A Lehigh Valley was already full. The Phillies acquired him from the Rangers in the July 2015 Cole Hamels trade.

Asher had good results in 27 2/3 innings in the big leagues last year, posting a 2.28 ERA with a 13/4 K/BB ratio. While it didn’t show in those stats, the right-hander sometimes struggles with command and he doesn’t miss bats often enough to make up for it. The Orioles, however, are happy to add some pitching depth.

Ervin Santana gets Opening Day nod from Twins again

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Ervin Santana will once again start on Opening Day for the Twins, MLB.com’s Rhett Bollinger reports. He’ll face the Royals at home in a day game on Monday, April 3.

The last pitcher to start back-to-back Opening Days for the Twins was Carl Pavano in 2011-12.

Santana, 34, is entering the third year of a four-year, $55 million contract signed in December 2014. Last season, the right-hander finished with a solid 3.38 ERA and a 149/53 K/BB ratio over 181 1/3 innings.