In an effort to add some first base depth following Corey Hart’s knee surgery the Brewers are “talking to” free agent Lyle Overbay, according to Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com.
Rosenthal reports that Overbay has other teams interested besides the Brewers, but he played in Milwaukee in 2004-2005 and probably won’t find a better opportunity for playing time with Hart expected to miss 3-4 months.
For now Mat Gamel is expected to be the starting first baseman in Hart’s absence, but he’s unproven in the majors and has a lengthy injury history of his own. Overbay hit .259 with a .727 OPS in a part-time role for the Braves and Diamondbacks last season at age 35.
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.