The New York Times is reporting that MLB, rebuffed in its attempts to get Biogenesis documents from the Miami New Times, is now paying an ex-Biogenesis employee for documents relating to the case.
Which is interesting enough. Making it even more fascinating: according to the report, the league has taken this step after learning that a player named in documents has purchased documents from a former clinic employee in order to destroy them.
The New York Times has no idea about the identity of that player. Among those named in the Biogenesis documents were Alex Rodriguez, Ryan Braun, Gio Gonzalez, Melky Cabrera and Nelson Cruz.
The Times reports that MLB has provided payments to multiple former Biogenesis employees who have cooperated with its investigation. According to the Times: “The payments were for the time they provided to the investigators,” and “were not believed to have exceeded several thousand dollars.”
While MLB is well within its rights to pay the ex-employees, there is the concern that said payments would make the employees easily attackable witnesses in case they’re called to testify in any lawsuits.
The Astros remain in contact with the Athletics on starting pitcher Sonny Gray, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports. The Astros have added Charlie Morton this offseason, but the club has been trying to add a big-name starting pitcher to put at the top of the rotation behind Dallas Keuchel.
Gray, 27, was limited to 22 starts in the 2016 season due to a forearm issue. His stats left a lot to be desired, as he finished with a 5-11 record, a 5.69 ERA, and a 94/42 K/BB ratio over 117 innings. Considering how Gray pitched in the previous three years, he’s a good bet to bounce back.
Gray is under team control through 2019, which is a big draw for the Astros. Needless to say, the Athletics would want a haul in terms of prospects. Gray will earn $3.575 million in 2017, having avoided arbitration in his first year of eligibility.
As we noted last week, The Chicago Cubs took the unusual step of not waiting until the summer after winning the World Series to make their customary White House visit to meet the president. They did it today, seeing President Obama a few short days before he leaves office.
Despite the fact that Obama is a White Sox fan, he met the Cubs with diplomacy and grace. It’s almost as if he’s been in that business for the past eight years. In return, he was given some gifts by the Cubs: Theo Epstein presented Obama with a No. 44 Cubs jersey, a tile from the center field scoreboard at Wrigley Field, and a lifetime pass to Wrigley as well.
Obama is staying in D.C. after he leaves office this week, hanging around so his daughter can finish high school in the same place she started. Even so, he’s likely going to be back to Chicago a good bit over the rest of his life, so he’ll likely be able to put the free pass to work. Assuming it comes with, like, six companion passes for his Secret Service detail.