Nomar Garciaparra thinks proven PED users should be booted from the Hall of Fame

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Former Red Sox shortstop Nomar Garciaparra spoke at length with Jesse Spector of Sporting News. One of the big topics they touched on was the inclusion of players proven or implicated to have used performance-enhancing drugs getting into the Hall of Fame. Nomar thinks they should be booted out if they have been proven to have cheated.

From Spector’s column:

For me, I don’t understand why you can’t go back. If you find that out and you find out the truth — you can’t go off assumptions, but when you find out the truth, why can’t you take a person out of the Hall of Fame if you found out he was taking PEDs? I don’t see why that’s so horrible to do. Or, if they had an award, I know they do it in the Olympics, they take away gold medals and things when they later find out. I don’t see why that’s so hard. I mean, they took away the Heisman Trophy, as well. There’s a lot of different ways people can go about it and say that it can still be done.

Using an eraser on baseball history opens up a pandora’s box. Once you get the steroid cheaters out, is that it, or do you go after amphetamine users? Spitballers? What about other morally-questionable inductees — the wife-beaters, the racists, the drunks? By itself, Garciaparra’s wish certainly makes sense, but unfortunately it raises more questions than it answers.

Yankees re-sign Jon Niese to a minor league deal

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The Yankees have re-signed pitcher Jon Niese to a minor league contract, George A. King III of the New York Post reports. Niese was released on Sunday, but he’ll stick around and provide rotation depth for the Yankees.

Niese had knee surgery last August and got a late start to spring training as a result. In six spring appearances lasting an inning each, the lefty gave up three earned runs on five hits and a walk with five strikeouts.

Niese, a veteran of nine seasons, put up an aggregate 5.50 ERA with an 88/47 K/BB ratio in 121 innings last season between the Pirates and Mets.

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.