The Cubs sign Ryan Sweeney to a two-year deal


Why wait until the offseason to sign dudes?


Sweeney hit .266/.324/.448 with six homers and 19 RBI in 212 plate appearances this season. The Cubs had signed him to a minor league deal and called him up on May 6.

He made $1.75M for the Red Sox in 2012, so now he’s basically back up to his old salary level, this time with some job security. Although maybe not location security: there was talk of trading Sweeney over the summer. If he has a decent start next year the Cubs could always shop him again.

Chris Sale will start on Opening Day for Red Sox

Bob Levey/Getty Images

No surprise here: Chris Sale will start on Opening Day for the Red Sox, Pete Abraham of The Boston Globe reports. The Red Sox open the season on March 29 in Tampa Bay against the Rays. Sale will oppose Chris Archer.

Sale, 28, is the fifth different Opening Day starter the Red Sox have had in as many years, preceded by Rick Porcello, David Price, Clay Buchholz, and Jon Lester. Sale started on Opening Day for the White Sox in 2013, ’14, and ’16.

Sale finished second in AL Cy Young Award balloting last year and finished ninth for AL MVP. He went 17-8 with a 2.90 ERA and a 308/43 K/BB ratio in 214 1/3 innings. Sale and Clayton Kershaw (2015) are the only pitchers to strike out 300 or more batters in a season dating back to 2003.