Report: Pablo Sandoval recently rejected contract offer in the $40 million range

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Earlier, we learned that the Giants and third baseman Pablo Sandoval haven’t made any progress on a contract extension. It appears Sandoval wants a deal similar to Hunter Pence’s five years and $90 million, which was struck last September.

CSN Bay Area’s Andrew Baggarly is reporting that, on Friday, the club offered Sandoval a three-year deal in the $40 million range, but it was rejected. Sandoval’s agent, Gustavo Vasquez of SPS Sports Group, will remain in Arizona through the Giants’ season-opening series and will continue to negotiate, but he doesn’t expect any concessions. What he does expect, however, is for his client to test free agency if a deal can’t be struck by the All-Star break.

Sandoval has had health and conditioning issues, which is not an insignificant factor for the Giants. He logged over 470 plate appearances last season for the first time since 2010 and his weight has long been a source of concern, though he did show up in camp noticeably more svelte.

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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.