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Grady Sizemore and Nick Swisher never officially retired but have basically retired


Neither Nick Swisher nor Grady Sizemore ever retired. They just . . . stopped being signed by teams and given a chance to play. Now, despite, the lack of an official announcement, both have signaled that they have moved on to the next phase of their careers.

The Yankees have announced that Swisher will be a spring training instructor. He joins A-Rod, Goose Gossage and a cast of the zillion usual former Yankees suspects down in Tampa. I would guess that he’ll talk to young players about how to scare the living hell out of reporters with a positive intensity that goes to 11, bro.

Sizemore, meanwhile, has been hired by the Indians as an advisor for player development. Whether this is a real front office job or if he’ll be the sort of “advisor” who is, in reality, just a spring training instructor remains to be seen.

If, as it seems, this is the end of each of their careers, they go off into the sunset with nothing to be ashamed of. Sizemore finishes with a .265/.349/.457 career batting line and 150 homers over 1,110 games. There was a brief period there, about a decade ago, when he was in the conversation as one of the best players in the game. Injuries, unfortunately, derailed that promise. He last played, with the Rays, in 2015.

Swisher, who also did not play in 2016, was the first round pick of the Oakland A’s in the now-famous 2002 draft featured in “Moneyball.” The second generation big leaguer — son of Cards, Cubs and Padres catcher Steve Swisher — finishes with 245 homers and a line of .249/.351/.447 in 12 seasons. He made the All-Star team once and was a a key part of the World Champion 2009 Yankees.

Good luck with your future endeavors, men.

Jharel Cotton to undergo Tommy John surgery

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Athletics right-hander Jharel Cotton will undergo Tommy John surgery, per an announcement on Saturday. Cotton initially experienced some elbow soreness during a Cactus League start earlier this week and was officially diagnosed with a strained ulnar collateral ligament and strained flexor muscle on Thursday. He’ll be out of commission until 2019 at the earliest.

This isn’t the first time Cotton has dealt with elbow issues. According to’s Jane Lee, he had screws inserted in his right elbow after sustaining a stress fracture in 2013 and suffered some minor elbow discomfort again last fall. Prior to his diagnosis, the 26-year-old was poised for his third run with the A’s in 2018. He pitched his first full season with the club in 2017, turning in a 5.58 ERA, 3.7 BB/9 and 7.3 SO/9 in 24 starts and 129 innings.

Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle adds that the team is open to adding pitching depth this spring, though they’ll wait to see if the price goes down on some free agents first. Barring that, right-handed long reliever Andrew Triggs could be tabbed to fill the fifth spot in the rotation.