Author: Bill Baer

Texas Rangers' Robbie Ross works against the Boston Red Sox in the first inning of a baseball game on Sunday, May 11, 2014, in Arlington, Texas. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez)
AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez

Red Sox, Robbie Ross avoid arbitration at $1.25 million

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Jon Heyman reports that the Red Sox and left-hander Robbie Ross have avoided arbitration, agreeing to a one-year deal worth $1.25 million plus incentives. The two sides weren’t able to come to an agreement before the January 15 submission deadline, but they have avoided a hearing which would occur in February.

Ross, in his first year of arbitration eligibility, filed for $1.325 million while the Red Sox countered at $1.075 million. The club acquired him from the Rangers just over one year ago in exchange for pitcher Anthony Ranaudo. With the Red Sox last season, Ross posted a 3.86 ERA with a 53/20 K/BB ratio over 60 2/3 innings. He’ll serve as a lefty out of the bullpen along with Tom Layne this season.

Stephen Vogt underwent surgery on his right elbow

Oakland Athletics' Stephen Vogt watches his two-run home run during the fifth inning of a baseball game against the Baltimore Orioles, Friday, Aug. 14, 2015, in Baltimore. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)
AP Photo/Patrick Semansky
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MLB.com’s Jane Lee reports that Athletics catcher Stephen Vogt underwent arthroscopic surgery on his right elbow. He has an expected recovery timetable of four to six weeks. The club expects he will be ready by Opening Day on April 4.

Vogt, 31, hit .261/.341/.443 with 18 home runs and 71 RBI in 511 plate appearances for the Athletics last season, his third with the club after joining the club following a trade from the Rays in April 2013. His performance behind the dish and at the plate resulted in his first All-Star nomination this past season.

Vogt will be eligible for arbitration for the first time after the 2016 season and can become a free agent after the 2019 season.

Report: Nationals interested in Bronson Arroyo

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The Nationals are interested in free agent starter Bronson Arroyo, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports is reporting. With such a signing, the Nationals would reunite Arroyo with manager Dusty Baker, as the two were previously linked on the Reds from 2008-13.

Arroyo, who turns 39 in February, is recovering from Tommy John surgery which forced him out of action for the entire 2015 season and half of the 2014 season. In 2014, as a member of the Diamondbacks, Arroyo posted a 4.08 ERA with 47 strikeouts and 19 walks over 86 innings of work. Due to his age and injury history, Arroyo will likely sign a very incentive-laden contract whether with the Nationals or another team.

Arroyo had a throwing session with the Reds on Friday, adding another potential team to the mix along with the Nationals.

The Diamondbacks are still trying to trade Aaron Hill

Arizona Diamondbacks' Aaron Hill hits a two run double against Colorado Rockies relief pitcher Scott Oberg during the seventh inning of the second game of a baseball doubleheader Tuesday, Sept. 1, 2015, in Denver. (AP Photo/Jack Dempsey)
AP Photo/Jack Dempsey
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The Diamondbacks are still trying to trade second baseman Aaron Hill, but they’re having trouble as the free agent market still offers some better options including Howie Kendrick, Jimmy Rollins, and Ian Desmond, as Jon Heyman noted on Twitter.

Hill, 34 in March, will earn $12 million this season in the final year of his three-year contract with the D-Backs. He hit a meager .230/.295/.345 with six home runs and 39 RBI in 353 plate appearances last season, the second season in a row in which he was hampered by injuries and posted subpar numbers. The D-Backs wouldn’t expect much in return, even if they cover most or all of his remaining salary.

Moving Hill would allow the Diamondbacks to pursue an upgrade at second base, potentially one of the three aforementioned free agents. Kendrick and Desmond both turned down qualifying offers, so the club would have to forfeit an unprotected first round draft pick.

Josh Reddick ready to discuss extension with the Athletics

Oakland Athletics' Josh Reddick heads back to the dugout after grounding out to second during the eighth inning against Toronto Blue Jays in a baseball game in Toronto on Friday, Aug. 9, 2013. Reddick had hit a home run in his three previous at-bats. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Chris Young)
AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Chris Young
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Outfielder Josh Reddick and the Athletics recently avoided arbitration in his third and final year of eligibility, agreeing on a one-year deal worth $6.575 million. With that out of the way, Reddick is ready to discuss a potential contract extension with the team, reports John Hickey of the Bay Area News Group.

Reddick, who turns 29 in February, hit .272/.333/.449 with 20 home runs and 77 RBI in 582 plate appearances for the Athletics last season. While he typically puts up above-average offensive numbers while playing solid defense in right field, Reddick has had trouble staying health in recent seasons, which may give the A’s pause.

The Athletics could also try to trade Reddick before this season’s August 1 non-waiver trade deadline if he doesn’t sign an extension.