Milwaukee Brewers outfielder Nyjer Morgan took to the ice to play a little hockey on Wednesday, practicing with the San Jose Sharks for about 30 minutes.
Morgan played junior hockey for the Regina Pats of the Western Hockey before giving up the sport to focus on baseball about a decade ago. He handled himself well, and even scored a goal on Sharks backup Thomas Greiss during a shootout contest.
Sharks star Joe Thornton characterized Morgan’s performance as “Not bad. It was better than I thought.”
You can read more details in Mike Halford’s post over at PHT, and the always engaging Morgan talks about the experience in an entertaining interview with CSNBayArea below.
Stay cool, Tony Plush.
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Takashi Saito and the Brewers have finalized a one-year contract, with Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com reporting that the deal could pay the 41-year-old reliever up to $3.2 million based on incentives.
Saito can’t handle a full workload at this point in his career, rarely pitching on back-to-back days for the Braves this year, but he remains an elite reliever with a 2.83 ERA, .203 opponents’ batting average, and 69/17 K/BB ratio in 54 innings.
He figures to serve as John Axford’s primary setup man, although Saito could take over closing duties if Axford struggles after more or less coming out of nowhere to save 24 games with a 2.48 ERA as a 27-year-old rookie. Saito saved 81 games in three seasons with the Dodgers. And that Milwaukee pitching staff keeps looking better and better.
Carl Pavano and his agent smartly let Cliff Lee sign before making their move, setting him up as the top free agent starter on the market. However, that took place two weeks ago and Pavano still hasn’t made a decision despite interest from multiple teams.
Minnesota and Washington (and previously Milwaukee) have been linked to Pavano, and Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe adds Texas and Seattle to the list. Presumably any team seriously interested in Pavano has offered him a two-year deal, but according to Cafardo he’s holding out for a three-year contract.
Pavano hasn’t missed a start in two seasons and went 17-11 with a 3.75 ERA and fantastic 117/37 K/BB ratio in 221 innings for the Twins this year, but at age 35 and with his extensive injury history a three-year commitment would be an extremely risky move by a team truly desperate for rotation help. It’ll be interesting to see if anyone caves.