The Blue Jays reach deals with Dustin McGowan, Jose Bautista

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It’s for $500,000 for McGowan. Adam LaRoche understands the significance of that amount.

McGowan was pretty awesome in 2007 and 2008, winning 14 games with a 3.62 ERA and 169 strikeouts in 32 starts.  Then there were concerns of overuse, then there was shoulder surgery.

Last summer J.P. Ricciardi said that McGowan’s rehab had hit some bumps and that his career was in jeopardy.  Either McGowan’s actual prognosis has improved or the Jays are not being run by excitable people who struggle at the most basic of public relations tasks like Ricciardi did.  Not that those things are mutually-exclusive.

The Jays likewise announced that they’ve reached terms with Jose Bautista for one year, $2.4 million. He’s a part-timer and maybe not worth that money, but he’s not worth too much less than that and the Blue Jays like him.

Cubs to activate Craig Kimbrel on Thursday

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The Cubs will activate reliever Craig Kimbrel ahead of Thursday afternoon’s game against the Braves, Sahadev Sharma of The Athletic reports.

Kimbrel, 31, ended a seven-month stint in free agency, agreeing to a three-year, $43 million contract with the Cubs earlier this month. He has made four minor league appearances, allowing one earned run on two hits and a walk with four strikeouts in 3 2/3 innings.

With an aggregate 3.96 ERA entering Wednesday, the Cubs’ bullpen has been among the better bullpens in the league. Adding Kimbrel, one of the greatest closers of all-time, certainly can’t hurt and will give them some stability in save situations.