Dodgers (still) want to sign Pineiro

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The Los Angeles Dodgers want everyone to know they’re trying really, really hard. Honestly, folks.

According to Yahoo!’s Tim Brown, the Dodgers are trying to figure out away to sign free agent pitcher Joel Pineiro, who is coming off perhaps his finest season.

The Dodgers have reportedly been on the Pineiro hunt for awhile, but since it keeps coming up we’ll mention it again.

Following two straight trips to the NLCS, and proving to be no match for the Phillies in both instances, the Dodgers are taking an odd (meaning cheap) approach to this offseason. It’s an approach no doubt connected — no matter what the honchos tell you — to the ongoing divorce proceedings between owners Frank and Jamie McCourt.

The Dodgers have already let Randy Wolf walk and made little to no effort to bring back Jon Garland, Vicente Padilla and/or Jeff Weaver. Jason Schmidt is also gone, but his presence was little more than a rumor anyway, kind of like Sasquatch.

That leaves them with Chad Billingsley, Clayton Kershaw, Hiroki Kuroda and a host of other possibilities, including Hong-Chih Kuo, Eric Stults, James McDonald and Russ Ortiz. Russ Ortiz? What, Dave Burba wasn’t available?

Anyway, the whole thing is rather ridiculous considering the Dodgers said they couldn’t afford Wolf, who signed for three years and $29.75 million with the Brewers. Guess how much Pineiro wants? Three years, $30 million!

Who’s running that team, the body guard?

Follow me on Twitter at @bharks.

Astros talking to Justin Verlander, Gerrit Cole about extensions

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It’s extension season and Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reports that the Astros — who already agreed to an extension with Alex Bregman — are discussing contract extensions with Justin Verlander and Gerrit Cole.

Funny thing about Verlander, by the way: when he got his current $180 million deal, most people fell into the “oh, there’s an overpay!” column. What’s more, this past winter, when everyone was talking about how bad it is to give guys big long term deals, Verlander’s name was notably absent in the conversation despite the fact that his deal has turned out to be quite good. I suppose that says something about how good the anti-long-term deal folks are at cherrypicking.

That being said, Rosenthal says “it would be an upset” if either Verlander or Cole signed extensions. I can see that. Verlander is locked up this year and has a vesting option for 2020, and a lot can happen in a year or two. Cole is a Scott Boras client and Boras clients tend to hit the market rather than sign extensions. Perhaps their former teammate, Dallas Keuchel‘s, terrible experience on the free agent market this winter will alter that calculus. Hard to say.