Red Sox ink Embree to minor league deal

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Rob Bradford of Boston-based WEEI.com passes along word that the Red Sox have agreed to terms on a minor league contract with reliever Alan Embree.  The veteran left-hander posted a 5.84 ERA, a 12/12 K/BB ratio and a 1.62 WHIP in 36 appearances last season for the Rockies before fracturing his tibia in mid-July.  He should be fully recovered by now, but he’s a longshot to make Boston’s Opening Day roster.  Embree, who turned 40 in late January, is the owner of a 4.59 career ERA and 1.34 career WHIP over 16 seasons.

Report: Cardinals to sign Paul Goldschmidt to five-year contract extension

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Extension season continues. The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal reports that the Cardinals and first baseman Paul Goldschmidt are close to an agreement on a five-year extension. The value is believed to be around $130 million, according to Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Goldschmidt was set to become a free agent after the season.

The Cardinals acquired Goldschmidt, 31, from the Diamondbacks in December in exchange for Luke Weaver, Carson Kelly, Andy Young, and a 2019 competitive balance round B pick. The slugger is a six-time All-Star, a three-time Gold Glove Award winner, and a four-time Silver Slugger Award winner. Goldschmidt owns a career .297/.398/.532 triple-slash line along with 209 home runs, 710 RBI, 709 runs scored, and 124 stolen bases. He is also well-regarded for his defense at first base. As a result, he has accumulated 40.3 Wins Above Replacement over eight seasons, according to Baseball Reference.

With Goldschmidt in place, the Cardinals are set at first base for the foreseeable future. Though Goldschmidt got off to a slow start last season, carrying an OPS barely above .700 into June, he recovered and finished with a .922 OPS. That two-month blip aside, there’s no reason to think Goldschmidt’s production is about to fall off anytime soon.