Jon Rauch signs with the Blue Jays

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Toronto has signed reliever Jon Rauch to a one-year, $3.5 million contract with a $3.75 million option for 2012.

Rauch had a decent year last year, pressed into service as the Twins’ closer when Joe Nathan had Tommy John surgery. He had a 3.12 ERA and 46 strikeouts and 14 walks in 57.2 innings and converted 21 of 25 saves.  He also led the league in being really, really tall and in having neck tattoos, so he’s not a one-dimensional player.

Octavio Dotel will likely start as the closer, but given how erratic he can be, the Jays may happily turn to Rauch if need be.

Padres ride double-decker tour bus to AT&T Park

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On Sunday morning, the Padres planned to take a bus from their hotel in San Francisco to AT&T Park ahead of their afternoon game. The bus never showed. MLB.com’s AJ Cassavell reports that team director of player and staff services TJ Lasita flagged down an empty San Francisco tour bus, negotiated a rate, and got his players an impromptu ride to the ballpark.

The Padres’ Twitter account and Annie Heilbrunn of the San Diego Union-Tribune tweeted pictures and video:

The Padres and Giants are playing the rubber match of their three-game series this afternoon. The Padres will then travel to Arlington for a series with the Rangers. The Giants will welcome the Rockies.