Bad news for Joel Zumaya

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Last week Tigers’ reliever Joel Zumaya was cleared to start a throwing program.  Now it has taken a turn for the ominous:

The news about Joel Zumaya turned somber Sunday after the Tigers disclosed he felt pain during Thursday’s rehabilitation at Lakeland, Fla. … The Tigers will hold a conference call today that will include James Andrews, the orthopedic surgeon who has worked with Zumaya on a series of arm ailments.

Tough break for Joel Zumaya who has had nothing but tough breaks in the department for the past few years.

In other news, do you think that Dr. James Andrews’ neighbors down in Alabama chuckle to themselves when they say they’re going to have a visit with him?  It’s not high comedy — it’s really on par with the time that I really and truly did need to go see a man about a dog — but I bet it never gets old to them.

Free agent slugger José Abreu signs 3-year, $58.5M deal with Astros

Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports
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HOUSTON — Jose Abreu and the World Series champion Astros agreed to a three-year, $58.5 million contract, adding another powerful bat to Houston’s lineup.

Abreu, the 2020 AL MVP, gets $19.5 million in each of the next three seasons.

He spent his first nine major league seasons with the Chicago White Sox. The first baseman became a free agent after batting .304 with 15 home runs, 75 RBIs and an .824 OPS this year.

With the Astros, he replaces Yuli Gurriel at first base in a batting order that also features All-Star sluggers Yordan Alvarez, Jose Altuve, Alex Bregman and Kyle Tucker.

Gurriel became a free agent after Houston defeated the Philadelphia Phillies this month for its second World Series championship.

The 35-year-old Abreu becomes the biggest free agent to switch teams so far this offseason. Born in Cuba, the three-time All-Star and 2014 AL Rookie of the Year is a .292 career hitter in the majors with 243 homers, 863 RBIs and an .860 OPS.

The Astros announced the signing. Abreu was scheduled to be introduced in a news conference at Minute Maid Park.

He would get a $200,000 for winning an MVP award, $175,000 for finishing second in the voting, $150,000 for third, $125,000 for fourth and $100,000 for fifth. Abreu also would get $100,000 for earning World Series MVP and $75,000 for League Championship Series MVP, $75,000 for making the All-Star team and $75,000 for winning a Gold Glove or a Silver Slugger.

Abreu gets a hotel suite on road trips and the right to buy a luxury suite for all Astros home games.