Twins close to agreement with free agent Jason Marquis

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According to Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com, the Twins are nearing agreement on a contract with free agent right-hander Jason Marquis.

Marquis posted an underwhelming 4.43 ERA and 1.49 WHIP in 23 starts between the Nationals and Diamondbacks in 2011, fanning only 76 batters and walking 43 across 132 innings before fracturing his right fibula on a comebacker in mid-August. He had a wretched 6.60 ERA in 58 2/3 innings in 2010.

Marquis should find better luck at Minnesota’s Target Field, an extreme pitcher’s park, but the 33-year-old is doubtful to suddenly become a dominant starter in his 13th MLB season. No word yet on the financial terms, nor the length of the deal that is being discussed.

Yankees activate Giancarlo Stanton

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The New York Yankees have activated Giancarlo Stanton. He’ll be in the lineup in tonight’s game against the Rays.

Stanton has been on the injured list since April 1 due to a left biceps strain and a left shoulder strain sustained in what Aaron Boone called a “funky swing” at the time. He began a rehab assignment in late May, had it halted due to injury, and resumed it recently. He’s been swinging the bat well during his most recent stint, socking four homers in ten games.

That pop will be welcome. The Yankees have weathered Stanton’s injury — and injuries to Aaron Judge and scads of other players — but a team can’t defy gravity forever. At some point you need your established threats back. With Stanton coming back tonight, Judge coming back later this week and with the addition of Edwin Encarnación in that trade with Seattle, the Bombers should continue to hit bombs throughout the summer.