Reds, Sean Marshall working on multi-year extension

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FOX Sports’ Jon Paul Morosi reports that the Reds are “making progress” toward a multi-year contract extension with setup man Sean Marshall. Morosi says the deal “could be announced early this week.”

Marshall was acquired via trade this offseason from the Cubs and hasn’t thrown a pitch yet in a major league game for the Reds, but he has a 2.45 ERA over his past 150 1/3 innings and is widely regarded as one of the most reliable relievers in baseball.

Marshall will become a free agent five days after the 2012 World Series if an extension is not completed.

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UPDATE, 12:41 PM: Marshall told the Cincinnati Enquirer‘s John Fay: “We may have something tomorrow.”

Cubs announce Anthony Iapoce as new hitting coach

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The Cubs announced on Monday afternoon that Anthony Iapoce will take over as the new hitting coach.

Chili Davis was fired as the Cubs’ hitting coach last week. As noted, the Cubs’ offense regressed in a few areas, notably in the power department. Additionally, the offense in general waned as the season went on, which opened up the door for the Brewers to challenge for the NL Central title.

Iapoce, 45, spent the last three years as the Rangers’ hitting coach. The Cubs point out that the Rangers’ offense made great strides in 2017 thanks in part to Iapoce. They are no doubt hoping he can bring the same magic to Chicago. Iapoce was the Cubs’ special assistant to the GM for the three seasons before joining the Rangers.

Though he never made it to the majors, Iapoce did spend time in the Brewers’ minor league system from 1994-2003 and another two in the independent Northern League in 2004-05.