From FOX Sports’ Jon Morosi comes word that the Cubs, Pirates, Royals and Braves are among the teams with interest in free agent Jason Hammel.
The Giants requested the 31-year-old’s medical records at one point earlier this offseason, but they’ve apparently moved on after signing Tim Hudson and re-upping with Ryan Vogelsong.
Hammel, who’s said to be looking for a three- or four-year deal, posted a disappointing 4.97 ERA, 1.46 WHIP and 6.2 K/9 in 139 1/3 innings this past season for the Orioles. The right-hander posted a much-better 3.43 ERA, 1.24 WHIP and 8.6 K/9 in 118 frames with Baltimore in 2012.
Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle reports that Oakland Athletics owner John Fisher has reversed course and will continue to pay minor leaguers. Fisher tells Slusser, “I concluded I made a mistake.” He said he is also setting up an assistance fund for furloughed employees.
The A’s decided in late May to stop paying paying minor leaguers as of June 1, which was the earliest date on which any club could do so after an MLB-wide agreement to pay minor leaguers through May 31 expired. In the event, the A’s were the only team to stop paying the $400/week stipends to players before the end of June. Some teams, notable the Royals and Twins, promised to keep the payments up through August 31, which is when the minor league season would’ve ended. The Washington Nationals decided to lop off $100 of the stipends last week but, after a day’s worth of blowback from the media and fans, reversed course themselves.