U.S. Mint issuing first-ever “curved” coin to commemorate the Baseball Hall of Fame

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We heard back in April that the U.S. Mint was asking for submissions for the design of the 2014 National Baseball Hall of Fame Commemorative Coins. Well, a winning design has been selected and the result is something pretty cool.

In early 2014, we will see the first-ever “curved” coin issued by the U.S. Mint. The winning design, submitted by Cassie McFarland of San Luis Obipso, California, depicts a baseball glove on the obverse (heads) side. Meanwhile, the reverse (tails) side depicts a baseball. Thus, the curve not only simulates the pocket of a glove, but the look and feel of a baseball. It’s really quite nifty. Be sure to check out the interactive graphic on the U.S. Mint website.

You’ll be able to buy these bad boys in five, one, or half-dollar form while surcharges for each coin will be paid to the National Baseball Hall of Fame. If you’re into that. They’re not intended for practical use, but a neat keepsake nonetheless.

(Hat-tips to Dan Wohl of Cut 4 and Reddit Baseball for the link)

Twins designate Phil Hughes for assignment

AP Photo/Ron Schwane
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Phil Hughes was officially designated for assignment by the Twins on Tuesday, the culmination of multiple injury-plagued seasons and poor performance.

Things couldn’t have started out much better for Hughes in Minnesota. The former Yankees hurler joined the Twins on a three-year, $24 million contract in December of 2013 and reeled off a 3.52 ERA over 32 starts during his first season with the club. He set the MLB record (which still stands, by the way) for single season strikeout-to-walk ratio and even received some downballot Cy Young Award consideration. The big year resulted in the two sides ripping up their previous agreement with a new five-year, $58 million deal, but it was all downhill after that.

Hughes took a step back with a 4.40 ERA in 2015 and struggled with a 5.95 ERA over 11 starts and one relief appearance in 2016 before undergoing surgery for thoracic outlet syndrome. He wasn’t any better upon his return last year, putting up a 5.87 ERA in nine starts and five relief appearances. Hughes missed time with a biceps issue and required a thoracic outlet revision surgery in August. He began this year on the disabled list with an oblique injury, only to put up a 6.75 ERA over two starts and five relief appearances before the Twins decided to turn the page this week.

Hughes is still owed the remainder of his $13.2 million salary for this year and another $13.2 million next year. The deal didn’t work out as anyone would have hoped, but unfortunately this is another case of health just not cooperating.