Brewers intend to exercise their half of a $14 million 2015 mutual option on Aramis Ramirez

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Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com has the scoop …

The Brewers intend to pick up their part of the $14 million mutual option on Aramis Ramirez’s contract, league sources said.

Milwaukee has the option of buying out the veteran third baseman Ramirez for $4 million but is pleased with his performance and prefers him back with the team on a $14 million, one-year commitment.

Brewers GM Doug Melvin denied to MLB.com’s Adam McCalvy that anything has been decided, but $14 million for a player of Ramirez’s caliber is pretty cheap. The real question is whether Ramirez will decline his half of the option in search of a multi-year deal.

The 36-year-old third baseman entered play Wednesday with a .295/.341/.447 batting line in 123 games.

Madison Bumgarner has been competing in rodeos under a fake name

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The Athletic’s Andrew Baggarly and Zach Buchanan report that Diamondbacks starter Madison Bumgarner has been competing in rodeos under a fake name as recently as December. The fake name is Mason Saunders. Bumgarner explains that “Mason” is shortened from “Madison,” while “Saunders” is his wife’s maiden name.

Bumgarner — err, Saunders — and one of his rodeo partners, Jaxson Tucker, won $26,560 in a team-roping rodeo competition in December. The Rancho Rio Arena posted a picture of the pair on Facebook, highlighting that they roped four steers in 31.36 seconds.

As Baggarly and Buchanan point out, Bumgarner also pointed out in a rodeo competition last March, just a couple days before pitching in a Cactus League game versus the Athletics, back when he was still with the Giants.

Bumgarner suffered bruised ribs and a left shoulder AC sprain in 2017 when he got into a dirt bike accident. Given that, Bumgarner’s latest extracurricular activity does raise a concern for the Diamondbacks, who inked him to a five-year, $85 million contract two months ago. Baggarly and Buchanan asked Bumgarner about such a concern. Bumgarner referred them to the club’s managing partner Ken Kendrick. Kendrick directed them to GM Mike Hazen. Hazen declined speaking about “specific contract language.” For what it’s worth, Bumgarner says he primarily uses his right hand to rope.

The jig is up on Bumgarner’s hobby. He jokingly said to The Athletic’s pair, “I’m nervous about this interview right now.” He added, “I’m upset with both you two.”