White Sox reportedly nearing trade for Jeff Samardzija

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From Jon Heyman’s latest at CBSSports.com …

SAN DIEGO — The A’s are close to a deal involving Jeff Samardzija. It appears likely he’d be headed to the White Sox.

There was speculation the Red Sox were involved in talks, as well, but the South Side team, which also happens to be Samardzija’s hometown team, has been the most interested and appears like the likely winner.

Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports says the A’s front office has been eyeing White Sox infielder Marcus Semien, who could take over at shortstop next year in Oakland with Jed Lowrie departing as a free agent. Multiple prospects would also be headed the A’s way.

Semien has batted just .240/.293/.380 in 326 plate appearances at the major league level since debuting in 2013, but the 24-year-old had a cool .266/.368/.491 slash line and 19 homers in 115 games at Triple-A.

Samardzija is entering his contract year, so this is another sign that the White Sox are going for it in 2015. The 29-year-old former Notre Dame wide receiver had an outstanding 2.99 ERA, 1.065 WHIP, and 202/43 K/BB ratio in 219 2/3 innings (33 starts) this past season between the Cubs and Athletics.

Royals, Alex Gordon close to contract agreement

Alex Gordon
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MLB.com’s Jeffrey Flanagan reports that the Royals and outfielder Alex Gordon are “getting close” to an agreement on a one-year contract. Terms of the deal aren’t yet known, but the Royals could make it official within the next few days.

Gordon, who turns 36 years old next month, hit .266/.345/.396 with 13 home runs and 76 RBI over 633 plate appearances with the Royals this past season. His offense has waned, owning an adjusted OPS of 84 since 2016 (100 is average), but he still plays decent defense.

Gordon has spent all 13 years of his major league career with the Royals. With the club in a rebuilding phase, he will serve as the clubhouse leader and be a mentor to younger players on the roster.