Phillies GM Ruben Amaro apologized to Ryan Howard

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In December, Phillies GM Ruben Amaro publicly criticized first baseman Ryan Howard in an appearance on 97.5 The Fanatic back in December. Amaro said, “It would probably bode better for the organization not with him but without him. With that said if he’s with us, then we’ll work around him.”

Since then, Amaro has taken some heat for the comment as it’s not exactly a good look to go on the media circuit to trash a player who could potentially serve as a trade asset.

That chapter of the Ryan Howard book has ended, though, as Amaro has apologized to the slugger, Ryan Lawrence of the Philadelphia Daily News reports:

“Frankly, I apologized for those comments that I made that were public,” Amaro said. “And I think he appreciated that. Other than that, I want to keep the conversation private. It was a good talk.”

Howard, 35, is entering the fourth year of a five-year, $125 million contract extension signed back in April 2010. He’ll earn $25 million in both 2015 and ’16, and will receive another $10 million when the Phillies (or his eventual acquiring team) buy him out for $10 million for the 2017 season. Howard, who owns the Phillies’ single-season home run record with 58, batted a meager .223/.310/.380 last season but slugged 23 home runs and knocked in 95 runs.

Giants sign Drew Smyly to one-year deal

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The Giants announced on Thursday that the club inked pitcher Drew Smyly to a one-year contract. As Alex Pavlovic of NBC Sports Bay Area notes, the contract is of the major league variety.

Smyly, 30, split last season between the Rangers and Phillies with a stint with the Brewers in between. He did not appear in a major league game with the Brewers. In aggregate, Smyly posted a 6.24 ERA with 120 strikeouts and 55 walks over 114 innings.

Smyly will vie for a spot at the back of the Giants’ starting rotation. If he doesn’t make the cut, he could work out of the bullpen. Pitching in the spacious confines of Oracle Park should help Smyly, who gave up 19 homers in Texas and 13 in Philly last season in more hitter-friendly parks.