Athletics sign Henderson Alvarez to a one-year deal

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Chris Cotillo of MLB Daily Dish reports that the Athletics have signed starter Henderson Alvarez to an incentive-laden one-year deal with a base salary of $4.25 million. Alvarez can earn an additional $1.6 million in incentives, which would push the maximum value to $5.85 million.

The Marlins non-tendered Alvarez earlier this month, ahead of his eligibility for his second year of arbitration. Alvarez made only four starts this past season due to a partially torn UCL in his right elbow and inflammation in his right shoulder. He underwent shoulder surgery in July, but it remains possible he could be ready by opening day.

In parts of five seasons between the Blue Jays and Marlins, Alvarez has a career 3.80 ERA with 296 strikeouts and 129 walks in 563 innings.

Pujols hits 701st career home run, connects for Cardinals

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ST. LOUIS — Cardinals slugger Albert Pujols hit his 701st home run, connecting Friday night against the Pittsburgh Pirates.

Pujols launched a slider from former teammate Johan Oviedo over the Big Mac Land sign in left field at Busch Stadium. The solo drive in the fourth inning made it 1-all.

Pujols faced Oviedo for the first time and made the 24-year-old righty the 456th different pitcher he’s homered against.

The St. Louis star hadn’t homered in a week since hitting No. 699 and 700 at Dodger Stadium last Friday. Pujols had gone 10 at-bats without a home run after two starts and one pinch-hit appearance.

The Busch Stadium crowd gave the 42-year-old Pujols a long standing ovation before he came out of the Cardinals dugout to tip his cap for a curtain call.

Pujols hit his 22nd home run this season for the NL Central champion Cardinals.

Pujols is fourth on the career home run list behind Barry Bonds (762), Hank Aaron (755) and Babe Ruth (714).