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Pirates sign Ivan Nova for three years, $26 million

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Robert Murray of FanRag Sports reports that Ivan Nova has signed with the Pittsburgh Pirates for three years and $26 million. He will get a $2 million signing bonus.

That’s a lot cheaper than many suspected he’d get after his solid performance following his trade to Pittsburgh last season. Nova started slow with the Yankees, posting a 4.90 ERA in 15 starts and six relief appearances but posted a 3.06 ERA in 11 starts for the Pirates while striking out 52 and walking just three in 64.2 innings.

Nova is basically J.A. Happ, right? Happ had a crappy first half of 2015, went to Pittsburgh and fixed himself in 11 great starts, just like Nova. And yet Nova got $10 million less than Happ got on his three year deal with the Blue Jays a year ago.

Oh well.

Police are keeping reporters away from owners at the owners meetings

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The owners meetings are going on in Arlington, Texas right now and something unusual is happening: the owners are using police to shield them from reporters seeking comment.

Chandler Rome, the Astros beat writer for the Houston Chronicle, attempted to talk to Astros owner Jim Crane at the hotel in which the meetings are taking place. Which makes sense because, duh, Rome covers the Astros and, if you haven’t noticed, the Astros are in the news lately.

Here’s how it went:

This was confirmed by other reporters:

To be clear: this is a radically different way things have ever been handled at MLB meetings of any kind. Reporters — who are credentialed specifically for these meetings at this location, they’re not just showing up — approach the GMs or the owners or whoever as they walk in the public parts of the hotel in which they’re held or in the areas designated for press conferences. It’s not contentious. Usually the figures of interest will stop and talk a bit then move on. If they don’t want to talk they just keep walking, often offering apologies or an excuse about being late for something and say they’ll be available later. It’s chill as far as reporters vs. the powerful tend to go.

But apparently not today. Not at the owners meetings. Now police — who are apparently off duty on contract security, but armed and in full official uniform — are shielding The Lords of Baseball from scrutiny.

We live in interesting times.