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Report: Yankees to sign Troy Tulowitzki

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ESPN’s Jeff Passan reports that the Yankees and shortstop Troy Tulowitzki have agreed to a contract, pending a physical. The Blue Jays, who released Tulowitzki on December 11, will pay his $20 million salary minus the major league minimum. The Blue Jays will also be on the hook for Tulowitzki’s $14 million salary in 2020 and $15 million in 2021 (with a $4 million buy out), both minus the major league minimum.

Tulowitzki, 34, missed the entire 2018 season recovering from surgery to remove bone spurs in both heels. He posted a weak .678 OPS in 66 games in 2017 and his best years are almost certainly behind him.

The Yankees, however, will be without Didi Gregorius, who underwent Tommy John surgery in October and isn’t expected to return until around the All-Star break. Tulowitzki will serve as a stopgap as the roster is presently constructed. The Yankees, of course, could still sign Manny Machado, as Passan notes that the Tulowitzki signing doesn’t preclude them from such a deal.

White Sox broadcaster Ed Farmer dies

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Ed Farmer, who pitched 11 years in the big leagues and then went on to much greater fame as a radio voice for the Chicago White Sox has died. He was 70.

Farmer, who had a history of kidney disease, had been in poor health which caused him to miss the end of the 2019 season. He was also was on a slower ramp-up to the 2020 season. His cause of death was not immediately reported.

Farmer, a Chicago native, was the 5th round pick of the Cleveland Indians in the 1967 draft and made his debut with them in 1971. From there he would go to Detroit, Philly, Baltimore, Milwaukee, and Texas before joining his hometown White Sox in 1979. After three seasons with the Sox he’d go back to Philly and then close out his career in Oakland in 1983. He pitched in 370 games in all, with all but 21 of them coming from the pen. He posted an ERA of 4.30. His best season came in 1979, which he split between the Rangers and Sox, posting a 2.99 ERA in 53 games, tossing 114.1 innings. He saved 30 for the Sox in 1980.

Farmer was better known as the radio voice for the White Sox, a role he first assumed in 1990. In 1991 he served as a special assistant to Sox general manager Ron Schueler, but was back in the booth for good in 1992. 2020 was set to be his 29th calling Sox games. In 2004 he and broadcast partner John Rooney were named the best radio team in the American League by USA Today.