Hello everyone, and a very happy Friday to you. Congratulations on making it through another week! Please take a look at some nice links to start your Friday journey.
In Mariners news...
- The Mariners reportedly made two notable acquisitions yesterday! First, the Mariners have reportedly agreed to a minor league deal with veteran lefty Wei-Yin Chen. As Greg Johns notes, the Mariners themselves have not yet confirmed the deal, which is contingent on Chen passing a physical.
- Secondly, the Mariners officially announced the signing of relief pitcher Yoshihisa Hirano to a Major League contract. Per Ken Rosenthal, Hirano’s contract includes a bonus each time he’s traded.
Hirano deal with #Mariners also includes a $250K bonus each time he is traded.— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) January 30, 2020
- Athletic beat writer Corey Brock gave his thoughts on the Hirano accquisition. ($)
- Baseball America posted their Top 30 rankings of shortstop prospects. Mariners prospect Noelvi Marte came in at number 17. ($)
- Bleacher Report, meanwhile, posted their rankings of the top prospects in every organization. While not exactly useful as a measure of organizational strength, it’s a fun thought exercise. The Mariners came in at number 11 with Jarred Kelenic being listed as their top prospect.
- If you missed it, MLB Pipeline announced their top 100 prospects last week. That’s old news, but yesterday they listed the top prospect on each team that just missed the cut. The Mariners’ entry is Noelvi Marte. For reference, Jarred Kelenic, Julio Rodriguez, Logan Gilbert, Evan White, and George Kirby all made the original top 100 list.
Around the League...
- The Pirates are reportedly considering Kevin Pillar, Billy Hamilton, and Cameron Maybin for the CF vacancy.
Free agents Kevin Pillar, Billy Hamilton snd Cameron Maybin are among CF candidates Pirates are considering. Pillar would seem to be pricier than the others. GM Hen Cherington knows him from Toronto— Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) January 30, 2020
- The Dodgers have reportedly emerged as the most likely trade partner with the Red Sox for star OF Mookie Betts.
- The Rangers have signed Matt Duffy to a minor league deal.
- Baseball Prospectus released their top 101 Dynasty Prospects. ($)
- Eno Sarris looks at whether some athletes might be willing to dip a toe into pseudoscience to gain an edge... Recovery Water, anyone? ($)
- In case you missed it from an early edition of links, an Astros fan mapped out every trash can bang from 2017. Marc Craig from The Athletic detailed it. ($)
- The Rockies have reportedly hired Peter Bourjos as a scout.
- New Astros manager Dusty Baker on sign stealing:
Baker on sign-stealing: "We have to go forward and make sure that it doesn't happen again. It's certainly not going to happen on my watch here."— Brian McTaggart (@brianmctaggart) January 30, 2020
- Our friends at SBNation ranked the 2020 MLB pre-game hats that teams wear.
- Ex-Mariner David Phelps has signed a minor league deal with the Brewers.
- In case you didn’t know, the Women’s World Chess Championship wrapped up last week! The championship match pitted the defending champion, 28-year-old Ju Wenjun of China, against 21-year-old Aleksandra Goryachkina of Russia. The match itself was extremely exciting, with Goryachkina securing a needed win in the 12th and final game to send the match to a four-game set of rapid tiebreakers. Wenjun edged out Goryachkina in the tiebreakers 2 1⁄2 - 1 1⁄2 to win the championship.
- Fifth-ranked Dominic Thiem of Austria won a thrilling match against top-seeded Rafael Nadal of Spain two days ago in the quarterfinal of the men’s Australian Open. Thiem played in the semifinal last night against ninth-ranked Alex Zverev of Germany, though I’m admittedly writing this before the match has taken place. The winner will face the fearsome Novak Djokovic in the finals. (edit: Thiem defeated Zverev and will face Djokovic in the finals on Sunday.)