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In Mariners News:
- Just in case you didn’t see it spelled out, per Larry Stone, it seems like the Mariners are indeed done adding to the big-league roster, at least offensively:
Dipoto said Thursday it is unlikely the Mariners will pursue any more offensive players on major-league contracts.
- Also from Larry Stone: new-look Chris Flexen has dropped 50 (!) pounds after remaking himself as a pitcher in Korea.
- It’s Spring Training, which means BSOHL stories abound. Yesterday we got one on Yusei Kikuchi; today it’s ... Justin Dunn?
Yep. Dunn does look different. Servais said this morning that he had lost about 10 lbs as part of his off season plan and that they were very happy with what they saw when he reported.— Shannon Drayer (@shannondrayer) February 20, 2021
And hello maple leaf. https://t.co/Kzyy2W55pJ
Honestly I’m surprised Dunn, who has always struck me as a relatively slender guy, had ten pounds to lose. Maybe he cut off the bleached tips?
- ICYMI, since he can’t do his Top Golf fundraiser for his 4MOM charity this year, Braden Bishop is doing his #HitsForALZ fundraiser again, where he pledges money for each Spring Training hit he gets. Someone has already jumped in to sponsor Julio, as well, but that’s not scaring off the young outfielder:
I GOT YOU— Julio Y. Rodriguez (@J_RODshow) February 20, 2021
- “Rupp” was before my time, but this is a sweet sentiment nonetheless:
This is a sweet uniform and I was very fortunate to wear it. Baseball gave me so much more than a great livelihood and I would not be the man I am today without it. #NeverGiveUp— Ruppert Jones (@JonesRuppert) February 20, 2021
Around the League:
- Former Astros Wet Guy Jake Marisnick is headed to the Cubs on a major-league deal with an mutual option for 2022. In order to make room for him on the 40, former Mariner Phillip Ervin was DFA’d. That anguished howl you hear is coming from Connor. Former Mariner Cameron Maybin is also headed to the Cubs, on a minor-league deal.
- Speaking of the Astros, Carlos Correa and José Altuve are teaming up to feed 25,000 kids affected by the ice storm that assaulted Houston over the past week.
- College baseball returned this weekend, and while there was a lot to be excited about—and for the players themselves, all of whom seemed a little extra amped up—probably no one had a more exciting start to the season than Florida Atlantic’s Caleb Pendleton:
WATCH as @FAUBaseball's Caleb Pendleton hits not one, but TWO GRAND SLAMS IN ONE INNING— Conference USA (@ConferenceUSA) February 21, 2021
...did we mention these were the true freshman's first two collegiate at-bats? #SCTop10 | @SportsCenter | @ESPNAssignDesk | @notthefakeSVP | #TheCUSAWay pic.twitter.com/YcJFs7FRXn
- Most MLB teams rolled back their organization-wide pay cuts once things got back underway. The Diamondbacks, however, have not, which still makes them only the second-most dysfunctional sports team in the Phoenix area. (Would also be willing to hear arguments regarding the Suns.)
- The annual “Shohei Ohtani is out to prove a point this season” article only this time I’m afraid it might stick ($). (Also in Angels news: Acting pitching coach Matt Wise has tested positive for COVID and will be out for a while.)
In Bird Content:
New birb just dropped: