San Francisco Giants third baseman Pablo Sandoval is thin and happy. He showed up at the Giants' spring camp a few days ago after a winter of rejuvenation in his native Venezuela. He refined his nutritional intake, got in shape and played a little ball in the Venezuelan Winter League. As for what is behind the transformation --he had a similar one between 2010 and 2011 - Sandoval said it doesn't necessarily have anything do to with the fact that his three-year, $17.15 million deal expires after the season.
Los Angeles Angels pitcher Mark Mulder tore his left Achilles tendon Saturday, cutting short his comeback and possibly bringing his career to an end. Mulder last pitched in the majors in 2008 for St. Louis. The 36-year-old left-hander was hoping to make the Angels' rotation after being invited in January to spring training, but team spokesman Eric Kay said Mulder felt a pop during agility drills. That was tough.'' Mulder won 103 games over nine major league seasons with Oakland and St. Louis, including a 21-win season in 2001.
Justin Smoak and the Seattle Mariners have avoided arbitration by agreeing on a contract that guarantees the first baseman $2,787,500 and could be worth up to $8,287,500 over two years. Smoak will earn $2,637,500 this season under Saturday's agreement, and Seattle has a $3.65 million option for 2015 with a $150,000 buyout. He was Seattle's last player in arbitration. With the moves to acquire Corey Hart and Logan Morrison in the offseason, Smoak's time at first base could be significantly reduced if he isn't a consistent performer at the plate.
ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) -- The Cleveland Indians improved to 2-0 in salary arbitration cases this year, defeating pitcher Josh Tomlin.
VIERA, Fla. (AP) -- Washington Nationals manager Matt Williams says he expects Bryce Harper to be fully recovered from offseason knee surgery when the slugger reports to spring training next week.
GOODYEAR, Ariz. (AP) -- The Cleveland Indians signed right-hander Aaron Harang to a minor-league deal on Saturday and invited him to camp.
University of New Orleans head coach Ron Maestri and a group of his Privateer players joined coaches and players from LSU, Grambling and Southern as instructors for the two-hour clinic Urban Youth Academy clinic, which was followed by a college and career fair attended by five universities and two companies.
Ryan Howard has been here before. A year ago, Howard sat in front of the media at Bright House Field and promised the season was going to be the one that shifts the Philadelphia Phillies' fortunes. The Phillies finished with just 73 wins and Howard played in only 80 games thanks to knee problems. I haven't talked to (Phillies manager Ryne Sandberg) about what the approach is going to be this year, yet, but I think it's going to be to try to take care of things, watch what we're doing, get my work in and not necessarily overdo it.'' After tearing his Achilles in the last game of 2011, Howard has missed 173 games in the following two seasons.
David Price didn't think he would be in Port Charlotte this spring. For much of the offseason, the Tampa Bay Rays' ace expected to be traded. This is home for me.'' There's still a chance that Price could get traded before the end of the season, but he thinks each day in Port Charlotte makes it less likely. ''David has a great arm,'' new Rays catcher Ryan Hanigan said.
Detroit Tigers ace Justin Verlander threw 41 pitches in his first official bullpen session of spring training. Verlander is recovering from surgery on his abdomen in early January. He's trying to tone it down this spring and Tigers rookie manager Brad Ausmus says Verlander is mostly setting his own pace. ''I feel really good,'' Verlander said.
The Chicago Cubs have signed speedy utility man Emilio Bonifacio to a minor-league deal with an invitation to big-league camp Bonifacio is a switch-hitter who can play both all over the infield and outfield. He played for the Toronto Blue Jays and Kansas City Royals last season and was released by the Royals earlier this week. Bonifacio is guaranteed $573,770 in termination pay from his deal with the Royals, who had agreed last month to a $3.5 million, one-year contract.
After the World Series championship parade, Red Sox pitcher Jake Peavy bought a duck boat that currently resides at his spacious ranch in Alabama. That duck boat is a prized possession -- one that Peavy is taking great lengths to design to just his liking.
There was nothing subtle about the way the Padres pursued Minor League free-agent pitcher Anthony Carter this offseason.
There's been nothing idle about the way catcher Yasmani Grandal has pushed himself to get ready for Opening Day -- even if the Padres are being cautious about his surgically repaired right knee.
The Cubs signed Emilio Bonifacio to a contract on Saturday, and manager Rick Renteria says the versatile player seems like a perfect fit for the National League.
The Orioles claimed utility man Jimmy Paredes off waivers from the Marlins on Saturday.
The Indians are always on the hunt for more depth in their rotation. On Saturday, veteran right-hander Aaron Harang was spotted in the halls of Cleveland's spring complex, possibly representing another arm added to the mix.
Among the highlights of Saturday's first workout for Rays pitchers and catchers -- according to manager Joe Maddon -- was the sensation of looking out to one of the pitching groups and noticing they were all left-handers.
Count Alex Cobb among the many who are optimistic about the Rays' chances this season.
Last spring, Rays ace David Price was coming off an American League Cy Young Award season. Due to the many accolades he received, Price's workout routines were occasionally disrupted. In said cases, Price would have to rely on a "sock" workout, where he would put a sock over his arm with a baseball inside of it, making for a drill that allowed him to throw a baseball while inside.