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Blue Jays reach one-year deal with free-agent RHP David Phelps

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The Toronto Blue Jays have agreed to a deal with free-agent right-hander David Phelps, sources told ESPN’s Jeff Passan on Thursday night.

The one-year deal is worth $2.5 million and includes a club option, sources said.

Phelps, 32, missed the 2018 season while recovering from Tommy John surgery. He tore the ulnar collateral ligament in his pitching elbow while throwing the final pitch of his last spring appearance while with the Mariners, with whom he was expected to serve as a setup man in 2018.

Phelps spent his first three big league seasons with the Yankees before they traded him to the Marlins following the 2014 season. He pitched two-plus seasons for Miami before a trade to Seattle in 2017.

Phelps is a career 30-33 pitcher with a 3.89 ERA and 520 strikeouts in 553⅔ innings.

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MillerCoors losing stadium naming rights for Milwaukee Brewers in 2021

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MILWAUKEE — The home of the Milwaukee Brewers will be renamed when MillerCoors’ naming rights expire following the 2020 season.

MillerCoors said in a statement Tuesday that the rights to Miller Park will go to American Family Insurance beginning in 2021. MillerCoors said American Family proactively pitched the Brewers “an incredibly rich offer” for future naming rights to the ballpark.

Miller Park, with its convertible roof, opened in 2001 and replaced Milwaukee County Stadium.

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Texas Rangers reach deal with infielder Asdrubal Cabrera

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Free agent infielder Asdrubal Cabrera and the Texas Rangers are in agreement on a one-year, $3.5 million deal, pending a physical, league sources tell ESPN.

Cabrera can play all around the diamond and slot into a utility role if necessary, but the Rangers’ plan is to slot him at third base, the sources said.

The Athletic first reported news of the agreement.

The switch-hitting Cabrera batted .262 with 23 home runs and 75 RBIs in 147 games last season with the New York Mets and Philadelphia Phillies. He hit .228 with five homers for Philadelphia after being acquired on July 28 to give the team some infield flexibility and pop for their playoff push.

Cabrera has spent most of his career at shortstop but started only at second for the Mets last season and split his time at second, third base and shortstop with the Phillies after the trade, so he provides a lot of versatility.

Cabrera has a career batting average of .269. His best offensive season was 2011 when he was easily the Cleveland Indians‘ most valuable player that year, batting .273 and posting career-highs with 25 homers and 92 RBIs — power numbers few saw coming. Before that season, the 33-year-old had hit just 18 career homers. Cabrera led AL shortstops in RBIs, was tied for first in hits (165) and was second in doubles (32) and runs (87).

Beyond that, he made dazzling defensive plays that saved runs, turned games and earned him an almost nightly spot on TV highlight packages.

Cleveland acquired Cabrera from Seattle in 2006 in a trade for first baseman Eduardo Perez. After he was called up from Triple-A in 2007, Cabrera provided an immediate spark, helping push the Indians to an AL Central title and within one win of the World Series.

Cabrera followed with seven-plus productive years in which he emerged as one of the game’s best all-around middle infielders before he was traded to the Nationals in July 2014. He then played one season with the Tampa Bay Rays before signing with the Mets in 2016.

ESPN’s Jeff Passan contributed to this report.

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Bryce Harper to Rangers? Well, if Tony Romo says it’s so …

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Bryce Harper is headed to Texas. At least if you believe Tony Romo.

Romo, the CBS NFL analyst — and former Dallas Cowboys quarterback — put on an epic performance prognosticating the New England Patriots‘ plays during their overtime victory in the AFC Championship Game on Sunday against the Kansas City Chiefs, sparking buzz on social media.

The praise for Romo’s Nostradamus act wasn’t lost on Harper, MLB’s most high-profile free-agent superstar.

First, with tongue firmly in cheek, Harper took to Twitter that night to “confirm” he’d asked Romo to predict which team’s outfield he’ll be roaming in this season.

A day later, Romo responded — and his choice was, well, predictable.

A little home cooking or not, it was enough to make the Texas Rangers happy.

We’re pretty sure the Rangers didn’t send any dough to Romo, but if they have any intention of making his call come true and luring Harper to Texas, well, they’ll need to write out a pretty big check indeed.



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