Two rumored Reds deals didn't come to pass at baseball's winter meetings, but Cincinnati general manager Walt Jocketty plans to continue talking.'
Two rumored Reds deals didn't come to pass at baseball's winter meetings, but Cincinnati general manager Walt Jocketty plans to continue talking.
"Other people are coming to us," he told reporters covering the team.
A deal that would have sent second baseman Brandon Phillips to the Yankees for outfielder Brett Gardner was reportedly nixed by New York, but the teams are still talking with more names in the mix.
The Reds were also reportedly close on a deal that would have sent reliever Sean Marshall to Colorado that didn't happen and have been trying to secure a backup shortstop. With or without the trades, they will likely succeed in the latter quest eventually.
Veteran Steelers cornerback Ryan Clark talked about the example James Harrison set for his Pittsburgh teammates during a conference call with reporters who cover the Bengals this week. Harrison returns to Pittsburgh as a Bengal for the first time Sunday night.
"The things you learn from James, you learn by the way he works," Clark said. "To watch a guy in the weight room who works as hard as he does in season and out of season. To watch a guy that when he practices, he practices with a weight vest. He goes hard every play. He runs to the ball every play. He works on his rush moves every play. And this is even after he was named league defensive MVP.
"When you see a person who's accomplished what he's accomplished and made the money he's already made and to still continue to work the way he's worked? That is contagious. And it's not only contagious, it's at least setting an example of what it takes to be a great football player. James did all those things while he was here."
Clark laughed when he was asked if Harrison's personality is contagious.
"Not really," Clark said. "Nobody really wants to be as big of a jerk as James can be sometimes. James' personality was kind of created by him and also by the people around him; the media. He kind of played into it. And now, he's forgotten that he's actually really a nice dude. For us, the James I know is not the guy that everybody else knows."
With the Indians having let closer Chris Perez go, they are in a market for a replacement. Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com reported that the Tribe "is believed to have made an offer" to John Axford, who was non-tendered by the Cardinals. St. Louis reportedly let him Axford go because he figured to get a significant raise from the $5 million he made in 2013.
Axford closed with the Brewers before he was dealt to the Cardinals and is reportedly high on the Chicago Cubs' list. Baltimore and Seattle are also believed to be looking at Axford as potential closer, although the Orioles are also eying up Perez and Grant Balfour.
Purdue athletic director Morgan Burke made it clear this week he still believes his decision to fire football coach Danny Hope and hire Darrell Hazell was a good one, despite the team's step back record-wise from 2012 to 2013. Hope's Boilermakers were 6-6 in 2012 and Hazell, the former Ohio State assistant who was the head coach at Kent State, coached a 1-11 season in his first year at Purdue.
"We made that conscious decision to invest in football and the objective is to get back to Pasadena (Rose Bowl)," Burke told the Lafayette Journal and Courier. "We're not going to back away from that - that's exactly what we said we want to accomplish. We went out and recruited a guy who was in demand, who has a strong pedigree and experience of both building and maintaining success in a program."
Burke said he wasn't satisfied to be .500 every season.
"I knew last year this was an average team," he said. "We've been a .500 program for the last five, six, seven years. That's not bad, but that's not where we want to go. . ."
Purdue signed Hazell to a six-year contract, which paid him $2 million this past season. The pool to pay assistant coaches increased about $500,000 to $2.1 million from 2012.
Indians general manager Chris Antonetti has already told Carlos Carrasco that he's going to be on the major league club this season – he's out of options – and the pitcher who spent most of last season with the Clippers, wants to be a starter. Carrasco was 1-4 with a 6.75 ERA in 15 games including seven starts with the Tribe last season. He was 3-1 with a 3.14 ERA in 16 games, 14 of which were starts, in Columbus.
The Tribe also wants him to start and he is expected to compete for the fifth spot in the rotation with Josh Tomlin and Trevor Bauer.
Carrasco started laying the groundwork for the battle this week, driving from Tampa to the winter meetings in Orlando to meet with Cleveland manager Terry Francona and pitching coach Mickey Callaway.
"This is a big year for me," Carrasco told the Plain Dealer. "After the wild-card game, I took a week off and started training again. Every morning my wife gets me out of bed and tells me to go run. I'm ready for spring training."
He's a little ahead of himself. Pitchers report on Feb. 11.