Odds & Ends: Cubs, Giambi, Kikuchi

Some links to check out as we await the crowning of the 2009 AL Central Champions:

  • Major League Baseball announced today that the transfer of the Chicago Cubs to Tom Ricketts was unanimously approved.  Ricketts will assume day-to-day control of the club when the deal is finalized, which should take place before the end of the month.
  • Jack Curry of the New York Times reports via Twitter that Jason Giambi "raved about the Rockies and said he wants to play in 2010." 
  • Decision time is drawing near for Japanese high school pitcher Yusei Kikuchi and NPB Tracker took a glance at what lies ahead for the hard-throwing lefty.  The 18-year-old is deciding between MLB and Nippon Professional Baseball (NPB) and is believed to have more than 20 clubs interested in his services.  Kikuchi originally planned to speak with only a select few MLB teams, but has now resolved that he will talk to all interested suitors.  
  • More from NPB Tracker as Ryota Igarashi – reliever for the Tokyo Yakult Swallows – eyes a move to MLB.  Igarashi is keeping mum on the subject for now as his team is in the playoff hunt.
  • ESPN's Keith Law chatted about new Toronto GM Alex Anthopoulos on the radio today and Drunk Jays Fans has a transcript of the interview as well as a link to the audio.
  • Bill Shaikin of the Los Angeles Times offered up his take on how the internet has changed the way baseball is covered.
  • From the Fish Bytes blog comes the news that the Marlins did not extend contract offers to pitching coach Mark Wiley and first-base coach Andy Fox.  Both men were offered positions elsewhere in the organization.  The rest of the coaching staff will be retained.
  • Dick Kaegel of MLB.com brings us similar news out of Kansas City.  Everyone on the Royals staff will return to their current roles, except for bullpen coach John Mizerock and first-base coach Rusty Kuntz.  Mizerock has been let go whereas Kuntz will become a special assistant to GM Dayton Moore.

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