Odds & Ends: Schumaker, Chapman, Thome

Sunday linkage…

  • Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic reflects on Eric Byrnes' time with the D'Backs.
  • Skip Schumaker tells MLB.com's Matthew Leach that he and the Cardinals are nearing an agreement on a 2010 contract.
  • MLB.com's Joe Frisaro tweets that the Marlins were willing to offer $20MM to Aroldis Chapman.  
  • MLB.com's Scott Merkin writes that a handful of teams have contacted Jim Thome, including the Rays, though nothing is imminent. 
  • Owner Tom Ricketts defended general manager Jim Hendry this Saturday at the Cubs' annual convention, according to Melissa Isaacson of ESPNChicago.com.
  • Shi Davidi from the Canadian Press spoke with both Justin Morneau and Jeff Francis at Baseball Canada's Annual Awards Banquet Saturday. Morneau expects to begin full workouts in a couple of weeks as a season-ending stress fracture in his back appears to have healed without issue. Francis is recovering from shoulder surgery but expects to be ready for Spring Training.
  • Bill Ladson tweets that Ryan Zimmerman thinks the Nationals are having their best offseason since he's been with the organization. Some of the larger moves we've seen the Nats make include signing Jason MarquisMatt Capps, and Ivan Rodriguez, in addition to trading for Brian Bruney.
  • Eric Chavez told Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle that he is comfortable with shifting to a utility role after the addition of third baseman Kevin Kouzmanoff.
  • Jon Heyman of Sports Illustrated (via Twitter) "overheard" that the Brewers will sign at least one more pitcher.  Recently, Milwaukee outrighted pitcher Omar Aguilar to Triple-A, though assistant GM Gord Ash claimed it wasn't in anticipation of an acquisition.
  • ESPN's Buster Olney writes that the Marlins didn't give Josh Johnson an extension just to appease the "Powers That Be".  Those within the organization expected the deal to get done well before the joint press release from the commissioner's office and the players' union.
  • Olney also writes that the Marlins are still looking for bullpen help and will sift through the remaining free agent relievers, including Kiko CaleroFlorida declined to offer arbitration to Calero, to avoid giving him a raise on his $500K salary in 2009.


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