Some news about the defending World Series champs and their division rivals…
- The Padres "remain open" to the idea of signing another Major League starter, tweets Jon Paul Morosi of FOXSports.com. This is just pure speculation, but of the five hurlers on Luke Adams' list of pitchers that could benefit from the NL, three (Jeremy Bonderman, Bruce Chen and Kevin Millwood) are still available and would likely be open to the idea of pitcher-friendly Petco Park.
- Brandon Belt "has a legitimate chance" to win an everyday job playing first base or left field in San Francisco, writes MLB.com's Chris Haft. Belt, who turns 23 in April, has just one minor league season to his name, but he hit .352/.455/.620 in 595 plate appearances for the Giants' Class A, Double-A and Triple-A affiliates.
- Pablo Sandoval has lost 17 pounds training with former Olympic decathlete Dan O'Brien and plans to lose more weight before the start of Spring Training, Rich Aurilia tells Henry Schulman of the San Francisco Chronicle. Sandoval was threatened with a demotion to the minors by GM Brian Sabean unless the "Kung Fu Panda" improved his conditioning this offseason.
- The Rockies' big extensions with Carlos Gonzalez and Troy Tulowitzki put more pressure on the team's minor league system to produce low-cost, quality players, writes Jim Armstrong of the Denver Post.